Golden State Warriors visit the Los Angeles Lakers on Monday night, in the Pacific division’s derby. Things would be much different if it weren’t for Klay Thomspon’s injury, but in this situation, the Lakers are the absolute favorites. Hosts have five consecutive victories, while on the other side, the Warriors come to STAPLES Center following two losses. They are still trying to create some chemistry, but for now, the results are mixed. The champions began the season strong, looking superb, indicating that the purple and gold are the biggest favorites for winning the title once again.
Warriors (+360) lost to Indiana Pacers at home, 104-95, and after that vs. Denver Nuggets on the road, 114-104. Steve Kerr’s crew can’t find any consistency, even Steph Curry, whose productivity oscillates very much. Though, the reason for that is the fact that he doesn’t have too much help in the attack, making the GSW’s offense one-dimensional.
The teams began playing box-and-one defenses on him, making it extremely tough for the two-time NBA MVP to score. Andrew Wiggins scores 17.8 points per match, and he is the closest one to Curry, while the next guy on the list is Eric Paschall, with 11.7 buckets, which is unacceptable.
Kelly Oubre’s 11.1 points are way below the expected level, and the former Phoenix Suns’ forward needs to improve; otherwise, he’s going to be one of the biggest mistakes GSW had in recent times.
LA Lakers (-440) has five straight wins, the previous four by at least 10 or more points difference. Three were on the road, just to let you know. The champions are looking very well, with LeBron and Anthony Davis leading the way, both averaging 20+ points and 8+ rebounds.
What makes them incredibly good is the fact that Frank Vogel has numerous players able to step up and score 10 or 12 points and help the above-mentioned duo.
Against the Pels in the latest game, those were Montrezl Harrell and Lentavious Caldwell-Pope with 16 points apiece. Dennis Schroder had 12, and Kuzma 11 with 13 boards. This variety in the attack gives a massive edge to Vogel over other coaches, because they don’t know how to make a defensive gameplan.
Marquese Chriss and Klay Thompson are out for the season, while Alen Smailagic will miss some time due to his knee injury.
Kostas Antetokounmpo and Jared Dudley are game-time decisions.
Head to Head Matches
We never saw the Lakers with LeBron against the Warriors with either Curry or Thomson involved, but without Durant. Last year, the LAL won all three games against the crippled Dub Nation. The latest victory was pretty convincing, 116-86.
The Lakers are more talented in the offense, with their attacks being more diverse than the Warriors’. Steph Curry is the only one who might hurt the LAL, while on the other side, the purple and gold have pretty much advantage in all other potential matchups on the floor. The spread on the Lakers is -9, which shouldn’t be problematic once looking at their latest performances. We deliberately mentioned in the text that LAL’s previous four wins were with 10+ points. So why not see one more.
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.