Milwaukee Bucks vs. Los Angeles Lakers Pick and Prediction – Tuesday, February 8th, 2022
Looking at this matchup a couple months ago was probably very exciting. The Lakers and the Bucks came into this season as two top competitors for the NBA Finals. Since then, the Lakers haven’t been the team they wished and it makes this matchup a little less appealing.
With that being said, if the Lakers can beat one of the toughest teams in the league like the Bucks, that could give them a huge mental boost moving forward. They certainly have the talent and they could shake up their roster at the trade deadline.
We still have ourselves a good game on our hands. The Bucks are sitting pretty in second place in the East with a record of 34-21, while the Lakers are lagging behind at 26-28 (9th in West). Let’s take a look at the matchup for this game, starting with the odds.
Odds for Bucks vs. Lakers
The Bucks will be coming into this game as the favorite on the road. This shouldn’t be a surprise to most people because they look like they have a serious chance of repeating as NBA champions.
The point total is huge for this game, as BetOnline and other sportsbooks are predicting it to be very high scoring. That could be true, as both of these teams play at a very high pace. The Lakers play at the 4th fastest pace in the NBA, while the Bucks are two spots behind them at 6th.
These two teams played once already this season. That was all the way back in November, with the Bucks winning by 7 (102-109). The Lakers were without LeBron James in that game, so it shouldn’t go exactly like that this time around.
Let’s take a look at what each team is looking like coming into this game.
Milwaukee Bucks Matchup Preview
The Bucks have been amazing over the past couple years and still look to be that way. Giannis Antetokounmpo is leading the way as usual and he could be in for another big game against the Lakers.
He obliterated them in their last game, scoring 47 points on 18 of 23 shooting (78%). The Lakers were without LeBron, but they still had Anthony Davis in that game. Davis is one of the best defenders in the league, and that proves how good Giannis is.
The Bucks are winners of 7 of their last 9 games. They have the 5th highest Offensive Rating in the NBA paired with the 9th best Defensive Rating. They have some great players outside of Giannis, which makes them even more dangerous.
Giannis is playing at an MVP level this year again, averaging 28.9 points, 11.2 rebounds, 5.9 assists, 1.0 steals, and 1.4 blocks per game. He has also upped his free throw percentage compared to the previous 2 seasons.
Middleton is having another solid year as well. He is averaging 19.4 points, 5.6 rebounds, 5.3 assists, and 2.3 threes per game. He is a great all around player and can do pretty much anything well. He will probably be tasked with guarding LeBron for a lot of this game.
Holiday is one of the most underrated players in the league. He is averaging 18.0 points, 6.6 assists, 1.5 steals, with just 2.7 turnovers per game. He completes their big 3 in spectacular fashion and was a big reason they were able to beat the Suns in the Finals.
Los Angeles Lakers Matchup Preview
The Lakers shouldn’t count themselves out of this game either. They have their own big 3 in LeBron, AD, and Westbrook. They have some solid rotational pieces as well, which makes for a decent lineup overall.
Westbrook hasn’t had the best year, so it hasn’t turned out well for them.
The Lakers’ Offensive Rating is 23rd in the NBA, while their Defensive Rating is a bit better at 16th.
LeBron being in the lineup always makes things better. He’s played in 37 of their 54 games this year, but is averaging 29.1 points, 7.8 rebounds, 6.4 assists, 1.6 steals, and 1.1 blocks per game. He hasn’t averaged this many points since his 2009-10 season, so his age has played absolutely zero factor into his level of play, outside of missing games.
He didn’t play in their last game against the Bucks and they only lost by 7. Theoretically that should mean they have a stronger chance of winning this time around.
A player that has really taken a step forward for the Lakers recently is shooting guard Malik Monk. Monk has slid into the starting lineup recently and has made it worth the Lakers’ while. He’s averaging 18.3 points per game in his 16 games in the starting lineup.
Malik Monk tonight:— Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) February 6, 2022
Sniper. ? pic.twitter.com/ESfVbIsPxq
His ability to shoot really helps the Lakers lineup with LeBron, AD, and Westbrook. Those players aren’t known for being shooters, so Monk fits in nicely.
If the Lakers can find their groove, they should be able to beat tough teams like the Bucks.
My Pick for Bucks vs. Lakers
With the Lakers struggling with their health, they should have really enjoyed their 2 day rest since their overtime win over the Knicks on Saturday. The Bucks are a great team and are favored to win for a reason.
I think the point total can be a bit too tricky for a game like this. Yes, both teams play fast, but the Lakers can be unpredictable at times as well. I would much rather take the points, in what should be a close game.
Head over to the best NBA betting sites to bet along with me.
Los Angeles Lakers +3.5-108