Thursday NBA picks, best bets: Look for the Warriors role players to take on the Lakers

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By Webdesk


Now that we are in the heat of battle NBA playoffs, the basketball betting market is hotter than ever. CBS Sports will make daily picks during the postseason. Sam Quinn will make at least one pick for every game between now and the NBA Final. All rules courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook.

Los Angeles Lakers at Golden State Warriors

Recommended game | Golden State Warriors v Los Angeles Lakers

The Los Angeles Lakers have been great as underdogs since the trade deadline, but they tend to lose focus in games that don’t quite qualify as must-win. In the first round against Memphis, they stole home court advantage in Game 1… and then lost Game 2 with Ja Morant out. In the regular season, they knocked Anthony Davis out of a game against the Houston Rockets that would have had major seeding implications…and lost. They needed overtime to beat the Utah Jazz in the final week of the season. They got the road win they needed on Tuesday. What is the probability that Anthony Davis will play 44 minutes ago in Game 2? Or that LeBron James plays 40? The Lakers would love to win Game 2, but they don’t need to. They got the split they were looking for. Now Golden State is the desperate team, and it’s a role they’ve thrived in throughout their dynasty. The choice: warriors -6

Kevon Looney has at least 13 rebounds in his past six playoff games. He averages just over 16 per game. Now…why is his line so low for Game 2? Vegas seems to expect the Warriors to go small after the Lakers demolished them inside Game 1. They probably will too. But even if they do, there’s no guarantee Looney will go to the bench over Draymond Green, especially if the Warriors dedicate more possession to Stephen Curry, which would make Green far less valuable offensively. What if Looney goes to the bank? He averages one rebound every 112 seconds he plays this postseason. That means that to get eight rebounds, he only needs to play 26 minutes to reach this total at his current average. That’s very doable, especially when Looney’s minutes come against the small Laker bench lineups. The pick: Looney over 13.5 rebounds

Our own Brad Botkin explained the matter for more Jordan Poole minutes, and that’s a sensible one. The Lakers won Game 1 by ignoring Golden State’s non-shooters. By playing Poole, the Warriors were able to drag Davis out of the picture, force LeBron James to defend a true scorer instead of playing assist exclusively, and even force a poor defender in D’Angelo Russell to team up with one of their star guards. to go. Yes, it would mean making Davis’ life even easier than it was in Game 1, but how much better can he really play? Will he finish with 40 points and 30 rebounds against one-big lineups? That seems unlikely considering how exhausted he was at the end of Game 1. Expect the Warriors to get small and expect Poole to be active early in Game 2. The choice: Poole over 14.5 points

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