LA Lakers vs Sacramento Kings: Prediction, Starting Lineups, Odds (12/21/22)

If you would have told me the Sacramento Kings would have been comfortably over 0.500 at this point of the season, I would have laughed at you. Well look who’s laughing now, and it’s certainly not me. The Kings have been an exciting surprise on the season and are proving that their record is for real behind an electric offense. Can they continue to win against the bumbling Lakers who are without Anthony Davis?

LA Lakers vs Sacramento Kings Betting Odds

Oddsmakers think so as they opened the Kings as a -7 favorite. Bettors believe the number was set too high, taking the Lakers down to +6 as of writing. This will be an intriguing matchup as the Lakers sudden success was off the back of Anthony Davis who was the most dominant player in the NBA over the past few weeks, but he is now sidelined with an injury. Even with the return of LeBron James, the interior will be weak without Davis’s shot blocking presence. An area that the Kings can exploit.

As for the total, points are expected to be scored in bunches as oddsmakers opened the number at 228.5. Betters were quick and adamant in agreement, hammering the total up to as high as 240 which is a massive swing. With the Lakers lacking an elite big man, this leaves them vulnerable down low while the Kings defense is spotty at best as well. Scoring opportunities will be present for both teams in this one.

LA Lakers vs Sacramento Kings Prediction

The Pick: Under 240

Even though defense is expected to be weak on both ends, I’m taking the under as this number has simply climbed way too high. With or without Anthony Davis, the Kings will want to push the tempo and that is detrimental for a big man to guard. If anything, this only helps the Kings in half court sets which means the pace of game has slowed down and helps our chances at cashing the under.

It also needs to be remembered that the Lakers are one of the worst shooting teams in the NBA. Lacking any sort of threat from the perimeter, opposing defenses have been granted the ability to sag down and dare them to shoot over them. This script should be no different and potentially allow the Kings to shift their focus more on LeBron’s scoring output.

This also allows the Kings depth to do the same, limiting Russell Westbrook’s drives to the rim and forcing him to shoot. If the Kings can get Westbrook into forcing low quality shots at the rim and securing defensive rebounds, this severely limits the Lakers scoring opportunities throughout the course of the game while the Kings slowly build on a lead.

Betting Trends

  • Under is 4-0 in last four Kings games when on one day of rest
  • Under is 4-1 in last five Kings games when the opponent scores over 100 points in their previous game

Key Matchups

Can the Lakers defense limit the plethora of scorers that the Kings send out?

Lakers defense vs Kings scoring production

While the King’s defense has lacked, it has been their offense that has carried the torch for their success. The Kings score and they do it efficiently. They currently play ten players with meaningful minutes with six of them in double digit figures. De’Aaron Fox leads the way with 23.2 points per game.

Speaking of Fox, this team lives and dies by his production. That was made apparent when Fox was dealing with a nagging injury, going on a losing stretch and the offensive output drastically lessening. When his assists and scoring took a dip in limited minutes, so did the team as a whole.

The Lakers defense will need to be crisp and ready to help switch off as the Kings can burn from multiple ways. Losing Davis hurts, as Davis allows the defense to stretch out while anchoring him down low and securing boards, but they can recoup his loss by crashing the boards and limiting second chance opportunities.

Verdict

Take the under for a total that has climbed too high as I believe the Lakers struggles will continue with the loss of Anthony Davis.

LA Lakers Starting Lineup

PG: Patrick Beverley
SG: Lonnie Walker IV
SF: Troy Brown Jr
PF: LeBron James
C: Thomas Bryant

(Team Callout)

Sacramento Kings Starting Lineups

PG: De’Aaron Fox
SG: Kevin Huerter
SF: Harrison Barnes
PF: Keegan Murray
C: Domantas Sabonis

(Team Callout)

Key Injuries

LA Lakers Injuries: Russell Westbrook (Q), Austin Reaves (D), LeBron James (P), Anthony Davis (O)

Sacramento Kings Injuries: Domantas Sabonis (Q), Harrison Barnes (Q)

Kody is a sports betting writer here at Lineups. He specializes in college sports as well as the NFL and NBA. He won’t quit believing in the Lions Super Bowl chances even when they are eliminated.

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