Home > All > Los Angeles Lakers vs Houston Rockets 10/20/18 NBA Odds, Preview and Prediction

Los Angeles Lakers vs Houston Rockets 10/20/18 NBA Odds, Preview and Prediction

The Los Angeles Lakers will make their Staples Center debut against the Houston Rockets on Saturday, 10/20/18.

Both teams lost their opening games with the Rockets getting upset by the Pelicans and the Lakers suffering yet another loss to the Blazers.

Caught Off Guard By Stauskas

LeBron James made his highly anticipated Lakers debut on Thursday night but after opening his purple and gold career with two thunderous dunks that brought the crowd to its feet, everything fizzled. Los Angeles came prepared for Portland’s dynamic backcourt duo who delivered a combined 49 points on Thursday but they were caught off guard by reserve Nik Stauskas who scored 24 points on 5-8 three point shooting off the Portland bench.

Still, LeBron James had a fantastic debut with 26 points, 12 rebounds and 6 assists while backup guard Josh Hart had a big night with 20 points (8-12 shooting) and 3 steals. But Los Angeles shot a miserable 7-30 from behind the three point line and Portland wasn’t really lights out from downtown at 35.1%, the Blazers made 6 more three pointers than the Lakers and that was the difference in the game.

Despite the loss, the Lakers showed tremendous scoring balance and good teamwork. But their inability to stop Portland from making three pointers all night spelled their doom. Los Angeles was also outrebounded 54-46 including 14-8 on the offensive boards. The Lakers also missed 7 free throws which would have made the game closer in the end game.

  • Los Angeles Lakers vs Houston Rockets 10/20/18
  • Moneyline Odds Not Yet Available

No Answer For The Brow

Like the Lakers, the Rockets also lost their season opener, at home at that, against the New Orleans Pelicans. But unlike the Lakers who lost the game due to several shortcomings, the Rockets lost to the Pelicans because they had no answer for the Brow, Anthony Davis.

After James Harden hoisted the 2018 MVP trophy before their hometown crowd, Anthony Davis made an early case for MVP honors with a monster night. The Brow scored 36 points, grabbed 16 rebounds and issued a career high 8 assists as New Orleans blasted Houston from the Toyota Center 131-112.

James Harden shot just 6-15 from the floor and scored just 18 points but had good scoring support from Eric Gordon (21 points), Chris Paul (19 points) and P.J. Tucker (19 points). However, the Pelicans outscored the Rockets 76-44 inside the paint, mostly points from Davis and the newly acquired Julius Randle who had 25 points off the Pelicans’ bench. With the Lakers not having dominant inside players, the Rockets should have an easier time on Saturday night.

Who Wins?

The Lakers lead the all-time series 136-80 but that’s because the purple and gold have a more storied history than Houston. In the post Kobe Bryant era, the Rockets have taken five of the seven meetings against the Lakers, including 3 of 4 last season.

But then you can’t really judge these Lakers based on historical stats and trends because this is basically a different team this season. LeBron James changes the entire landscape and James’ court has new faces like Javale McGee, Lance Stephenson, Rajon Rondo and Michael Beasley. It was obvious that while the Lakers displayed great teamwork against the Blazers, they still lack the chemistry of a playoff contender. That will come though but it’s likely not yet there on Friday against the Rocket.

Aside from chemistry, the Lakers have other things to worry about. While LeBron has shown that he can win with any team, he is more effective when he is surrounded by excellent long distance shooters. Unfortunately, he doesn’t have a marksman in Los Angeles. The Lakers shot just 7-30 from behind the three point line and were also just 22-29 from the foul line. Had the Lakers shot better in both departments, it could have been a different story.

Los Angeles’ inability to stop Portland’s three point shooters was also crucial. Against the Rockets who are the NBA’s top three point shooting team, that is going to be a major issue. In this game, I think three point shooting will be the difference. Los Angeles’ inability to close out on shooters will give Houston plenty of three point baskets in this contest. I’m not sure if it’s even to be close. I’m really rooting for LeBron to succeed but I just can’t put my money on a team that doesn’t shoot well from behind the arc. Unless the Lakers start making three pointers, I’m not risking my bet on them. We’re picking the Houston Rockets to beat the Los Angeles Lakers on 10/20/18. The Moneyline odds for this game isn’t available yet as of this writing.

Other Bets To Make

Head to head, the Rockets are 6-4 ATS in their last 10 games versus the Lakers.
The Rockets won the first meeting between these teams last season by a winning margin of 23 points. The next three games were decided by six points each. So while the Rockets have won three of the last four games between these squads, majority of those games have been close.

  • Los Angeles Lakers vs Houston Rockets 10/20/18
  • Spread Odds: Lakers +2.5 (-105), Rockets -2.5 (-115)
  • Odds from Sportsbetting.ag as of 10/19/18

The current spread though is set at 2.5 points and the last time that a game between the Rockets and the Lakers was decided by less than three points was in 2013 when the Lakers won 99-98 with Jodie Meeks leading the way with 18 points. I’m not even sure if you remember Jodie Meeks. This matchup has always been a shootout. With Houston’s three point shooting ability, it only takes one of their three pointers to cover this spread. Prediction: Rockets -2.5

The over is 6-4 in the Lakers last 10 games played and the under is 7-3 in the last 10 games played by the Rockets. Head to head though, the over is 7-3 in the last 10 games between these two teams. In those last 10 meetings, the average total score was 228.8 points.

  • Los Angeles Lakers vs Houston Rockets 10/20/18
  • Over/Under Odds: Over 230.5 -110, Under 230.5 -110
  • Odds from Sportsbetting.ag as of 10/19/18

The Rockets scored just 112 on the Pelicans last Tuesday but averaged 123.25 points per game against the Lakers last season. The current Lakers team isn’t just a high scoring team but it also doesn’t play good defense at all. And yes, they don’t close out well on three point shooters, which will give the Rockets’ shooters more open looks.

In their opening game, the Lakers and Blazers combined for 247 points, 25 more than the over/under total of 222 set for the game. Likewise the Rockets allowed 131 points against New Orleans so this has the makings of a wild west shootout. Prediction: Over 230.5

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