The NBA makes its long awaited return this week, with all of the leading teams in the East and West involved on the big return. It will be slightly different to what fans are accustomed to, as there will be no spectators in attendance for the remainder of the season, but regardless, it promises to be a thrilling end to the season.
When: Friday 31st August 2020
Where: ESPN Wide World of Sports Arena
How To Watch: NBA TV
LA Lakers vs LA Clippers Odds
|LA Lakers (-4.5)||-110|
|LA Clippers (+4.5)||-110|
The fixture that captures the eye immediately when looking at the upcoming NBA fixtures will be the battle between the two sides from Los Angeles. The Lakers and Clippers are both among the favourites for success in the NBA this season, with this fixture possibly the one that will be the championship game from the Eastern Conference.
The Lakers have been the dominant force in the West so far this season as they have won 49 games and have lost just 14 times. Playing away from Los Angeles isn’t likely to phase them as much as most as they have won 26 of their games on the road, and have suffered just six defeats.
Their opponents have struggled away from Los Angeles, as they have lost 13 times and won just 19 times. Regardless, the Clippers remain the leading threat to the Lakers in the West, and with players like Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, it will be difficult to rule them out.
This will be the fourth time that these two sides have met this season, with the Lakers having won the most recent meeting. However, that 112-103 success was the only time that they have beaten the Clippers this season as they had won the two previous meetings this season. Regardless, it’s hard to bet against the Lakers on the spread.
Boston Celtics vs Milwaukee Bucks
|Boston Celtics (+4.5)||-110|
|Milwaukee Bucks (-4.5)||-110|
The game of the round in the East will see the dominant Milwaukee Bucks take on the playoff chasing Boston Celtics. This could be a thrilling fixture between two sides that could easily be playing in the conference finals in a couple of weeks time.
The Bucks have been terrific all season, and most fans are already planning ahead for the predicted Bucks vs Lakers NBA final. However, getting through the East playoffs may still throw up challenges, with the Celtics, 76ers, Heat and Raptors all capable of improving their game. However, the Bucks have lost just 12 times this season to date, and that highlights their dominance.
The Celtics are one of the sides that are improving as the season progresses, and they could have a huge part to play when the playoffs begin. They are locked in third in the standings as they have won three fewer games than the Raptors this season.
Boston lost the last game against the Bucks, but have beaten their dominant opponents once this season. However, Bucks have beaten the Celtics in three of the previous five meetings. That run will continue in this fixture, as the Bucks return to the court with a big win.