Still smarting from road losses to the Blazers and Timberwolves, the Warriors (51-16) are extremely shorthanded as they’ll face their Pacific Division rivals without Stephen Curry (right ankle), Klay Thompson (fractured thumb, out 2-4 weeks) and Draymond Green (right shoulder).
The Lakers (31-36) are not only coming off a grueling 112-103 win over the Nuggets on Tuesday night, they’ll be without Brandon Ingram (strained groin) and Kyle Kouzma (ankle) as they try to avoid being swept by the Warriors for the first time since 1994.
Kuzma and Julius Randle each scored 26 points Tuesday in the victory over Denver. Isaiah Thomas will start in the backcourt for the Lakers with Kuzma out.
The Warriors have won all three meetings, including a 116-114 overtime win on Dec. 18 in Los Angeles and a 113-106 win in Oakland on Dec. 22.
The Warriors will be without their Splash Brothers for at least the next four games as it certainly appears Golden State will not be the top seed in the Western Conference for the first time in four seasons.
Here are the projected starting lineups:
C Zaza Pachulia
PF Kevon Looney
SF Kevin Durant
SG Nick Young
PG Quinn Cook
C Brook Lopez
PF Julius Randle
SF Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
SG Isaiah Thomas
PG Lonzo Ball