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<center>T H E P Y R A M I D
Wednesday, January 21th, 2004
7:00 CST


vs.
(22-18 / 7th Midwest) .. | .. (23-15 / 2nd Pacific)
Complete Standings

Starting Lineups
<IMG SRC="http://www.nba.com/media/playerfile/lorenzen_wright.jpg" ALT="Lorenzen Wright"</IMG><IMG SRC="http://www.nba.com/media/playerfile/pau_gasol.jpg" ALT="Pau Gasol"</IMG><IMG SRC="http://www.nba.com/media/playerfile/james_posey.jpg" ALT="James Posey"</IMG><IMG SRC="http://www.nba.com/media/playerfile/mike_miller.jpg" ALT="Mike Miller"</IMG><IMG SRC="http://www.nba.com/media/playerfile/jason_williams.jpg" ALT="Jason Williams"</IMG> vs <IMG SRC="http://www.nba.com/media/playerfile/gary_payton.jpg" ALT="Gary Payton"</IMG><IMG SRC="http://www.nba.com/media/playerfile/kareem_rush.jpg" ALT="Kareem Rush"</IMG><IMG SRC="http://www.nba.com/media/playerfile/devean_george.jpg" ALT="Devean George"</IMG><IMG SRC="http://www.nba.com/media/playerfile/stanislav_medvedenko.jpg" ALT="Slava Medvedenko"</IMG><IMG SRC="http://www.nba.com/media/playerfile/brian_cook.jpg" ALT="Brian Cook"</IMG>
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Matchups to Watch

Jason Williams will square off against the last remnant of the Lakers' "Four Hall of Famer" squad, Gary Payton.
</center>



Head Coach: Hubie Brown
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Notes
One team is coming into this game hot off a thrilling 88-83 victory over the Houston Rockets and also riding a five-game win streak. The other is racked with injuries, mired in a 7-10 slump, and by the way, has dropped their last seven road games. Did we all get sucked in a vortex into a parallel universe? Did we all just fall asleep? No, because the league has begun to take notice of the hot Memphis Grizzlies. Pau Gasol, James Posey, and a resurrected Mike Miller have been playing inspired basketball lately, putting in 24, 17, and 20 points respectively against Houston. Posey should not count on fouling out in only 11 minutes (a bogus statline last game in Los Angeles) at home. After falling in the last seven games of December, Memphis has won eight of nine and are making a serious push for the playoffs at the halfway pole.

Injury Report
- Troy Bell (sore left knee), Theron Smith (back spasms), and Ryan Humphrey (concussion) are on the injured list.

Clubhouse
Official Memphis/LA Lakers Game Thread (11/10)
Official Memphis/LA Lakers Game Thread (11/23)
Box Score (11/10) - Memphis (105) LA Lakers (95)
Box Score (11/23) - Memphis (89) LA Lakers (121)
Box Score (1/19) - Memphis (88) Houston (83)


Head Coach: Phil Jackson
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Notes
Those wondering if I screwed up the game thread -- that really is the Lakers' starting lineup tonight. Shaq's calf, Kobe's shoulder, Malone's knee, Fox's ankle, and Devean George's brain have all taken their toll on the Lakers, who after starting the season 18-3 are now 25-13. The LakeShow is coming off a defeat to the hapless Phoenix Suns, 88-85, on Monday. Without three of the four Hall of Famers, the Lakers role players have been practically left in the cold. Devean George, highly touted for making wide-open jumpers early in the season, has struggled mightily lately now that other players can defend him regularly. Slava Medvedenko and Kareem Rush have been meager stopgaps and have had good games here and there -- Medvedenko has a penchant for putting on shows against Memphis. Without Shaq and backup center Horace Grant, the Lakers are looking horribly weak down low, which should open up some fastbreaks, which worked well last game against Memphis. LA has never lost multiple games to the Grizzlies in the same season.

Injury Report
- Horace Grant (personal reasons) and Shaquille O'Neal (strained right calf) will not play.
- Kobe Bryant (sprained right shoulder), Rick Fox (surgery; tendon, left foot) and Karl Malone (sprained medial collateral ligament; right knee) are on the injured list.



