Both the Los Angeles Lakers and the Milwaukee Bucks are in search of a win after suffering losses in their respective games last Tuesday. Who wins this battle between top title contenders?
Catch this game live on Friday, January 22, at 8:30 AM, Manila time
HOME TEAM: Milwaukee Bucks (9-5, 6-1 at home)
The Bucks lost in a wild shootout with the Brooklyn Nets last Tuesday on the road, 125-123, as Khris Middleton missed what would have been a game-winning 3-pointer. Middleton finished with 25 points, while Giannis Antetokoumpo led his team with 34 points to go with 12 rebounds and seven assists.
The Bucks have not lost two games in a row this season plus they have covered the spread in all games after a loss, so that should lighten up the outlook for Milwaukee against the Lakers this Friday.
Milwaukee plays at a faster pace than the Lakers, as the Bucks are sixth in the NBA with 101.9 possessions per 48 minutes, and they have been efficient on those touches. In fact, the Bucks are tops in the NBA in adjusted offensive rating with 118.4 points per 100 possessions and fifth with 1.182 points per possession.
The Lakers are a solid defensive team, but the Bucks are stacked with floor stretchers. Seven Bucks players averaging at least 15 minutes per game are shooting better than 35.7 percent from deep.
ROAD TEAM: Los Angeles Lakers (11-4, 7-0 on the road)
The Lakers squandered a 14-point lead last Tuesday and lost to the Golden State Warriors at home, 115-113, for the Purple and Gold’s first defeat in six games. That’s not a good springboard for the Lakers before taking on a long seven-game road trip, beginning with a visit with the Bucks this Friday.
However, the Lakers have been among the best covering teams when away from home. So far this season, the Lakers are 5-2 against the spread in road games. Also, the Lakers are 2-1 against the spread after a straight-up loss.
Anthony Davis and LeBron James both had off nights in the loss to the Warriors, as each superstar shot just 6- of 16 from the field for 17 and 19 points, respectively. The duo can get it going again against Milwaukee, which is just 16th in the NBA with 110.6 points allowed per game.
Teams are also shooting 37.7% from deep against Milwaukee. That’s blood for the Lakers’ outside shooters to smell, as Los Angeles is hitting 39.1% of their 3-point shots this season.
The Lakers are undefeated on the road, but none of their wins away from home have been against a top title contender. It will be different this Friday, as they face the Bucks. The Lakers will suffer their loss outside STAPLES Center in this game, 118-115.