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The 7-seed Los Angeles Lakers (1-0) stole Game 1 of the 2023 Western Conference Semifinals vs. 6-seed Golden State Warriors (0-1) behind a monster defensive effort from Anthony Davis.
Lakers-Warriors returns to the Chase Center for Game 2 Thursday with tip-off at 9 p.m. ET. AD had 4 blocks Tuesday, grabbed a team-high 23 rebounds, and a +42 net rating.
Splash Brothers Steph Curry and Klay Thompson combined to score an inefficient 52 points and Warriors backup guard Jordan Poole added 21 points.
Aside from LAL’s defense, the difference in Game 1 was the free-throw battle. The Lakers attempted 23 more free throws than the Warriors (29-6).
Lakers vs. Warriors Game 2 odds (DraftKings Sportsbook)
This is a basketball/team sports betting strategy when you bet the opposite side in a rematch. The logic is simple: It’s hard to beat the same team twice in consecutive games.
Generally, this strategy is used for betting sides and not totals. Since 2020, home favorites are 13-1 straight up (SU) and 12-2 against the spread (ATS). But, the totals are 6-8 Over/Under (O/U) as well.
A lot of NBA talking heads will pick the Warriors to tie this series before heading back to LA for Game 3. If I had to play a side, I’d lay the points with Golden State too.
I’d prefer to fire up the zig-zag theory for the UNDER since I didn’t like what I saw from the Warriors offensively. They couldn’t do anything in the paint in Game 1, Curry shot 41.7% from the field and Klay hit 36.0% of his shots.
Furthermore, this is a …
‘Pros vs. Joe’s’ Game
Game 2’s total opened at 227.5 and lowered down to 227 at DraftKings. More money at DraftKings is on the UNDER whereas more bets are on the Over.
So DraftKings is moving the total in accordance with the sharps, not the public. Maybe DK is seeing what I’m seeing, which is …
The Warriors ‘D’ up at home
Golden State’s offensive rating was 8th during the regular season and 12th defensively, according to CleaningTheGlass.com (CTG). The Dubs’ defensive rating is much stronger at home: 3rd at home and 28th on the road.
This is backed by the O/U trends for the Warriors. They are 18-25-2 O/U at home this season with a -3.2 O/U margin. Golden State’s defense responds to losses: The Dubs are 1-5 O/U after their last six losses.
‘Styles Make Fights’
Both teams did a great job protecting the rock in Game 1. Golden State’s turnover rate (TOV%) was 6.9% and LAL’s offensive TOV% was 7.1%. The average TOV% in these playoffs is 11.9%.
The ball security should carry over to Game 2 because trying to force turnovers in basketball is a gamble. If you go for a turnover and miss, defenses will be out of place leading to open shots.
Golden State doesn’t force a lot of turnovers in the first place. The Warriors want to get back on D to protect the basket vs. an aggressive Lakers offense. LAL won’t gamble on defense in fear of the Dubs getting wide-open 3s.
Both teams have below-average wide-open 3-point-attempt rates in these playoffs albeit for different reasons. Golden State is a perimeter-oriented offense and the Lakers don’t have a lot of 3-point shooters.
Moreover, there could be a …
Fatigue Factor in Game 2
Not only did the Warriors play a grueling 7-game series in the 1st round but this is Golden State’s 4th game in the past six nights. The Dubs played a fast-paced style vs. the Kings and a physical Game 1 vs. the Lakers.
Davis played nearly 44 minutes in Game 1 and LeBron James played 40 minutes. AD told reporters how important it was for LAL to steal Game 1. Now that the Lakers accomplished that mission this could be a natural let-down game.
With that in mind, if this game becomes a blowout in the 2nd-half, I could see both teams taking their feet off the gas. We saw this in Game 2 of the 76ers-Celtics series Wednesday.
BET: UNDER 227 in Lakers vs. Warriors Game 2, down to 226
PS Player Prop: Lakers big Anthony Davis points prop (26.5)
The UNDER being more expensive suggests DraftKings is trying to steer bettors into betting the Over. The sportsbooks aren’t our friends so this feels like a “trap line”.
More importantly, Davis is the defensive anchor of the Lakers and could spend less energy on offense. If AD has an off-game defensively, LAL is going to get cooked most nights.
Plus, Golden State has one of the best defensive front-courts in the NBA. Draymond Green is an all-time defender and Warriors C Kevon Looney is a vastly underrated paint protector.
If the Dubs are going to win this series, Draymond and Looney need to minimize the damage Davis does. I think they’ll be up to it since this is a back-against-the-wall game for the Warriors.
AD has scored more than 22 points in three of his seven games in these playoffs. After putting up 31 in Game 3 against the Grizzlies in the 1st round, Davis scored just 12.
Davis followed up a 31-point effort in Game 5 with 16 in LAL’s series-clinching victory vs. Memphis last round.
BET: Lakers PF Anthony Davis UNDER 26.5 points in Game 2
- Betting Strategy: Shop around for the best number for Brunson’s points prop. Of course, consider DraftKings since they are a partner with OutKick. Yet there may be cheaper prices out there if you look.
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