Can Philadelphia 76ers End Road Losing Streak vs. Los Angeles Lakers?

By Alan Gung
Jodie Meeks
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia 76ers‘ best chance of getting their next win will be against the Los Angeles Lakers. With stars Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash and possibly Pau Gasol out, the Sixers will have a big matchup advantage tomorrow night in Los Angeles.

The Lakers’ backcourt is very slim at this moment with just one point guard and not much offensive power. The Sixers can exploit this. Jordan Farmar is the only point guard available for L.A. He did manage to drop solid numbers against the lowly Utah Jazz, but he had difficulty playing against the Miami Heat in the previous game when he came back from injury.

The Sixers’ starting backcourt of Evan Turner and Michael Carter-Williams will be a matchup nightmare for former Sixer Jodie Meeks and Farmar. Farmar’s 0.8 steals and Meeks 1.13 steals per game don’t even combine for nearly as many steals as Carter-Williams’ 3.0 per game, and barely average more than Turner’s 1.04.

Turner and Carter-Williams are also the Sixers’ most offensive efficient players. Turner averages 19.3 points and four assists and Carter-Williams averages 17.6 points and 7.8 assists.

The only players the Sixers will have to keep an eye on is leading scorer Nick Young, who averages 15.9 points per game, and starting center Chris Kaman. Young will be a spark off the bench while Kaman can be an inside presence. However, Kaman may be limited after turning his ankle in Friday night’s loss to the Jazz.

Spencer Hawes and Thaddeus Young should give the Lakers a tough time inside the paint. Their efficiency ratings are higher than Gasol and Kaman’s.

There’s no word on Gasol’s return, but he may be back after sitting out from a respiratory infection. Hawes averages more points and blocks than Gasol. He’ll also make Gasol less effective on the defensive end by forcing him to step out of the paint with outside shots.

The Sixers will still need to play their best considering it’s a road game, and the Lakers have taken close losses in their last two games.

Alan Gung is a Philadelphia 76ers writer for Follow him on Twitter @AlanGung, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.


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