The Los Angeles Lakers were hopeful of getting LeBron James back from injury on Wednesday night but that won’t happen. The Lakers are still home favorites against the similarly short-handed Portland Trail Blazers. Here’s our NBA parlay for Wednesday.
NBA games to bet on Wednesday
Orlando at Indiana (-5)
Tip at 7 p.m. ET on NBA League Pass. Indiana played Monday without its top two big men in Myles Turner and All-Star Domantas Sabonis as well as backups Goga Bitadze and Oshae Brissett but still upset the Clippers. Isaiah Jackson made his first career start and was great with 26 points, 10 rebounds, two blocks, one steal and no turnovers or personal fouls across 29 minutes. He posted the first double-double by a Pacers rookie since Turner in 2015-16.
It sounds as if all those other guys will be out again for this one. Turner and Sabonis for sure will be as Turner has a long-term injury and Sabonis is in COVID protocols. Sabonis is averaging 19.1 points, 12.1 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game, while shooting 58.1% from the field this season. Guard Malcolm Brogdon completed his 10-day rehab for his sore right Achilles on Monday, but there is still no timetable for his return. He’s averaging 18.5 points, 5.9 assists, and 5.1 rebounds per game this season.
Two other rookies were great as well Monday. Duane Washington scored 14 of his 16 points off the bench in the fourth quarter, going 4-for-7 from 3-point range. And Terry Taylor played backup center minutes out of necessity, tallying a career-best 15 points on 7-of-11 shooting and eight rebounds. Taylor played in just his sixth career game. Yet another rookie, guard Chris Duarte, ranks sixth among all NBA rookies in scoring (13.4 ppg) and leads all first-year players in 3-pointers made (74).
It’s the second of a back-to-back for the Magic as they were in Chicago on Tuesday. The Magic have had five-or-more players score in double figures 30 times (8-22 record), six-or-more players with 10+ points 21 times (7-14 record) and seven-or-more players in double figures three times (2-1 record). Orlando’s reserves are averaging 34.5 ppg. They have outscored (or tied) the opponent’s bench 25 times (8-17 record).
Somehow, this is the first meeting of the season between these teams. The Pacers swept all three last year. Orlando has lost 11 of the last 13 regular season meetings at home and 12 of the last 14 matchups in Indiana.
Portland at LA Lakers (-3)Tip at 10:30 ET on NBA League Pass. Lakers star LeBron James is expected to miss Wednesday’s game vs. Portland, and could be out a few more games due to irritation in left knee. He and the Lakers want to be cautious and allow James to return once irritation subsides.
In his 19th season, James is averaging 29.1 points per game, tied for second in the league, in 36.6 minutes per game, which ranks fourth. Coach Frank Vogel was asked whether James’ knee injury has him thinking about how he will manage the veteran’s workload when he returns.
“I think about it every day,” Vogel said. “We’re always mindful of the load that he’s carrying, in constant communication with him and the medical team. And in terms of what we do going forward with the knee and where he’s at, it’s really a heavy lean on the medical staff and [trainer] Mike Mancias and what they feel is best. It’s really not a head-coach thing as much as it is relying on the medical team.”
Portland remains without its star in Damian Lillard. The six-time All-Star averaged 24 points and 7.3 assists in 29 games this season for the Blazers before going down. It was clear from the start that the injury — lower abdominal tendinopathy — was bothersome.
“It was just one of those things where I’ve always had control over how I moved and everything, and it had reached a point where my body couldn’t do what my mind wanted it to do and go places that I wanted it to go,” he said.
Nassir Little underwent successful surgery on his left shoulder and is expected to make a full recovery before training camp next season. Little had the best season of his career, averaging career-highs across the board.
Anfernee Simons continues his hot start to the year, averaging 20.7 points, 6.2 assists and 2.7 rebounds per game in his last 10 outings, shooting 43.2% from the field and 41.6% from deep. He has taken advantage of Lillard’s absence.
CJ McCollum has scored 20-plus points in four of his last six games against the Lakers, averaging 21.7 points, 5.5 assists and 5.0 rebounds in those games. Jusuf Nurkic averages 11.7 points, 8.9 rebounds and 2.3 assists in 16 career games against the Lakers.
The Lakers’ Russell Westbrook is averaging 22.3 points, 10.3 rebounds and 9.9 assists in his last 10 games against Portland, recording six triple–doubles in those games. Anthony Davis averages 25.7 points, 9.7 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 1.40 blocks in his previous 10 games against Portland.
Wednesday’s matchup is the third of four meetings between the Trail Blazers and Lakers this season and the final game in Los Angeles. The season series is tied 1-1.
- Back both home teams for a moneyline parlay.