Lakers Vs. Warriors Game Preview: LA Looks To Return Home With A Win
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

After a 100-95 loss to the Golden State Warriors in Beijing, the Los Angeles Lakers will look to rebound against these same Warriors in front of the Shanghai crowd. The game tips off at 4:30 am Pacific Time once again as the Lakers will hopefully improve to 3-3 in the preseason before returning home.

While the Lakers lost on Tuesday, the team made progress as they outplayed the Warriors starting lineup through three quarters. In the second half, Nick Young and Chris Kaman played well finishing with 18 and 14 points respectively, and the Lakers had an 80-69 advantage going into the fourth.

While the Lakers ran with their second and third units in the fourth quarter, the Warriors continued to play their starters. The Lakers continued to stay competitive in the fourth, but missed defensive assignments and turnovers and squandered their 11-point lead.

Frontcourt:  In Beijing, it was the battle of the bigs as David Lee and Chris Kaman both had solid performances. Lee carried the Warriors with 31 points, six rebounds, and four assists in nearly 38 minutes in a preseason game. Kaman came alive in the second half as he was perfect from the field (7-7) and finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds in only 22 minutes of play.

Backcourt: The backcourt of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson struggled from the field in Beijing. While they combined for 37 points, they were only 12-35 from the field, including 6-19 from three-point land.

Things to Look For
Defending the Paint – The Warriors are extremely talented on the perimeter, but the Lakers have to do a much better job of defending the paint. The Lakers allowed Lee to finish 12-16 from the field, and most of his attempts were around the rim. While the Lakers don’t have shot blockers around the rim except for Jordan Hill, it becomes a matter of pushing players like Lee further away from his comfort spots on the initial catch.

Limiting Fastbreak Opportunities – Giving up 21 fastbreak points was the norm last season for the aging Lakers. With a roster now filled with young legs, the Lakers should always be able to get back on defense and limit those fastbreak opportunities. It’s easier said than done since the Warriors are still faster, but there needs to be a concerted effort to limit easy baskets.

Marcus Landry or Ryan Kelly? – The Lakers waived Darius Johnson-Odom yesterday and now have 16 players remaining on the roster. Chances are the final roster spot (if the Lakers decide to keep 15 players) will be determined between these two players. In his first game back from a foot injury, Ryan Kelly showed his ability as a stretch four and finished with six points and three rebounds. However, Marcus Landry has struggled tremendously, shooting 26 percent from the field and 23 percent from three-point land.

Golden State Warriors (2-2) at Los Angeles (2-3)
4:30 AM PST, October 18, 2013, Mercedes-Benz Arena, Shanghai, China
TV: TWC SportsNet, NBA TV
Radio: 710 ESPNLA

Warriors Projected Starting Line-up
PG: Stephen Curry
SG: Klay Thompson
SF: Andre Iguodala
PF: David Lee
C: Andrew Bogut

Key ReservesSF Draymond Green, PF Marreese Speights, C Jermaine O’Neal

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