Originally posted on Bloguin Best  |  Last updated 11/2/12
Los Angeles Clippers (1-0) vs. Los Angeles Lakers (0-2) 10:30 p.m./ESPN Kobe Bryant does not want anyone talking about this game. You know, ESPN should probably go ahead and not show it. Because all they will talk about is how the Lakers are struggling to grasp the Princeton Offense and have two losses to their name already. So Bryant is telling everyone to shut up about the Lakers and their struggles and Dwight Howard goes out and is Dwight Howard, making a joke about it. Yep, Los Angeles is a regular Hollywood story already. It is not easy though to integrate two new key players into a new offense though. It takes more than a training camp and it will take more than a few games. Just like the Heat a few years ago, it was asking a lot for everyone to come in and immediately mesh well and win convincingly. Then again, Dallas is an OK team, particularly without Dirk Nowitzki, and Portland, while a tough place to play, is not among the West's elite. The Clippers, though, are. They scored a nice, gritty victory over the Grizzlies in their opener, with Blake Griffin taking every hit that Zach Randolph could dish out. Los Angeles' other team showed a lot more balance as the bench produced for the Clippers. That is where the Lakers have their biggest weakness too. Jamal Crawford came off the bench and scored 29 points and Eric Bledsoe had 13 off the bench. That could spell trouble for the Lakers tonight when the second units are in. Other Storylines to Watch -The Lakers will be without Steve Nash tonight. That means Steve Blake and Chris Duhon will have to step in and play the point guard for the Lakers. That might be a good thing though. Nash was not handling the ball much anyway. But they are both clearly downgrades from Nash. -OK, the bench played fantastic last time out for the Clippers. Are the starters ready to come along? To defeat the Lakers, the Clippers will need more than 23 points from Griffin and Paul to win the game. It worked Wednesday to have Crawford do the scoring. That may not fly this time around with a much hungrier Lakers team in front of them. Tonight's Other Games Indiana Pacers (1-0) vs. Charlotte Bobcats (0-0) 7 p.m. D.J. Augustin returns to Charlotte after signing a free agent contract with Indiana. Augustin is likely coming off the bench, but at one point the Bobcats believed he was their point guard of the future. That did not quite work out. And it appears Augustin did not want to stay in Charlotte. Bobcats GM Rod Higgins said the Bobcats offered Augustin more than he got in Indiana. Denver Nuggets (0-1) vs. Orlando Magic (0-0) 7 p.m. Everyone wants to know how the Magic will play without Dwight Howard. So here is Game One of the post-Dwight Howard era. will this team be an absolute flop or is this team going to be barely mediocre? These are important questions! OK, I might be the only one who cares. [follow]
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