December 7, 2017, 3:35 pm
The Lakers (8-15) head to Philadelphia (13-10) Thursday to kick off a four-game road trip. Los Angeles, in the midst of a six-game losing streak, is fresh off of two morale crushing losses. One a thrashing at the hands of the West Coast leading Rockets and the other a terrible loss to the short-handed Nuggets during which the Lakers were outscored 15-0 to end the game.
The 76ers are led to Joel Embiid and rookie sensation Ben Simmons. The last time the teams met Embiid had a legendary game with 46 points, 15 rebounds, seven assists and seven blocks while leading Philadelphia to a 115-109 victory.
Simmons was stellar with 18 points, 10 assists, nine rebounds and five steals. He is the presumed leader for the Rookie of the Year award averaging 18.0 points, 9.3 rebounds, 7.1 assists and 2.3 steals a game. He was recently awarded Rookie of the Month along with Laker rookie Kyle Kuzma.
Kuzma is currently leading Los Angeles in scoring at 16.8 points per game adding 6.5 rebounds and 1.5 assists while shooting 49.8 percent from the floor and 76.2 percent from the line. He was one of the best Lakers in their blowout loss to the Rockets accruing 22 points, 12 rebounds, one steal, one block and three 3-pointers.
Brandon Ingram has been a silver lining for the Lakers during their losing streak with averages of 19.3 points, 5.7 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 1.0 steals and 0.7 blocks. He is showing consistent aggressiveness and significant growth from last year when he really struggled as a rookie.
Speaking of struggling, Lonzo Ball hit a new low with his performance against Houston with two points, one rebound, three assists and two blocks on 0-of-4 from the field. Ball has been fighting through calf tightness and was thoroughly outplayed by Simmons the last time these teams faced off — Laker fans hope that he is healthy and ready to bounce back.
Update: Philadelphia has agreed to send former first round pick Jahlil Okafor, Nik Stauskas and a 2019 second round pick to Brooklyn in exchange for Trevor Booker. This should not have a significant effect on the game Thursday.
- Los Angeles is the worst team in the league at turning the ball over at 17.5 per game with Philadelphia a close second at 17.4 per game.
- These are two of the best rebounding teams in the league — the Lakers average 46.4 rebounds per game (4th) compared to 49.3 (1st) for the 76ers.
- The Lakers score 105.8 points per game (14th) vs. 108.2 (8th).
- Philadelphia is third in the league in assists per game at 25.5 vs. 22.7 per game for the Lakers, good for only 16th.
- Los Angeles continues to be the worst 3-point shooting team in the league at 31.5 percent compared to 35.7 percent (20th) for Philadelphia. The Lakers chances of winning are greatly augmented when they shoot well from 3-point range and limit their turnovers.
Lonzo Ball (PG)
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (SG)
Brandon Ingram (SF)
Larry Nance Jr. (PF)
Brook Lopez (C)
Jerryd Bayless (PG)
JJ Redick (SG)
Ben Simmons (SF)
Robert Covington (PF)
Joel Embiid (C)
Lonzo Ball (calves) – PROBABLE
Markelle Fultz (shoulder) – OUT
Justin Anderson (shin) – OUT
Dario Saric (eye)- OUT
Time: 5:00 PM PST, 8:00 PM EST
Television: SPECSN/SPECD, SPORTSNET ONE, TNT
Radio: 97.5 THE FANATIC, 710 AM ESPN, 1330 AM ESPN DEPORTES