The Los Angeles Lakers need every win they can get simply to compete in the Western Conference play-in tournament and remain without LeBron James likely for at least two more weeks. Thus, one would presume that fellow star Anthony Davis would be playing every game out of necessity but that would be incorrect as the Lakers are sitting Davis for tonight’s game at tanking Houston. If LA loses tonight without AD – it is a 3-point favorite – and misses the play-in tournament, circle March 15.
NBA News: Lakers’ Anthony Davis Sitting Wednesday Vs. Rockets Despite Good Health
When: March 15 at 8:00 pm ET
Where: Toyota Center, Houston, TX
TV / Streaming: NBA League Pass, Spectrum SN, ATTSN SW
Davis was dominant in Tuesday’s 123-108 win over the Pelicans, scoring 35 points on 11-for-18 shooting and 12-for-13 from the free-throw line with 17 rebounds in 33 minutes. It was his ninth game of the season with at least 30 points and 15 rebounds, scoring 35 or more in five of them. Davis had totaled only 25 points in the team’s previous two games against the Raptors and Knicks.
Coach Darvin Ham said that Davis won’t play in Wednesday’s game versus the Rockets due to an “active” foot injury despite being pain-free. His right foot, which caused him to miss 20 games earlier in the season because of a stress reaction and a bone spur that fractured off the navicular bone, apparently still isn’t 100 percent. Doctors have recommended not to put Davis at risk of a setback from overexposure by participating in back-to-back games. He wouldn’t have to worry about playing both ends of a B2B in the playoffs as there aren’t any. LA has one more B2B left: April 4 at Utah and April 5 at the Clippers.
“It’s just one of those things where even though he’s playing pain-free, it’s still an active injury,” Ham said. “So we have to monitor it and stick to the plan, as we always have done. And just go out there with our other guys and try to get a W and finish the trip the right way.”
James (foot) remains out, but he was able to do some weight lifting and shooting during Tuesday’s shootaround. He is expected to be re-evaluated next week. At 34-35, LA sits 10th in the West for that final play-in spot but also is only two games back of No. 6.
With no Davis tonight, that should mean more shots for the likes of DeAngelo Russell and Malik Beasley. Russell was just 5-for-15 Tuesday with 17 points. Beasley shot 7-of-12 from three to finish with 24 points. The Lakers had it rolling in the first half, scoring 75 points and taking a 35-point lead into the intermission. Beasley had much to do with that, scoring 21 points on 7-of-10 from three in the first half.
Houston is in full tank mode to try and finish with one of the NBA’s three-worst records and a 14% chance of winning the draft lottery, but the Rockets come off a shocking 111-109 home win over Boston on Monday. Jalen Green scored 28 points and rookie Jabari Smith Jr. added 24. The Celtics had a chance to tie it at the buzzer, but Jayson Tatum missed a layup.
Green is averaging 25.2 ppg over the past five games after averaging 18.9 his previous 11 games played. He had seven rebounds vs. Boston on Monday after not having more than three in any of his previous nine games. Green is averaging 27.4 ppg (49.3% FGs) in the Rockets wins this season.
Good-looking young center Alperen Sengun (left groin strain) is questionable for Wednesday’s game against the Lakers after sitting out vs. Boston with Tari Eason replacing him in the starting lineup. Sengun is on pace to become the fifth player 20 or younger for the majority of season to have averaged at least 14.0 ppg, 8.0 rpg and 3.0 apg.
Houston is 3-3 over its past six games after losing 11 in a row prior. It ranks first in rebounding differential (+4.8 per) after finishing last in each of the previous two seasons.
The Lakers and Rockets have only played once this season, a 140-132 home LA win on Jan. 16. James had a season-high 48 points, nine assists and eight rebounds. Russell Westbrook scored 24 for the Lakers, who never pulled away in another poor defensive game, but also set a franchise record by committing just two turnovers. Westbrook is now with the Clippers.
The Lakers are looking to win their third straight season series vs. Houston after not winning one since going 2-1 in 2010-11. Houston is 2-4 in the past six at home in the series after winning seven of the previous eight.
I have read enough, I need to place my bet now. What to do?
Bet NBA Today
MyBookie Betting Lines for the Game
NBA Betting Center
NBA Odds and Lines
|Make the Playoffs|
Latest NBA News:
- Weekend Betting Action for NBA Week 23 Games
- Potential NBA Championship Matchups Before Starting the 2023 Playoffs
- NBA betting news: Knick’s Julius Randle could return for Play-In Round
- Thursday’s Celtics-Bucks Winner Earns Potentially Huge Playoff Tiebreaker
- Can’t Miss Games in the NBA Season’s Final Two Weeks