Devin Booker jump shot contested by Russell Westbrook

Dec 21, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker (1) shoots against Los Angeles Lakers guard Russell Westbrook (0) during the second half at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

  • The Los Angeles Lakers are 9.5-point underdogs Monday when they visit the Phoenix Suns
  • Anthony Davis (foot) will be out of the LA lineup for multiple weeks
  • Read below for the Lakers vs Suns odds and predictions

On the surface, the Phoenix Suns (18-12, 13-3 home) hosting the Los Angeles Lakers (13-16, 5-9 away) should be appointment viewing, considering their recent budding rivalry and the star power both sides possess.

Their latest matchup, however, could be lacking severely in the second category.

It was announced Sunday that Anthony Davis would be gone for multiple weeks with a foot injury. Los Angeles handled the first game without AD with a win over the Wizards, but how do they perform with a level-up opponent, while playing the second night of a back-to-back?

Phoenix won’t be near 100% either, as starters Devin Booker (groin) and Deandre Ayton (ankle) are questionable. Key reserves Cam Payne (foot) and big man Jack Landale (concussion) have already been ruled out.

It all gets underway Monday (December 19) at 9 pm ET from the Footprint Center, in a game that can be seen live on NBA TV.

Lakers vs Suns Odds

Team Spread Moneyline Total
Los Angeles Lakers +9.5 (-110) +330 O 230.5 (-110)
Phoenix Suns -9.5 (–110) -420 U 230.5 (-110)

Odds as of Dec 19 at FanDuel. Claim the FanDuel promo code to bet on the Lakers vs Suns game.

The NBA odds have the Suns as 9.5-point favorites, and Phoenix as -420 on the moneyline. Their 13-3 record is tied with Memphis for most home wins in the West.

Los Angeles has struggled on the road as of late, having dropped three of their last four.

Los Angeles Betting Outlook

Thomas Bryant isn’t in the same stratosphere as AD, but the big man came up huge in his start, giving the Lakers a needed interior presence as they held on for a 119-117 win against Washington, sending the Wiz to their 10th straight loss.

Tied at 117-117, LeBron James’ pass out of a double team was deflected, but he found the lose ball after nearly turning it over and got it to Bryant for what ended up being the eventual game-winning dunk. Bryant had 16 points and 10 rebounds in 33 minutes.

James finished with 33 points, seven rebounds and nine assists, and didn’t commit a single turnover. All five starters scored in double figures, but it wasn’t all good news, as Austin Reaves hobbled to the locker room with an ankle injury, but he did return to finish the game.

His status for Monday is yet unknown, but might be tougher with the short turnaround.

The Lakers have just five wins in 14 road games so far this season, and they’ve been a sieve defensively, giving up at least 116 points in each of their last seven road games.

Phoenix Betting Outlook

After taking their licks in New Orleans in a pair of losses, the Suns exacted some revenge against the Pelicans Saturday night, overcoming a 24-point second-half deficit to beat the Pels 118-114.

Devin Booker went supernova, dropping a season-best 58 points on 21-for-35 shooting, including a 6-for-12 mark from deep. Book also added five assists and six boards, helping snap Phoenix’s two-game slide at home.

Chris Paul added 18 points, five rebounds and eight assists, while Mikal Bridges chipped in with 15 points. Bismack Biyombo, starting in place of the injured Ayton, had 11 points on 5-for-6 shooting, along with six boards.

The Suns are just outside the top 10 in scoring at 115.2 (11th), while limiting opponents to 110.5 points per game, the 7th-best mark in the league. At home, they boast an impressive +8.4 point differential and hold teams to 107.8 points — which amounts to a top-3 defense.

The Lakers are actually ninth in scoring, just a few ticks ahead of the Suns, but they allow 116.3 points per game, which ranks 25th in the league.

Lakers vs Suns Prediction

Since trailing the Lakers 2-1 in their opening-round series of the 2020-21 NBA Playoffs, Phoenix has ripped off eight straight wins in this head-to-head. That includes a sweep of the season series last year and taking the only meeting this season, a 115-105 win at home.

Los Angeles is just 1-2 straight up and against the spread this year playing the second game of a back-to-back.

The Suns are a crisp 10-6 ATS at home this year, while LA sports a 5-9 ATS record away from crypto.com Arena.

Obviously, Booker’s status makes a huge difference. If he can’t go, I like to the Lakers to hang around. If the Suns’ starting backcourt is intact, look for them to cover.

Pick:

  • Suns -9.5 (-110); 1 unit to win 0.91 units
  • NBA Betting Record: 15-14 ATS, 1-1 ML, 2-3 o/u, 0-2 parlays; -3.92 units
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Eric Rosales

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