Pre-Game Report: Lakers @ Bobcats

Projected Starting Lineups:

Derek Fisher – D.J. Augustin

Kobe Bryant – Stephen Jackson

Ron Artest – Gerald Wallace

Pau Gasol – Boris Diaw

Andrew Bynum – Kwame Brown

Lakers couldn’t find their way around the Orlando Magic on Sunday afternoon, losing in Florida to make their record 4-1 on their current road trip. Dwight Howard went 13 for 16 from the floor and finished with 31 points and 13 rebounds. The biggest question after the game was Andrew Bynum’s knee. Bynum came up gimpy late in the game on and looked uncomfortable limping. So far, it is said that his bone bruise in his left knee is bothersome.

Los Angeles will head into Charlotte on Valentine’s Day to try and snatch a win from Michael Jordan’s young Bobcats team. The Bobcats have always given the Lakers trouble, winning seven of their last nine meets against L.A.

The Bobcats just came off a buzzer beater win in Atlanta when Stephen Jackson knocked down a rainbow jumper over Maurice Evans and Al Horford. Charlotte has been trying to gain back some rhythm into their game for the playoff hunt. Last season, the Bobcats were swept in the playoffs by Orlando and owner Michael Jordan was not happy. Recently, Jordan practiced with his team and supposedly kicked butt which, for Jordan, isn’t a surprise even at the age of 47. Charlotte’s breakout point guard  D.J. Augustin has been having an atrocious month as well, shooting 29%.

Keys to Lakers Victory:

Size advantage – The Lakers have Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum (two 7 footers), the Bobcats have a 6’8 Boris Diaw and 6’11 Brown. Their next line of big men is Eduardo Najera at 6’8 and Nazr Mohammed at 6’10. Tyrus Thomas is on the injury list.

Make Free Throws – The Lakers shot 46% at the line in Orlando.

Control Stephen Jackson and Gerald Wallace – If Ron Artest plays tight defense on Jackson or Wallace, points won’t come easy for the Bobcats as their next highest scoring leaders are Augustin and Diaw. Augustin has been struggling this month and Diaw puts up 8.7 shots a game with very few three-attempts.

You May Also Like

NBA News: DeMar DeRozan Officially Opts Out Of Contract With Raptors

The start of NBA free agency is less than a month away with a few All-Star-caliber players set to hit the open market with the intention of signing lucrative long-term deals…

Game Recap: Lakers Fight, But Lose In Final Seconds

After losing 111-99 to the Denver Nuggets, the Lakers open an important…

Kobe Bryant On Lakers Having No. 2 Pick: ‘Don’t Mess It Up’

The Los Angeles Lakers finally received some good news on Tuesday with…

Lakers News: Kobe Bryant Says Lakers Will Always Be Contenders

In what has to be considered one of the most wild offseasons…