NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Friday, November 15th (All times Eastern)
Memphis Grizzlies (3-5) at Los Angeles Lakers (4-6), 10:30 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - It's been a topsy-turvy season for the Los Angeles Lakers and they'll try to gain some semblance of stability when they open a four-game homestand Friday versus the Memphis Grizzlies.
The Lakers have lost three of their last four games and dropped a 111-99 decision at Denver on Wednesday. Still without superstar Kobe Bryant and more recently Steve Nash, the Lakers were paced by Pau Gasol's 25 points and 12 rebounds. Jordan Hill chipped in 18 points and 15 rebounds, and Steve Blake added 15 points to go along with 11 assists in defeat.
Los Angeles had 15 turnovers, leading to 20 Denver points, and the Nuggets grabbed 23 offensive rebounds. The Nuggets had a 36-19 advantage in second chance points because of their rebounding prowess.
Denver had a 60-32 difference in points in the paint.
"If you give this team momentum at home they take full advantage of it, and that's what happened," Blake said.
The Lakers' bench, one day after totaling 56 points against the Pelicans, combined for just 28 at Denver. They still lead the NBA in bench points at a 49.6 points per game.
L.A. will also welcome Detroit, Golden State and Sacramento to Hollywood and is 3-2 at Staples Center this season.
Memphis is still winless on the road (0-3) and will begin a four-game western trek Friday night against the Lakers, Kings, Clippers and Warriors.
The Grizzlies have lost two straight and three of four games, including Wednesday's 103-87 setback at home versus the Toronto Raptors. The Grizz faced former teammate Rudy Gay, who was traded to the Raptors last season and scored 23 points in his return to FedExForum.
Mike Conley countered Gay with 29 points and Marc Gasol added 18 and 10 rebounds. Zach Randolph grabbed 10 boards as well to go along with 10 points and Tony Allen added 10 points for Memphis, which shot 42.7 percent and committed 19 turnovers for 19 Toronto points.
"We hang our hat on defense. That's what we do," Randolph said. "I don't know what it is. We just have to stick together."
Memphis went 2-1 against the Lakers last season and has lost seven of the last 10 on the road in this series.
11/15 10:21:40 ET