Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers will hope that Dwight Howard #12 returns from his shoulder injury sooner rather than later.
The Los Angeles Lakers cancelled practice on Wednesday in New York.
On Tuesday night, Kobe Bryant welcomed Brooklyn to the NBA with a bit of his trademark magic. For the first time in history, the Lakers visited the Brooklyn Nets. The Lakers’ future hall of famer led his side to an unlikely win considering Dwight Howard was out injured, Metta World Peace was suspended, and Pau Gasol left the game with the game still in doubt.
Along with the injuries, Bryant and the Lakers overcame 20 offensive rebounds by the Nets. LA only had five offensive boards due, in large part, to their injured front line. What the Lakers lacked in size and talent, they made up for in effort and defense.
The Lakers did not shoot especially well, nor were they especially clinical with the basketball. However, they consistently challenged the Nets on defense and took advantage of the Nets’ turnovers. The Lakers scored 20 points off 17 Nets turnovers. The Nets only scored six points off the Lakers’ 13 turnovers.
Another positive to take out of Tuesday’s win in Brooklyn was the Lakers finally stopped settling for 3-pointers. The Lakers shot a modest 3-13 from distance in Brooklyn. In the four games leading up to Brooklyn, the Lakers were averaging 28 three-point shot attempts per game.
On the season, the Lakers average 24.6 attempts from behind the arc—third highest in the league.
Looking ahead, the Lakers will definitely have World Peace back, but Gasol appears to be a doubt for Thursday’s game against Boston. The Spaniard is set to undergo an MRI on his injured foot on Wednesday. Howard is still a doubt after re-aggravating his right shoulder injury against Phoenix at the start of the Grammy road trip.
Robert Sacre is currently the only healthy center guaranteed to be available for the Lakers.
The Lakers are now 3-1 on the Grammy road trip with games at Boston, Charlotte, and Miami still to come. The Lakers have three games in four days to finish off the trip, but if the Lakers keep putting out the consistent effort they displaying in Brooklyn, it is hard to imagine the Lakers going 0-3 to finish up.
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