When: 8:00 MT • Friday, January 11th, 2019
Where: Vivint Smart Home Arena · Salt Lake City, UT
Radio: 1280 AM/97.5 FM
Raul Neto - Groin - OUT
Ricky Rubio - Groin - OUT
Dante Exum - Ankle - OUT
Thabo Sefolosha - Groin - OUT
Grayson Allen - Ankle - OUT
Tony Bradley - Knee - OUT
LeBron James - groin - OUT
Rajon Rondo - hand - OUT
Injuries and short-handed squads
The Lakers are without LeBron, who is still one of the best players on the planet. Utah has suffered a myriad of injuries and is missing over one-third of their roster. Expect a lot of point guard minutes for Donovan Mitchell, possible Joe Ingles at point guard minutes, and Naz Mitrou-Long may even get some playing time tonight.
The last time these two teams face each other in November, LAL won. Utah has a lot to prove, but so does this young Lakers team.
What to watch for
Outside shooting from the front court. Utah struggles against stretch bigs. If Kuzma gets hot and starts hitting outside shots, this game will be a lot harder for the Jazz.
Pace and transition. The Lakers are 2nd in the NBA in fastbreak points per game, at 20.1. Utah is 2nd to last at 9.8 per game. If this game turns into a run-and-gun style, it could get ugly for us.
The Amazing Spida-Man. As Donovan Mitchell goes, so does Utah. When he has a good game, the Jazz usually win. He’s been on a bit of a hot streak lately. If that continues, that will give Utah the best chance at a win.
Fatigue. Utah is short-handed with 6 injuries - 5 of those to rotation players. Heavy minutes could mean tired legs and this game could get away from the Jazz in the 2nd half if they don’t come out focused early on. A good 1st half is crucial tonight.
Welcome to the SLC Dunk Game Thread.
You know the drill. No swearing, no trolling, no personal attacks, etc etc. Try to enjoy the game, hopefully.