The Los Angeles Lakers have suffered back-to-back losses only once this season and hope to avoid a repeat when they host the Miami Heat on Saturday. It will mark the first time that Los Angeles faces the Heat (12-17) since claiming the franchise's 17th championship with a 106-93 victory in Game 6 of the NBA Finals in October. The Lakers (22-8) have won eight of 10 but are coming off an 11-point loss to Brooklyn on Thursday.
Tip-off is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. at Staples Center. William Hill Sportsbook lists Los Angeles as a 3.5-point favorite while the over-under is 209, down from opening at 214, in the latest Lakers vs. Heat odds. Before finalizing any Heat 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 also up more than $8,400 on top-rated NBA picks over the past two-plus seasons. Dating back to last season, it enters Week 9 of the 2020-21 NBA schedule on a stunning 83-48 roll on top-rated NBA picks against the spread. Anybody who has followed it has seen huge returns.
- Heat vs. Lakers spread: Lakers -3.5
- Heat vs. Lakers over-under: 209 points
- Heat vs. Lakers money line: Lakers -165; Heat +145
- MIA: Heat G Tyler Herro has a pair of 27-point games in his last three
- LAL: Lakers PG Dennis Schroder (COVID-19 protocols) could miss a second straight game
Why the Heat can cover
Forward Jimmy Butler recorded his third consecutive triple-double in Thursday's 118-110 win at Sacramento, going for 13 points, 10 rebounds and a season-high 13 assists. While he scored only 13 points in each of the last two games, Butler has flirted with a triple-double in eight of the past nine contests. He had a pair of them in the Finals against the Lakers, topped by 40- and 35-point performances.
Center Bam Adebayo also had a triple-double Thursday with 16 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists, the eighth time in 12 games he has double-digit rebounds. He also was a part of history, joining Butler as the only players to ever post triple-doubles in the same game on multiple occasions. The team's leading scorer at 19.8 points, Adebayo missed two games in last season's Finals due to a neck injury.
Why the Lakers can cover
Coach Frank Vogel acknowledged he needs to figure out how to manage the minutes of LeBron James with fellow All-Star forward Anthony Davis likely out a month due to calf and Achilles injuries. Since playing over 40 minutes in three straight overtime games, James is 2 of 19 from 3-point range in the past four contests. Still, despite those struggles, he is averaging 28.0 points on 57.7 percent shooting overall in that span.
Despite their issues in struggling to contain Brooklyn's NBA-best offense, the Lakers rank No. 1 in defensive rating, allowing 105.5 points per 100 possessions. They should fare decidedly better against a Heat club that is No. 25 in the league in offensive efficiency. Los Angeles also will look to exploit Miami's league-worst turnover percentage (16.1) and rebounding woes (No. 28 in the NBA).
How to make Heat vs. Lakers picks
SportsLine's model is leaning over on the total, projecting both teams combine for 215 points. The model also says one side of the spread hits in well over 50 percent of simulations. You can get that pick at SportsLine.
So who wins Heat vs. Lakers? And which side of the spread hits well over 50 percent of the time? Visit SportsLine now to find out which side of the spread you need to jump on, all from the model that has crushed its NBA picks.