The 2013-14 Lakers season begins tonight against the Clippers. With all the hype surrounding the Clippers and their championship hopes this season, the Lakers are in unfamiliar territory. According to Magic Johnson, this is the first time where the Purple and Gold aren’t being mentioned and these current Lakers should respond to the challenge.
Without Kobe Bryant starting on opening day for the first time in seven years, there is a lot of uncertainty surrounding his return and the Lakers’ playoff hopes. After taking a couple days off from rehabilitation, there were concerns that he had suffered a setback. Fortunately for all Lakers fans, Bryant has continued to put in work and is measuring how his ankle feels at this point. With his Achilles tendon healed, Bryant is working to regain flexibility in his ankle that has naturally gone stiff because of the time off.
After a 4-4 record in the preseason, the Lakers will look to keep themselves in the playoff hunt until Bryant returns. While most are expecting these Lakers to not make the playoffs, the timing of Bryant’s return will determine their chances this season.
Lakers Nation News
Looking Ahead: Lakers And Clippers [ESPN]
Chris Kaman Says LA Still Belongs To Lakers, Not Clippers [LA Times]
Pau Gasol, Mike D’Antoni Clear Up ‘Uncomfortable’ Air [US A TODAY]
Pau Gasol: Attitude Is Positive [ESPN]
Lakers To Begin Season Without Kobe Bryant For First Time In Seven Years [Yahoo! Sports]
Five NBA Players Likely To Get Traded This Season [ProBasketballTalk]
Heat Must Defy History This Year [Bleacher Report]
LeBron Leading NBA Into A ‘New Era’ [Bleacher Report]
Barnes On The Bench? [SB Nation]
NBA GM Anonymously Admits He, Owner Planned To Tank Season [ProFootballTalk]