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Preview: Warriors take on Lakers for NBA Rivals week

LET’S GET A BIG WIN DUBS!

Golden State Warriors v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Jim Poorten/NBAE via Getty Images

The Golden State Warriors are struggling to keep a promising season alive, as they have stumbled to a 19-23 record, passing the halfway mark of the 82-game year. As they seek to turn it around, they can gather some historical motivation and encouragement from their opponent tonight, the team that eliminated them from playoffs last season, the Los Angeles Lakers.

Yes, LeBron James’ Lakers proved last year that you you don’t need to dominate the regular season to make the Western Conference Finals.

Golden State Warriors at Los Angeles Lakers

January 27th, 2024 | 5:30 PM PT

Watch: ESPN

Listen: 95.7 The Game

If there was any question about whether or not the Warriors have a chance of making a decent playoff run, they can look no further than their opponent tonight. Recall that the Lakers were also 19-23 last year, a season going down in flames.

In fact, their 23rd loss that season was a crushing double overtime loss to the Dallas Mavericks that had our colleagues at Silver Screen and Roll forced to talk about the power of moral victories:

The defeat is the fourth in a row for L.A. against Dallas, keeping the Lakers (19-23) in 12th place in the Western Conference Standings.

This was a tough loss but if there is such a thing as a moral victory for a team that needs every real win it can get right now, this has to be one. The Lakers never folded and pushed Dallas, a team that went to the Western Conference Finals last season, to the absolute limit. Yes, it was a loss and even moral victories this late can be moot, but you have to give L.A. credit for their effort tonight.

Of course, from there the Lakers went on to scrap their way into to the play-in tournament. They knocked of Minnesota to escape that vagabond bracket and land themselves a 7th seed spot in the Western Conference playoffs. They then upset the fiery Memphis Grizzlies, before stunning the Golden State Warriors in the second round. L.A.’s magical run finally ceased when they met the eventual champion Denver Nuggets.

If the Warriors want to get into the play-in tournament, they need to do what it takes to get some momentum. Their loss to the Sacramento Kings put a damper on that, forcing them to come to the realization that in this current era of NBA basketball, they can’t just summon up wins like they used to.

They’ll have a tough matchup on their hands tonight with the Lakers, a team whose size advantages can directly exploit Golden State’s weaknesses.

Poll

Who ya got, Warriors or Lakers?

This poll is closed

  • 65%
    Warriors, it’s time to get over the hump
    (25 votes)
  • 34%
    Lakers, they are too tall
    (13 votes)
38 votes total Vote Now

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