The Toronto Raptors are trying to get everything in place for a deep playoff run, while the Lakers are just trying to finish the regular season. Los Angeles has had a miserable 2018-19 season, but they are still a talented team. Toronto has been one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference all season long, and are hoping to finish strong.
The Lakers were able to snap a five-game losing streak with a win over the Chicago Bulls on Tuesday night. Los Angeles comes into this game with a record of 31-36, and are in fourth place in the Pacific Division. Toronto still holds onto the top spot in the Atlantic Division with a record of 48-20. The Raptors are -10.5 over Los Angeles in this game.
No Ibaka For Raptors
The Toronto Raptors will be without veteran center Serge Ibaka after he was suspended for three games by the NBA. Ibaka is having a great season for the Raptors, putting up 15.1 points and 8.1 rebounds per night. Toronto still has plenty of talent left on their roster, but losing a starting center will hurt any ballclub. Marc Gasol will likely see a lot more playing time in Ibaka’s absence and has been pretty good since putting on a Raptors uniform.
Toronto is in the top-10 in the league in scoring this season, putting up 114.0 points per night. Kawhi Leonard and Kyle Lowry are two of the biggest reasons why, but the Raptors are a deep team with a bunch of weapons. Leonard leads the team with 27.0 points per game, while Lowry has chipped in with 14.8 points and 9.1 assists per night. The Raptors won’t have any trouble scoring against a bad Lakers defense.
LeBron Still Putting On a Show
LeBron James has been a nightmare for the Raptors and their fans since he came into the league, but thankfully they only have to see him twice a year now. LeBron is having another terrific season with the Lakers, leading the team with 27.3 points, 8.7 rebounds, and 8.0 assists per game. Los Angeles is going to limit the minutes for their leader down the stretch, but you can bet that LeBron will be ready to put on a show against Toronto.
Injuries have plagued the Lakers all season long, but this roster will need to be improved in the offseason. Los Angeles is giving up close to 114 points per game this season, and are averaging just over 112 per night. The Lakers don’t have any real shooting threats surrounding LeBron, especially with two starters injured. Los Angeles will have a tough time scoring against a tough Raptors team.
Raptors Blow Out Lakers
The Lakers looked pretty good in their win over the Bulls on Tuesday night, but Chicago is also a struggling team. Taking on the Raptors in Toronto is a whole different story, and the Lakers just don’t have the weapons to keep up. LeBron has been a thorn in the Raptors side for a decade, but they will get some revenge on Thursday night. Bet the Toronto Raptors -10.5 over the Los Angeles Lakers.