After beating the New Orleans Hornets on Wednesday night, the Lakers are now the NBA's only remaining undefeated team. Although the Lakers only won the game by seven points, the game really wasn't that close. The Lakers were up by twenty one points at the half and only really let the Hornets back in when they went into prevent mode in the fourth quarter.
Despite the scare the Lakers still came away with the victory. After the win, the question being tossed around is "When the Lakers will lose?"
Looking over the Lakers schedule, it seems that the greatest opportunity for their first loss of the season will come Friday against the Deeetroit Pistons. However, the Pistons are still getting used to playing with Allen Iverson and will be playing the second night of a back to back.
After the Pistons, the Lakers play seven of their next eight games at home, with the toughest games being a road game in Phoenix next Thursday, a home game against Denver the following night and home games against Dallas and Toronto on the 28th and 30th.
If they can get through November undefeated, they'll go on a short three game road trip with stops in Indiana, Philadelphia and Washington. Indiana is a dangerous team, and Philadelphia is much better than they are playing at the moment, but I don't think it is too far fetched to say the Lakers could sweep that trip as well.
After their road trip, they come home for a game against the Bucks, and fly up to Sacramento to play the Kings, before playing the Suns again at home on December 10th. If all goes to plan the Lakers could be 20-0 by the time they get to that Phoenix game. If they clear that hurdle, they have smooth sailing for the next week or so, with home games against Sacramento, Minnesota, and New York and a road game in Miami.
They'll likely be tested in a road match up against Orlando on December 20th, and could be surprised by a high flying Memphis Grizzlies squad on the 22nd. But really, the Lakers won't see a real formidable challenge again until they face the Hornets again on December 23rd.
Basically, from now until they play the Hornets again the Lakers look like they will only see challenges in games against Detroit, Denver, Toronto, Phoenix, and Orlando. And those are all winnable games. Obviously the Lakers can't just walk into arenas and expect to win. I mean, they play the games for a reason. But with the way they are playing right now, it's really is not too far fetched to say that the Lakers could have no more than three loses by the time they see CP3 and the Hornets again in late December.
Which team do you think has the best chance of handing the Lakers their first defeat of the season?