Read a preview and watch a live stream of the Rockets vs the Lakers.
Where: Staples Center, Los Angeles.
When: Wednesday October 29, 02:30 (UK time)
Watch live: Click here to watch on BT Sport online!
The Los Angeles Lakers host Dwight Howard and the Houston Rockets on opening night with Kobe Bryant set to return from injury and make his competitive comeback.
It was a season to forget last year for the Lakers, and having lost Pau Gasol to the Chicago Bulls and missed out on some of their big-name free agency targets, they are expected to struggle again this year.
New Coach Byron Scott has already been hit by the injury curse with Nick Young and Steve Nash amongst the players sidelined, but with Bryant returning and the likes of Jeremy Lin and Carlos Boozer hoping to prove a point this year, the Lakers coach will hope to get results.
Nevertheless, the excitement around the Mamba’s return is undoubtedly the big talking point as after playing in just six games last season, he will be expected to lead this team again in the coming year.
The build-up to this game has been dominated by the Bryant-Howard feud, but ultimately the Rockets will be looking to get off to a strong start in what they hope will be a successful season.
James Harden will be relied upon heavily offensively after the franchise lost the likes of Lin and Chandler Parsons, but the acquisition of Trevor Ariza certainly adds quality to the roster.
Houston are strong favourites to secure the win on their visit to the Staples Center, and with the Lakers’ absentees coupled with the likelihood that Scott may struggle in the first few months, the visitors will be determined to put the pressure on early.
Harden has averaged 32.7 points in his last six games against the Lakers, and he could well be in line to improve on that statistic on Tuesday night.