Lakers vs. Nuggets
NBA Basketball: Sunday, October 2, 2017 at 10:30 pm (STAPLES Center)
The Line: Lakers +1.5 -- Over/Under: 217.5 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The Denver Nuggets and Los Angeles Lakers meet Monday in NBA preseason action at the STAPLES Center.
The Denver Nuggets are coming off a 108-102 victory over the Golden State Warriors and will play their second of four straight road games. In the victory, the Nuggets shot 44.4 percent from the field and made 13 threes, as Paul Millsap led the way with 22 points and 11 rebounds while Nikola Jokic had 12 points and six rebounds. Emmanuel Mudiay chipped in 19 points off the bench and Mason Plumlee was the fourth and final double-digit scorer for the Nuggets. It was a really impressive performance for a Nuggets squad that was 8.5-point underdogs on the road against the defending champs, and one that should give this young team some confidence. Remember, the Denver Nuggets have just four players on this current roster who are at least 30 years old, so preseason believe can be big for a team like this.
The Los Angeles Lakers are coming off a 108-99 loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves and play their second of four preseason home games. In the losing effort, the Lakers shot 44.1 percent from the field and made five of 30 three point attempts. Kyle Kuzma led the Lakers with 19 points and five rebounds while Julius Randle had 15 points and seven rebounds. Lonzo Ball had five points and eight assists in his NBA preseason debut, and Jordan Clarkson had 14 points in 23 minutes. The Los Angeles Lakers can obviously shoot better from beyond the arc, but they can also clean up their 16 turnovers and do a better job of defending without fouling. The Lakers fouled 29 times in their debut, sending Minnesota to the line 35 times, which is downright ridiculous and not going to cut it moving forward.
The Nuggets are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 road games, 7-0 ATS in their last 7 Monday games and the under is 5-0 in Nuggets last 5 overall. The Lakers are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games playing on 1 days rest, 4-0 ATS in their last 4 home games and the under is 4-0 in Lakers last 4 games playing on 1 days rest. The Nuggets are 7-1 ATS in the last 8 meetings in Los Angeles and 4-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings.
The Los Angeles Lakers have value with the points because they're one of those teams that has a packed house with the excitment of Ball and others being on the court. Also, the Lakers lost by just nine points in their opener despite shooting awful from the outside. Yes, the Nuggets are the better team and should be the favorite, but this is a game where the Lakers could steal if some of those threes fall. I'll take a stab with the free bucket.