Luckily for the Los Angeles Lakers, they don't have too long to stew over how badly the final two minutes went on Christmas Day in their loss to the Chicago Bulls. The Lakers open their season with three game in three days, including Monday night against the Sacramento Kings at Power Balance Pavilion in Sacramento.
Kobe Bryant scored 28 points, seven rebounds, and six assists against Chicago on Sunday, but also had eight turnovers and had his potential game-winning shot blocked at the buzzer. In four games against Sacramento last season, Bryant averaged 31.5 points per game, including a triple-double on November 3, 2010 with 30 points, 10 rebounds, and 12 assists, the 17th triple-double of his career.
Monday night is the season opener for the Kings, who eight months ago seemed to be on their way out of Sacramento. After nearly moving to Anaheim during the summer, the Kings are still in Sacramento. The Lakers beat the Kings in overtime in Sacramento on April 13 before an amazing crowd, and now they are back to open the 2011-2012 season.
The Kings welcome new forwards John Salmons and Chuck Hayes into the frontcourt, as well as rookie guard Jimmer Fredette, on Monday night playing his first NBA game. The Lakers have beaten the Kings five straight times in Sacramento, and have won nine of their last 10 and 15 of their last 18 meetings overall.
Monday's 7:00 p.m. PST game will be televised by KCAL and NBA TV. For more Lakers news and information, be sure to read Silver Screen and Roll.