Lakers feel good heading into Nets game

February, 5, 2013
2/05/13
3:10
PM ET
After losing 10 of their first 12 games in 2013, the Lakers have won five of their last six heading into Tuesday night's matchup against the Nets at Barclays Center.

The Lakers will be without Dwight Howard (back) and Metta World Peace (suspension) on Tuesday, but they're still feeling pretty good about themselves right now.

[+] EnlargeMike D'Antoni and Steve Nash
Rick Osentoski/USA TODAY SportsEx-Knicks coach Mike D'Antoni makes his second trip to the Big Apple since taking the Lakers job.
"We're starting to figure it out a little bit," coach Mike D'Antoni said after his team's shootaround Tuesday morning in Manhattan.

"We're playing very well," Kobe Bryant said. "I think we've found a pretty good groove."

"We feel much better," Steve Nash said. "We feel more positive. But we still have a ways to go."

The Lakers defeated the Nets in their previous meeting this season, 95-90 in Los Angeles on Nov. 20, and have won nine straight games in the series. But Bryant expects a tough game Tuesday night.

"They've been playing very well since the coaching change," Bryant said of the Nets, who are 14-5 since P.J. Carlesimo took over for Avery Johnson. "Playing with a lot of energy, playing very well at home, and coming off a big win against Chicago. ... It's gonna be tough, but we're looking forward to it. It’s a good test to see where we are."
Kieran Darcy is an ESPNNewYork.com staff writer. He joined ESPN in August 2000 after graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, where he played four years of JV basketball.
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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Brook Lopez
PTS AST STL MIN
20.7 0.9 0.5 31.4
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsK. Garnett 6.6
AssistsD. Williams 6.1
StealsD. Williams 1.5
BlocksB. Lopez 1.8