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Lakers vs. Clippers Game Preview: Going back-to-back

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A busy weekend in Laker Land tips off early Saturday.

NBA: Los Angeles Clippers at Los Angeles Lakers Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers are home, so to speak, but not home when they face the Clippers at STAPLES Center. Not only is it going to be the red and blue version of STAPLES, but a 12:30 tip off is as alien as it gets for the Lakers.

The Clippers absolutely smoked the Lakers about a week ago, dropping 133 on the purple and gold. That’s not a great sign of things to come for the Lakers, who typically look sluggish in these early games.

On the positive end of things, Brandon Ingram is expected to get back on the court Saturday. He’s been out with right patellar tendinitis, but head coach Luke Walton liked how he looked during practice and intends to get the rookie back in for the last few games of his first season in the league.

We’ll have to see how much time he gets, though, with the Lakers playing a back-to-back through the weekend. They’ll host the Memphis Grizzlies Sunday afternoon, same bat time, and Ingram is playing under a minutes restriction. He will be back in the starting lineup, however.

We’re down to lucky number seven games left in the season, with no signs of improvement and a finish line that comes down to the Phoenix Suns and Lakers stumbling into the end. The Suns have now lost 10 in a row, staying a half-game back from the Lakers in draft lottery standings.

A back-to-back against the Clippers and Grizzlies, both at odd starting times, is quite the wrench in the schedule for the purple and gold to fall over. Enjoy the game, you fine folks that are riding through the end with our community!

Time: 12:30 p.m. PT

TV: Spectrum SportsNet