It has been a long, grueling year for these Lakers, but they continue to keep grinding. They have picked up consecutive wins and knocked off the Wizards by 18 last night. All of their role players are stepping up to try and earn big $ contracts elsewhere.
Utah handed Phoenix a 33-point loss but let Devin Booker score 59 on them. They are currently sitting at #6 in the conference and are starting at a matchup with Houston. But with Nurkic’s injury, they have a chance to slide a bit higher.
The stats will tell you this has been a year to forget for the Lakers. But they only tell have the story. #16 in points and #24 in points allowed do not say much about the Lakers. Their lack of three-point shooters hurt them from the first moment LeBron got hurt on Christmas. He missed a long stretch of games, and that is where it all went downhill. Being without Lonzo Ball after January certainly did its damage, while Brandon Ingram not being able to play in the final 19 games is a killer blow, because he had been starting to play like a star.
The worst part of this whole thing is that they hardly used Andre Ingram after signing him. He had a magnificent NBA debut a season ago after a long D-League career, but it just did not last. When the Lakers gave him a 10-day this year, he did not see the floor much. But as we mentioned above, look for LA to be competitive tonight. KCP, Rondo, Lance, McGee, etc. will all be looking for contracts elsewhere this offseason.
Despite numerous injuries to their point guards this year, they have not missed a beat. Like last season though, it was a slow start morphing the team into a great bunch who realized early on that they had a lot of potential. Donovan Mitchell is putting up numbers that very few sophomore guards ever has, and is looking to take it a step further next year as a real “star.” He’s leading the way with 23-4-4 and is shooting 43% from the floor. He is able to take games over whenever the team needs him too.
Jae Crowder has been effective with his 12 points per game off the bench, knocking down three after three. Rudy Gobert has yet to miss a game (knock on wood) and his presence being there for the whole season is huge. They were at their worst last year whenever Rudy was not in the lineup. Korver is shooting 39% from three since coming back to Utah.
Jazz win a close one, get their 45th win
Be sure to bet LAL +12! The Jazz will ultimately emerge victorious in a close game, as LeBron (should be suiting up) will keep the LakeShow in this one. If he’s out, go all in on UTAH -12.
Free Pick: LAL +12
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