The fiercest rivalry in all of basketball renews this coming Sunday on ABC when the Los Angeles Lakers meet the Boston Celtics at Staples Center. Call it a rematch, a renewal, a regular season game. I’ll call it what it really is: a statement game.
While players and coaches alike will deny the game has any more meaning than any other regular season game, don’t be fooled. This game matters. A lot. To both teams.
But, believe it or not, it matters the most to the Lakers. You would think the opposite that Boston returns to the place of their demise last June in the NBA Finals, blowing a 13 point lead to watch confetti fall from the Staples rafters and Kobe Bryant hoist his fifth NBA trophy.
However, it is the Lakers who need a victory more. This game offers the chance for LA to send a real statement. Not only to Boston, but to the league.
So, here are the five reasons why this battle is a statement game for LA.