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Los Angeles Lakers vs. Boston Celtics NBA Preview & Free Pick

NBA Basketball Matchup: LA Lakers vs Boston Celtics

The best rivalry in the NBA will headline TNT’s Thursday night NBA action this week. Both of these teams have had their struggles this year, but both are still considered contenders for the title.

Gamble On The NBA: Lakers vs. Celtics
8:00 PM EST on TNT
NBA Gambling Odds from Bookmaker
NBA Betting Favorite: Celtics -3
Over/Under: 177.5

Matchup | Preview

The Celtics have picked it up lately with the help of their terrific half court defense. The Lakers picked up a nice win at Denver, but they followed it up with losses in Utah and Philadelphia.

Expect the best out of both of these squads in this rivalry game.

Kobe Bryant has taken on a little more of the scoring load this year. Bryant averages 29.3 points per game, which is four points per game better than his average from last year. On the negative side, Bryant is shooting just 29.9% from beyond the arc this year.

He is averaging 5.4 assists per game, which is his best mark since 2004-2005. The most disappointing Laker so far this year is probably Pau Gasol. With Lamar Odom gone, most expected Gasol to pick up the scoring in the frontcourt. Gasol has actually seen his scoring average drop to 16.4 points per game. [soliloquy id=”82219″]

Andrew Bynum is a beast in the post, and the Lakers need to continue to commit to getting him the ball.

Boston recently got Rajon Rondo back in the lineup, and it seems this team is starting round into form. The Celtics have won nine of their last ten games after a slow start.

Boston hasn’t given up more than 94 points in a game in their last ten games. On the year, the Celtics are first in the NBA in points allowed per game at 86.5. Five guys average at least 11.8 points per game for the Celtics. Brandon Bass has taken some pressure off Kevin Garnett in the frontcourt.

Paul Pierce is the team’s leading scorer, but he is shooting only 42% from the floor. Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett are both shooting 50% from the field.

The Lakers are 3-9 away from home this season. Boston has won nine of ten, and I expect the Celtics to win this one with their tough defense.

Prediction: Boston 88 Los Angeles 83



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