Take The Lakers Tonight In An Up Tempo Affair Against Nuggets

L.A. Lakers players

Tuesday, January 31, 2017 2:53 PM GMT

While the Nuggets have won three games in a row the Lakers have dropped their last three. Tonight, they meet up in L.A where and odds makers have Denver as a small favorite. Can Los Angeles get some revenge?

Denver Nuggets

Denver has been playing some quality basketball recently winning their last three games and four out of their last five. They've been great at pushing the tempo and putting up a lot of points averaging just over 110 points per game ranking them third in the NBA. Statistically across the board, they have been shooting the ball decently well hitting 46.3% overall and 36.1% from distance ranking them ninth and 14th in the NBA respectively.

They are also averaging 40.4 field goals made per game which ranks them fourth. Defensively Mike Malone's squad has been less than stellar though giving up their fair share of points with opponents averaging 111.1 points per game making Denver third to last in the league. Percentage wise they have not been good either as opponents are shooting 47.2% overall and 37% from distance both of which rank Denver in the bottom five. I believe this could hurt Denver tonight, and with Los Angeles liking to run up-tempo look for them to stay within the number.

Los Angeles Lakers

Los Angeles can be real scrappy at times but they are currently on a three-game slide, and like Denver, they just don't play much defense. Offensively they have just been average at just 103.6 points per game and shooting 44.4% from the field. For the most part, their statistics on the offensive side of the ball hover around the bottom third of the league. Defensively it gets worse as the Lakers rank last in the NBA in opponent overall shooting percentage and two-point shooting percentage.

I believe in Luke Walton but right now the Lakers are just a bit too young and simply don't have the overall talent to run the type of up-tempo offense that he wants to implement supplemented by a very tough defense. They will pull their share of upsets here and there throughout the rest of the NBA season, though, and the fact that they stayed close with Denver in their last match up here in Los Angeles makes me believe they will be able to do so again, grab the points.

Denver Nuggets vs L.A. Lakers

Oddsmakers have made Los Angeles a +3.5 underdog and for my NBA pick, I will back them in the spot. Although Denver is playing really well lately they still don't play much defense so look for offensive happy Los Angeles to put up more points than expected and take this game to the wire at worst.

Free NBA Pick: Lakers +3.5

Best Line Offered: at Bookmaker

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