Fresh off their loss last night to the Nets, the Lakers will head to Manhattan tonight to take on the New York Knicks. We’ll preview the game before reviewing my best prop play for the action.
On Saturday night, the Knicks made the short trip to Brooklyn and lost 122-115, which brought their record over the last ten games to 5-5. Despite the Knicks having five guys score in double figures, they could not overcome the Nets shooting 53% from the field and 55% from three.
Allowing opponents to beat them from behind the three-point line has become a common problem for New York over their last ten games, and it continued to affect them Saturday night, with the Nets making 22 threes in the game. Over the previous ten games, no team in the league has allowed more three-pointers to be made a game than the Knicks, who are allowing an average of 15 a game.
Recently, an inability to run shooters off the line has overshadowed how well the Knicks' offense has been playing. New York has the 6th best offensive efficiency rating in the league over the past ten games, and the entire Knicks rotation has a good chance at continuing their impressive scoring tonight against a Lakers team that is 18th in defensive efficiency across the last ten games.
Los Angeles has gone 4-6 in that span and was without Anthony Davis and LeBron James last night in the loss to the Nets. Both players are expected to be back in the lineup for tonight’s game, which will help the offense.
Over the last ten games, the Lakers rank 21st in opponent points in the paint and 23rd in second-chance points allowed, so the issues run much deeper than just who is playing on a nightly basis. The Knicks are 10th in the league in paint scoring this season, so unless the Lakers make a more concerted effort tonight down low, the Knicks will have an advantage down low.
My prop play for this game will be Jericho Sims to go over 8.5 rebounds at (-105). The Knicks big man has seen an increase in usage since Mitchell Robinson went down with an injury, and he has performed incredibly well on the boards. Sims has pulled down 14 and 10 rebounds in his past two games, which brings his average in his past ten games to 7.8.
Sims is in an excellent spot to go over his total again tonight against a Lakers team that has allowed the most rebounds per game over the last ten games. Los Angeles is allowing an average of 47.9 rebounds per game, which is .8 higher than the Nets, who just allowed Sims to pull down ten boards against them.
New York is 4th in the league this season in rebounds per game, and they are 2nd in offensive rebounds, which gives them another advantage tonight since the Lakers are 24th in offensive rebounds allowed over the previous ten games. Sims knows his role is to pull down rebounds, and I think he can continue to do at a high level tonight.
Jericho Sims Over 8.5 Rebounds (-105)