Utah Jazz vs. Los Angeles Lakers Odds, Prediction, & Pick
Jazz vs. Lakers Odds
|Date||Tue, Nov. 21|
Tuesday’s NBA In-Season Tournament slate will conclude with a matchup between the Utah Jazz and Los Angeles Lakers at 10:00 p.m. ET on TNT. The Lakers enter play 3-0 in the tournament, with the Jazz, 2-1, as their top competition to emerge from Group A. Ahead of tip-off tonight, LeBron James and the Lakers are favored by 7.5 points on the spread. The total is set at over/under 238 points.
Below, we break down the matchup for both teams and offer a free pick for the betting community!
Walker Kessler ruled OUT
Per Cleaning the Glass, Utah ranks in the 4th percentile in offensive efficiency and the 13th percentile in defensive efficiency with Walker Kessler on the court this season, compared to the 86th percentile in offensive efficiency and the 19th percentile in defensive efficiency when he is off of the floor.
Kessler is third on the team in rebounding this year, averaging 7.9 boards per game, but he is averaging only 24.0 minutes of playing time and has not directly contributed to winning basketball. The Jazz are 2-6 when Kessler plays this season and 2-3 with him on the sidelines.
Who will step up for Utah?
According to RotoGrinders CourtIQ, Lauri Markkanen and John Collins each see a slight uptick in rebound rate when Kessler is off of the floor. Per 36 minutes with Kessler off of the court, Markkanen is averaging 9.9 rebounds, and Collins is averaging 10.7 rebounds. Expect both players to be active on the glass on Tuesday against a Lakers team that ranks 23rd in rebound percentage and 22nd in opponent rebounds per game during November.
Los Angeles Lakers
LeBron James, Lakers making In-Season Tournament a priority
LeBron James and the Lakers are the only NBA team to win each of their first three In-Season Tournament games this year. Their wins have come in convincing fashion, outscoring their opponents by 14.0 points per game.
Talking to the media after their most recent tournament victory, James commented, “We know what’s at stake,” referring to the added incentive for these contests. James has certainly backed up his talk regarding the tournament thus far, including a 35-point, 9-assist performance this past Friday against the Trail Blazers. James is likely in store for another heavy workload this evening against the Jazz.
Lakers offense propelling success
In three In-Season Tournament games, Los Angeles is scoring 123.9 points per 100 possessions, which gives them the 2nd-best offensive efficiency of any team in the league. If there is any reason to be wary of their chances tonight, it is related to their effort on the defensive end of the floor.
The Lakers rank a respectable 10th in defensive efficiency in tournament contests, but they have had the benefit of playing struggling offenses that have struggled to hit shots from the perimeter. The Lakers have allowed the 2nd-most three-point field goal attempts per game in the tournament and have continued to be weak on the glass – an area where the Jazz have performed well.
Utah Jazz vs. Los Angeles Lakers Prediction
Jazz +7.5 (-110)
LeBron James and the Lakers have won each of their first three NBA In-Season Tournament games, but they are vulnerable tonight against a Jazz team that shoots a high percentage of their shots from beyond-the-arc and rebounds the basketball well. The Lakers rank in the bottom-half of the league defending the perimeter and controlling the glass this season, which makes the Jazz a live underdog on the road on Tuesday night. At a minimum, this game is likely to be competitive.