Los Angeles Lakers vs. Portland Trail Blazers 8/29/20: Starting Lineups, Matchup Preview, Betting Odds
Los Angeles Lakers vs. Portland Trail Blazers Matchup Preview
While most of these games have been the Lakers by six points, it jumps to a 13-point spread with Damian Lillard out as the odds are heavily in favor of the Lakers ending this series tonight. This would bode well for the Lakers to get some extra rest and potentially get Rajon Rondo back for the next round. Portland’s playoffs went about as expected and very similar to the last few seasons. It is very clear the Blazers are in need of another superstar. This series was a more of a challenge for the Lakers despite the likely 4-1 series win and last few blowouts. This team pushed them to step up their defensive game and made sure the Lakers couldn’t take them lightly. Overall this series should help Los Angeles moving forward as they will possibly take on the Houston Rockets and their small set of all-star guards in the backcourt.
Time: 9:00 PM ET
Arena: AdventHealth Arena, Orlando, FL
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Lakers Starting 5
Los Angeles has made quick work of the Portland Trail Blazers and it has been from the guys we expected. Anthony Davis left early last game with back spasms after an 18-5-5 start with 18 minutes on the court. The Lakers had hot shooting from Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell Pope, and Danny Green. James once again dished out double-digit assists and his play was not needed for most of the second half. Tonight’s game should be much more of the same and the Lakers will have an easier task for defending with Damian Lillard out. The Lakers have done a great job on the defensive end in this series allowing just 102 points per game and holding the Clippers to just 31% from downtown. They have the second-best defensive rating in the postseason and a net rating of +11.
Trail Blazers Starting 5
Trail Blazers Analysis
We will take a look at the Blazers offense without Damian Lillard. He had over a 30% usage rate this season so there is a lot to pick up. C.J. McCollum will soak up most of it with over a 30% usage rate in a 454-minute sample size with Lillard off the court this season. Carmelo Anthony sits at 27%. There is no clear bench player although Gary Trent will start at shooting guard while McCollum switches over to point guard. Portland tried to combat the Lakers bigs by starting Hassan Whiteside and Jusuf Nurkic together but that quickly fizzled out. They have been out-rebounded in the series and have had no answer for LeBron James or Anthony Davis. Portland goes through these shooting stretches as well and it hasn’t been pretty the last few games. We can credit the Lakers defense who stepped it up after Game 1. It was likely the wakeup call they needed.
Lakers vs Trail Blazers Fantasy Basketball Angle
As seen above the Blazers usage and offensive production will shift, but they also might not see the fourth as the Blazers are expected to get blown out. LeBron James and Anthony Davis continue to be the main fantasy weapons on the Lakers while the rest of the team are just tournament dart throws. You are hoping a KCP, Kuzma, Green, or Caruso overperform and have one of their better games. Kuzma and Caruso might see more run in a blowout, as well as the Lakers, look to build their confidence for the next round.
Lakers vs Trail Blazers Betting Odds
Lakers Odds: -1100
Trail Blazers Odds: +650
Spread: LAL -13.5
Los Angeles has been 3-0 against the spread over the last three games and they have had an average score of 120 to 103. That was with Damian Lillard playing. Portland’s poor shooting has caught up to them as they have averaged 42% from the field compared to the Lakers 51%. They are also getting out-rebounded by eight a game. The 13 point spread is fair and I will side with the Lakers ending this one early. The Portland bench has no answer and without Lillard they are not going to be able to keep up with the Lakers.
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