The Los Angeles Lakers continue their seven-game road trip with the third game of the trip coming up on Monday against the Cleveland Cavaliers. LeBron James’ return to Cleveland is always a notable matchup and the Cavs are better this year than they have been in years past.
They are still not a great basketball team by any stretch of the imagination but their 8-8 record in the best start the team has had without LeBron on the roster. They even have two huge wins over the Brooklyn Nets, who the Lakers may see in the NBA Finals.
A big reason for the team’s success is the jump that Collin Sexton has taken this season. The young point guard is averaging 25.5 points, 4.0 assists, 2.4 rebounds and 1.2 steals per game. He is shooting 51.7% from the field and an astonishing 45.8% from beyond the arc.
The Cavs are not a high-scoring team, though. Cleveland ranks 29th in offensive rating and 29th in points per game. They rank seventh in both defensive rating and points allowed per game.
As part of the Lake Show Life Podcast (which is posting on Tuesday and Friday this week instead of the normal days) I have been picking both against the spread and against the point total for every Laker game.
According to the BetMGM odds on The Action Network, the Lakers are 11.5-point favorites in this game with the point total set at 213.5. It is worth mentioning that I am 6-0 in the Lakers’ last three games. That is right: I am red-hot.
My season record still is not that great at 17-13, but that is much better than 11-13. Let’s make it 19-13.
Betting picks for Los Angeles Lakers vs. Cleveland Cavaliers:
- Cleveland Cavaliers +11.5, over 213.5 (Final score: Los Angeles Lakers 112, Cleveland Cavaliers 104)
Yes, I am going with the Cavaliers in this one and it is because 11.5 points is a lot to spot a team. As good as the Los Angeles Lakers are, they are also a team whose main priority this offseason is staying healthy and they do not need any sort of statement win.
Of course, that can change if a role player has a huge night but I do not think that will be the case. I think this will be a lot like the Bulls game where the Lakers simply play good basketball, coasting to an eight-point win.
The Lakers will lead by more than 11.5 points at some point in the second half but that is when garbage time will be enacted and the Cavs will be able to climb back for the backdoor cover.
With this being smack-dab right in the middle of the road trip and a big game coming up against Philly, I don’t see the Los Angeles Lakers playing for a blowout against Cleveland.