Tonight marks the start of the Phoenix Suns’ three-game homestand versus their bitter rivals, the Los Angeles Lakers.
In addition, it marks the start of a brand-new NBA basketball era.
In the inaugural NBA in-season competition, the Suns and Lakers are participating in their first group match. When the Suns play on their own tournament court, they will be donning their brand-new City edition “El Valle” jerseys.
Both teams have faced inconsistency to varying degrees coming into the matchup. The Lakers are 3-5, including 0-5 on the road after a 128-94 drubbing at the hand of the Houston Rockets on Wednesday night.
The Suns are coming off of a frustrating performance that happened to turn into a win, in a 116-115 triumph against the Chicago Bulls the same night.
On the health front, Devin Booker remains out for the Suns, as does Damion Lee. Bradley Beal is probable and is expected to play his first game in front of a rambunctious Suns crowd. Jaxson Hayes and star big man Anthony Davis are questionable for the Lakers.
This should still be an intriguing matchup despite the fact that we almost certainly won’t get fully healthy teams tonight. Here are some things to look out for: