Saturday’s preseason game against the Golden State Warriors will mark the first time Luke Walton will face his former team as the new head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers. As expected, there’s already been some playful banter between Walton and Warriors head coach Steve Kerr, but trash-talking during the game may be a stretch.
After Friday’s practice in Las Vegas, Walton was asked whether there will be some trash-talking back and forth with Kerr during their first meeting as opposing head coaches. Walton shot down that notion that they’d be jawing but thinks forward Draymond Green may have a few things to say, via Mark Medina of the OC Register:
“I don’t think trash talk,” Walton said. “Maybe between me and Draymond (Green). Not between Steve and I.”
Walton and Kerr will go head-to-head twice during the preseason. The second game between the Warriors and Lakers will take place in San Diego at Valley View Casino Center on Oct. 19 followed by the last preseason game for Los Angeles on Oct. 21 against the Phoenix Suns at the Honda Center in Anaheim.
The Lakers will see plenty of Walton’s former squad early in the regular season as well. The first matchup between these two teams in the regular season will take place on Nov. 4 at the Staples Center. In fact, the Lakers face the Warriors three times in the first full month of the 2016-17 NBA season with Walton and company traveling up to Oracle Arena on Nov. 23 and Stephen Curry’s team coming back down to Los Angeles on Nov. 25.
After three meetings in November, the Lakers won’t see the Warriors again until the last game of the regular season on April 12 back at Oracle Arena. It’ll be interesting to see where both teams are at that point and if Walton needs a win against his former team to propel the Lakers into the playoffs.