Detroit Pistons faces the reeling defending champs LA LakersNovember 17, 2009 by Marc Jerbs

The defending champions LA Lakers have somewhat loss their focus and energy in their last two games. Both were lopsided losses inflicted by the Nuggets and Rockets. Woeful shooting is the main culprit that led to back-to-back losses by the Lakers. If you average between the vicinity of 33% to 39% field goal shooting, you are not expected to win a game.

Without Pau Gasol, the Lakers are having lots of trouble in their inside defense and scoring. Andrew Bynum is not versatile enough to fill the void left by Gasol, who is nursing a hamstring injury. What's worse, star player Kobe Bryant has aggravated his groin injury in their last game against the Rockets. He's determined to play it through against the Pistons; hopefully it will not lead him to sit out the next scheduled games of the Lakers.

The Pistons may look like not a threat against the Lakers. But they surely would like to hand the Lakers their third consecutive loss of the season. The Pistons also have their share of injuries as well; Richard Hamilton and Tayshaun Prince are among the victims. Ben Gordon has been the primary scoring option of the Piston while they await the return of their two injured All-Star players.

Given the chance that Kobe Bryant will still play nursing a groin injury, the Lakers are still deemed as the slight favorite to beat the injury depleted Pistons' lineup. Expect Kobe to find a way to help his Lakers team win this one to have their swagger back.