Los Angeles Lakers Rumors: Utah Jazz's Struggles Give L.A. Playoff Hope

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Mar 06, 2013 02:52 PM EST
Utah Jazz Out of Playoffs as they Struggle??
Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard (12) is defended by Utah Jazz center Al Jefferson during the first half of their NBA basketball game in Salt Lake City. (Photo : REUTERS/Jim Urquhart) "

The Los Angeles Lakers are battling and hanging on to the ninth place in the Western Conference. They are currently attempting to overpass a struggling Utah Jazz club that continues to slip lower in the Western Conference standings. With these Jazz complications, the Lakers now obtain a chance to enter the playoff picture. 

The Lakers are 30-31 and were briefly sitting right at .500. To their luck, right after reaching 30-30, they had to face the Oklahoma City Thunder the next day and they were responsible for dipping their record under .500 once again. 

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Overall, the Lakers are 6-4 in their last 10 games and have been playing well after the All-Star break. The chemistry seems to be there for the starting five that has disappointed all season long. 

As Kobe Bryant changes nicknames, he continues to dominate on the court despite being 34 years of age. If the Lakers don't win a championship, it will be a disappointing season. If the Lakers don't make it to the playoffs, it will be an embarrassing season. 

The Jazz ,however, are possibly slipping out of the playoffs. They are 4-6 in their last 10 games and have 32-28 record. This puts the Lakers just 2.5 games behind the Jazz with just about a month and a half of regular season basketball left to play.

About half of their remaining games will be against teams in contention and currently sitting over .500. The Jazz have 21 games remaining in the entire season. They will have to win these big games if they want to make the playoffs. 

As for the Lakers, their schedule is a little bit easier as 12 of their final 21 games will be against teams under .500. After being injured early on in the season, the Lakers look to finish strong as they have their All-Stars healthy.

The Lakers face the New Orleans Hornets  while the Utah Jazz take on the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday evening. 

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