The Los Angeles Lakers were battered and beaten by the Toronto Raptors Friday night but still have a chance to close out their four-game road trip 2-2 when they visit the Memphis Grizzlies Saturday. Splitting the travel-heavy trip while missing both D’Angelo Russell and Nick Young would be huge for the Lakers, and that it would be against the Grizzlies has larger implications.
The Lakers need to make ground on one of the playoff teams ahead of them. The Grizzlies, sans Mike Conley, are the clear target for the time being. The purple and gold might be hurting, but the Grizzlies are in even worse shape. James Ennis, Zach Randolph, Chandler Parsons, Vince Carter and Brandan Wright could all miss the game Saturday, with a variety of injuries — both long term and short term — tearing their squad apart.
The Lakers are pretty dang healthy when you put it like that.
Memphis has the fourth-worst offense in the NBA, averaging 99.8 points per 100 possessions. That number should only get worse while they play without a huge chunk of their team. Considering Toronto scored 41 point in a single quarter against the Lakers, this should be a vacation.
Still, in the second game of a back-to-back, the fourth game in five nights and at the end of a tough road trip, the Lakers can’t expect a win. They have to go out there and take it, putting a nice cap on what would be considered a very successful stretch. Enjoy the game!
Time: 5 p.m. PT
TV: Spectrum SportsNet