South Bay Lakers play first regular-season game at new home

Photo via Pixabay

The rebranded South Bay Lakers, the Los Angeles Lakers NBA G League affiliate, will play their first regular-season game at the UCLA Health Training Center in El Segundo Wednesday evening, facing the Santa Cruz Warriors.

The rebranding of the team formerly known as the Los Angeles D-Fenders was announced in January and coincided with its move from the Toyota Sports Center, which is also in El Segundo.

Capacity for all South Bay games at the UCLA Health Training Center is 750, more than double what it was at the Toyota Sports Center. All fans in attendance for Wednesday’s game will receive a beach bag.

The UCLA Health Training Center is also the practice facility for the Los Angeles Lakers and site of the team’s offices.

Two food trucks will be present at each game, serving food until the end of the third quarter. Dogtown Dogs, whose gourmet hot dogs include soy dog and turkey dog options, and Ruben’s Tacos will be at Wednesday’s game.

South Bay’s roster includes three players with NBA experience — forward Travis Wear, center Stephen Zimmerman and guard Scott Machado — and one player assigned to it by the Los Angeles Lakers, center Thomas Bryant. Its coaching staff includes former Laker forward Metta World Peace.

The Warriors (1-1), the Golden State Warriors NBA G League affiliate, have six players with NBA experience — guard Quinn Cook, forwards Cleanthony Early, Georges Niang and James Southerland, guard-forward Michael Gbinije and center Damian Jones.

South Bay (1-0) opened its season with a 138-135 overtime victory at Santa Cruz Saturday, overcoming a 19-point second-half deficit, with Bryant scoring 22 points and Machado 20.

The league formerly known as the NBA Development League announced its rebranding in February in connection with an expanded partnership involving the NBA and the sports fuel company Gatorade.

—City News Service