Jordan’s NBA Picks: 49-33
Golden State (53-24 SU & 33-43 ATS) at Lakers (35-43 SU & 31-45 ATS)
Thursday, 10:30 PM EST, TNT
Free NBA Pick: Warriors 1H -7
Best Line Offered: Pinnacle
The Warriors are in a dog fight with the Nuggets for the top spot in the Western Conference and with them up against a G-League level Lakers team on Thursday. Is there anyone or anything standing in their way of a 20-plus point victory?
Warriors Full Speed Ahead
The Warriors have had little trouble cashing against the Lakers this season outside of their first meeting way back on Christmas Day. Note that the Dubs have won both of their last two meetings against the Lakers by double figures and there is almost nothing standing in their way of doing it again.
However, I am afraid of the backdoor cover a little bit, so the best play for this game has to be the first half odds.
The Warriors are playing on the first half of a back to back on Thursday before going back home to face a tanking Cavs team. Golden State should play this one tough in order to get a big first half lead. Then they can rest their starters a lot in the second half and prepare some of them to play on Friday night.
With that in mind, the Dubs at -7 in the first half is a must play tonight.
The Sharp Pick
The Warriors have had no problem scoring on the road this season and in the first halves of their road games, they have been the top scoring road offense in the first two quarters. They have an offensive rating of nearly 119 in the first halves of their road games this season, so against the defenseless G-League version of the Lakers, 60-plus first half points should be easily attainable.
The Lakers’ first half offense on the other hand has been atrocious since the start of March. LA is averaging only 106.1 points per 100 possessions in the first halves of their games since March 1.
With the Warriors’ defense looking more locked in lately, I see no chance the Lakers are within single digits of the Dubs by halftime. With a game tomorrow, the Warriors know how important getting out to a big lead early is for this game and their chances of getting some rest down the stretch. They are still fighting the Nuggets hard for the top seed in the West, so I think they use that and their easy game tomorrow as motivation to blowout their divisional rival Thursday night.
First Half Score Prediction: Warriors 64 – Lakers 54