The Lakers are back at home and riding the momentum of a two-game winning streak. Before them lie the oh-so-beatable 7-16 Charlotte Bobcats. And what ho! Pau Gasol has returned! With Steve Nash maybe, maybe, on his way back for Saturday! It's like the Basketball Gods woke up and remembered that they work for us.
The Bobcats have lost 11 in a row. Their last victory was over the Washington Wizards in double overtime on November 24. They've given up a hundred or more points in nine straight games and rank last in the NBA in defensive efficiency. Not that anything is assured with this Lakers team - I mean, honestly - but this is pretty much the perfect opponent and situation for working Pau back into the rotation. He'll start, by the way.
The Bobcats boast maybe the worst collection of big men in the NBA, one "featuring" Brendan Haywood, Bismack Biyombo, Byron Mullens and someone named "Jeff Taylor." Yeah, I don't know either. But their backup point guard is Ramon Sessions, so be sure to wish him a warm return to Staples.