Lakers vs. Raptors Preview: Battle between future teammates?

14-03-2019 21:03

Who: Los Angeles Lakers (31-36) vs. Toronto Raptors (48-20)

When: Thursday, March 14; 5:00 p.m. PST; Scotiabank Arena

Where: TNT

It feels like ages ago when the Raptors ran the Lakers off the court in Staples Center. The Lakers have gone through dozens of peaks and valleys since that loss, one of the more embarrassing of the season.

Now, the Lakers are squarely in a valley, maybe the lowest one of the season, while the Raptors look primed for a Finals run.

Future teammates?

The storyline surrounding this game, and most games between the Lakers and potential free agents, will be whether it’s a game between future teammates. Kawhi Leonard is the diamond of the free agent class and one many teams will be chasing. He could also elevate the Lakers into title contention status. Unfortunately, the Lakers haven’t exactly put themselves in a great position to be appealing to free agents like Leonard.

James or no James?

According to reports, the Lakers will sit James during back-to-backs. They didn’t say which side of the back-to-backs he will sit.

That being said, the Lakers are on national television on the road with rest since the last game. It makes sense he’d play Thursday and rest Friday at Detroit but that decision appears to not have been made yet.

Return to the tank

Tuesday’s win over the Bulls was a pleasant result in a second-half of the season full of the opposite. However, the focus of the season has shifted and losses are at a premium now. The Lakers are one game back of Charlotte and Orlando and a half-game back of Minnesota.

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