Los Angeles Clippers (0-0) at Los Angeles Lakers (0-0)
NBA Basketball: Tuesday, December 22, 2020 at 10:00 pm (Staples Center)
The Line: Los Angeles Lakers -2.5 -- Over/Under: 224.5 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers duke it out with Kawhi Leonard and the Los Angeles Clippers at the Staples Center on Tuesday night.
The Los Angeles Lakers will be looking to go back to back after outlasting the Miami Heat in six games in the NBA Finals. LeBron James and Anthony Davis solidified themselves as the best one-two punch in the league, they had plenty of size and experience on their bench led by Rajon Rondo who has since been traded. In the offseason, the Lakers actually improved as they acquired Wesley Matthews, Dennis Schroder, Montrezl Harrell and Marc Gasol, so they are deserved favorites to repeat as champions.
Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Clippers will be looking for a major bounce-back season after getting embarrassed by the young Nuggets in the second round despite holding a 3-1 series lead. After getting bounced out of the playoffs early, Ty Lue replaces Doc Rivers as head coach, the Clippers re-signed Paul George and Marcus Morris while bringing in Serge Ibaka and Luke Kennard, but interestingly they let Montrezl Harrell walk after a strong season. There seems to be major culture problems at the Clippers but they’re doing everything they can to remain in the contention in a competitive Western Conference.
Looking at the betting trends, the Clippers are 11-3 ATS in their last 14 road games, 23-8-1 ATS in their last 32 games playing on three or more days rest and 12-3 ATS in their last 15 Tuesday games. The Lakers are 1-4 ATS in their last five games a favorite and 1-4 ATS in their last five Tuesday games.
Head to head, the under is 4-0 in the last four meetings overall and the Clippers are 7-0 ATS in the last seven meetings in Los Angeles.
The Lakers are coming into the season with house money after pulling off a nice run in the bubble to escape with the NBA championship. LeBron and Davis were dominant for the Lakers who look like favorites to repeat as champions after upgrading their depth in the offseason, so the pressure will be on the Clippers to bounce back this season and it all starts on Tuesday. I’m tempted to take the Lakers as the slight favorites here, but with the offseason being so short, I expect them to start a bit slower than the Clippers who have had all the extra time off to lament their early exit in the second round. Give me the Clippers with the points in what should be a close one.