- Kobe Bryant needs 11 points to hit 31,000 for his career. He will be the youngest of the five players to reach that milestone at 34 years, 185 days, surpassing Wilt Chamberlain (36 years, 164 days). In his career, Bryant has averaged 24.2 points in 55 regular-season games against the Mavericks.
- Anthony Morrow makes his Dallas debut after being acquired from Atlanta at Thursday’s trade deadline for Dahntay Jones. Morrow put on a show for his new teammates at Saturday’s practice, knocking down 24-of-25 attempts from 3-point distance. “A guy that can shoot like that is going to be an asset,” coach Rick Carlisle said.
- Lakers starters Earl Clark (sprained/dislocated left pinky finger) and Steve Nash (sore back) are expected to play.
- Mavericks center Chris Kaman has been practicing and there’s a chance he could return today after missing 10 games due to a concussion, giving Dallas help inside against Dwight Howard. “I don’t see the need to rush him back into the fray,” Carlisle said.
- Los Angeles (27-29) has won four straight games in Dallas (25-29), including a 115-89 victory on Nov. 24. Overall, the Lakers have taken seven of the last eight regular-season matchups. Both teams are chasing Houston (31-27) for the No. 8 seed in the West.
- Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni doesn’t think the early start time for the game will be a factor. “If somebody is letting down, it’s because it’s mental, it’s not physical or anything,” he said. “You sleep well, you get up and you go to work, kind of like everybody else does. Usually you’re more productive in the morning, right?”
– Dave Ivey