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NBA Preview from The Sports Network



Sunday, December 29th (All times Eastern)

Philadelphia 76ers (8-21) at Los Angeles Lakers (13-17), 9:30 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Los Angeles Lakers are better known as the walking wounded lately and hope to stop a season-long four-game losing streak Sunday versus the road-weary Philadelphia 76ers.

The Lakers are already without Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash and Steve Blake, and may not have big men Pau Gasol and Chris Kaman versus the Sixers. Gasol is battling an upper respiratory infection and Kaman has a sprained ankle. Both are game-time decisions.

Los Angeles is opening a four-game homestand Sunday and will also welcome Milwaukee, Utah and Denver to Staples Center. It is 7-7 in L.A. this season and dropped a 105-103 decision to the Jazz Friday night. Jazz forward Derrick Favors helped the hosts to the win on a tip-in slam with 2.1 seconds remaining. Jodie Meeks' desperate 3-point attempt was off the mark.

Nick Young led the Lakers with 21 points off the bench before fouling out with 5:45 left in the fourth quarter. Kaman had 19 points and 10 boards, while Jordan Hill and Jordan Farmar netted 16 points apiece in the setback. Hill scored four points in a row at one moment to make 103-103.

Favors did the rest against a Lakers team that shot 50 percent from the field and had six players score in double-figures.

"We just didn't play good," said Kaman. "We did some decent things, but in the second half we just couldn't get any stops."

The Lakers used their sixth different lineup in as many days (15 total). L.A. last lost five in a row during a six-game skid from Jan. 1 - 11, 2013.

Young, meanwhile, is a former Sixer and has scored 20 or more points in five of his last seven games. He leads the Lakers with 15.9 ppg and averaged 10.6 ppg in 59 games with Philly last season.

Philadelphia dropped to 0-2 on a six-game road trip with Saturday's 115-101 loss against the Phoenix Suns. The defeat spoiled a 30-point, 10-rebound performance from Thaddeus Young, while rookie Michael Carter-Williams netted 27 points to go with six rebounds, six assists and four steals.

Tony Wroten added 22 points off the bench for the Sixers, who shot 38.9 percent for the game and have dropped 13 straight on the road. The 76ers haven't tasted victory outside of Philadelphia since their first away game -- a 109-102 win in Washington on Nov. 1 -- and lost 15 in a row as the guest from Jan. 2 - March 21, 2013.

"Defensively we just have a long way to go. I don't think we made a step forward," 76ers coach Brett Brown said. "I'm greedy. I want to see an immediate result on defense."

The Sixers, losers in 17 of 20 games overall, are the worst in opponents' scoring at 111.8 points per game. But the Lakers are third-to-last in that category, allowing 103.4 ppg.

Philly will also visit Denver, Sacramento and Portland on the trip and may not have forward Evan Turner Sunday because of a sore knee. Turner hasn't played since last Saturday in a loss at Milwaukee.

The 76ers and Lakers split a pair of meetings a season ago with each team winning on the road. Los Angeles is 10-4 in the past 14 overall meetings between the teams and 10-3 over the previous 13 at Staples Center.

12/29 10:17:44 ET

Other Stories

  • ACC: North Carolina vs. Miami

    Saturday at 12:25 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: San Diego vs. Miami

    Saturday at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • SEC: Florida vs. Georgia

    Saturday at 3:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • CFB: Notre Dame vs. Navy

    Saturday at 8:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Carolina Panthers vs New Orleans Saints

    Tonight at 8:25 on 99.9 The Fan

  • ACC: Duke at Pittsburgh

    Saturday at 12:00 pm on 620am

  • ACC: NC State at Syracuse

    Saturday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-FM

  • Football Friday with Tom Suiter

    Tomorrow at 11:35 pm

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