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NBA All-Star Game: Team Giannis vs Team LeBron Betting Preview

The 72nd All-Star Game will be played Sunday evening in Salt Lake City, Utah, with Team Giannis squaring off with Team LeBron. This game will be played at Vivint Arena, with tipoff scheduled for 8:00 pm ET.

Team LeBron comes in as the slight favorites. They are -148 to win, while Team Giannis’ moneyline sits at +126. The spread features Team Giannis as 3-point underdogs (-110), and the over/under for total points is 324.5 (-110).

Could Team Giannis Be Without Their Leader?

For as exciting of a matchup as this game could be, it, unfortunately, might be without its leader. In his last game before the All-Star break, Giannis Antetokounmpo suffered a wrist injury in the Bucks’ victory over the Chicago Bulls.

If Giannis, the “Greek Freak”, can’t go, that would be an average of 31.8 points, 12.2 rebounds, 5.4 assists, and the player with the third-best odds of winning the regular season MVP award (+700) missing from his squad.

Aside from Giannis, other superstars on the team include Jayson Tatum, Kyrie Irving, Donovan Mitchell, Joel Embiid, Jaylen Brown, DeMar DeRozan, Julius Randle, Jrue Holiday, and others.

It will especially be interesting to see Donovan Mitchell play in this one, as he returns to the city he called home for the first five years of his career. This season, he is averaging 27.3 points, 4.1 rebounds, and 4.9 assists per game.

Team LeBron Trying To Keep Streak Alive

Since the NBA adopted the style of having team captains, LeBron James has been a captain every single year. Not only has he been a captain, but his team has won every year, beating team’s headed by Kevin Durant (twice), Giannis Antetokounmpo (twice), and Steph Curry (once). He will try to keep that streak alive Sunday night.

Team Lebron, which is coached by the Denver Nuggets’ Michael Malone, consists of superstars like James, Nikola Jokic, Luka Doncic, Damian Lillard, Paul George, Ja Morant, Domantas Sabonis, Lauri Markkanen, Shai-Gilgeous-Alexander, and others.

The key for Team LeBron is their top-end talent. Between Nikola Jokic (-240), Giannis Antetokounmpo (+700), Luka Doncic (+2100), and Ja Morant (+6500), Team LeBron consists of four of the top six in terms of odds to win the regular season MVP award.

Jokic (24.7 points, 11.5 rebounds, 10.1 assists) and Doncic (33.3 points, 8.8 rebounds, 8.1 assists) could be especially prone to big games and potentially taking home the All-Star game MVP award.

Take LeBron To Win

As a brief reminder of the format of the All-Star game, the two teams will play the first three quarters as normal. At the end of the third quarter, a target score will be determined, which is determined by adding 24 points (Kobe Bryant’s jersey number) to the score of whichever team is leading.

This process started in 2020, and since then, the final difference in score has been three points or less in two of the three All-Star games played. For instance, last year, Team LeBron beat Team Durant by a final score of 163-160.

Despite that, on paper, this matchup seems awfully uneven, especially if Giannis is unable to go. Obviously, that comes with the caveat that any of these superstars could single-handedly take over a game, but on paper, this seems like a game Team LeBron should take.

Take LeBron James to keep his winning streak going. Take Team LeBron straight up (-148).

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