Last season, games between the New Orleans Pelicans and Los Angeles Lakers were must-watch TV, in part because of the aftermath of the Anthony Davis trade saga, but also because of the matchup between Zion Williamson and LeBron James. This season, they haven’t been quite as fun, and Tuesday’s game isn’t expected to be any different.
Some of that has to do with the fact that both James and Davis won’t be available, but it also has to do with how disappointing the Pelicans have been in the second year of their rebuild. Even with an All-Star in Zion Williamson and a player who’s only a year removed from an All-Star appearance in Brandon Ingram, the Pelicans are 2.5 games back of a play-in spot in the Western Conference.
The Pelicans may beat the Lakers on Tuesday — it would be their first win against L.A. since the Davis trade — because Los Angeles will be down three starters once again, but their first meeting of the season already told us where both of these teams are competitively, and it’s not close. That’s not even meant as shade at the Pelicans; it’s more so the sobering reality that we’ll likely have to wait another year to see the Baby Lakers and the actual Lakers go head-to-head in the postseason. That’s assuming Lonzo Ball isn’t traded before next season.
Come on home, Zo — just not to the Clippers. That was shade.
The Lakers and Pelicans will tip-off at 5:30 p.m. PT. The game will be broadcast on TNT nationally and Spectrum SportsNet locally.
Notes and Updates
- Anthony Davis (right calf strain), Jared Dudley (right MCL tear) and LeBron James (right ankle sprain) are out. Marc Gasol isn’t on the injury report, but Frank Vogel said on Sunday that Gasol could miss “a couple more games.”