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Battle of LA – Who Gets To the Finals?

Steve Shoup

After years of mediocrity, it’s finally a good time to be an LA NBA fan. No matter which part you’re from, you’re either a Laker or a Clipper. With both teams strengthening their squads with elite players, it’s no wonder that their championship ambitions are through the roof. Experts and fans alike are adamant that an LA team will be in the final, but who gets there first?

LA Lakers Chances

Last year, the Lakers missed the playoffs even with Lebron James on the team. Expectations for a playoff spot were high, yet the team played a hit and miss season that got worse as the playoffs drew near. Lebron may be one of the greatest players in the history of basketball, but he couldn’t do it all alone. Changes were needed and the organization made the right steps.

After removing Magic Johnson from the team, the team also replaced Luke Walton with Frank Vogel. Vogel is an experienced coach who put together a pretty great Indiana team during Lebron’s Heatles era. It’s safe to say that if it wasn’t for Miami’s Big Three, that Pacers team could have gotten to the NBA Finals.

Once Walton was removed, Pelinka continued with the right moves. The Lakers added one of the league’s best players to its roster, Anthony Davis. A perennial MVP and DPOY candidate, Davis is already putting up great numbers with Lebron (MVP odds 8/1) by his side. Demarcus Cousins’ injury derailed plans for an LA Big Three, but the Lakers fare great without him so far. Essential contributions from the bench have made the Lakers a force majeure in the West now that the Warriors sit atop mock draft lists.

As a result, the Lakers are right behind the Clippers on the list of biggest favorites for the title. The LA Lakers hover around the 13/4 mark, with some bookies giving them equal (3/1) odds as the Clippers. After years of waiting, the Lakers are in contention again and fans couldn’t be happier about it. You will get the best NBA tips, predictions & odds at sites such as https://www.onlinesportbetting.ca/nba-betting/ plus numerous other features such as live streamed NBA games.

LA Clippers Chances

If there’s one team from the West that could challenge the Lakers for a place in the final, it’s the Los Angeles Clippers. What was once fiction is now a reality – the Clippers are the Lakers’ biggest threat to the throne.

The Clippers have stars to match the Lakers. Lebron James wears the purple-and-gold with pride – the Clippers have Kawhi Leonard (MVP odds 9/1). The Lakers added Anthony Davis – the Clippers answered with Paul George. Which duo is better? We were thinking of a tie as well.

There’s no question that the Clippers are a serious title contender this year and possibly even beyond. Led by the legendary Doc Rivers and with quite a deep bench, the team is nicely covered in all positions and has the best Sixth Man in the league in Lou Williams. With Harrell’s intensity around the rim, the Clippers are the true Lakers opponent for the throne.

Who Wins the Battle of LA?

Bookies have the Clippers on top of the list of favorites with odds of 3/1. With George and Kawhi in the fold, that’s not so surprising. With the Warriors down, many teams have seized the opportunity to form new dynasties that can last for a long time.

If we had to pick a side, we’d go neutral. Some believe that the sheer genius of Lebron James puts the Lakers on top. However, you can counter that with the deeper bench the Clippers have, not to mention a reigning NBA Finals MVP in Kawhi Leonard. From a neutral point of view, we’d say let them fight for 6 Western Conference Finals matches and let the best team win in the 7th. Whoever reaches the Finals will be crowned the new NBA champion – that’s a sure bet.

 



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