As if Kobe Bryant needs any more motivation to rehab his torn left Achilles tendon quickly so he can return early in the season.
The Lakers will face Dwight Howard on Nov. 7 in Houston for the first time since the free-agent center bolted to the Rockets. The NBA expects to release its 2013-14 schedule Tuesday, but the following details obtained by the Los Angeles News Group are not expected to change.
Despite the team's first-round flameout last season to the San Antonio Spurs, the Lakers still will carry one of the marquee games on Christmas Day.
They will host the defending champion Miami Heat at Staples Center, marking the second time in four years they will have faced each other on Christmas.
The Lakers open the season against the Clippers on Oct. 29 at Staples Center, a matchup that should provide plenty of motivation considering the Clippers retained Chris Paul and hired Doc Rivers as their coach.
The Clippers also swept the season series from the Lakers last season.
The Lakers reached an agreement with undrafted rookie free agent Elias Harris on a two-year deal, according to a league source.
Harris' contract involves a partial guarantee at the veteran's minimum his first season. The Lakers
hold a team option on the second season.
Harris averaged 10.2 points and 5.6 rebounds in five games with the Lakers in the Las Vegas Summer League. The 6-foot-8. 240-pound forward averaged 14.6 points and 7.4 rebounds last season at Gonzaga.
The Lakers currently have 12 players under contract for next season.
Second-round draft pick Ryan Kelly is likely to stay with the team, bringing that number to 13. NBA teams are allowed to field a maximum of 15 players on their rosters.