Lakers play Spurs for second time this week

The Lakers will try to get back on the horse as they go to San Antonio to face the Spurs in back-to-back nights.

It was almost like a walk in the park for the Lakers in their first encounter with San Antonio. Los Angeles won by a whopping 31 points and it was really never a contest after the first few minutes of the game. Anthony Davis scored 30 points and grabbed 18 boards that night.

Heck, Davis is still going through the best stretch of his career. His last four games have been phenomenal: if his averages of 35.5 points, 18.3 rebounds, 2.5 blocks, and 2.3 steals (along with .623 from the field and .920 from the line) don’t jump out at ya, I really have no idea what else to say. With the way he handled the Spurs last Sunday, I don’t see how he can’t continue eating. And Thanksgiving just happened!

The Lakers had 7 players score in double figs that night. The game had been pretty much over by then but this could easily happen again on Friday (and Saturday). The Spurs are still last in defensive rating, allowing 118 points per 100 possessions. And they have been really going through it in the month of November. The Spurs have lost 11 of their last 12 games and, other than that win against the shorthanded Milwaukee team, they have allowed 113 points or more in each of their losses.

The Spurs’ last game was against the New Orleans Pelicans. They took a 19-point loss against them and they were dominated in the paint by one Zion Williamson. Davis did that to San Antonio on Sunday and unless they send the entire farm towards him every play, he can make the paint his house. Having Jakob Poeltl back will help San Antonio but Davis is just that much better than everyone else.

It’s also not the time for Keldon Johnson to go on a slump (or maybe it is; we know there’s a draft lottery coming this spring). He is 2 for 19 (.105) from behind the arc in his last three games. Those same three games are his lowest scoring of the season as well (11 against the Clippers, 12 against the Lakers, and five against the Pelicans).

Devin Vassell has emerged as the Spurs’ leading scorer (20.6 PPG). He scored 26 against New Orleans and he’s still really shooting well from three at .441. Young Jeremy Sochan has showed some flashes of his potential, especially defensively. Tre Jones has been good at the point guard spot. So they have some talent but it’s definitely a young and inexperienced team.

Gregg Popovich has them passing the ball around, though (second in the league in assists and top 10 in passes per game). So the Lakers really have to stay on their toes on defense. Can’t fall asleep against this team.

Despite a report on Tuesday saying that LeBron James is returning for this game, he’s still listed as questionable. After shoving Deandre Ayton on the floor, Patrick Beverley was punished with a three-game suspension so he’ll be out for a bit. Either Dennis Schröder or Kendrick Nunn will likely start in his place. Because we know Darvin Ham likes having Russell Westbrook off the bench.

Obviously, the Lakers had no problem against the Spurs on Sunday. Still, while we say that the Lakers should beat them, it could still easily be a trap game (trap games, really) for them. These Spurs are definitely desperate for a victory. And with this weird schedule quirk, San Antonio will have two chances to do it as they face the Lakers on Friday and Saturday.

But that also means a potential two wins for the Lakers. Can’t waste these opportunities.

*On a personal note, I hope all of you had a nice Thanksgiving and had your opportunities to spend time with your loved ones. Hope you enjoyed the food and all the love from your family and friends.

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