The Los Angeles Lakers face the Cleveland Cavaliers tonight at Staples Center, and on paper it looks like a mismatch. The Lakers have won four straight games, and six out of seven, while the Cavaliers have lost 10 straight games, and 20 out of 21. Cleveland has lost a stunning 16 games in a row on the road. Both teams have suffered key injuries in the last week, although the Cavs' injury qualifies as more crushing.
Laker reserve forward Matt Barnes had surgery this morning to repair a torn meniscus in his right knee, and while his loss will be felt by the Lakers, it's not as deep a cut as suffered by Cleveland. Starting power forward and energy guy Anderson Varejao is out for the season with a torn tendon in his right foot. Here is a look at tonight's probable starting lineups at Staples Center:
- Point Guard: Mo Williams
- Shooting Guard: Manny Harris
- Small Forward: Christian Eyenga
- Power Forward: Antawn Jamison
- Center: J.J. Hickson
In addition to Varejao for the Cavs, Joey Graham, Daniel Gibson, and Leon Powe are out, and Anthony Parker is a gametime decision with a lower back strain.
- Point Guard: Derek Fisher
Shooting Guard: Kobe Bryant
Small Forward: Ron Artest
Power Forward: Pau Gasol
- Center: Andrew Bynum
Lamar Odom is listed as probable with a sore left shoulder, but since he grabbed 18 rebounds with the same sore left shoulder on Sunday, my guess is that Odom will play tonight. Odom has played in 138 consecutive games, dating back to the 2008-2009 season.
For more info on tonight's game, be sure to read Silver Screen and Roll.