NBA Betting: Warriors at Lakers – But Who’s Playing?

Jason Lake

Monday, December 18, 2017 12:36 PM UTC

Monday, Dec. 18, 2017 12:36 PM UTC

The Los Angeles Lakers are about to host the Golden State Warriors, but with so many players listed as questionable or out, which team belongs in our basketball picks?

Free NBA Pick: Over 218Best Line Offered: Bookmaker

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Golden State Warriors at Los Angeles Lakers

What if they had a basketball game and nobody came? We might find out this Tuesday (10:30 p.m. ET, NBA-TV) when the Los Angeles Lakers host the Golden State Warriors. There are five players on Golden State’s injured list; some may play Monday, others definitely will not. The NBA odds for this matchup have yet to be released as we go to press late Sunday night, but we’ll do our bets here at the ranch to get you pointed in the right direction.

Let’s start with the walking wounded. Definitely not playing for the Warriors (23-6 SU, 14-15 ATS): center Zaza Pachulia, who’s out with a sore left shoulder. Also unavailable: point guard Shaun Livingston (knee), and most importantly, forward Draymond Green (shoulder) and PG Stephen Curry (ankle). That leaves SG Nick Young (concussion), and it looks good for Swaggy P, with head coach Steve Kerr saying Sunday that he thinks Young will play.

To the Popemobile!

The Lakers (10-17 SU, 13-14 ATS), on the other hand, are at full capacity for Monday’s game – in theory. They do have one issue with SG Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, who’s unable to leave the state of California for the next 25 days after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor offense for letting a drunk person drive his vehicle. Caldwell-Pope isn’t barred from playing at Staples, but he was away from the team tending to this legal matter, and he might not be back in time to face the Warriors.

That’s a pretty big deal for our NBA picks. Caldwell-Pope (plus-0.6 BPM) is one of the few Laker regulars on the positive side of the Box Plus/Minus stats at Basketball-Reference, thanks to his special blend of 3-and-D. If he can’t play, rookie Josh Hart (minus-2.3 BPM) will presumably get his second NBA start in place of KCP, and hoo boy.

Young (minus-3.4 BPM) has been a curious fit on the Warriors ever since they lured him from Los Angeles during the offseason. He’s all 3-pointer and no cattle, shooting 41.4 percent from behind the arc; Monday will be a rare occasion for Young to put more of his stamp on the offense, which could be great news for OVER bettors once the NBA lines come out. Keep it locked with SBR for fresh odds, watch the shoot-around to see if Young is ready, and as always, may the sphere be with you.

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