Los Angeles Lakers: Lakers 2012-13 schedule
July, 26, 2012
By The Kamenetzky Brothers
We don't know how the games will play out*, but now at least we know the order in which they'll be played. The 2012-13 schedule was released Thursday afternoon, and as it always does, the 82-game regular-season slate provides plenty of intrigue.
Here's a quick breakdown:
Five compelling dates on the 2012-13 schedule:
1. Nov. 2 vs. Los Angeles Clippers
This year, as it was in 2011-12, it’s not simply a Battle for L.A., but for the Pacific Division. Both teams enter the season having improved, at least on paper, with the Clips adding Lamar Odom, Grant Hill, and Jamal Crawford to the Chris Paul/Blake Griffin core. How will this tweaked Clippers lineup match up with the Steve Nash-led Lakers? Not surprisingly, the answer might revolve around Odom. Lakers fans can certainly give Clips loyalists a tutorial in the whole “L.O. as X factor” thing.
The home opener (Oct. 30 vs. Dallas) is always a huge deal and will give Staples Center its first look at Nash in home colors, but this is the first game against an upper-tier foe. (Interestingly, the Lakers and Clips basically bookend their seasons, playing the last game in the season series on April 7, a day that could have major playoff implications.)
2. Dec. 25 vs. New York
The Knicks certainly have questionable ownership and this whole Melo/Amare thing isn’t working out quite as planned, but we’re still talking Knicks vs. Lakers, Christmas Day. L.A. vs. New York. Aesthetically, it might be a little cooler if they scheduled this one at the Garden -- snowy day, big beauty shots of the tree at Rockefeller Center, ice skating and all that -- but palm trees are nice, too, and the Knicks represent a little twist to recent Xmas opponents.
3. Jan. 17 vs. Miami
We won’t know yet if the Lakers are truly a championship-caliber team, but that won’t keep anyone from projecting this as a potential preview of the Finals, particularly if the Lakers enter with a strong record. It’s always intriguing to see how the Lakers defend LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, but the big question is how efficiently L.A. scores the ball. In the Big Three Era, Miami typically has smothered the Lakers. With Nash guiding the offense and a still-sizable (ha!) advantage in the post, can the purple and gold flip the script? A great measuring stick game against an elite defensive team, and also likely more meaningful as a point of comparison because the Lakers’ visit to Miami (Feb. 10) comes at the end of a season-long seven-game road trip.