NBA Basketball: Wednesday, December 5th @ 10:30pm ET (Staples Center)
Spread: Los Angeles Lakers -7.5
FREE NBA Pick San Antonio Spurs vs Los Angeles Lakers
The Spurs are heading to LA on Wednesday night for their third matchup of the season with the Lakers (the Spurs won the first two games by a combined 5 points, including a 143-142 OT victory).
Los Angeles Lakers
The Lakers are beginning to find their footing, having won 10 of their past 13 games (and 12 of their past 16) and sitting in the middle of the still very crowded Western Conference playoff picture. In 5th place at 14-9, they’re just 2 games behind the first place Nuggets and Clippers (16-7) but also only 3.5 games ahead of the second-to-last place Jazz (11-13). Eventually, a few more teams will fall a little further out of the picture, but Los Angeles is starting to show that they belong back in the conversation as one of the top 4 teams in the West. Offensively, they’re still trying to find their rhythm (16th in efficiency), but they’re a top-10 defensive team and when they really need an offensive jolt they’ve still got the best player on the planet to lean on. Not a bad position to be in. And from a betting standpoint, they’ve covered 3 straight games as the favorite, including laying a 24-point smackdown on the last place Suns. Not only beating, but crushing the teams you’re supposed to crush is an important step in a team’s development, so that Suns win feels like a good sign. Also of note: the total has gone under in their past 8 games, as they’ve held 4 of those opponents to under 100 points.
San Antonio Spurs
The indomitable force that is the Spurs machine is beginning to show some cracks, and as the Raptors ascension continues (3 more wins and 2 fewer losses than every other team in the NBA), the winner of the Kawhi for DeMar trade is getting clearer by the day. Yes, they still have 2 legitimate stars in DeRozan and Aldridge, and Popovich can do more things with less than most, but I wouldn’t be all that surprised if this were finally the year that the Spurs’ ridiculous 21 season playoff streak finally comes to an end. There’s just a lot of parity, with a handful of early surprises around the league, and with a porous defense and an affinity for shooting mid-range jumpers (their two stars are also great at shooting 20-footers, which isn’t ideal in the modern game), they could find themselves on the outside looking in for the first time in the 21st century. Recently, they’ve been underdogs more often than not (7 of the last 9 games), and in that time they’ve gone just 3-6 ATS (also 3-6 SU). They’re a hard team to judge, with some good wins and bad losses peppered into their ~.500 record, but one thing they’ve yet to accomplish is winning on the 2nd night of a back-to-back, going 0-4 in such instances so far this season. Tonight’s game against the Lakers will represent their 5th try at winning in that scenario.
Cover the Spread 365 Betting Trends
Los Angeles Lakers
LA Lakers is 4-2 ATS in its last 6 games
LA Lakers is 7-1 SU in its last 8 games at home
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of LA Lakers’s last 5 games
San Antonio Spurs
San Antonio is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games
The total has gone OVER in 8 of San Antonio’s last 9 games
San Antonio is 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games when playing LA Lakers
FREE NBA Prediction San Antonio Spurs vs. Los Angeles Lakers
As I mentioned before, San Antonio is already up 2-0 in the season series, albeit both in extremely close contests, and the 4th and final game of the season series is this Friday. The Lakers have vastly improved since those first 2 games (their 3rd and 6th games overall), and I’m pretty confident they’ll win tonight. However, this is their 3rd largest spread of the year, and aside from their last game against the worst team in the NBA, in which they covered an 11.5 point spread, the largest they’ve covered this year is just 5.5. I expect a close and high scoring game tonight in LA, with a very well-rested LeBron (hasn’t played since a very relaxing win on Sunday) being the difference, as he usually is.