The Lakers and Blazers square off on Saturday night for the second time this season. The Blazers won the first matchup at home, and this one again is in Portland. Like clockwork, the Blazers have gone from everybody's favorite team to dismiss in the summer to a really good team, sitting at 6-2 and No. 3 in the West. Funny how that works when you have Damian Lillard. One of these days, that dude will get the respect he deserves. 

On the other side, all is not even close to well in Laker Land. Eight games into the season, Luke Walton is already being admonished by Magic Johnson as patience is running thin after a 3-5 start. I'm not sure what Johnson expected with the head-scratching summer additions he and Rob Pelinka put around LeBron James, but here we are. As this particular game is concerned, that feels like perhaps the most important factor: How do the Lakers respond in the immediate wake of a front-office spanking that has Walton answering questions about his job security eight games into the season? 

Below is the viewing information plus a prediction for the spread, over/under and moneyline. 

Lakers vs. Trail Blazers game info

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Lakers vs. Trail Blazers against the spread odds, pick

  • Line: Blazers -3, via Westgate Superbook
  • Analysis: More than 70 percent of the money is on the Blazers to cover the three, and for pretty good reason: They're just a better team than the Lakers right now. The Blazers have won three straight and have the second-ranked offense in the league, and more importantly, they're 6-2 against the spread so far. The Lakers, on the flip side, are 2-6 ATS. That said, the public pressure mounting on Walton makes for a bit of an unknown in what feels like something close to a coin flip spread as it is. If you're going to bet this one, keep the wager small. I would advise staying away. 
  • Pick: No bet.

Lakers vs. Trail Blazers over/under line, pick

  • Line: 236.5 total points, via Westgate Superbook
  • Analysis: These teams put up 247 points in their first meeting, and both offenses are humming right now. Los Angeles' problem is on the defensive end, which feels like a recipe for a lot of points combined with Portland's second-ranked offense. If the outcome feels up in the air, total points feels like the safest bet with this game. 
  • Pick: Over 239.5

Lakers vs. Trail Blazers moneyline odds, pick 

  • Odds: Blazers -135, Lakers +135, via Westgate Superbook
  • Analysis: In what feels like a coin-flip game, the value is obviously on the underdog -- and indeed, 80 percent of the money-line wagers are on the Lakers. I don't think there's enough value either way. Again, the over/under is the play in this game. 
  • Pick: No bet.