With Lonzo Ball Not Playing vs. Russell Westbrook, Fade Lakers in OKC

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Jason Lake

Wednesday, January 17, 2018 1:01 PM UTC

Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018 1:01 PM UTC

The Los Angeles Lakers are 4-1 SU and ATS in their last five. They’ll get another chance to beat the NBA odds this Wednesday night against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Lakers at ThunderFree NBA Pick: ThunderBest Line Offered: Heritage

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If you don’t have good health, what have you got? The Los Angeles Lakers (15-28 SU, 21-22 ATS) have found another gear now that they’ve got most of their players back in the lineup; they’ve won four of their last five games SU and ATS, which makes us very happy here at the home office. And they’ve got a very good chance to at least cover Wednesday’s road game with the Oklahoma City Thunder (24-20 SU, 17-20 ATS), beginning at 8:00 p.m. Eastern on ESPN.

That’s if Lonzo Ball (+0.7 BPM) makes the start for Los Angeles. And it doesn’t look too good for this year’s No. 2 overall pick; Ball is listed as doubtful for Wednesday after spraining his left knee over the weekend and missing Monday’s game against the Memphis Grizzlies – which the Lakers lost 123-114 as 3.5-point road dogs. Update: Ball will not play.

Happy Fun Ball

We’re definitely happy to recommend the Lakers for your NBA picks if Ball does play. He still needs to work on his shooting, but everything else looks great for the local hero. If Ball can’t go Wednesday, then look out: The Lakers are 0-7 SU and 1-6 ATS without him in the lineup. That includes a 133-96 garroting at the hands of OKC (–5 away) on January 3.

Meanwhile, Brandon Ingram (minus-2.2 BPM) is questionable for L.A. with a sprained left ankle, although he reportedly plans to play Wednesday night. For now, backup swingman Corey Brewer (minus-2.9 BPM) wouldn’t be that much of a downgrade compared to Ingram – unlike backup PG Tyler Ennis (minus-3.8 BPM), who’s clearly a step or two behind Ball. And we’re getting late news on the availability of PF Larry Nance Jr. (plus-3.3 BPM): He’s questionable with a hip pointer. The Lakers went 5-6 SU and ATS when Nance missed most of November with a broken thumb. If Nance and Ball are both out, yeesh.

The Thunder have an important injury of their own that’s flying under the radar. Defensive specialist Andre Roberson (plus-1.2 BPM) has missed the last eight games with patellar tendinitis in his left knee; Oklahoma City is 4-4 SU and 3-5 ATS during this stretch, which includes the big win over the Lakers. Roberson could return at any time, so make sure to check out Wednesday’s shootaround and see if he’s healthy. Regardless, fade the Lakers with extreme prejudice with Ball not available.

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