New York Knicks vs Los Angeles Lakers 2/5/22: Starting Lineups, Matchup Preview, Betting Odds, Predictions

New York Knicks vs. Los Angeles Lakers Matchup Preview (2/5/22)

Two underachieving teams play in an east coast versus west coast showdown when the New York Knicks travel to Los Angeles to face the Lakers. Anthony Davis and company will hope they can turn things around after a tough loss to the Los Angeles Clippers after a last-second shot from Davis popped out of the rim as time expired in the fourth quarter. Unfortunately, this may be a challenge as the Lakers will be without LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony, who strained his hamstring early on in their last game. The best chance the Lakers have to win this game will be Anthony Davis scoring 30-35 points and protecting the rim, thus forcing the Knicks to hit outside shots.

New York has struggled recently, losing games to the Miami Heat, Cleveland Cavaliers, Milwaukee Bucks, and Memphis Grizzlies. One could make an argument that none of those were terrible losses, though, as those are probably four of the seven or eight best teams in the NBA. Below, I cover the potential outcome that seems most plausible to me and what I will be betting on personally. Check it out under the betting odds section!

New York Knicks vs. Los Angeles Lakers Betting Odds

It disgusts me that I have to bet on this game: both of these squads had already officially entered my “black list” of betting. If I had to place a bet on this game, I’d lean the Lakers against the spread. Anthony Davis has played great offensively and defensively in his past four games. Now that the Lakers have their best rim protector back, their defense should improve slightly. New York has lost four of its past five games, with the only win coming against the horrendous Sacramento Kings at home. It’s clear that certain players on the Knicks, including Julius Randle, are playing uninspired basketball. It’s hard to blame them because this team has underperformed in every way. Regardless, this should make the Lakers against the spread a good bet.

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TV Schedule

Date: 2/5/22
Time: 8:30 PM ET
Arena: Crypto.com Arena – Los Angeles, CA
Channel: ABC

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New York Knicks Starting Lineup

PG: Kemba Walker
SG: RJ Barrett
SF: Evan Fournier
PF: Julius Randle
C: Mitchell Robinson

New York Knicks Analysis

New York needs to find some newfound motivation after dropping four of its past five games. The Knicks are not getting the output that it would like to from Julius Randle, who has averaged merely 13.8 points on 43% from the field and 15% from three during that span. When your best player seems unmotivated and is in a slump, that can carry over to the other players on the team. Sure, the Knicks have had a demanding schedule recently, but they have to turn around and win the winnable games after going through that stretch. That’s what playoff-caliber teams are capable of doing. The Knicks are by no means out of playoff contention, but if they want a chance to make it, they have to start now.

Los Angeles Lakers Starting Lineup

PG: Russell Westbrook
SG: Avery Bradley
SF: Malik Monk
PF: Stanley Johnson
C: Anthony Davis

Los Angeles Lakers Analysis

Surprisingly, it sounds like LeBron James will be returning before the All-Star break from his knee injury. With All-Star Weekend around the corner, I thought surely the Lakers would keep LeBron out that extra bit longer to make sure he is fully healthy so they can try for a late-season playoff push. Bringing LeBron back this quickly tells me that Los Angeles is desperate, and rightfully so, as it is merely 25-28. These are the games that the Lakers need to win, with or without LeBron, and they should be fully motivated to do just that.

New York Knicks vs. Los Angeles Lakers Daily Fantasy Picks

Since returning from injury, Anthony Davis has played exceptionally well. Davis did not have a great start to this season and was relatively inefficient before an injury further derailed his year. His averages on the season are roughly 24 points, ten rebounds, and three assists on 52% from the field and 17% from deep. Davis has posted 29.5 points, 12.3 rebounds, and 2.5 blocks in his past four games on nearly 56% from the field. In short, Davis has stepped up since returning from his injury, and the fact that LeBron James has been sideline has forced him to become the primary scorer once again. LeBron may return soon, but it probably won’t be for this game. That makes Davis incredibly valuable in DFS in the meantime, so consider him for your lineup.

I want to go on record and say that I am a huge fan of Mitchell Robinson’s game. He knows exactly what his capabilities are and maximizes that output night-in and night-out. His season averages are not overwhelming, but he is exceptionally solid. Robinson averages roughly 8.5 points, 8.5 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks per game but has recently produced even more. In his past 12 games, Robinson has averaged a double-double with 11 points, ten rebounds, and two blocks. If you are looking for a cheap option at center or even a utility player, look no further than Robinson.

An honorary selection for a DFS player to look at is Malik Monk. Monk has shot the ball exceptionally well this season, with roughly a split of 47/41/80. As a starter, Monk averages over 18 points per game, and for every game that LeBron sits, he will likely draw a start. Additionally, he’s plenty capable of getting red hot in certain games, evidenced by a 33 point game he had less than one week ago. At the moment, Monk may be the best shooter that the Lakers have, so expect a progressively higher usage as they begin to hopefully figure out that he’s a terrific offensive player.

Drew is a lead NBA writer at Lineups.com where he has been covering in-season basketball coverage to the NBA Draft. He is a former collegiate player who now spends time diving into NBA prospects and evaluating the analytics of the NBA.

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