The season is right around the corner and the Los Angeles Lakers have opened with +250 odds for the 2020-21 NBA Championship. The experts here at SportsTips have taken the time to review every single NBA team and offer up their opinion on how each team is expected to perform in the 2020-21 season, meaning you can place your best NBA bets with confidence.
So, without further ado, have a read on below at all our NBA betting stats and information on the Los Angeles Lakers
Los Angeles Lakers’ 2019-20 Season Review
With the signing of LeBron James in 2018, expectation surrounded the Los Angeles Lakers. After a disappointing first season, the Lakers traded almost the entire roster to acquire Anthony Davis.
After sending three players and three first round picks to New Orleans, LeBron James and Anthony Davis were supposed to lead the Lakers back to the top of the league.
Davis’ first season in the purple and gold was nothing short of spectacular. He averaged 26.1 points, 9.3 rebounds, 2.3 blocks and 1.5 steals on his way to finishing second in Defensive Player of the Year voting.
James’ averaged 25.3 points, 7.8 rebounds and paced the league in assists with 10.2 per contest, which earned him second place in MVP voting.
The pair led the Lakers to a 52-19 record and top place in the Western Conference. The Lakers went through the Western Conference Playoffs defeating the Blazers, Rockets and Nuggets all in five games, with players like Rajon Rondo, Danny Green, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Kyle Kuzma and Dwight Howard stepping up on any given night to help the star duo.
Los Angeles made the Finals for the first time since 2010, when they last won an NBA Championship, and James and Davis were able to help the Lakers overpower the Miami Heat in six games.
The Lakers finished 11th in offensive rating but what won them all their games and the 2020 NBA Championship was their defense, where they ranked third in defensive ranking. This allowed them to keep totals low, despite their offensive firepower, finishing with a 34-36 record in totals betting, 24th in the league.
When going against the spread, lofty expectations meant that the Lakers dropped in the standings from the 3rd best actual record to the 12th best record ATS, which was 36-33-1.
JOB’S FINISHED: YOUR LOS ANGELES LAKERS ARE NBA CHAMPIONS pic.twitter.com/Dnxtgt9i1d
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) October 12, 2020
Los Angeles Lakers’ Offseason Changes
The Los Angeles Lakers entered the 2020 NBA Draft with just the 28th pick. In the days leading up to the draft, the Lakers agreed to send pick 28 and Danny Green to the Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for Dennis Schroder.
Players In: Wesley Matthews, Montrezl Harrell, Dennis Schroder, Marc Gasol, Alfonzo McKennie
Players Out: Dwight Howard, Javale McGee, Rajon Rondo, Avery Bradley, Danny Green
Los Angeles Lakers’ 2020-21 Season Preview
The reigning, defending NBA Champions seem to have improved their roster during the 2020 offseason and their odds for the upcoming season seem to show that. Once sitting at +350 to win the NBA Championship, the Lakers now sit at +250, a clear best in the league.
Not only that, but their odds to win the Western Conference Championship have also come in to an extremely short +135.
Losses of key pieces from their championship run in Rajon Rondo, Dwight Howard, Javale McGee and Danny Green, as well as versatile defender Avery Bradley would decimate a team beyond repair.
However the Lakers have brought in pieces that have put them in a better position to defend their crown than when the season finished.
Signing Montrezl Harrell and trading for Dennis Schroder, the top two vote getters in Sixth Man of the Year voting, is a massive boost for the Lakers and both can help relieve Anthony Davis and LeBron James respectively.
Marc Gasol, one of the best defensive bigs of the last decade, joins the team and provides championship experience, an incredible IQ on both ends of the floor and a nice passing and shooting touch for someone of his size.
Gasol shot over 38% on three pointers last season and was slightly better on catch and shooter situations, something he will have plenty of with James and Davis on the floor.
Wesley Matthews is a career 38%+ three point shooter and shot above 37.5% on catch and shoot threes last season when playing alongside Giannis Antetokounmpo for the Milwaukee Bucks.
Only having 10 weeks between the end of a grueling 6-game NBA Finals and Opening Night of the 2020-21 season shouldn’t be ignored, especially with James entering season 18 and turning 36 just weeks into the season.
Expect a lot of their veterans, including James, to rest every now and again, especially if the fixture is condensed as reported, with the goal being another NBA Championship.
That is the ultimate goal and is a reality for this team, but regular season wins might come at a cost to prepare for the postseason.
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) December 2, 2020
Will the Los Angeles Lakers Make the Playoffs?
The Los Angeles Lakers will absolutely make the playoffs. Coming off an NBA Championship with an improved roster means that this team only has one goal, back-to-back titles.
Anything short of a trip to the NBA Finals would be a disappointment and they are currently favored to do so.
The one thing to watch for is how seriously the Lakers take the regular season, with three projected starters being aged 34 or older. Rest is expected and their performance throughout the year could suffer because of it, meaning this Lakers team that dominated the West last season to finish on top of the standings, might not be there this year.
Los Angeles Lakers’ Key Games
December 22: vs Los Angeles Clippers: Opening Night, Battle of LA
December 25: vs Dallas Mavericks: Christmas Day, LeBron v Luka
January 15: vs New Orleans Pelicans: The Trade, AD v Ball, Ingram & Hart, LeBron v Zion
January 18: vs Golden State Warriors: First matchup with the Warriors, LeBron v Curry
January 21: @ Milwaukee Bucks: LeBron v Giannis, AD v Holiday
February 18: vs Brooklyn Nets: LeBron v KD & Kyrie
February 20: vs Miami Heat: NBA Finals rematch
Los Angeles Lakers’ Betting Summary
The Los Angeles Lakers have a regular season wins line of 48 games exactly, but finished last season with a 52-19 record from just 71 games, one less than this upcoming season.
Despite our thoughts that this team may struggle early due to their short offseason and potential championship hangover, they have brought in four key rotation players that are improvements, have had more rest and are hungry for a championship of their own.
A four win decrease from last season seems like an overreaction, and the over at -110 odds looks to be the bet.
With league best odds for the NBA Championship, +250, and Western Conference Championship, +135, there is no value in betting on the Lakers right now.
While they are favorites and definitely should be, let the season play out a little bit and catch them after a stretch of bad games where their odds might get a bit better than their current mark.
*Odds correct at time of publication, courtesy of PointsBet.
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