After massive offseason moves by both Los Angeles teams, the Lakers and Clippers come into the season each with an entirely different look. The Clippers were able to add Kawhi Leonard and Paul George while the Lakers paired LeBron James with Anthony Davis via trade – before filling out the rest of their roster with a number of talented free agents.
Both teams seem equipped to make deep playoff runs and are considered to be the top two frontrunners to win a title next season. With their opening night tilt and Christmas day showdown already leaked to the public, the NBA schedule makers have proven they understand the gravity of these LA matchups.
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Los Angeles Lakers vs Los Angeles Clippers Opening Night Betting Lines & Odds Announced
In the first showdown between the two teams, the Clippers have the edge at -2 despite Paul George’s status still being up in the air. Coming off a shoulder injury, George may wind up missing the first few weeks of the NBA season on his current recovery timeline. George’s status should largely play a role in the line seeing as, without him, the Clippers roster looks much worse off to match up against LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
While the Clippers still have most of their depth intact from their surprising playoff appearance last year, the Lakers added an arsenal of weapons to use off the bench as well – making the matchup between the two teams even more intriguing. The -2 line reflects how closely oddsmakers view these two teams in terms of their ability and how they match up so expect a tight matchup even in George can’t go.
Lakers vs Clippers Betting Preview & Prediction
Despite the status of George being unclear so far out, the Clippers hold a distinct advantage of having the majority of their roster be familiar with one another on the court. While their two biggest stars, Leonard and George, need to be integrated, the rest of the team took themselves to a playoff appearance last season despite shipping off their best player in Tobias Harris.
That said, the Lakers are going the extra mile to try and build chemistry before the season with LeBron James hosting a minicamp for the team before training camp kicks off. While they have mostly new faces, the team seems to be an ideal fit on paper and if all goes well, there could be little to no downtime in cohesion among the players. With a number of shooters and hard-nosed defenders capable of spacing the floor for James and Davis, the Lakers have built what looks much more like a traditional LeBron James-led team.
If George can’t go, expect the Lakers to win a close but hard-fought affair and easily cover their +2 line. However, if George is able to suit up, you might want to stay away from the spread in this matchup and instead take a look to the point total when it eventually gets released.