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Lakers Clippers Betting Predictions – Battle Of Los Angeles Looms As An Attractive Matchup

Posted by Craig Parsons on 1/2/2013 6:08:26 PM

The Los Angeles Lakers play on a gold and purple court at Staples Center. The Los Angeles Clippers play on a red, white and blue court. Friday, it's red, white and blue for NBA hoops.

Los Angeles Lakers @ Los Angeles Clippers – Friday, January 4   
Sport betting line: No line

Why The Los Angeles Lakers Will Win

When the best online betting sites size up this game, they won't have to come up with overly complex reasons for a Laker victory. Steve Nash is back in the Lakers' lineup, which has enabled Kobe Bryant to acquire a noticeable and very comfortable groove. Nash entered Tuesday night's game against the Philadelphia 76ers with a special distinction in hand. Kobe Bryant had been hitting over 55 percent of his shots with Nash on the floor. The pairing between these two players has been immensely successful, even though a lot of other aspects of the Lakers' performance and team makeup have not generated much of any enthusiasm this season. Kobe has wanted to play with a creative and stylish point guard who could put him in a position to succeed, and more specifically, to give him the chance to get clean looks at the basket without having to freelance too much for his own shot.

Let's go beyond the Kobe-and-Nash angle, though, because that's a bit limited in the larger scheme of things. The bigger thing to absorb about the Lakers is that they're losing on fewer occasions. They were good enough to beat the New York Knicks on Christmas Day, and they're not giving away as many bad losses (such as one to the Cleveland Cavaliers) as they had been in prior weeks. This is a team that has every right to feel good about itself as it takes on the Clippers.

Why The Los Angeles Clippers Will Win

In a hardwood version of poker, NBA basketball teams need to have a dealer they can trust. It's true that the Lakers can rely on Steve Nash, but the Clippers can count on Chris Paul to get them where they need to go. Paul has been terrific over the past five weeks. The Clippers didn't lose a single game in the month of December, going from Nov. 26 to Jan. 1 without a defeat. Paul's ability to create opportunities for his teammates, work well in tandem with forward Blake Griffin, and hit shots on his own in big situations has catapulted the Clippers to a 17-game winning streak and a top-tier position in the Western Conference. Paul got beaten up near the end of the lockout-shortened 2011-2012 season, but his body is responding a lot better this season, and Paul isn't getting pounded to the extent that he was last season. A better, fresher version of Paul, combined with a better mix of young and old role players, has the Clippers in good position to defend their home court.  

Who Will Win

This is going to be a close and exciting game, but the Clippers have more athleticism than the Lakers and are going to exploit the Lakers' suspect defense with their quickness. Take the Clips here.

NBA Basketball Betting Pick: Los Angeles Clippers

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