Pacers Projected Starting Line-up
PG: Darren Collison
SG: Mike Dunleavy
SF: Danny Granger
PF: Josh McRoberts
C: Roy Hibbert
Key Reserves: T.J. Ford, James Posey
Injuries: T.J. Ford (Stomach Virus) game-time decision
The Lakers will return home after losing a close game to the Utah Jazz. The Lakers will play one game in Staples Center before they are back on the road for two games.
Frontcourt: The Indiana Pacers are a fairly “short” team, as their only seven-footer is Roy Hibbert. Hibbert will be going up against Pau Gasol, and will have his hands full guarding the early season MVP. The Lakers will also challenge the Pacers with the versatile Lamar Odom. Odom’s style of play will make it difficult for players like Josh McRoberts and Jeff Foster to stay in front of him. If the Lakers’ big men stay out of foul trouble, they should dominate the paint for the entire game.
Backcourt: The Los Angeles Lakers will go with their usual backcourt of Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher. Bryant and Fisher will have their hands full guarding Darren Collison and Mike Dunleavy, but at the end of the day expect the veteran Lakers to win the battle. The Lakers’ success will rely heavily on the play of their bench and the “Killer Bs.” Guards Steve Blake, Shannon Brown and Forward Matt Barnes have an advantage on the Pacers’ bench, and they must take advantage.
Keys to Laker victory: The Lakers must take advantage of the Pacers in the paint, and have to feed the ball to Gasol and Odom often. The Pacers will have trouble guarding the Laker bigs, so the team must exploit the mismatch.
The Lakers must get a better performance by the bench, their sub-par play on Friday resulted in a loss to the Utah Jazz. If Blake, Brown and Barnes play an effective game, the Lakers will have no problem beating the Pacers.
Laker Injuries: Andrew Bynum and Theo Ratliff
Indiana Pacers at Los Angeles Lakers
Staples Center- 9:30 P.M. EST/ 6:30 P.M. PST
FSW West, NBA League Pass (TV), 710/1330 AM ESPN (Radio)