About a week and a half ago, it appeared Tuesday night's game at Staples Center would be the battle for the top seed in the Western Conference in the upcoming NBA playoffs. Now, the Los Angeles Lakers are simply trying to stop the bleeding, hoping to snap a five-game losing streak against the team with the best record in the NBA, the San Antonio Spurs. This is the fourth meeting of the season between the two teams, with the Spurs winning two of three.
The Lakers' magic number to clinch the No. 2 seed in the West is just two, but they have two games remaining so they most likely to need to win both remaining games to secure the position. The Lakers play in Sacramento Wednesday night. The Lakers tonight will try to recapture the magic of the team that was 17-1 since the All-Star break, and the team that blew out the Spurs in San Antonio on March 6. L.A. led by as much as 30 points in that 99-83 win.
C.A. Clark at Silver Screen and Roll sees tonight and tomorrow as a great opportunity for the Lakers:
It's not like years have passed since the last time the Lakers appeared dominant. Win a couple games to close out the season, take care of business with relative ease in the first two rounds of the playoffs, and the Lakers will once again be labeled as the team to beat, seeds and home court be damned. It's about communication to the rest of the league that the last five games were the blip on the radar, not the 18 games that preceded it.
For more news and information on the Lakers, or on tonight's game, be sure to read the SB Nation blog Silver Screen and Roll.