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Game Preview: Knicks @ Lakers, 1/7/2020

Venice the Menace

Is Jared Dudley looking? After the Kawhi Leonard nonsense and the Doc Rivers sticking up for David Fizdale theatrics, it seems like an obvious next move for the Knicks beat reporters to go hang out with Milk Dudley and get his opinion on how much the Knicks suck and how perfect the Nets are. Thankfully Marc Berman is having another career year. From La Cienegaaaa...

BANG! That one goes down and the game is tied!

The Knicks (10-26) have been in Los Angeles the past few days and hung tough with the Clippers. Now they’ll face the Lakers (29-7), who are best in their conference and on a five-game win streak. Hopefully the Knicks did just enough to recharge while in La La Land and didn’t turn into some beach bums drinking tequila, smoking pot and eating bushels of tacos. Of course... that’s what I would do, but you see, I am a POS.

Projected Starters

Elfrid Payton is questionable again, as he did not return to the team for yesterday’s practice. But if I had to bet a bushel of tacos on it, I’d say he’ll be ready to roll for tonight’s affair. If he gets a DNP-baby, I’ll take everyone to Del Taco. Dennis Smith Jr. remains questionable with his oblique up shit’s creek. Lastly, Marcus Morris is probable with a sore neck. This recurring issue better not become chronic, cus you can’t smoke that stuff.

Meanwhile the Lakers’ best player is a little banged up with some shoulder soreness. Pick up something and hit him with it.

Keys & Predictions

With LeBron James leading the league in assists for the Lakers and Anthony Davis being a brute squad unto himself, it might make sense to see if the Knicks can’t get that duo to go on their own isolation fests and just take away as much as you can from everyone else.

If you’re lucky, Davis could come up short on his jumpers and the Knicks can push in transition. LeBron isn’t exactly one to let the Knicks off the hook, so that doesn’t look good, but he also isn’t one to make the first effort on defense — much less an extra one. Keep that pill poppin’ and make your free throws, god damn it!

Slowly coming into his own and with a growing tendency to show up for statement games, look for Frank Ntilikina to really use his fouls and lay some punks down. Of course, that will cut his minutes short. I’m sure LeBron will be haranguing the refs for calls against Frank from the jump because he needs to neutralize the Henchman.

It’ll never happen, but Knicks by 4.

Warm Up Music

Drink in that sun while you still can, Knicks. Heading out to Utah right after this and then back home on Friday for an increasingly feisty Pelicans squad.