The Los Angeles Lakers have prospered on their three-game road trip and have a chance to sweep the trio of games when they visit the Dallas Mavericks Friday night. The Lakers haven't lost since superstar Swaggy P returned to save the day, and that record will be put on the line against a very good Dallas team.
If you want to look at two teams on the opposite end of the spectrum the Lakers and Mavericks are mirror images of each other. Dallas has a 9-3 record and the best offense in the NBA, scoring 114.9 points per 100 possesions, per NBA.com. For a Lakers defense that struggles with the "team" concept of stopping opponents, that's going to be a big problem.
These teams have both swung erratically since that fateful playoff series, but Dallas is trying to rehash the team Mark Cuban so quickly disbanded. Both Tyson Chandler and J.J. Barea are back in Dallas, while they've added key players like Chandler Parsons and Monta Ellis along the way. Dirk is pretty much the power forward equivalent of Kobe on offense, in the sense that both have moves that will always get buckets no matter how old they are. Rick Carlisle is one of the top coaches in the league, and this is a team that took the San Antonio Spurs to seven games last season.
But a win would be sweet. Oh, so sweet. Cuban's barb that he hopes the Lakers "suck forever" is understandable, to an extent, but he's loved needling Los Angeles every opportunity he gets. Remember "amnesty this?" Hopefully the Lakers go out, play a very good game of basketball, and beat a very good Mavericks team on their home court. A three-game winning streak on the road is something that seemed like a far-fetched idea just a few days ago. The Lakers are 48 minutes of winning basketball away from it now. Enjoy the game.
Time: 5:30 p.m.