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Los Angeles Lakers vs. Washington Wizards: Regular Season Game 44 Open Thread

The Essentials:

Lakers (33-11) vs. Wizards (14-29)
7 p.m.
Verizon Center
TV: CSN, NBATV for Fan Night
Radio: 106.7 The Fan

Notable Lakers numbers this season

1st in expected winning percentage (.717)
7th in pace (93.9 possessions per game)
10th in offensive efficiency/offensive rating (108.8 points/100 possessions)
3rd in defensive efficiency/defensive rating (101.8 points allowed/100 possessions)

Pre-game links

Silver Screen and Roll SB Nation's Lakers Blog
Forum Blue and Gold
If the Lakers need a shakeup, the Wizards need a whirlpool
Players Union President Derek Fisher talks Gilbert Arenas/Javaris Crittenton situation with Michael Lee
GameDay Lakers

Tonight's Projected Starters
Lakers vs. Wizards
Derek Fisher PG Randy Foye
Kobe Bryant SG Mike Miller
Ron Artest SF Caron Butler
Pau Gasol PF Antawn Jamison
Andrew Bynum C

Brendan Haywood

Couple notes:

  • Antawn Jamison's foot is sore, but he's going to play.
  • Earl Boykins is doubtful with a heel injury
  • Ron Artest has the flu, but apparently he's going to play
  • Here's something interesting: in an interview with Comcast SportsNet's Ron Thompson, Kobe Bryant says he feels bad for Caron Butler for being stuck in this situation. Kobe and Caron are good friends, dating back to Caron's time with the Lakers, so him saying that isn't much of a surprise. I wonder, though, whether many players who aren't as close with Caron as Kobe also feel the same way.
  • The Lakers are really good, but their bench has been pretty so-so all season. It hurt them against Cleveland on Thursday, and it also hurt them when they played the Wizards last year. If the Wizards are to have a chance tonight, the bench has to play well.
  • UPDATE: Mike Miller's starting instead of DeShawn Stevenson tonight. That's interesting.