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Los Angeles Lakers At Washington Wizards: Regular Season Game 23 Open Thread

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The Essentials:

Lakers (14-9) at Wizards (6-15)
7 p.m.
Verizon Center
TV: CSN
Radio: 106.7 The Fan

Tonight's Starters
Wizards vs. Knicks
Kirk Hinrich PG Derek Fisher
Gilbert Arenas SG Kobe Bryant
Al Thornton SF Ron Artest
Yi Jianlian
PF Lamar Odom
JaVale McGee C

Pau Gasol

CJ and I will be covering the game. Mike will be there as a fan, so you should tweet your location if you're attending and accost him and his SBNation brethren. Maybe he will buy you an adult beverage.

I don't have much to add to tonight besides the fact the Andrew Bynum will be returning tonight for the Lakers and getting about 15-20 minutes of burn. Obviously a Wizards win tonight would be amazing, but I barring that I would like to see the team keep it within 20. It speaks volumes that I'm typing this up at blogger row 60 minutes before game time, and of the 200 people here already, about 150 of them are Laker fans. So if it sounds like another away game at the Verizon Center, don't be surprised.

Flip's Pregame notes

- Not surprisingly, most of Flip's pregame talk centered around John Wall. Flip stated that knee tendinitis tends to flare up after a layoff. He said that the Wizards training staff will be looking at putting Wall on a stricter regimen in the future to avoid this situation from repeating itself.

- Flip also repeated the line that it wouldn't "be fair" to the other players to have Wall continue to be a GTD and would hurt the team's preparation. So you can expect Wall to sit in upcoming games unless he is cleared in morning practice.

- Kobe Bryant is the one of the greatest players ever, barring Michael Jordan. Flip stated that it's Kobe's competitiveness that sets him apart from other players.

- Flip stated that he isn't really game prepping for Bynum or the other Lakers because he has enough injuries to worry about.

- As I type this, Josh Howard is going full speed in warmups, and Andray Blatche is out there dribbling. So there is a tiny ray of hope.

Phil Jackson's pregame notes:

  • Andrew Bynum may play more than he thinks according to Phil Jackson. But Jackson will play that by ear.
  • When asked what does John Wall's absence means to how the Lakers approach this game? Jackson responded by saying, "nothing we have a lot of respect for Kirk Hinrich."
  • When asked how the Lakers will beat this team, Phil Jackson said, "slow them down, they ran the ball down our throat a few times [in LA]."
  • Phil Jackson was asked if Flip Saunders is running the same sets as he did in Minnesota and if so would that give Jackson and his team any advantage. He responded by saying,"it's the same." He did not address whether that knowledge would provide him or his team with an advantage.

GO WIZARDS

Poll

Can we keep it within 20 tonight?

This poll is closed

  • 30%
    Yes - we played them close at Staples.
    (30 votes)
  • 52%
    No - No Wall, No Blatche, No chance.
    (52 votes)
  • 17%
    Sean, you pessimist! We are going to win this thing!
    (17 votes)
99 votes total Vote Now