The Los Angeles Lakers put up a hekcuva’ game against the defending champions on Sunday. They’ll have their hands full again Tuesday night with the Clippers “in town.” D’Angelo Russell won’t have an easy time trying to get loose on Chris Paul, though his 40-point breakout performance might have some residual momentum.
Russell responded to getting a chance back in the starting lineup by lighting Kyrie Irving up, but it wasn’t enough to upset the well-rested Cavaliers. They’ll get a game-worn Clippers team who just escaped a fourth-quarter collapse against the New York Knicks.
Blake Griffin is a big-time challenge for the frontcourt of Julius Randle and Ivica Zubac. Griffin should be in attack mode after dropping 30 on New York, and the Lakers have struggled protecting the rim all season. Big Zu gets a crack at DeAndre Jordan and Griffin, which is quite the out-of-the-frying-pan moment.
Jordan Clarkson will likely draw the assignment of defending Paul, which — in a dream scenario — is an argument for playing Russell and Jordan together. Clarkson would make himself invaluable as a defensive presence against the tougher backcourt draw.
If the Lakers play up to their potential this could be a pretty fun match. Enjoy the game, and the first of two games against the Clippers over the next two weeks.
Time: 7:30 p.m. PT
TV: Spectrum SportsNet