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Lakers vs. Hawks game preview: Road trip comes to an end in Atlanta

The Lakers’ four-game road trip comes to a conclusion in Atlanta.

NBA: Preseason-Atlanta Hawks at Chicago Bulls Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers were a few Paul George mid-range jumpers away from stealing a win on the road against the Indiana Pacers but will quickly forget about those blues as they close out their first back-to-back of these season in Atlanta against the Hawks.

Timofey Mozgov will sit out against Atlanta after getting his bell rung in Indiana, which should make for a very tough night for the Lakers’ frontcourt. Second-chance points have been a huge problem through the first week, and the Lakers suddenly lack a big man to at least put a body on Dwight Howard. Defending Howard and Paul Millsap will be a huge challenge for Julius Randle and whoever lines up alongside him tonight.

The Lakers are wrapping up a four-game road trip and have yet to notch head coach Luke Walton’s first win away from Staples Center. Avoiding a four-game losing streak before the Golden State Warriors come stomping into Los Angeles would be ideal.

The team continues to dig itself into early deficits that turn into second-half pushes, but it’s been too little too late ever since opening night. Dennis Schroder should be an interesting measuring stick for D’Angelo Russell, who is still looking for a complete performance that ends with a Lakers victory.

Atlanta without Mozgov won’t be easy, but we’ll see what the kids do. Coach Luke has been running small-ball lineups featuring Larry, Nance Jr. and Randle, and Tarik Black should get extended minutes sans Timo. The Hawks are undefeated, but they’ve got to drop one sometime.

Enjoy the game, and maybe we’ll get to celebrate the first road win of the season.

Time: 4:30 p.m. PT

TV: Spectrum SportsNet

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