Portland Trail Blazers vs Los Angeles Lakers Prediction, Betting Odds, Picks
- The Trail Blazers are on a three-game losing streak as they enter this one-game road trip.
- The Lakers look to get back on the winning trend after losing six of their last ten.
- The Blazers earned a 15-point victory over the Lakers in their first meeting this season.
Portland Trail Blazers vs Los Angeles Lakers Odds
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Head-to-Head: Portland Trail Blazers vs Los Angeles Lakers
|Portland Trail Blazers||Head-to-Head||Los Angeles Lakers |
|Chauncey Billups||Head Coach||Frank Vogel|
|13-21 (12th in West)||Standing||17-19 (7th in West)|
|110.2 (14th of 30)||Off Rtg||106.8 (25th of 30)|
|113.9 (28th of 30)||Def Rtg||108.8 (12th of 30)|
|98.0 (18th of 30)||Pace||100.9 (1st of 30)|
Leaders (Per Game)
|D. Lillard (24.2)||PPG||L. James (28.0)|
|J. Nurkic (9.9)||RPG||A. Davis (9.9)|
|D. Lillard (7.3)||APG||R. Westbrook (8.3)|
|R. Covington (1.2)||SPG||L. James (1.7)|
|R. Covington (1.2)||BPG||A. Davis (2.0)|
|J. Nurkic (.570)/C. McCollum (8.0)||FG%/FGM||D. Jordan (.675)/L. James (10.5)|
|B. McLemore (.425)/D. Lillard (3.3)||3P%/3PM||D. Howard (.750)/L. James (2.9)|
|Cody Zeller||Portland Trail Blazers||12 Dec 2021||Out (Knee)||Zeller will be re-evaluated before his return to play.|
|CJ McCollum||Portland Trail Blazers||15 Dec 2021||Out (Lung)||McCollum will be re-evaluated before his return to play.|
|Dennis Smith||Portland Trail Blazers||24 Dec 2021||Out (Health & Safety)||Smith has been placed under league health & safety protocols.|
|Trendon Watford||Portland Trail Blazers||24 Dec 2021||Out (Health & Safety)||Watford has been placed under league health & safety protocols.|
|Keljin Blevins||Portland Trail Blazers||25 Dec 2021||Out (Health & Safety)||Blevins has been placed under league health & safety protocols.|
|Robert Covington||Portland Trail Blazers||25 Dec 2021||Out (Health & Safety)||Covington has been placed under league health & safety protocols.|
|Ben McLemore||Portland Trail Blazers||25 Dec 2021||Out (Health & Safety)||McLemore has been placed under league health & safety protocols.|
|Kendrick Nunn||Los Angeles Lakers||6 Dec 2021||Out (Knee)||Head Coach Frank Vogel said he expects Rondo to return after three weeks.|
|Anthony Davis||Los Angeles Lakers||18 Dec 2021||Out (Knee)||Davis suffered a sprained MCL and will be re-evaluated in four weeks.|
|Trevor Ariza||Los Angeles Lakers||23 Dec 2021||Out (Health & Safety)||Ariza has been placed under league health & safety protocols.|
|Rajon Rondo||Los Angeles Lakers||26 Dec 2021||Out (Health & Safety)||Rondo has been placed under league health & safety protocols.|
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How Can the Trail Blazers Beat the Lakers?
Playing good, solid defense isn’t exactly in the track record of the Portland Trail Blazers. However, if Portland can limit their opponents’ trips to the free-throw line, the game could shift in their favor.
The Trail Blazers are 22nd in the league in free-throw attempts allowed with 21.3 per game, while their opponents own a .753 conversion rate against them. In wins, the Trail Blazers hold their opponents to 4 free throw attempts less than in losses.
It seems minuscule, but for a team with a sieve-like defense it is important to limit any additional opportunities to score. Finishing possessions cleanly will only open up the Trail Blazers’ opportunities further.
Trail Blazers Key Player: (G) Damian Lillard
— NBA BASKETBALL (@DejoseMark) December 30, 2021
The Trail Blazers continue to stumble down the Western Conference table and it is coming close to the time for the Portland front office to make a decision on their future. Until then, Lillard is performing as he does.
Lillard is coming off of a 32 point, 6 rebounds, and 4 assist evening despite the loss to the Utah Jazz. The long-time Blazers point guard remains elite, at least in the scoring column.
When Lillard faces the Lakers, Portland will need as many points as he can muster. Short on scoring and short on defensively adept role players, it’ll be an offensive battle to say the least.
How can the Lakers beat the Trail Blazers?
For the Los Angeles Lakers to take a victory from the Trail Blazers, they will need to maintain their effort through four quarters. If they can’t the Trail Blazers have the personnel to close out a tight game.
In their last game against the Memphis Grizzlies, the Los Angeles Lakers got out to a decent start. They opened the game with a 30-23 first quarter and were only outscored by two points through the third. However poor shot creation resulted in a 7 of 20 quarter where Los Angeles was outscored 16 to 26.
The Lakers’ bench unit must step up in support of LeBron James and Russell Westbrook. If the star pair can’t find support, the Trail Blazers have the firepower to steal a victory.
Lakers Key Player: (G) Russell Westbrook
Nice cut, nice lob, nice finish.
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) December 30, 2021
The Los Angeles Lakers may have lost their most recent game, but it was steps in the right direction for Russell Westbrook. Despite the loss, Westbrook put up another triple-double on improved offensive efficiency.
Westbrook posted 16 points, 12 assists, and 10 rebounds on 7 of 16 shooting from the field and 2 of 4 shooting from three-point range. He could clean up in the turnover department, where he had 5 on the night, while improving on getting to the free-throw line where he was without an attempt against Memphis.
Westbrook will be key in this matchup, considering the constantly swirling rumors of Damian Lillard being coveted by the Los Angeles Lakers. The former NBA Most Valuable Player should be aggressive as he faces a depleted Trail Blazers frontcourt.
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How to Watch Portland Trail Blazers vs Los Angeles Lakers
|Portland Trail Blazers vs Los Angeles Lakers Information|
|Teams||Portland Trail Blazers vs. Los Angeles Lakers|
|Location||crypto.com Arena, Los Angeles, California|
|Time||10:30 PM EST, December 31st, 2021|
|How to Watch||NBA TV|
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Christian Jope is a writer, social media strategist, and data analyst. A Queen’s University Alumni, Christian is an author and social media strategist with Raptors Cage, while also working closely with MLSE and Canada Basketball through community-driven events.
Email: [email protected]