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Portland Trail Blazers at Los Angeles Lakers Betting Preview



The Portland Trail Blazers take on the Los Angeles Lakers in a pseudo-home game for the Lakeshow on Tuesday, August 18th at 9 PM ET in what is a game of question marks. Although there are some question marks, it’s where my NBA pick comes from tonight.


After numerous disappointing and, in some cases, shockingly disappointing displays from the LeBron James-led Lakers, the basketball world has their sights set squarely on this game to see how Los Angeles psychologically responds to the noise about its on- and off-court antics.




On the other side, Damian Lillard, who many say has been the most outstanding player of the bubble, is fresh off a pseudo-home game victory over the Memphis Grizzlies to cinch their play-in game glory.


Oddsmakers are setting the line at 5.5 in favor of the Lakers, and a total hung at around 230, depending on the shop.


Does the Dame Show continue, or does the Lake Show prevail in its 2020 NBA Playoffs debut?

Individual Excellence

Individual scoring is going to be a major factor in this matchup. Anthony Davis is a scoring machine in his own right but combined with James, its no question why the Lakers were set as preseason title favorites.


While the Lakers haven’t looked themselves in recent games, it’s safe to say that a lot of the noise is overblown. James has always been one to inflate and embellish the potential distractions and turmoil of teams, whether intentionally or unintentionally. In most instances, he would bounce back in tremendous fashion.


Are Handicappers Worth the Money?


The critical question of the series will rest on whether Dame is capable of sustaining his ridiculous scoring output, in addition to counting on supplemental scoring output from the likes of C.J. McCollum and clutch baskets from the grizzled Carmelo Anthony.


On the other side of the floor, Davis and James, when both are playing a fluid two-man game, are basically unguardable. 


But if the Blazers are able to have Lillard run wild, a straight-up win is very much in the cards for the upstart underdogs. Also, Jusuf Nurkic, the Blazers do-everything big man, should not be slept on. He will be a major X-factor for the series with his passing and ability to score from every spot on the floor.


Check out our winning pick in last Tuesday’s Bucks vs. Wizards game over at DocsPicks.com.

Pace of Play

Pace is going to be a major factor for both sides of the ball. These are teams that love to run in transition, and when it comes to McCollum and Lillard, both are isolation scorers who eviscerate opponents in transition. The Lakers run in transition as well, and their bench sustains a brutal onslaught when they are shooting the ball extremely well.


With a 230-point total at top online sportsbooks, it’s hung high for a reason. These teams score lots and lots of points, and when they do, they don’t tend to stop. 


The bubble has been the site of higher-than-average totals, and when examining the pace rankings for both squads, the Blazers far exceed the Lakers with the second-fastest pace in the league.

The Prediction

We like the Blazers to shock the Lakers in their return to mediocrity. The Lakers come out flat and demotivated, the gossip will continue, but it gives them a “back-against-the-wall” mentality.

The Blazers win it, 107-101.

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