Lakers must show grit against Celtics, have strong chance to upset Boston

PHOENIX, AZ - OCTOBER 20: Lonzo Ball (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ - OCTOBER 20: Lonzo Ball (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

Tonight will be very telling for Lonzo Ball of the Los Angeles Lakers, considering all of the outside circumstances his family is dealing with.

As the LiAngelo Ball situation in China continues to unfold, his older brother will try to guide his team to a win over the steaming hot Boston Celtics. Ball and company will have to try and stop the Celtics, and the edge that Boston has right now above anything else is likely a mental one.

Whether Lonzo will admit it or not, the fact that his brother was arrested in China just recently will probably affect him over the next several games and perhaps throughout the rest of his rookie season.

It’s not an ideal situation, but no matter how you feel about LaVar Ball, Big Baller Brand, or even Lonzo, it’s important to sympathize with the fact that it is something none of us would want to go through.

On top of that, Boston has the best defense in the entire Eastern Conference, allowing opponents under 95 points per game coming into the game. Meanwhile, the Lakers have allowed 107.3 points per game — the fourth worst in the Western Conference.

It has been interesting to see how Boston has responded without Gordon Hayward, who was injured in their season opener against the Cavaliers. Since that loss, Boston is 9-1, including their nine game winning streak.

A big game from Kyle Kuzma would be a welcome solution for the Lakers, but lately Brook Lopez has been their biggest scoring threat, which is still not a bad thing.

In order for the Lakers to pull out a win tonight, they will have to make sure they shut down Kyrie Irving, as he leads the team in points, assists, and steals. Other than Irving, it is Al Horford and Jayson Tatum, who lead in rebounds and blocks, respectively.

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It being in Boston doesn’t help LA much either, but the reason they have a chance to win is because of the fact that they can bounce back from a lot and this game is what will be most telling about that quality that they have.