The current face of the NBA will take on the possible future face of the league on Christmas day when the Los Angeles Lakers face the Dallas Mavericks. LeBron James will go up against Luka Doncic, someone who has garnered much buzz. Both teams are considered favorites to make the playoffs from the western conference this year.
However, both the Lakers and the Mavericks got off to a rough start to the new NBA season. The Lakers had their championship ring celebration spoiled by their neighbor Clippers, who defeated them. The Mavs lost to Chris Paul and the new-look Suns.
Yet now, both teams have a chance at redemption on Christmas day. The Lakers and Mavericks can use the fixture as a statement of intent by getting a strong win over the other. With that in mind, let us take a look at the Lakers and Mavericks going into their exciting Christmas fixture.
Los Angeles Lakers
The Lakers had a tough loss to the Clippers on opening night. But they will be happy with the performances by their debutants in Dennis Schroder and Montrezl Harrell. Additionally, they will not be too concerned with the loss, as they have had a very short time to recover after the NBA finals.
The defending champions will hope to get back to winning ways against the Dallas Mavericks. While LeBron James joked earlier that he would cherry pick his games in the beginning of the season, he will be playing against the Mavericks after suffering an ankle injury against the Clippers.
Predicted LA Lakers starting line-up: Dennis Schroder, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Marc Gasol
Dallas had a surprising loss against the Phoenix Suns. The Mavericks had a poor defensive night, trying to guard Chris Paul, Devin Booker and DeAndre Ayton. However, Luka Doncic had a decent scoring game, and will look to improve on his efforts there.
The Mavs will still be without Kristaps Porzingis, who is recovering from his knee surgery in the postseason. But the Mavericks have enough firepower to cause some problems to the Los Angeles Lakers.
Predicted Dallas Mavericks starting line-up: Luka Doncic, Josh Richardson, Dorian Finney-Smith, Tim Hardaway Jr., Dwight Powell.
Predictions: Los Angeles Lakers vs Dallas Mavericks
This fixture is tough to predict because both teams are coming off losses. Yet both teams have star players who can change the course of a game by their performances. While Luka Doncic does not have enough support around him, he has shown that he is capable to win a game through sheer will alone.
But the Los Angeles Lakers have a healthy dose of experience, youth and skill. The lethal combination of LeBron James and Anthony Davis has proven too much for the league on so many occasions. Plus, the off-season additions of the Lakers can only help them as the season goes on.
Prediction: Dallas Mavericks steal the game at the last moment, perhaps even in overtime.
It remains to be seen how the Lakers vs Mavericks game pans out. It is perhaps the most anticipated fixture on Christmas day, and rightfully so.
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This post was last modified on December 25, 2020 10:56 pm