Will anybody actually watch this game?
Tonight, your ailing 29-33 Los Angeles Lakers wrap up their three-game road trip against the ailing 28-33 Oklahoma City Thunder in a battle of Western Conference play-in hopefuls.
The big problem: LeBron James (out with a a right foot injury), Anthony Davis (a right foot stress injury)) and D’Angelo Russell (right ankle sprain) are all sidelined for LA, while the Thunder are without their own superstar.
So what should we watch for? Should we even watch at all?
Will this be the lowest-rated game of the year so far on Spectrum SportsNet?
Yes. This Lakers team will be playing without its top three scorers and three of its five best players. It will be suiting up against an Oklahoma City Thunder club missing its best player, All-Star point guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. LeBron James is set to miss at least the next two weeks with a loosely-defined “right foot injury.” Following an exciting trade deadline that saw team vice president of basketball operations Rob Pelinka reinvigorate the roster, LA fans might understandably be really bummed out knowing that all those big moves may have been for naught. Who exactly wants to watch this game, which may boil down to a battle of wills between… Josh Giddey and Dennis Schröder?
Who will be the game’s high scorer?
I’ll go with Giddey, who has a more versatile offensive bag than Schröder, although presumably Darvin Ham will be sticking Jarred Vanderbilt on him to hound OKC’s prized small forward prospect all night.
Will Los Angeles beat the spread?
The Lakers are only 3.5-point underdogs tonight, thanks no doubt to the Thunder being without SGA. I am dubious that LA will both generate enough offense and provide enough defense to lose by three points or less.