With about half the NBA season completed, there is a game between two mismatched opponents in the Western Conference. These teams are the San Antonio Spurs and the Los Angeles Lakers. The Spurs entered the season with the hopes of dethroning the Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference. However, the Spurs are currently in third place in the Western Conference and are only five games back of the Warriors for first place. Their opponents in this contest, the Los Angeles Lakers, have been underachieving so far this season and are currently tied for last in the Western Conference standings. Since these teams are extremely uneven, expect this game to be rather lopsided.
San Antonio’s success is due to its elite defense and bench production. The Spurs, led by star forward Kawhi Leonard, were expected to compete for an NBA championship this season. However, Leonard has only played in eight out of the team’s 42 games this season and the team is still 28-14. One major reason for the team’s ability to win without its best player is its defense. This season, the Spurs have allowed the second-fewest points per game in the NBA and have used their stifling defense to win a ton of low scoring contests. The Spurs also have the sixth-highest scoring bench in the NBA and use its tremendous depth to tire out their opponents. If the Spurs plan on winning this contest, expect its bench to play extremely well.
Los Angeles’ struggles have been due to its extremely young core. Offensively, the Lakers are led by rookies Kyle Kuzma and Lonzo Ball. This season, Kuzma is averaging over 16 points per game along with over six rebounds per game and is shooting 46.4% from the floor. Fellow rookie Lonzo Ball struggled early on this season but has recently improved his level of play. This season, Ball is averaging 10.0 points per game along with 7.1 assists and rebounds per game. However, Ball has struggled with his shot since joining the NBA. As the second pick in the NBA Draft, Ball was expected to make an immediate impact on the Lakers organization. Although his statistics are extremely well-rounded, Ball is only shooting 34.9 percent from the field and 29.8 percent from the three point line. If the Lakers plan on making the playoffs in the future, Ball will have to drastically improve those shooting numbers.
As for my prediction, I have to side with the Spurs. Although the game is in Los Angeles, the Spurs are clearly the better team in this contest. I expect its defense and bench to control the tempo of the game as the Spurs win this game by double digits.
Lakers vs. Spurs: Game Time, TV Channel & Viewing Details
Event: Los Angeles Lakers vs. San Antonio Spurs
Date: Thursday, January 11, 2018
Start Time: 10:30 P.M. EST
Location: Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA
How to Watch Lakers vs. Spurs On Your Tablet Or Mobile Device
You can live stream the game on the Watch TNT app.
How To Live Stream Lakers vs. Spurs Online Without Cable Subscription
You can also live stream the game through Sling TV free trial. Just click on the Sling website and click “Watch Now 7 Days Free” for the free trial. Choose the Sling Orange package, which costs $20 per month and comes with TNT, along with many other sports channels.