Lakers vs. Hornets Free NBA Picks and Predictions

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LaMelo Ball #2 of the Charlotte Hornets dribbles the ball. Andy Lyons/Getty Images/AFP.

After snapping a two-game losing streak with a franchise record of 158 points at Indiana, the Charlotte Hornets host the Los Angeles Lakers. Charlotte is the big favorite at the top-rated sportsbooks due to the Lakers’ overall struggles and some possible injuries as well to their stars. Charlotte is also the best team against the spread at home.

Los Angeles Lakers vs. Charlotte Hornets 

Friday, January 28, 2022 – 07:30 PM EST at Spectrum Center

Charlotte Best ATS Home Team

The Charlotte Hornets are 15-5 against the spread (ATS) at home which is the best record in the league. In their most recent win at Indiana, they put up a franchise-record 158 points. The Lakers defense allows 112 points per game which is 26th in the league. That along with injury issues to both LeBron James (knee soreness) and Anthony Davis (picked up a wrist injury last night) have the Hornets as -7 point favorites tonight.

It has not yet been confirmed if LeBron will play tonight and the wrist injury suffered by Davis last night does not appear to be serious. It is the second game of a back-to-back and with Davis just coming off a lengthy layoff due to a sprained knee, it is possible his minutes could be a bit more limited, especially after hurting his wrist last night. As for right now, LeBron is questionable but there is a chance he could play after resting last night against the Sixers.

Either way, the Lakers will have their hands full trying to slow down this Charlotte offense. The Hornets have been the highest-scoring team in the league for most of the season and if they can somehow figure out how to get some stops on defense, they'll be a truly dangerous team come playoff time.

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Over Has a Lot of Value Here

The total for this game is 228 which I think has value here for our NBA picks. In a back-to-back situation, it's hard to see the Lakers stopping the Hornets from getting their average which is 115 points. With the rest advantage, I actually expect Charlotte to get at least 120 points, especially coming off a game where they put up 158 on the road. They will be up for this Lakers game, after all, every young team is excited to play against LeBron and company.

I mentioned the Lakers allow the 5th most points per game but they score the 10th most points in the league because of the pace they play at. Both of the teams rank in the top 4 respectively in pace so 228 points aren't as much as it appears to be. If both LeBron and Davis play tonight, I would expect this total to get steamed way up from the current number.

The last time these two teams met, the final score was a combined 249 points but the game did go into overtime. If you take away the 19 points scored in overtime, the total would have been 230 which sounds about right. That game was all the way back in November and with the way the Hornets are playing right now having won 7 of their last 10, they will have no fear of the Lakers at all. Looking at the NBA odds available, I'm counting on that plus the Hornets' inability to get stops on a regular basis leading to a high-scoring game that goes over the total.

NBA Pick: Over 228 (-110) at Bovada (visit our Bovada Review)

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Over 228 (-110)
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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.