Boston and Los Angeles are not only the two most storied franchises in NBA history, but there’s a lot of history between the two teams, as well. Unfortunately, despite big expectations neither team’s season has gone according to plan so far.
Both L.A. and Boston come into Thursday night’s game streaking a little bit. After winning six in a row, then losing six in a row in January, the Celtics are hot once again, having won five straight. The Lakers, meanwhile, have won five of their last six since losing 10 of their previous 12 games. That being said, neither team is in an enviable position heading into the All-Star break.
While the Lakers and Celtics might look to be on the upswing, injuries may prevent both teams from reaching their potential. For Boston All-Star point guard Rajon Rondo and rookie wonder Jared Sullinger are out for the season, while the Lakers will be missing big men Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol for Thursday night and the foreseeable future.
Likewise, both teams came into the season with big expectations. The Celtics decided to re-up on a team led by Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Rondo after pushing the Miami Heat to seven games in last year’s Eastern Conference Final. The Lakers, by contrast, brought in Steve Nash and Howard in an attempt to get the aging Kobe Bryant another ring or two.