With the Lakers coaching situation chaotic right now, the Lakers will be with the assistant coach right now no matter what. Mike Brown couldn’t really handle the coaching job of Phil Jackson, who they are trying to bring back. The Lakers are down right now. Their star PG Steve Nash is out, giving the Warriors the edge, Kobe is injured, giving Klay a chance to catch up with him, and Howard? Well the Warriors will have to see how that plays out.
Bogut is out for 7-10 days, thinking that he is a liability for the Warriors, he has placed himself on the bench to work on some extra strengthening. This means that Howard is going to crush whoever is the center for the Warriors. This means that Festus Ezeli, and at some parts of the night, Carl Landry and David Lee well end up guarding the best center in the league. Lee and Landry I trust, but Howard is big, muscular, and monstrous.
If Ezeli’s size and inexperience is too much for Howard to have a regular night, the Warriors may have to break another NBA record and force Howard into 50 free throws. Hack-a-Dwight almost worked for Mark Jackson last season. Maybe if the Warriors go into zone, they will smother Howard and force him into a turnover, a tough shot, or a kick-out to a perimeter shooter. The Lakers haven’t had many of them this season.
1. Stephen Curry vs Steve Blake: Curry dominates matchup, Steve Blake is washed up, old, and can only stroke it sometimes.
2. Klay Thompson vs Kobe Bryant: Kobe likes Klay, but that doesn’t mean he won’t try to score 40 on him. Kobe will win the matchup.
3. Harrison Barnes vs Metta World Peace: World Peace wins, but only because Barnes is afraid of him.
4. David Lee vs Pau Gasol: Matchup is mostly equal, but Lee edges Gasol on shot %, Gasol beats him with rebounds
5. Festus Ezeli vs Dwight Howard: Howard.
This is a very good rebounding team for the Lakers, who really need Landry to get into it here. When he’s in, he has to work hard, drive, shoot, and rebound. Landry is capable of all these things, as his signing has turned out to be a good one.
Player to Watch: Harrison Barnes
Leading Scorer: Dwight Howard, 33, 14
Matchup to Watch: Pau Gasol vs David lee
Winner: Lakers by 8 or less