After losing five consecutive games, the Los Angeles Lakers (16-21) got their first victory of 2013 Tuesday night against the struggling Cleveland Cavaliers.
The Bucks have shown they are a playoff team with their dynamic back-court of Brandon Jennings (19 points, six assists) and Monta Ellis (19 points, five assists).
After recently losing four games in a row, Bucks and coach Scott Skiles parted ways, and since then the team has won three of their last four games.
Pau Gasol for the Lakers will miss his fifth straight game due to a concussion, and will later be reevaluated for their next game.
In the month of January, Jennings is averaging 22 points on 45% shooting, and six assists. He is playing like an all-star right now, and he has a great opportunity for a good game against the Lakers. If the Lakers let him get to his spots and control the game, it will be a tough game for the Lakers to win.
We all know Bryant can score, but last game he showed us he can still play great defense. Bryant guarded the highly praised point guard Kyrie Irving for basically the entire game, and it proved to be very effective. Irving had only 15 points on 7-15 shooting, and was obviously flustered by Bryant’s performance. Mike D’Antoni recently said he wants Bryant to guard point guards more often, and it looks like he will be on Jennings tonight. If Bryant can contain Jennings, the Lakers have a great chance to win.
KEY TO A LAKERS VICTORY
The Bucks are led by two fast and athletic guards, Jennings and Ellis, that get their teams running and playing at a high energy. If a team comes out flat against them they can go on runs very fast. The energy for the Lakers has been better as of recently with the help of Earl Clark effort and Kobe Bryant locking in on defense. Every game is a must win game at this point, and if the Lakers want to win the energy must be there.
PROJECTED STARTING LINE-UPS
Los Angeles Lakers
PG: Steve Nash
SG: Kobe Bryant
SF: Earl Clark
PF: Metta World Peace
C: Dwight Howard
PG: Brandon Jennings
SG: Monta Ellis
SF: Ersan Ilyasova
PF: Luc Richard Mbah a Moute
C: Larry Sanders
The game starts at 7:30pm PST and will be broadcast on TWC SportsNet.