NBA basketball is back inside the bubble at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida! The Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers have each completed their scrimmage schedule at 2-1, and will (re)open the league’s regular season amid the coronavirus pandemic with an epic clash on the campus of the Magic Kingdom on Thursday. How do LA’s teams look heading into their latest (and strangest) matchup?
On this week’s episode of Hollywood Hoops, Eric Pincus and Josh Martin get you caught up on all things inside (and outside) the bubble with the Lakers and Clippers. Our co-hosts tip off their typical conversation by evaluating the product that the NBA has put on the floor so far. What’s it like to watch pro hoops without fans in the stands? Are there actually advantages to the viewing experience for the millions of fans who are watching at home?
Eric and Josh then delve into what they’ve seen from the Purple and Gold so far. Who among the Lakers’ supporting cast looks best equipped to step up as the third banana behind LeBron James and Anthony Davis? Is it Kyle Kuzma, who’s looked healthy and confident in Orlando? Could it be Dion Waiters or JR Smith, both of whom made their Lakers debuts inside the bubble? And what should Lakers Nation make of the team’s attending youngsters, from Alex Caruso and Kostas Antetokounmpo to Talen Horton-Tucker and Devontae Cacok?
After that, our co-hosts turn their attention to the Clippers, who might’ve had their whole roster ready for the official restart if not for Lou Williams’ unscheduled detour to an Atlanta gentlemen’s club for chicken wings. Are the Clippers equipped to win it all, with Kawhi Leonard and Paul George both looking healthy? Could Joakim Noah give Doc Rivers’ squad the playmaking boost it needs up front? Will on-court chemistry (or a lack thereof) matter as this talented team sprints toward the finish?
Finally, Eric and Josh wrap up this week’s episode with a look at the moves that LeBron, Kyrie Irving and their NBA brethren are making in support of social justice, from helping the disenfranchised vote and donating money to help WNBA players who are working for change, to continuing to speak out on behalf of Breonna Taylor.
00:00 – The Bubble Look, JR and Dion on the Lakers
19:12 – Kuzma, Caruso and Lakers Youth
33:31 – Clippers On (and Off) Campus
44:51 – NBA, WNBA and Social Justice