The Los Angeles Lakers (34-35) visit the Houston Rockets (16-52) on Wednesday night! Action tips off at 8:10 p.m. ET. Below we continue our NBA odds series with a Lakers-Rockets prediction, pick, and how to watch.
Los Angeles has won four of their last five games and sits in 10th place in the Western Conference. The Lakers covered 50% of their games while 51% went over the projected point total. Houston is coming off an upset win over Boston but remains in last place in the West. The Rockets covered 42% of their games while 51% went over. This will be the second of three meetings between the conference foes. LA won the opener in a 140-132 shootout.
Here are the Lakers-Rockets NBA odds, courtesy of FanDuel
NBA Odds: Lakers-Rockets Odds:
Los Angeles Lakers: -3 (-110)
Houston Rockets: +3 (-110)
Over: 230 (-110)
Under: 230 (-110)
How To Watch Lakers vs. Rockets
TV: Spectrum SN, ATTSN Southwest
Stream: NBA League Pass
Time: 8:00 p.m. ET/ 5:00 p.m. PT
*Watch NBA games LIVE with fuboTV (click for a free trial)*
Why The Lakers Could Cover The Spread
Los Angeles enters tonight fresh off a 15-point win over the Pelicans. While the Lakers will be without star forward Anthony Davis due to the back-to-back, LA remains in a strong position to cover as road favorites thanks to their improved defense. Since the All-Star break, the Lakers have allowed just 110.7 PPG – the sixth-best mark in the league over that span. That improved defense was on full display in their win last night after they held New Orleans to just 40 first-half points and 108 total. Although Davis being out will certainly hurt them on that end, their trade deadline additions should be more than enough to cover.
All three of D’Angelo Russell, Malik Beasley, and Jared Vanderbilt have made huge impacts since arriving in LA. Beasley is coming off arguably his best game as a Laker. In their win over the Pelicans last night he scored 24 points thanks to nailing 7/12 threes. That was just the culmination of what has been a hot shooting stretch for the 26-year-old. Beasley has averaged nearly three three-pointers per night since the All-Star break while shooting 37% from deep.
While Beasley has provided a shooting spark, D’Angelo Russell is the one who should see his usage spike tonight. Although he has been limited by injuries, Russell is averaging 20 PPG and 5.8 APG since the All-Star break. The combo guard has been incredibly efficient as well, shooting 54% overall and 48% from three on over seven attempts per game. Russell has always flashed the potential to average 20 points per game and looks to be putting it all together in his second stint in LA.
As for Vanderbilt, his contributions don’t always show up in the box score but he has been the single biggest reason for their defensive turnaround. At 6’8″, 214 lbs. Vanderbilt is the prototype for a versatile defender. Coming off an eight-rebound night in which he was second on the team with a +22 plus/minus, count on Vanderbilt to continue to lock things down on the defensive end. Additionally, be on the lookout for an increased offensive output with Davis out.
Why The Rockets Could Cover The Spread
Houston is coming off arguably the biggest upset of the season as they took down the team with the second-most wins in the NBA – the Boston Celtics. The Rockets held the Celtics to just 29% shooting from beyond the arc and forced 14 turnovers in the win. Additionally, they dominated the glass to the tune of 48-38. That has been the story of the season for Houston as they lead the league in total rebound rate by a considerable margin. That bodes well for their chances of covering tonight considering the Lakers rank outside the top 10 in rebounding and will be without leader Anthony Davis.
While the rebounding certainly helped, the biggest hope for the Rockets to cover tonight is the play of their young stars. Second-year guard Jalen Green and rookie Jabari Smith played one of their best games of the season against Boston. Green led the team with 28 points in the win. Although he was limited to just 8/29 from the floor, he managed 11 trips to the free throw line and capitalized on 10 of them.
As for Smith, his 24 points and 11 rebounds were critical to the team’s outcome. The third-overall pick went 9/11 overall and 5/6 from three en route to his big night. While he hasn’t been quite the revelation some expected coming into the league, a massive finish to the season is certainly in the realm of possibilities for the rookie.
Final Lakers-Rockets Prediction & Pick
This could be a nice spot for the Rockets considering LA is coming off a back-to-back but I like LA’s chances considering the recent play of D’Angelo Russell.
Final Lakers-Rockets Prediction & Pick: Los Angeles Lakers -3 (-110)