Lakers vs. Nets Betting Picks, Betting Odds & Predictions: Will LeBron James & Co. Roll Through Brooklyn?

Lakers vs. Nets Betting Picks, Betting Odds & Predictions: Will LeBron James & Co. Roll Through Brooklyn? article feature image

Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: LeBron James (23) of the Los Angeles Lakers.

Lakers at Nets Picks, Betting Odds & Predictions

  • Spread: Lakers -5
  • Over/Under: 230
  • Time: 8 p.m. ET
  • TV Channel: TNT

Odds as of Thursday evening and via FanDuel, where Action Network users get a risk-free bet up to $500.

LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers continue their New York City tour with a matchup against Kyrie Irving and the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday. The Nets are 2-11 since Dec. 26, including their current four-game losing streak.

Will the Nets snap their streak against the dominant Lakers? Our NBA crew breaks down the angles of the matchup and how to bet this game below.

Betting Trend to Know

The Lakers opened as 6.5-point favorites in Brooklyn (at FanDuel). Despite LeBron James & Co. receiving a majority of spread tickets the line has shifted from Nets +6.5 to +5. This season when the line has moved against LA, the team has gone 11-5-1 against the spread. John Ewing

Bryan Mears: Positive Regression on the Horizon?

Interestingly enough, both the Lakers and Nets have been largely fine when two of their stars haven’t been on the floor. The Lakers without Anthony Davis (questionable) have been -0.1 points per 100 possessions with him on the floor vs. off.

The Nets without Kyrie Irving (confirmed active) have been … -0.1 points per 100 possessions better with him on the floor vs. off. The teams actually have positive records ATS without those guys.

That’s potentially due to the market overreacting to their values, although the data is a bit weird. The Lakers and Nets are clearly better with those guys on the floor, but the data this season hasn’t shown that.

That said, I think the Nets started off really hot without Kyrie — Spencer Dinwiddie was on a tear — and over the past month have shown they need him. He has positive offensive differential splits: Notably, the team has posted an eFG% 3.9 percentage points worse without him.

They’ve shot 5.1% worse from the 3-point line, and they’ve struggled in end-of-shotclock situations, which is Kyrie’s specialty as a dynamic one-on-one player.

The Nets haven’t been very good lately, losing four in a row, but that was a murderer’s row of opponents: the Jazz, Sixers, Bucks and Sixers again. Tonight’s matchup against the Lakers isn’t much easier, but it’s notable that struggles are somewhat to be expected with this January schedule.

Further, the Nets continue to have a good shot profile. Over the past month, they’re third in shots at the rim and 11th in 3-point rate. That profile gives them the third-ranked expected eFG% in the league; unfortunately they’ve posted an actual eFG% of 22nd.

Things should potentially turn around; their shooters just haven’t made their shots. Joe Harris, winner of last year’s 3-point contest and one of the best outside gunners in the league, is shooting 31.1% from deep in January. He’s been above 41.0% in every other month. Dinwiddie has posted a much lower TS% in January than in any other month.

Part of that is the tough schedule they’ve played — it makes sense that their numbers are down recently. And while things might not turn around against the Lakers, who rank fourth in defensive efficiency this season, I think they’re a team to potentially buy over their next stretch of games. (The Lakers, for what it’s worth, are outside the top-10 in defense lately.)

I don’t have a strong lean on this game, at least enough to bet it, but the Nets I think hold potentially a little more value than the Lakers at this number. Of course, we still have to wait on the AD injury news, which could skew the betting market.

Also, as a final note, the Nets do match this historically profitable Bet Labs system:

Per Sports Insights, three of the four steam moves we’ve tracked have been on the Nets. — Bryan Mears

The Top Lakers-Nets Prop Bet

Jarrett Allen Over 9.5 rebounds (-117) [Bet now at FanDuel. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

Allen is a late prop value, and you’re going to want to grab this line quick before it inevitably goes up before tip.

So why the sudden late value? DeAndre Jordan was an afternoon scratch, and that means Jarrett Allen should get a lion’s share of the center minutes against a Lakers team that could well be without Anthony Davis tonight.

Allen is a strong rebounder and typically produces when on the court, and our models project him at 32.5 minutes tonight now that Jordan is out.

That puts him at 12.1 projected rebounds and gives a lot of margin for value here, even if the line rises to 10 or 10.5. At this number, I’m playing Allen as high as -175. — Brandon Anderson

Editor’s note: The opinions on this game are from the individual writers and are based on their research, analysis and perspective. They are independent of, and may not always match with, the algorithm-driven Best Bets from Sports Insights.

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