2010 NBA Preseason: Los Angeles Lakers vs FC Barcelona Observations, Analysis

The NBA season is now just around the corner, and the pre-season games have begun.

Today the Los Angeles Lakers squared off against the FC Barcelona men in Spain, for a highly anticipated pre-season match up. Many people have questions on their minds about the Lakers right now that they want answered.

How big of a blow will it be to not have Bynum early on in the season?

How well will Kobe come back from knee surgery?

How will everyone mesh together with the new pick-ups? (Barnes,Blake,Ebanks,Character)

While this is not the season opener, we'll still get a glimpse at where the Lakers are at going into the 2010 campaign for a three-peat. 

I carefully watched today's game taking notes, and here are my observations quarter by quarter for how the Lakers are shaping up at this point.

Fist Quarter:

Spanish basketball fans were treated to a long burn for Kobe in the first quarter, but sadly Bryant could not hit a jumper as he left 0-4. He did hit three free throws, but could not connect on his four rather difficult shot attempts. (even for him)

Gasol came out all guns blazing, looking very sharp as he hit multiple shots including the games first basket. He rebounded well, and seemed to be in good game shape.

Artest came out nearly causing an international incident within the first minute, as he got into multiple spats with Barcelona's Michael. While he didn't get many touches early on, he seemed to move well out there. Also, Artest has changed his number to 15 (from 37).

Steve Blake has looked like another bright spot for the Lakers so far, as he hit his first two shots and caused a steal on the defensive end. He seems to be in good game shape, and is ready to make an impact off the bench for this Laker team.

All in all, the Lakers length looks to be a problem for Barcelona as it is for most opposing NBA squads, but the game is close so ...

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