The Los Angeles Lakers opened a six-game road trip with a victory in their highest-scoring contest this season. That likely doesn't bode well for their next opponent.
The NBA's top-scoring team could be in for another big offensive effort while trying to extend the Memphis Grizzlies' season-high losing streak to 12 games on Saturday night.
On Friday, Los Angeles (36-9) shot 50.5 percent in a 132-119 victory at Minnesota for its fifth win in six games after losing two in a row for just the second time this season.
Putting up an average of 108.2 points this season, the Lakers next head to Memphis where they are averaging 114.3 while winning their last three road contests. Kobe Bryant had 36 in Los Angeles' 105-96 victory there on Dec. 22 in the teams' only previous meeting of 2008-09.
Bryant is averaging 34.4 points in his last 11 games versus Memphis.
There's a good chance the Lakers could continue their offensive dominance of the Grizzlies (11-34), who are mired in their longest single-season skid since dropping the first 13 games of 2002-03.
"It's already a bad season. It can't be much worse," said coach Lionel Hollins, who's 0-2 since replacing the fired Marc Iavaroni. "But hopefully, by the latter part of the season we can be knocking teams off that think they can come in here and win."
The Lakers are certainly a team who should be confident heading into the FedEx Forum after Bryant scored 30 points, Pau Gasol had 21 and Andrew Bynum continued his recent surge with 27 points and 15 rebounds against Minnesota.
The 21-year-old, 7-footer is the reigning Western Conference player of the week, and averaging 26.2 points and 13.8 boards in his last five games.
"He looks very confident in there right now, and he's playing above the crowd, so to speak, in many ways," said Lakers coach Phil Jackson, of Bynum, who had 13 against the Grizzlies last month. "I think this was a stepping out point for him."
While Bynum looks to continue his recent success, his frontcourt mate and All-Star Gasol could be in for a big night in his second trip to Memphis since the Grizzlies traded him to Los Angeles last season.
Facing his younger brother, Marc, Pau Gasol had 15 points on 6-of-10 shooting against the Grizzlies in December. Rudy Gay scored 23 and rookie O.J. Mayo added 22 in that contest for the Grizzlies, while Marc Gasol was held to eight.
Gay had 25 points in a 114-102 overtime loss at Oklahoma City on Wednesday for the Grizzlies, who were outscored 14-2 in the extra period.
"We are taking a step in a better direction," said guard Mike Conley of Memphis, which is averaging 87.6 points during its current skid. "We just need to put it all together."
Memphis won 102-82 over Dallas at home on Jan. 4 for its most recent victory, just the second in its last 21 contests.
Gay has totaled 51 points on 21-for-38 shooting in his last two games versus the Lakers.