Philadelphia 76ers vs. Los Angeles Lakers: Preview, Analysis and Prediction

For the second time in three weeks, the Los Angeles Lakers and Philadelphia 76ers are set to go to battle.

During their first bout of the 2012-13 NBA regular season, L.A. emerged victorious by a score of 111-98. Playing his hometown of Philadelphia, Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 34 points.

This time around, it's the Sixers that are looking to earn a victory on an opponent's home court.

Since the two teams first played, the Lakers have won four of their past five games. The Sixers have lost five of their past seven.

With a chance to create momentum on the first day of 2013, who will seize the opportunity?


Time: Tuesday, January 1, 2013 at 10:30 p.m. ET

TV: TWC Sports Net & CSN Philadelphia 

Records: Philadelphia 76ers (14-17) at Los Angeles Lakers (15-15)

Betting Line: Philadelphia 76ers 76ers (+9) at Los Angeles Lakers (-9) (via

Injuries: Steve Blake, Abdominal Strain; Andrew Bynum, Knee; Chris Duhon, Back Spasms; Pau Gasol, Plantar Fasciitis


Key Storyline: The Fight to Top .500

Should the Los Angeles Lakers defeat the Philadelphia 76ers on New Year's Day, they would top .500 for the first time since November 20, 2012. They were 6-5 at that time.

Who would have thought that it'd take 31 games for the Lakers to rise above .500?

Fortunately for L.A., they are finally at full strength. Steve Nash is back in the rotation, Pau Gasol is fighting off a foot injury and the starting lineup is now intact.

The Sixers are a different story.

Philadelphia remains without franchise center Andrew Bynum. Bynum, an ex-Laker, is still without a timetable for his return (via Philly Burbs).

During a season in which victories have come rather inconsistently, starting 2013 with a win is imperative for both sides. For L.A., it is a step toward ch...

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