Lakers relishing great game
Jordi Clos / Roger BogunyÓ
Los Angeles Lakersĺ players have not arrived in Barcelona to take it easy and will look to compete with and beat Regal Barša when the two teams meet in the Palau Blaugrana, their stars have assured.
The NBA champions landed in the Ciutat Contal after playing the first game of their European
pre-season tour in London and immediately declared that they were in town to win.
In front of the media throng the Lakers’ head coach Phil Jackson explained that he felt
the encounter with the Barša would be a great one. “We intend to move the ball around very
quickly,” he explained. “We want to find our match rhythm and look to use the
“We are not completely ready and we are not yet playing at our best,” the coach
continued. “We are not in prime condition and we intend to ensure that all our players are
given some game time here. That is what pre-season games are all about.”
Gasol is set to play against his former club but will not be doing the Blaugrana any favours.
“The NBA teams, like teams from any of the world’s best leagues, always want to show
their superiority,” he said. “But I think that it will be an attractive, hard-fought
game without incident.”
Just as he told Barša TV earlier in the week Gasol added: “Regal Barša have a great
team and they are ahead of us in their preparations for the season, but that will not be used as an
excuse,” he added.
Odom and Artest
Odom has been impressed by what he has seen in Barcelona already, but hopes to one day have a
closer look. “It is the first time that I have been here and I hope to be able to return and
to know the city better,” he explained. “Pau has told us a bit about Barcelona. He has
not said anything about the game though, but we are expecting a competitive encounter with both
teams going out to win. It is important that we enjoy it and play well. It will be fun.”
Ron Artest also highlighted Gasol’s enthusiasm for the Ciutat Contal. “I do not
know much about Barša, but Pau does. He often talks about them and says they have a good
team,” he said. Derek Fisher added: “We have a responsibility as NBA champions, but it
is exciting to be here.”