<center>
Click HERE to See NBA.com's Preview for Tonight's Game!

Visit the BRAND NEW Grizzlies January Watch Thread!


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For some reason NBA.com's preview has O'Neal on the roster. Is he playing??

http://www.nba.com/games/20040121/LALMEM/preview.html


I wouldn't play Shaq. You don't want to risk him getting hurt again off of some minor injury, or something of that nature. I bet this game will be pretty competitive even though the Lakers are depleted.

Predicted Outcome:

Grizzlies: 113 ---- Lakers: 107
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Originally posted by <b>C-MO 22 LD</b>!
For some reason NBA.com's preview has O'Neal on the roster. Is he playing??

http://www.nba.com/games/20040121/LALMEM/preview.html


I wouldn't play Shaq. You don't want to risk him getting hurt again off of some minor injury, or something of that nature. I bet this game will be pretty competitive even though the Lakers are depleted.

Predicted Outcome:

Grizzlies: 113 ---- Lakers: 107
The Lakers don't have any more room on their IR for Shaq. Kobe, Malone, and Fox are already taking up the spots. He'll be sitting out, most likely.
 

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Is this the same team that beat Denver badly, or was Kobe not injured then? Either way, the Grizzlies still can't take them lightly. Medvedenko has been playing very well as of late.

Hopefully, the Grizz will make history tonight and beat the Lakers more than once in the same season. :D
 

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Originally posted by Talula!
The game is sold out tonight.

And the Grizzlies are favored to win by 10 points.

Did I just hear that statement correctly?? The Grizzlies are sold out??? Who could have ever imagined 3 years ago when the Grizzlies came to Memphis that they would build up to be this good, in this short amount of time. Wow. The Grizzlies actually have fans. I think the basketball deity loves this town of Memphis. Am I right??

I also bet Vegas is cringing at the site of the line of tonights game versus Lakers. There prolly like: "You gotta be *****in me??"
 

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Can't really afford any more home losses, definitely don't want to give up this one with the Lakers hurting.

Grizz take advantage of some much deserved good fortune:

Grizz 111

Lakers 98
 

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Another example of how awful and biased the officiating in the NBA is today: Mike Miller gets fouled on the head, arm, and side at the same time and is sent crashing to the ground, and they call Shane Battier for a foul. What the hell? Can you really call these guys officials? I call them nut jobs.
 

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What a horrible free-throw shooter Gasol is! I wonder if we're going to see the Hack-a-Pau strategy near the end of games.
 

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Half
Los Angeles 46
Memphis 40


Lakers
Payton 11 points
Medvedenko 9 rebounds
Fisher/Payton/Rush 2 assists


Grizzlies
Miller 9 points
Wright 5 rebounds
Wiliams/Miller 3 assists
 

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Gasol is 2-9 from the free-throw line. At least he is being aggressive.


Posey hasn't scored yet.


Mike Miller is on fire to start the 3rd quarter.
 

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End 3rd
Los Angeles 62
Memphis 69


Lakers
Payton 18 points
Medvedenko 9 rebounds
Walton/Payton/Rush 3 assists


Grizzlies
Gasol 17 points
Wright 7 rebounds
Williams 9 assists
 

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Bonzi may finally be out of his slump. He went 4-8 from the field tonight for 11 points. He also had 4 rebounds in 22 minutes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
This is in the bag. 84-71 Grizz.

JWill's had a great game. Pau's been playing with intensity, but his FTs were way off tonight.

Awesome win.
 

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Final
Los Angeles 82
Memphis 88


Lakers
Payton - 24 points
Medvedenko - 12 rebounds
Rush - 5 assists
Fisher- 2 steals
Medvedenko - 1 block


Grizzlies
Miller - 18 points
Wright - 8 rebounds
Williams - 10 assists
Posey - 3 steals
Gasol - 3 blocks


Box Score
 

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As one of the biggest Pau critics, I must say he is starting to play very well. Almost getting up to All Star status with his play. If Mike Miller can be consistent, Pau will be even better.

Only KG has the quickness to contain him off the dribble.
 
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