Coming out of the NBA All-Star break, the league is going to ramp up its activity with every game holding more meaning to make it towards the postseason.
Two Western Conference teams that are fighting for their lives on the fringe of making the postseason will go against each other on the first night back when the Golden State Warriors go on the road to take on the Los Angeles Lakers.
Both teams have dealt with or are dealing with significant injuries to some key players on their roster that will make it harder to get them to where they want to go.
We even saw LeBron James injure his finger in the all-star game on Sunday and will see him listed as questionable for this matchup.
Both teams need wins to remain alive in the fight, and the line before this game favors the Lakers over the Warriors on their home court at -4.5.
Bridging the gaps in the roster with Steph Curry
Of all of the players in the NBA, losing Steph Curry for significant portions of time has proven the most dangerous in terms of wins and losses for the Warriors.
Despite bringing up some younger players and having actual backups behind him, the Warriors still struggle more with Steph off the court than any other team and their star player.
That is going to make this final stretch of the season rough for Golden State as they try to stay alive in the conference.
Not to mention, the Warriors have already secured the title for the worst road record in the league. The signs are not looking good for them, and they need to see some positives sooner rather than later.
No room for mistakes with a new look roster
The Lakers were one of the most active teams during the trade deadline and were able to rehaul and reshape almost their entire roster.
Ridding themselves of Russell Westbrook was a step in the right direction that they needed to make for their team, but now the new pieces are going to have to gel fast.
James has a small chance to sit out of this game, but there are not too many games left they can afford to lose with how tightly contested the Western Conference is.
Maybe Anthony Davis will return to form like he was in the beginning of the regular season before his injury, but there are still plenty of question marks for this team.
Warriors @ Lakers Betting Prediction
Normally, when these two teams match up with each other, it is a star-studded affair, but we will see just how many of them actually end up playing.
Guaranteeing Curry to miss this game already puts the Warriors at a pretty significant disadvantage so it makes sense to believe in the Lakers for this game.
Anthony Davis does seem to play well against the Warriors in previous matchups, so take them as the home favorite in this game to win over Golden State at -4.5.
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