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Nets vs Lakers Odds, Spread and Picks

Quinn Allen

by Quinn Allen in NBA Basketball

Updated Feb 17, 2021 · 7:08 PM PST

LeBron James
LeBron James and the LA Lakers welcome a surging Brooklyn Nets team to the Staples Center on Thursday. (Photo by Prensa Internacional/Zuma Press/Icon Sportswire)
  • The Anthony Davis-less LA Lakers welcome Brooklyn to the Staples Center on Thursday
  • The Nets will be looking for their fifth-straight win, while the Lakers saw a seven-game winning streak come to an end on Sunday
  • Get our odds, preview, and best bet below for this contest

A potential NBA Finals preview will be at hand on Thursday, February 18th, when the Brooklyn Nets stay out West for a meeting with LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers, tip-off 10pm ET.

Unfortunately, though, not all the superstars will be in action. Anthony Davis remains out with a calf strain that he suffered in a loss to Denver last Sunday, while Kevin Durant continues to nurse a hamstring strain. Kyrie Irving does return to the lineup after missing the Nets’ last game with back tightness, however.

This is the first encounter between the two Conference foes this season, splitting their two games last year.

Nets vs Lakers Odds

Team Spread Moneyline Total
Brooklyn Nets +2.5 (-110) +120 N/A
LA Lakers -2.5 (-110) -142 N/A

Odds taken Feb 17 at FanDuel

Brooklyn Getting Into a Groove

Steve Nash’s team will be looking to secure their fifth consecutive victory on Thursday. That would be their longest winning streak of the season — they’ve won four straight two separate occasions this campaign.

Tuesday’s 128-124 victory over the Phoenix Suns was arguably their gutsiest performances yet. Without both Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant, the Nets came back from a 24-point deficit to take the lead for good late in the fourth quarter, thanks to a three-point dagger from James Harden. The Beard dropped a team-high 38 points on the night, while former Sun Tyler Johnson added 17 and Joe Harris also added 22 points.

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After a dreadful first half, Brooklyn came out and took it right to Phoenix. They shot an impressive 50% from downtown in the game, with Johnson and Harden each draining five threes apiece. The Nets played lockdown defense in the final two quarters as well, keeping the Suns scoreless in the last 2:48 of the fourth.

It was truly an all-around effort from the entire rotation. To boot, Devin Booker and co. won six straight heading into Monday’s contest. They were red-hot but even without Kyrie and KD, Brooklyn was able to make a remarkable comeback. Guys like Landry Shamet and Jeff Green stepped up heavily, proving the critics who said this team doesn’t have depth wrong.

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It all comes back to Harden though. With Irving back in the lineup against the Lakers, expect the former Rockets star to step up in the scoring department due to Durant’s absence but also, serve as Nash’s best facilitator. Harden is averaging a ridiculous 11.8 assists this season and dished out another 11 on Tuesday against Phoenix.

LA Getting Used to Life Without AD

It wasn’t convincing, but the Lakers were able to win their first game without Anthony Davis on Tuesday, beating the Timberwolves by eight points. LeBron collected 30 points and 13 boards, while Dennis Schroder also had a big night with 24. Kyle Kuzma slotted into the first unit for Davis, but he struggled, collecting just seven points in 26 minutes of action.

However, Montrezl Harrell was seen as a player who would step up in the absence of AD. He did just that on Tuesday, dropping 17 points off the bench. A massive showing from Minnesota rookie Anthony Edwards kept the T-Wolves in striking distance for most of this contest. The 2020 first overall pick had a career night, erupting for 28 points while shooting 50% from downtown.

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The Lakers played a lot better defensively in the final quarter and even went on an 11-0 run midway through the fourth to push their lead to double figures. James also came up with some big plays at the rim in the dying minutes, which proved to be crucial for Frank Vogel’s squad.

Thursday will be their first real test without Davis though. A poor Timberwolves team took them the distance, so you better believe Los Angeles knows they will need to play a whole lot better against the NBA’s best offensive team in the Nets.

Best Bet

Brooklyn has not been good against the spread this season. They’re a dismal 14-16. But, Nash’s team have enjoyed their fair share of success as ATS underdogs, going 6-2. The Lakers meanwhile, are 13-15 as ATS favorites.

I do expect this to be a close contest. With Kyrie and Harden in action, expect an impressive offensive display from the Nets. Although LeBron doesn’t have his right-hand man in AD, LA has more than enough to put up a fight. However, I like Brooklyn here to bring their momentum into the Staples Center and collect another victory.

Pick: Brooklyn Nets +2.5 (-110)

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