The Los Angeles Lakers are currently on a skid, losing four of their last five as they soldier on without Anthony Davis. The loss of Dennis Schröder (health and safety protocols) hasn’t helped things, but thankfully, the Lakers will be relieved soon with their last game before the 2021 NBA All-Star break happening after their March 3rd game against the Sacramento Kings.
Because of that, many Lakers fans are probably looking forward to the second half of the schedule for when the Lakers will be at full strength. The schedule for that second half has not been out until today, as ESPN revealed the schedule on The Jump this afternoon. The full schedule can be seen in the Tweet below, but also below, we’ve gone ahead and noted 10 games to watch for in the second half.
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) February 24, 2021
Back to business — March 12th — Pacers @ Lakers
Definitely not the most noteworthy game, but this will be the first game for the Lakers after the All-Star break. Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press noted that this ties the Lakers with two other teams for the longest break between pre and post All-Star. The Lakers are definitely in need of a long break with the current absences on the roster. Hopefully Anthony Davis will return for this game, but nothing is guaranteed.
Season opener rematch — April 4th — @ Clippers
The Lakers actually have two games still left against the Clippers, as the two have not played since the season opener where the Clippers pretty handily took care of the Lakers. The Lakers will get their first chance to get some revenge on April 4th.
Time for a visit to the “big three” — April 10th — @ Nets
Shortly after their rematch against the Clippers, the Lakers will travel to Brooklyn to try and avenge their blowout loss to the Nets only a week ago. Hopefully both teams will be at full strength for this one, as both Anthony Davis and Kevin Durant missed the first meeting between the two teams.
Lakers host Danny Green, Dwight Howard, best team in the East — March 25th — vs 76ers
A couple familiar friends will be back in the Staples Center to play on the court they called home last season, as the Lakers will look to avenge (another) loss to an elite NBA team in the Philadelphia 76ers. The two teams played on January 27th, when Tobias Harris hit a buzzer-beating game-winner to win 107-106. The 76ers are the current best team in the East at a record of 21-11.
MLB series against the West’s best — April 17th and 19th — vs Jazz
The MLB-style series will still be happening in the second half, with none as noteworthy for the Lakers in the second half than this one. They will be getting their first chance at the Jazz in tonight’s game, although the Lakers seem to be on their way for a loss without Davis or Schröder around. Here’s to hoping they will be at full strength in mid-April for two straight games against the current best team in the West.
LaMelo? Yeah, LaMelo — March 18th and April 13th — vs Hornets
The Lakers haven’t had a chance to play the probable Rookie of the Year yet, as they will re-dip their toes in the water of the Ball family first on March 18th in L.A. The April 13th matchup in Charlotte is notable as this game will be the 7th game of a seven-game road trip that the Lakers will embark on (including the Clippers and Nets games mentioned above). On top of that, the April 13th game will be the second night of a back-to-back (Knicks before). We’ll have to see if the Lakers will still have gas in the tank for LaMelo Ball, Gordon Hayward, and the rest of the Hornets.
Rematch with the reigning Eastern Conference champions — April 8th — @ Heat
Man, they really have some avenging to do. They’ll have another opportunity at payback during the same road trip mentioned just above this as they pay Jimmy Butler and the Heat a visit on April 8th. The Lakers just lost to the Heat on February 20th, 96-94.
Those one losers — April 15th — vs Celtics
Beat the Celtics at all costs.
Another MLB series with the Mavs — April 22nd and 24th — @ Mavericks
The Lakers handily took care of the Mavericks on Christmas Day, winning 138-115. However, the Mavericks have definitely improved since then and may have a different looking roster by late April as many Kristaps Porzingis trade rumors are swirling. We’ll see how the Lakers fare against this possibly-new lineup with two straight games against the Mavs.
A final late-season test against Chris Paul and Devin Booker — May 9th — vs Suns
The NBA says its Play-In Tournament for the Nos. 7-10 seeds in each conference will take place May 18-21 and that the 2021 playoffs will begin May 22
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) February 24, 2021
They haven’t played the Suns yet, but they will before the All-Star break on March 2nd. They’ll play them again on March 21st, but I wanted to highlight the very late season game on May 9th. The Lakers only have four remaining games after that May 9th matchup, with those games being against the Knicks, Rockets, Pacers, and Pelicans. The Suns are obviously better than those teams, as they’re currently 4th in the Western Conference with a record of 20-10. The May 9th game may end up as the Lakers final, intense test of the team with the playoffs starting not too long after that on May 22nd.