Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#4767 Los Angeles Lakers vs.
#4768 Oklahoma City Thunder
Wednesday, January 13, 2021 at 8:00pm EST
Chesapeake Enery Arena, Oklahoma City
Written by Chris Kubala

It’s a battle of Western Conference foes on the parquet floor in the Sooner State. The Los Angeles Lakers are on the road again as they make the trip to face the Oklahoma City Thunder Wednesday night. Los Angeles was in action on the road Tuesday night as they faced the Rockets in Houston, so this is the second game of a back-to-back situation for them. The Lakers beat the Rockets 120-102 in Houston Sunday night in their previous contest. Oklahoma City was at home as they faced San Antonio Tuesday night as they log the second game of a back-to-back set as well. In their previous game, Oklahoma City beat Brooklyn 129-116 on the road Sunday. The Lakers own a 146-107 advantage in the all-time regular season series between the teams and took three of the four meetings last season. In the most recent matchup, it was Oklahoma City picking up a 105-86 “road” win in the bubble on August 5, 2020.

Los Angeles Lakers Playing Second Game of Back-to-Back Road Set

Los Angeles was in action in the Lone Star State on Tuesday night as they battled the Rockets in Houston. The Lakers entered Tuesday night leading the Pacific Division by one game over the Suns and Clippers. Los Angeles is 1-1 in the second game of back-to-back situations though they sport a -3 point per game differential (112 ppg for, 115 ppg against) in those contests. The Lakers entered Tuesday 5-0 on the road on the year with a +10.8 ppg scoring differential (110.4 ppg for, 99.6 ppg against) in those contests. Los Angeles is 7-3 against Western Conference teams on the year, averaging 114.2 points per game while allowing 105.3 points per contest, giving them a scoring differential of +8.9 points per game in those contests.

The Lakers are 8th in the league in scoring offense as they put up 114.5 points per game. Los Angeles is 4th in rebounding with 46.2 boards per contest and 12th in assists with 25.7 per game. The Lakers stand 4th in the league in scoring defense as they allow 106.2 points per night. LeBron James is leading the team with 24 points, 8.3 rebounds and 7.7 assists per contest this season. Anthony Davis contributes 22.9 points, 8.6 rebounds and 1.6 blocks a night while Kyle Kuzma chips in 10.8 points per contest. Dennis Schroder (14.3 points, five assists) and Montrezl Harrell (12.9 points, eight boards) are each averaging in double figures. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Talen Horton-Tucker, Wesley Matthews, Alex Caruso, Marc Gasol and Markieff Morris are among the other pieces in Frank Vogel’s rotation. The Lakers are 3rd in the league in field goal percentage as they shoot 49.3 percent as a team. Los Angeles is 22nd in the league with 11 triples per game while standing 6th in three-point shooting at 38.5 percent from downtown.

Oklahoma City Thunder Looking to Maintain Momentum

Oklahoma City was at home on Tuesday night as they faced the Spurs in the front end of their back-to-back set. The Thunder entered Tuesday’s game winners of three straight contests as they took care of business against the Nets. Oklahoma City entered Tuesday third in the Northwest Division, half a game behind the Jazz and Trail Blazers for the top spot. The Thunder was beaten 118-107 at home to Orlando in their lone second game of a back-to-back situation this season back on December 29. Oklahoma City is 0-3 at home going into Tuesday, averaging 98.7 points per game while allowing 113.7 points, giving them a -15 ppg margin. The Thunder is 1-2 against Western Conference teams, averaging 100 points per game while allowing an average of 111 points per contest.

The Thunder comes into this contest a dismal 28th in the league in scoring offense with 104.9 points per game. Oklahoma City stands 14th in rebounding with 44.7 boards a night while they are 26th in assists by dishing out 22.2 dimes per contest. The Thunder is 11th in scoring defense as they allow an average of 108.9 points a night. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander leads the team with 21 points, 5.3 rebounds and 6.8 assists a night this season. Luguentz Dort puts up 12.4 points a night, George Hill contributes 11.9 points plus 3.5 assists per contest and Isaiah Roby chips in 8.5 points plus 3.7 boards a contest. Mike Muscala (10.3 points) and Al Horford (11.3 points, 7.1 rebounds) are solid contributors offensively as well. Darius Bazley (11.2 points), Justin Jackson, Hamidou Diallo and Kenrich Williams have to contribute for the team to have success. Oklahoma City is 18th in field goal percentage as they shoot 45.1 percent from the floor as a team on the year. The Thunder is 11th by knocking down an average of 13.6 three-pointers a night while they are 26th in three-point shooting as they knock down 33.5 percent of their attempts on the year.

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Both teams are logging their second game in as many nights and their third game in four nights here so fatigue will be a factor. Oklahoma City has some momentum with three straight wins heading into Tuesday but the fact remains that they were winless at home going into their matchup with the Spurs. The Thunder doesnโ€™t have the superstars that the Lakers bring to the table, though one has to wonder if Davis and/or James will have their minutes limited or shut down completely. Still, weโ€™ve seen plenty of talent for Los Angeles step up this season. Given the fact that the Lakers are the defending champs and the Thunder is rebuilding, give a slim edge to Los Angeles here.

Prediction: Los Angeles Lakers -7

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Los Angeles has been productive on both ends of the floor this season. The Lakers are 16th in tempo as they average 100.6 possessions per contest on the year. Oklahoma City is 12th in the league in tempo as they average 101 possessions per game this year. The Thunder doesnโ€™t do a ton offensively and they are facing a Lakers team that is capable of shutting down opposing teams with regularity. Oklahoma City is struggling offensively at home this season and that, along with the fatigue factor on both sides, helps keep this one falling short of the mark when all is said and done.

Prediction: Under
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Written By Chris Kubala , "Chris Kubala"

Bio Coming soon!