The Lakers and Knicks will be doing battle at MSG on Monday night, in a game that is expected to be a fun one. Even with LeBron James and Anthony Davis not playing, LA has been playing good basketball of late and is looking like they may just be able to sneak back inside the top four in the standings, should they be able to figure things out further.
Andre Drummond has turned in consecutive solid performances, his big toe healthy, and his contributions looking steady. He has provided good minutes in the middle, and the big thing he has that Montrezl Harrell doesn’t, is size. The team was lacking a big man that could also impact the game on both ends of the floor, which Gasol has not been able to do much of.
New York has picked up consecutive thrilling wins. They rallied from 13 down in the final six minutes against Memphis on Friday, eventually winning in OT. And on Sunday, they were able to hold off the Raptors, RJ Barrett’s corner three with just over 30 seconds left, providing them with enough. Barrett has delivered clutch moments in back-to-back games, and it’s a good time to remember that he’s still only 20. He’s going to be a superstar.
Odds: The spread for Monday night is currently sitting at NYK -3. The over/under is set at 205.5 points.
Lakers Looking for Their Shaq Win
At 33-20, the Lakers are one win away from having Shaq’s Laker jersey number as their win total. If they can get there in 54 games, that wouldn’t be too bad, given the tough circumstances surrounding their season. They have been able to hold steady without their tars in the lineup and watch their role players grow into higher-level contributors before their eyes.
Drummond will have plenty of opportunities to eat, as he goes against the likes of Nerlens Noel and Taj Gibson. They do not provide New York with an interior presence that can slow a big man like Dre down. And off the bench, Harrell should also be able to come in and make an impact.
Talen Horton-Tucker racked up 11 assists against Brooklyn on Saturday, picking his game up following Dennis Schroder’s ejection.
Knicks Look to Move Over .500
It has been quite the season for the Knicks, who have primarily hovered around .500. Julius Randle has been up and down but a steady presence in the lineup each night. Barrett has emerged as the clear No.2 option, while the likes of Alec Burks, Immanuel Quickley, and Derrick Rose have been able to provide life off the bench.
It’s been a weird roster for the Knicks, but it works. Tom Thibodeau is somebody that would once ride all of his starters but now does it with just one. The only problem here is that lottery-pick Obi Toppin is playing fewer than 13 minutes per game as Julius Randle’s backup. They need to be more confident in his abilities and just let him loose one of these games.
Knicks Hold Off Lakers
The Knicks will get the victory over the Lakers, picking up the W at home.
FREE PLAY: KNICKS -3
OVER/UNDER: OVER 205.5
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