After the Lakers loss to the Warriors, Mark Jackson claimed that the Lakers were in the rear view mirror and essentially believed that his Warriors were on bigger and better things. Silly rabbit, didn’t you know that the Warriors were scheduled to play the Lakers again in a few weeks?
There are several ways to interpret this Laker team coming into this game. On one hand, they are the team that was down double digits to a Portland team starting four rookies despite having their playoff lives at stake. On the other hand, they are the team that pressed their advantages(i.e. Kobe, Gasol/Howard) and withstood a barrage of difficult shots from a budding star(Lillard) and a franchise that always seems to gives them fits at their home to take the victory.
The Warriors come in tonight after suffering a loss to a Thunder team that simply overpowered them on both ends of the floor. To make matters worse, Andrew Bogut suffered an injury and is unlikely to play tonight. While Bogut isn’t the player his #1 picks status suggests he should be, he did give the Warriors more of a post presence as Lee doesn’t quite have the same skill set. That loss makes the Warriors even more reliant on screens and perimeter shooting. On the defensive end, they will have their hands full containing an invigorated Lakers front court that has become more dominant with each passing game.
This space has already explained the strength of the Lakers at home. Despite not covering the spread against the Hornets, the Lakers deserve acclaim for their active, if somewhat inconsistent, defense. The Warriors aren’t nearly as good away from home and played last night. Add it all up and the Lakers should win going away.
Play: Lakers -7
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