Spanish network Barça TV used the “Rocky” theme in their TV-spot for the exhibition game matchup between their Euroleague champion FC Barcelona and 2-time NBA defending champs Lakers on Thursday. Of course, Barcelona see themselves as Rocky (the underdog) and the Lakers Apollo Creed (the popular reigning champ). It may be an exhibition game but a curious one since the NBA wants to prove it’s still the top of basketball and any other league is second best. But the Euroleague champs want to show the NBA that European basketball is closer than everyone thinks. See the TV-spot below:
Regal FC Barcelona was the team that Pau Gasol led to a Euroleague championship 2 years ago. Now, he gets to play against them, his fellow countrymen, in what is expected to be the most exciting pre-season game for the Lakers. Europe’s best versus America’s best. Kobe Bryant is said to be planning on playing against Barcelona, but his minutes will be very limited once again. Pau took his teammates out on their first night in Barcelona on Tuesday, but Lamar Odom stayed at the hotel because his luggage was temporarily lost leaving him with nothing to wear. Not sure what the big deal was, but I guess L.O. prefers his own wardrobe over any replacements.
The Lakers lost their first exhibition game Tuesday against the Minnesota Timberwolves by 19 points in front of a disappointed sellout crowd in London. A mild chorus of boos were heard as the 4th quarter ended. That just goes to show that a high-price ticket event combined with a lackluster performance is never tolerated in any country. Hopefully, the Lakers will turn things around against Barcelona. As far as Derek Fisher is concern, the Lakers are treating this game seriously since they want to win it for their Spaniard superstar. I have a feeling Pau has been looking forward for this game the entire summer.
Regal features Juan Carlos Navarro (Gasol’s former teammate in Memphis) and Ricky Rubio (you know the one European player who doesn’t seem to want to play in the NBA) but this team has a very talented frontline. Fran Vazquez, Pete Mickeal, Terrence Morris and Erazem Lorbek helped lead Regal to win their championship this past summer. I don’t expect this team to pull any punches. Then again, I also don’t see the Lakers treating this game as an ordinary pre-season game.
It should be fun.
Thur. Oct. 4th at Regal FC Barcelona
TV: KCAL-9 at 7 PM (delayed)/NBA-TV at 11:30 AM
Radio: 710/1330 AM ESPN at 11:30 AM
Other Notes: It looks like Phil Jackson is planning on giving Andrew Bynum limited minutes this season to help save him for the playoffs and reduce his chances of getting injured again.