In what might be a preview of the Western Conference Finals, two teams playing on top of their games square off when the Lakers begin their tough four-game road trip when they travel to the San Antonio to play the team with the NBA's best record.
The Spurs will be playing on one day's rest after humiliating Eastern Conference contender Miami on Friday night at AT&T Center, 125-95. In that game, eight players scored in double digits for the Spurs.
But their opponents are in the midst of a six-game winning streak, and have been winning despite not shooting the ball particularly well in their last two games. The Lakers shot under 40 percent in their last two victories.
Though the Lakers are likely to bounce back from consecutive poor-shooting nights, the Spurs are one the best defensive teams in the NBA.
The Spurs lead the season series 2-0, and narrowly defeated the Lakers at Staples Center in early February. When the two teams played at AT&T Center in late December, the Spurs picked apart Los Angeles, with a 97-82 win.
Point guard Tony Parker has been the difference against the Lakers this season. He's averaged 22 points, and shot 54.2 percent from the field in the two games.
In both games, Kobe Bryant didn't put up typical numbers.
In the Lakers' home game, Bryant nearly had a triple-double, with 16 points, 10 assists, and nine rebounds, but shot only five-of-18 from the field. In the road game, Bryant shot a poor eight-for-27 from the free-throw line.
The Black Mamba is known for redeeming himself. It will be interesting to see how he does on Sunday afternoon with one of the biggest games of the year for the Lakers.