Lakers vs. Rockets Game 4 Prediction
With their win in Game 3, the Lakers now own a 2-1 series lead over the Rockets in the NBA Western Conference semifinals. Will LeBron and Co. take a commanding series lead with a victory and a cover in Game 4 tonight?
715 Los Angeles Lakers (-5) at 716 Houston Rockets (+5); o/u 220
7:00 p.m. ET, Thursday, September 10, 2020
NBA Playoffs Western Conference Semifinals
Los Angeles Lakers DFS Spin
Anthony Davis hit 9-of-13 shots and 8-of-11 free throws on his way to 26 points, 15 rebounds, six assists and a steal in Tuesday's 112-102 win over the Rockets to give L.A. a 2-1 lead in the series. Davis was highly efficient and inadvertently took Robert Covington out of the game with an elbow to the face with just under five minutes remaining in the game. Covington's elbow caught AD in the hip or ribs and the injury was sensitive to the trainer's touch, but he was able to stay in the game. The Lakers put the game away with a 17-5 run in the fourth quarter and they easily closed the Rockets out in the final five minutes. AD will surely be on the injury report with his hip/ribs issue, among other minor issues, but we see almost no chance he's in jeopardy of missing Game 4 on Thursday. And we're not even going to bother putting him on the injury report at this point.
Houston Rockets DFS Spin
James Harden hit 11-of-23 shots, 4-of-9 3-pointers and 7-of-7 free throws for 33 points, nine rebounds and nine assists in Tuesday's Game 3 112-102 loss to the Lakers. The Lakers did a great job of double-teaming Harden in the second half, limiting his looks in the process. The seven free throws were the fewest Harden has shot since Aug. 29 against the Thunder and you have to think Mike D'Antoni might try to come up with a plan to help Harden get away from the double teams going forward. Danuel House was out for personal reasons tonight and Robert Covington left with a head/face injury late, meaning Harden might have to do even more in Game 4 with the Rockets in a 2-1 hole to the Lakers
Lakers vs. Rockets Betting Prediction
Despite dropping the last two games in this series both on the court and at the betting window, I’m sticking with the Rockets. Houston is 17-8 against the spread in its last 25 games as an underdog and has covered in five of its last seven postseason matchups as a dog. Russell Westbrook has been playing through a quad injury that has disrupted his play in this series but he did look much better in Game 3 than in either of the first two matchups. If Danuel House (personal) or Robert Covington (head) miss tonight’s game, Russ will have to carry a bigger load tonight but if that quad is feeling better, he should be able to handle more offensive responsibility. Either way, someone has to step up on this Houston team with the Lakers consistently double-teaming Harden. The Rockets have been in every game thus far, but have faded in the second half/four quarter the last two games. Tonight, I believe they stay within the five points.
NBA PLAYOFFS WESTERN CONFERENCE PREDICTION: HOUSTON ROCKETS +5