GAMEDAY PREVIEW: Thunder Host Lakers Without Kobe

Saturday, December 19th 2015, 4:28 pm
By: Brett Coppenbarger

Oklahoma City is playing in a rare Saturday afternoon game when they face off against the Los Angeles Lakers (4-22) at 4 pm today inside of Chesapeake Energy Arena. Here are a couple of things to know about tonight's matchup:

Laker legend not playing

Last month Kobe Bryant announced that this would be his last season to play in the NBA, and many people thought today would be one of the last opportunities to see Bryant play against Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. Turns out, Bryant was a last-minute scratch from the starting lineup due to a shoulder injury. The Lakers do make another trip to OKC in April, but this is a major bummer for those who bought tickets hoping to see an NBA legend in person.

Bounce back game for Thunder

After leading for three quarters on Thursday night against the Cavaliers, the Thunder (17-9) were out dueled in the fourth quarter to snap their six game winning streak. It'll be interesting to see how the Thunder respond to that adversity. The Lakers aren't what they were in the past, but if the Thunder come out sluggish in this early tip-off, that could spell bad news for a team that has to hit the road to LA and face the clippers on Monday night.