The Los Angeles Lakers will be facing the Portland Trail Blazers in the first round of the 2020 NBA Playoffs starting on Tuesday. The Lakers won the season series against Portland two to one. But as Anthony Davis – who also talked about Damian Lillard’s recent play – pointed out on Sunday, the Lakers are focused on their form in the bubble games rather than the previous matchups.
AD says the Lakers have been more focused on the games the Blazers have played in the bubble rather than the games they played against them earlier in the season because of how different both teams are.
— Christian Rivas (@RadRivas) August 16, 2020
The Lakers have not seen the Blazers with Jusuf Nurkic in the lineup this year. The big man has been a huge shot in the arm for a struggling team and has been a huge factor in their recent run of form to reach the playoffs. Additionally, the Lakers are now missing Avery Bradley and Rajon Rondo while adding new faces like Markieff Morris and Dion Waiters who could see substantial minutes in this series.
Regular season series rarely show much about how two teams match up. In this instance, those three games mean even less given how much both teams have changed since they last played in January.
Earlier, head coach Frank Vogel praised the Blazers for their elite level of play and said they expected to face Portland in the first round. That means Vogel and staff have had plenty of time to scout the opposition and come up with a plan to slow down Lillard and company.