Lakers and Knicks at MSG

13 December 2012 13:28:50 EST

The struggling Los Angeles Lakers make their one trip to New York this season when they play the Knicks at Madison Square Garden on Thursday evening.

With a 9-13 record, three consecutive defeats and a seven-game gap to the Los Angeles Clippers this is not the Lakers side that fans are used to seeing.

And yet, the return of Steve Nash could lead to a complete turn around helping to bring Dwight Howard more into the game.

Unfortunately for LA, Nash is still unavailable from his early season injury while the Knicks Carmelo Anthony is available after torching the Brooklyn Nets for 45 points on Tuesday.

The Clippers and Golden State Warriors continue to set the pace in the Pacific Division with wins on Wednesday against Eastern Conference opposition.

LA sent the Charlotte Bobcats to their ninth consecutive loss with a 100-94 triumph at the Times Warner Cable Arena in Charlotte, while the Warriors continued their remarkable East Coast swing with a two-point defeat of the Heat in Miami.

Rookie Draymond Green's layup with less than a second to play was the difference for the visitors who will conclude their trip at Orlando and Atlanta on Friday and Saturday.

The third game of the evening, following Charlotte's visit to Atlanta and the Lakers in New York sees the Northwest Division cellar dwellers the Portland Trail Blazers take on the San Antonio Spurs at the Rose Garden.

Wednesday the Spurs were beaten by the Utah Jazz who improved to 9-1 at the EnergySolutions Arena in Salt Lake City.

The Spurs are 11/10 to win the NBA Championship while the Knicks are at 1000/1.

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