Time: 7PM PST - TV: KCAL, CSCA, NBATV
Game two of the Lakers back-to-back-to-back grueling season opening schedule begins tonight. Someone told me that the season started for the Lakers yesterday, that's funny I don't remember watching the Lakers lose to the favored Bulls in the closing seconds where Kobe turned the ball over when he should've just kept the ball for the intentional foul only to give it up to the leagues reigning MVP and yes Rose made the Lakers pay by making his high arching teardrop over Gasol then Kobe attempted to shoot over three horned defenders to redeem himself only to be blocked while Derek Fisher stands alone wide open at the corner...yeah...no I don't remember watching that game.
It's okay, today is a new day. A day that has the Lakers favored for the W over the (almost Anaheim) Sacramento Kings. Sacramento is one of the youngest teams in the league only having four players over 25. Tonight's game will showcase the old and the wise vs. the young and the quick. Bynum is now serving his 2 of 4 game suspension. The Lakers played fittingly without him so far. Will the Lakers match-up well with the Kings? Lets see the projected starting lineups shall we?
Lakers starting 5 and last nights numbers:
- Derek Fisher (2pts/3reb/3ast)
- Kobe Bryant (28pts/7reb/6ast)
- Devin Ebanks (8pts/1reb/2ast)
- Josh McRoberts (6pts/8reb/2ast)
- Pau Gasol (14pts/8reb/3ast)
- Tyreke Evans (sore left shoulder)
- Marcus Thornton
- John Salmons (thigh contusion)
- Chuck Hayes (heart abnormality - 2nd physical proved he's capable of playing now)
- DeMarcus Cousins (recovering from ankle injury)
Tyreke Evans averaged 18pts/5reb/6ast. last season and look for him to come out strong, especially with the Lakers highly publicized PG situation. We all know Evans is trigger happy so defending him well and forcing him to shoot low percentage shots is key.
NBA Sophomore DeMarcus Cousins had a great rookie season last year averaging 14pts/9reb. He is the better scorer compared to Hayes. He's tough and does not back down. Gasol will have to put a body on him at all times.
Marcus Thornton came out of nowhere last season having been traded to Sacramento mid season from New Orleans. He averaged 8 points with the Hornets (46 games) and then ended the season averaging 21 points for the Kings (27 games). He sparked the Kings late in the season and look for him to keep the fuse going in their season opener tonight.
The unfortunate reality for Sacramento is that Kobe's pissed at himself for yesterday's collapse and he's looking for redemption.
Sources: Yahoo! Sports, The Sacramento Bee.