• Mike D’Antoni will be coaching the Lakers from the bench tonight when they host the Nets at Staples Center, he confirmed before the game. D’Antoni was hired Nov. 11, two days after Mike Brown was fired five games into his second season with the team. D’Antoni has run several practices with the team but has not been able to work courtside because he’s recovering from knee-replacement surgery. “It doesn’t get any better than this,” D’Antoni said before the game.
  • With point guards Steve Nash and Steve Blake still sidelined by injuries, Darius Morris will have a tough test against Brooklyn point guard Deron Williams. Morris has the size to match up with Williams but will likely lack much of the court awareness that has made Williams a three-time All Star. D’Antoni announced before the game that Blake will not be available for the next four games due to a lower abdomen strain and there’s no timetable for Nash’s return from a non-displaced fracture in his lower left game, which he suffered in the second game.
  • The Nets are trying for their first six-game winning streak since a 14-game streak late in the 2005-06 season. They haven’t defeated the Lakers in their last eight tries, however.

Dan Arritt

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