Today’s first NBA game is live on Sky Sports at 6pm. I will be posting my other NBA Tips in the coming hours, but first of all I’ll be tackling what I’m calling our ‘Featured’ NBA game of the day.
The ‘Featured game’ is something I’ll be doing regularly now that the NBA has given screening rights to Sky Sports and we’ll be seeing lots more of it. The ‘Featured bet’ doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s my best bet or or that it’s a guaranteed win, it just means its coming from the Sky Sports game. As long as I find a suitable bet, we’ll make a thing of having our ‘Featured game’ and all piling our money on to the same bet as we collectively watch it on Sky Sports!
Tonight, the LA Lakers (17-22) will travel to face the Toronto Raptors (14-26) and I’m not buying the whole fact that people think the Lakers have turned their season around. At 17-22 and already 15 wins behind the likes of the LA Clippers and OKC, there isn’t much of a season to be had for Kobe and co.
Last time out the Lakers went down in a 9 point home loss to the Miami Heat, and that game was a good measuring stick of how turned around this team are. The Heat play up to big games, we know that, but given their extremely patchy form and troubles on the road you might of been forgiven for thinking the Lakers +2 might cover in front of a home crowd – the Lakers, however, were thoroughly unimpressive.
The Raptors have come in to this game on the back of 4 straight losses. That is never as bad as it sounds in the NBA though, as form can turn at the drop of a hat and runs of all sorts come and go for most teams. The form of Toronto doesn’t bother me half as much as the away form of LA in comparison to the points they’ve been given in this one, and after numerous wins in the past week on huge underdogs such as the Wizards twice and the Orlando Magic, tonight we’re taking another underdog.
The bookies have made the Lakers a -5.5 point favorite in this one, and although 6 is a moderate number – it only becomes so when you can be a certain a team is even going to win. Can anyone be certain the Lakers are going to win here? No, you really can’t.
The Lakers hold a 5-12 road record this season, which shows more than half of their wins have come in front of a home crowd. Despite only winning 14 this season, the Raptors have pulled out 10 of those at home and whilst the Lakers have a -2 point differential on the road, the Raptors have won their 10 games by an average of 3.5 points per game at home.
Kobe Bryant has been a MONSTER for the Lakers this year, as always, but quite honestly he’s the only on, minus Nash on his day.
The other thing to note here is that whilst this game is already an early start with a 1pm tip off time, the Lakers are traveling across time zones to Canada and as far as their bodies are concerned they are going to be playing at 10am today. The Raptors, however, a custom to their own time zone, will indeed be playing at 1pm.
NBA teams playing that early have always struggled, it’s a fact, and the Lakers bodies may also just not be in the right place to compete at full potential in this one and I think the Raptors can jump on the situation in front of their home crowd.
Toronto Raptors +5.5 @ 1.87 with Marathon