|NBA Matchups, Odds, Analysis 1/29-1/31: Bucks @ Raptors
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NBA Matchups, Odds, and Analysis January 29-31, 2019 By: Christopher B. Watford for NoLuckNeeded.com
Philadelphia 76ers @ LA Lakers - 1/29/19
The Philadelphia 76ers have found themselves in the midst of a Western Conference battle - and their performance over the last ten games has been kind of peculiar. It’s not very shocking that they’ve gone 20-13 against teams in the Eastern Conference, considering they’re a top five seed. But over the last couple of weeks they’ve dropped games against some horrendous teams such as the Wizards, Hawks, and a few close matchups against other lottery teams. In recent weeks they have taken games against the Rockets (James Harden 37 points), Spurs, and a close game against the third seed, OKC Thunder.
LA has been matched up with some tough teams over their last ten, but they’ve maintained position fairly well. They’re two games above .500 but LeBron James has now sat out a career-high, 16 consecutive games. Any team that loses a superstar player like LeBron is obviously going to struggle (shocker, right?), but now they’ve got yet another barrage of injuries that have smacked them in the face. Lonzo Ball has a grade three ankle sprain and he’s out for at least the next three weeks, Kyle Kuzma has a hip sprain that’s getting ‘a little worse’ according to LakersNation.com, and Josh Hart was taken out in the Phoenix game due to knee tendinitis.
With all of these injuries plaguing the Lakers it’s going to be a tough matchup against a healthy 76ers teams. The Lakers started Rondo, KCP, Ingram, Beasley, and Ivica Zubac against Phoenix. They played pretty well against the Suns with three players scoring over 20 points, but they’re going to have a hell of a time trying to defend a fully healthy Sixers’ squad.
While the Lakers anxiously await the return of LeBron, head over to Intertops and place your bets on this game. Watch live with the TNT crew this Tuesday at 10:30 PM ET.
Who will win the NBA Eastern Conference? Celtics? Raptors? Bet your team!
Utah Jazz @ Portland Trail Blazers - 1/30/19
The Western Conference is incredibly close pretty much every year, but for some reason it feels even tighter this year. The third seed and the eighth seed are separated by less than four games and there are a few teams that are skirting the edge of the playoffs. All it takes is one injury for the entire course of the West to drastically change. When the regular season is all said and done, the Jazz and Blazers is a potential first round matchup we could watch this year.
There’s been a few rumors floating around that the Jazz have taken interest in Mike Conley from the Grizz and Otto Porter from Washington. The trade deadline is just around the corner and if the Jazz are able to pick those two up they become a deadly team pretty quickly. Obviously they would have to give up some key pieces, but we know for sure that they wouldn’t part with the new, young face of the franchise, Donovan Mitchell. It’ll be interesting to see what the Jazz can do before February 8th, but they might be pretty lethal when the playoffs roll around.
Like most Blazers games go, this is definitely a matchup of the back courts. Of course you have Lillard and McCollum sitting in the back court for the Blazers, but the Jazz have the 17th leading scorer in the NBA and the 16th best passer in the NBA as well, Donovan Mitchell and Ricky Rubio. The Jazz have been steamrolling their way through the competition, going 9-1 over their last 10 with no signs of slowing down.
Catch this one this Wednesday on ESPN at 10:30 PM ET.
Milwaukee Bucks @ Toronto Raptors 1/31/19
I don’t know what it is, but the East excites me year in and year out. A lot of people like to trash on the East, with the majority of lottery teams competing there, such as: Chicago, Atlanta, Cleveland, and New York. Brooklyn has worked their way out of the lottery talks this year and have become one of the most explosive young teams in the league. But enough about that, let’s take a look at the one and two seed Bucks and Raptors.
The Bucks are coming off a tough loss against the Thunder where Giannis just wasn’t himself. Well, that and he got blocked a career-high (and league-high) seven times. I’m not even a Bucks fan and I had to cover my eyes a couple of times. It was kind of depressing, honestly. We’re so used to seeing Giannis explode to the rim with no concern for human life, but he was just off his game. Milwaukee attempted a late comeback, but Paul George just wasn’t allowing it. After throwing down a vicious dunk on Antetokounmpo and then draining an insanely clutch three, the Bucks were hopeless. With the tough loss aside, that one single loss isn’t really a concern to Milwaukee fans. They’re still the first seed in the East and they’re 8-2 over their last ten.
The marquee matchup is definitely the battle between Giannis and Kawhi. Giannis is the eighth best scorer in the league (26.6 PPG) and Kawhi is three spots above him, with 27.9 PPG - and of course his elite defense. I’m a sucker for small forward matchups which makes this my game of the week. You really don’t want to miss it. These guys battled it out a few weeks back and the Raptors ended up taking the game, 123-116, but Giannis fought hard and put up 43 points and 17 rebounds.
Will Giannis be as explosive as he was the last time these two teams met? Watch this Thursday on TNT at 8:00 PM ET.
(Check NBA game odds and updates at Intertops Sports Betting)
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