The only thing predictable about the Los Angeles Lakers so far is their unpredictability. So which version will be on show at the Staples Center on Friday night when they meet the Denver Nuggets for the first time since edging past them in a seven-game play-off series last season?
The Lakers are just 6-4 at home so far and were edged out 79-77 by Indiana on Tuesday with another torrid shooting display. Kobe Bryant has kept up his blistering pace but Dwight Howard has fallen off the pace in support. They might have better luck against Denver, where they start as 1.48 favourites. Although the Nuggets have a marginally better record, they are a patchy defensive squad, giving up 98.8 points per game. So far, the Lakers are 6-1 when they score over 100 points and with offence their only hope at present, expect them to push the game over the total points line of 205, available at 1.91.
The worst team in the league, Washington, have at least hauled the money off their backs by claiming a first win of the season at the 13th attempt. The Wizards now head to New York where the Knicks will be confident of sending their guests into another losing run and defending their unbeaten record at the Garden.
The Knicks have the best offence in the league and they are 4-0 against teams with worse than .500 records. It’s no wonder the Wizards are 10.50 to pull off an upset in regulation but they have been able to hold teams close so consider a punt on them on the handicap of +13 at 1.91.
The Portland Trailblazers suffered the ignominy of losing to Washington at Boston and normally they’d be long shots to get past the Boston Celtics. However Rajon Rondo begins a two-game suspension on Friday which could leave the Celtics vulnerable to a shock.
Bet of the day: Take Washington on the handicap against New York at 1.91.