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Lakers vs. Trail Blazers preview: Damian Lillard, D’Angelo Russell lock horns

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D’Angelo gets his toughest test yet in Lillard.

NBA: Los Angeles Lakers at Portland Trail Blazers Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers enjoyed a day off of practice after an exciting preseason win over the Denver Nuggets and are back at it again, taking on the Portland Trail Blazers. As measuring sticks go, Damian Lillard and the crew will definitely be the toughest outing yet for the purple and gold.

Even still, it’s going to make for a unique opportunity to watch a player that makes for a good comparison with D’Angelo Russell. Lillard -- a scoring point guard more than anything else -- has steadily taken on a heavier load each season since being drafted by Portland. He’s coming off a year where he scored a career-best 25.1 points per game, taking on the mantle that LaMarcus Aldridge left behind on his way out to San Antonio.

If there’s a current “young” point guard that projects to be a model to what we see out of Russell, Lillard is one of the best comparisons. Seeing if D’Angelo can disrupt him via defense will make for another compelling reason to watch this one closely. Damian is far and away the most talented guard Russell will have faced in exhibition thus far.

If not Russell, then perhaps Jordan Clarkson and his new focus on defense may be able to put the brakes on Lillard. “Spectacular” defender Nick Young could even be in the mix.

Plenty to watch as we approach the mid-way point of preseason. Enjoy the game.

Time: 7:30 p.m. PT

TV: Spectrum SportsNet