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Predictions For NBA Playoff Betting – Lakers, Clippers Face Early Hole

Posted by Craig Parsons on 5/18/2012 2:24:34 PM

The sports betting scene in California is as hot as it has ever been, with the Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers getting things done in the NBA playoffs, and the Los Angeles Kings on the verge of reaching the NHL Stanley Cup finals. However, while the Kings are one win away from eliminating the Phoenix Coyotes in the NHL Western conference finals, the Lakers and Clippers face uphill climbs as both teams return to the Staples Center down two-games-to-none in their best-of-seven series, with a doubleheader scheduled for this Saturday.

San Antonio Spurs @ Los Angeles Clippers
Saturday, 3:30 PM ET

It will be the Clippers getting the day started in Los Angeles, where they will have to find a way to avoid a third straight double-digit defeat at the hands of the top-seeded Spurs. San Antonio took the first two games in this series by a combined 33 points, and if Blake Griffin and company can’t find a way to defend the paint in a hurry they are going to have no chance at climbing back in to this series regardless of where they play. The Clippers were outscored 50-18 in the paint game two, and for as big of a role as Tim Duncan and Boris Diaw played in the Spurs’ success down low, Tony Parker and the San Antonio guards were finding lanes to the rim all game. As much as he denies it, Chris Paul is undoubtedly hurting from a sore hip and groin, something that head coach Vinny Del Negro has been quick to point out. Without Paul at full strength the Clippers have even less of a chance in this series, which is beginning to look like it could be another San Antonio betting sites sweep.

NBA Betting Pick: San Antonio Spurs

Oklahoma City Thunder @ Los Angeles Lakers
Saturday, 10:30 PM ET

Considering how good the Lakers had played until the final three minutes of their game two loss to Oklahoma City, there is nobody in Los Angeles that doesn’t believe this team can come back. There is an old saying that nothing has changed in a series until a team loses at home, and while the Clippers may lack the ammunition to respond to San Antonio at home, Kobe Bryant and company proved in game two that they can hang with the Thunder stars. The Lakers will play the next three games in this series at home where they will look for maximum results, and if Andrew Bynum, Pau Gasol, and Bryant can remain on the same page and continue to communicate, they will undoubtedly be able to finish in game three what they started in game two. Despite their considerable talent, the Thunder are still a very young team and could become vulnerable if they are faced with an early deficit on the road in a hostile environment as the sportsbook favorites.

NBA Betting Pick: Los Angeles Lakers


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