The Los Angeles Lakers will take on Kyrie Irving and the Brooklyn Nets hoping to remain perfect on the second night of a back-to-back and move to 3-1 on their current road trip.
The Lakers are 5-0 on the second night of a back-to-back situation as well as 6-0 on the first night after beating the New York Knicks.
And as for the Nets, they will pose an interesting challenge to a Lakers team hoping to maintain that perfection since they are a heavy perimeter team.
The Nets, who will have Irving back after his extended absence, are led by their three-headed guard monster of Irving, Spencer Dinwiddie, and Caris LeVert. The Lakers have had some troubles against teams with multiple athletic guards and wings, so they will need big defensive nights from Avery Bradley, Alex Caruso, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, and Danny Green.
On the injury front, the Nets will be without De’Andre Jordan, meaning the Lakers should be able to have an advantage down low with Jarrett Allen being the team’s only consistent rim protector.
As for the Lakers, JaVale McGee will not play, so Dwight Howard will make his first start of the season.
This is the first meeting during the 2019-20 NBA season between the Lakers and Nets with both teams wanting wins for very different reasons. The Lakers want to gain back some momentum after getting killed by the Boston Celtics, and sweeping a back-to-back would be very helpful before a primetime matchup against the Philadelphia 76ers.
The Nets have disappointed as a whole so far this season, and are currently hanging on to the Eastern Conference’s eighth seed. They have also lost four games in a row, including two games to the 76ers while also losing to the Utah Jazz and Milwaukee Bucks. This is a brutal stretch of the schedule for them, but a win against a good team would be big as they try to make a standings push prior to the 2020 NBA All-Star break.
Despite the records, the Lakers will have to show a ton more effort against the Nets than they did against the Knicks or they won’t be able to pull out a win. They’ll also have to put a much stronger emphasis guarding the perimeter than they did against the Celtics.
Los Angeles Lakers (35-9) vs. Brooklyn Nets (18-24)
5:00 P.M. PT, Jan. 23, 2020
Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York
TV: TNT, Spectrum SportsNet
Radio: 710 AM (ESPN), 1330 KWKW (Spanish)
Projected Lakers Starting Lineup:
PG: LeBron James
SG: Avery Bradley
SF: Danny Green
PF: Anthony Davis
C: Dwight Howard
Key Reserves: Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Alex Caruso, Rajon Rondo
Projected Nets Starting Lineup:
PG: Kyrie Irving
SG: Spencer Dinwiddie
SF: Joe Harris
PF: Taurean Prince
C: Jarrett Allen
Key Reserves: Caris LeVert, Rodions Kurucs, Garrett Temple, Timothe Luwawu-Cabbarrot