After a lot of changes for the Los Angeles Lakers during the NBA offseason, the start of the 2017-18 NBA season is upon them. The storied franchise will get their 82-game grind underway on Thursday with Larry Nance Jr. and company gearing up for a head-to-head battle with the L.A. Clippers at the Staples Center.

Following practice on Wednesday, Nance was asked about his upcoming matchup with star forward Blake Griffin. Nance is looking forward to going up against the fellow high-flyer as these two Los Angeles franchises try to attempt to get off to a strong start on Thursday night.

“I can't wait,” Nance said. “That's kind of where I've hung my hat. Defense. This is going to be a great challenge for me, you know, a challenge for us to start the year. If it goes through Blake [Griffin], take away his passing lanes and stuff like that. Try to make him more of a one-dimensional player.”

As of Wednesday, head coach Luke Walton has yet to name who he'll have at power forward in the starting lineup for the season opener. Julius Randle, Kyle Kuzma, and Nance appear to be the three players in the running for the starting gig, but Walton has been reluctant to make his decision public.

Nance could very well be named the starter come Thursday with arguably the toughest assignment on the floor. Griffin is now the face of the Clippers franchise and the team's first option offensively with Chris Paul traded to the Houston Rockets in the offseason.

The starting shooting guard position has also yet to be announced with newcomer Kentavious Caldwell-Pope serving a two-game suspension. Jordan Clarkson will likely get the nod, but Walton and company could go in a different direction.