Road to the Repeat: Mile High Mania

The Lakers (55-22) have been struggling. Possibly due to a lack of communication.

They’ll have to put their transgression aside tonight as they hit the road against a conference rival, the Denver Nuggets (51-27).

The Lakers have struggled without their starter center, who has missed the last eight games due to a strained Achilles tendon.

They’re 4-4 since the injury.

In the 100-81 loss at home against San Antonio, Los Angeles was out of sync heading into halftime.

Now with 22 losses in the season, they’ll have to win the final five games in order to reach their 2nd consecutive 60-win season.

Attempting this feat against a cocky Denver Nugget team will not be an easy task.

The Nuggets, however are without their best defensive player, Kenyon Martin, who is out with a left knee injury.

But, despite a 95-89 loss to the Lakers on Feb. 28, they’ve handled themselves well, and are in position to take the season series 3-1 with a win tonight.

The Lakers will have to communicate on both ends of the floor to beat this Nuggets team. Denver has held their last three opponents to 92.0 points after allowing 105.3 in the previous six.

They’ll also need to be consistent with executing the offense through the inside. The Lakers have tended to stray away from this effective strategy as the game progresses.

Kobe has been struggling offensively in the last two games. Going 5-23 against Utah and 8-24 against San Antonio.

PROJECTED STARTERS:

LAKERS:
(C) P. Gasol
(PF) L. Odom
(SF) R. Artest
(SG) K. Bryant
(PG) D. Fisher

X-Factors: Consistent looks toward the inside; Kobe’s scoring efficiency.

INJURIES:
A. Bynum (left Achilles)is out.

NUGGETS:
(C) J. Petro
(PF) Nene
(SF) C. Anthony
(SG) A. Afflalo
(PG) C. Billups

Injuries:
K. Martin (left knee) is out.

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