LeBron James and the Lakers are in Philadelphia for a primetime tilt with the 76ers. Photo from @espn (Twitter).
- The red-hot Lakers visit Philly on Saturday night
- LA is 8-2 in their last 10 contests
- Get the odds, pick, and betting preview below
The high-flying Lakers will look to continue their winning ways when they travel to Philadelphia on Saturday, Jan 24, with tip-off scheduled for 8:30pm ET. LA currently has the second-best record in the NBA at an impressive 36-9 which is first in the West, while the Sixers are 29-17, sixth in the Eastern Conference.
This is the first of two games between the two teams this season, with their next contest taking place in March at the Staples Center.
Los Angeles Lakers vs Philadelphia 76ers Odds
|Team||Spread||Moneyline||Total at BetOnline|
|LA Lakers||-4 (-109)||-177||Ov 218.5 (-110)|
|Philadelphia 76ers||+4 (-111)||+157||Un 218.5 (-110)|
*Odds from January 24.
By no surprise, the Lakers enter Saturday’s matchup as favorites. Philly is still without star big man Joel Embiid, who practiced on Friday but isn’t quite ready to return after dislocating his finger on January 6. Anthony Davis, who was out for a short time for the Lakers, is healthy again but slowly returning to his form, dropping just 16 points on Thursday in a win over Brooklyn.
Lakers Keep it Rolling
LeBron and co. are one of the hottest teams in the association right now, going 8-2 in their last 10 contests. During that span, James has put up at least 20 points on seven different occasions, while scoring at least 30 in four of those games. That’s the usual from the King though, as he’s averaging 25.2 ppg, 7.7 boards, and an NBA-best 10.8 assists.
Davis is leading the Lakers in scoring with 26.2 points per night but missed almost two weeks before returning on January 20 against the Celtics. It’s taken him a few games to find his stride again, but there’s no doubt that AD and LeBron will continue to form one of the most deadly partnerships in the NBA.
Frank Vogel’s team is shooting the ball extremely well from the field this season, leading the league with a 48.4% field goal percentage. They’ve won three out of their last four, including a convincing 15-point win over the Nets on Thursday, as LeBron collected a triple-double.
Sixers Looking to Get Back into Win Column
Philly saw a four-game win streak end when they lost to the Toronto Raptors 107-95 on Wednesday on the road. Previously, they beat Brooklyn twice, the Bulls, and the Knicks. Since leading-scorer Embiid went on the shelf in early January, the Sixers have actually played better than expected, going 5-3 in that span. Al Horford has been able to return to his natural position at center with Embiid out, while Ben Simmons and Tobias Harris have generated a lot of the scoring.
Embiid leads the team with 23.4 points per game, while Harris has dropped 19.3. They have been handed another huge blow, losing guard Josh Richardson to a hamstring injury that may keep him out for three weeks. This injury leaves their backcourt slightly thin, especially because he was their fourth-best scorer with 15 points per contest, starting all 38 games he featured in so far this season. Expect players such as Furkan Korkmaz and Matisse Thybulle to eat up minutes in Richardson’s absence.
Lakers are Best Bet
The Sixers are 20-2 at home this season, but against a team of the Lakers caliber, it’s going to be a difficult task to pull out a win, especially without Embiid. LA is also 20-4 away from Staples Center, so they thrive playing on the road.
I don’t believe it will be a blowout, but the combo of Davis and James will prove to be too much to handle for the Sixers. While Philly could get by against weaker teams without Embiid and Richardson, against a team like the Lakers, it’s going to prove costly.
Pick: Lakers -4 (-109)
Quinn Allen is a sports journalist, with a background and education in broadcast journalism (BCIT '17). He has written for publications such as Fansided and Baseball Essential, as well as for various local colleges in his hometown of Vancouver, BC.