The Los Angeles Lakers take on the Los Angeles Clippers in the second game of the NBA's 2020 Opening Night. Tuesday's 10 p.m. ET tilt is the first of three scheduled matchups between the teams in 2020-21, with the Lakers operating as the home team in the opener. The Lakers are the reigning NBA champions after knocking off the Miami Heat in the 2020 NBA Finals. The Clippers fell short of expectations last season, losing to the Denver Nuggets in the playoffs after garnering a 3-1 advantage in the best-of-seven series.
William Hill Sportsbook lists the Lakers as 2.5-point favorites. The over-under, or total number of points expected, is down to 219.5 after opening at 223 in the Lakers vs. Clippers odds. Before making any Clippers vs. Lakers picks, be sure to see the NBA predictions and betting advice from SportsLine's proven computer model.
The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every NBA game 10,000 times, and it returned over $5,000 in profit on its top-rated NBA picks last season. The model is up nearly $8,100 over the past two seasons. Last year, it went a stunning 61-33 on top-rated picks against the spread, returning almost $2,500 on those selections alone. Anybody who has followed it has seen huge returns.
- Lakers vs. Clippers spread: Lakers -2.5
- Lakers vs. Clippers over-under: 219.5 points
- Lakers vs. Clippers money line: Lakers -140, Clippers +120
- LAL: The Lakers are 8-7 against the spread in the last 15 games
- LAC: The Clippers are 4-5 against the spread in the last nine games
Why the Lakers can cover
The Lakers were potent offensively during the 2019-20 regular season, producing a strong effective field goal percentage (54.3 percent) and grabbing 27.0 percent of their own offensive rebounds. Los Angeles also added two proven scorers in Dennis Schroder and Montrezl Harrell, with the defensive infrastructure strong enough to support the new pieces.
In fact, the Lakers were elite defensively last season, ranking in the top three in creating turnovers and in overall defensive efficiency. Given the presence of Anthony Davis, arguably the best defender in the NBA, that should continue, and the Lakers also have Marc Gasol to serve as a physical anchor, as well as a high-level defensive communicator in 2020-21.
Why the Clippers can cover
The Clippers were an elite offensive team last season, scoring more than 1.14 points per possession and ranking second in overall efficiency. That effectiveness was keyed by the No. 1 free throw percentage late in the NBA season, and the Lakers are below-average in allowing opponents to generate free throw attempts. In addition, the Clippers are very good at taking care of the ball, committing a turnover on only 14.1 percent of possessions, and they are a good offensive rebounding team, snagging 26.7 percent of available rebounds after a missed shot.
Defensively, L.A.was also a top-five unit last season, with a top-three mark last season in shooting efficiency allowed. There is also some low-hanging fruit in turnover creation, with the Lakers turning the ball over on 15.0 percent of possessions last season, a bottom-10 mark in the NBA.
How to make Lakers vs. Clippers picks
SportsLine's model is leaning over on the total, as LeBron James, Davis, Kawhi Leonard and Paul George all score more than 21 points in the simulations. The model also says one side of the spread has all the value. You can only see that pick at SportsLine.
So who wins Clippers vs. Lakers? And which side of the spread has all the value? Visit SportsLine now to find out which side of the Clippers vs. Lakers spread you need to jump on Tuesday, all from the model that has crushed its NBA picks.