Knicks, Lakers Have Much in Common

Knicks, Lakers Have Much in Common

By the KING of Las Vegas WAYNE ALLYN ROOT

Thursday's sports schedule is lined up beautifully...with Notre Dame/Florida State representing the first true "marquee" matchup in the college bowls goes in the afternoon...followed by Heisman Trophy winner Robert Griffin III leading his Baylor Bears vs. Washington in the Alamo Bowl...leading to a nightcap of New York Knicks/Los Angeles Lakers in the late NBA game on TNT.

I have big plays all over the football and basketball cards here available for purchase here at the website. I hope you'll join THE KING OF LAS VEGAS tonight and all through the holiday weekend. Be sure to take care of business Thursday before that 5:30 p.m. ET kickoff for Notre Dame/Florida State (2:30 p.m. out here in Las Vegas).

I'll be watching all of the big TV games very closely in my state-of-the-art home theatre. As a native New Yorker...who understands that Las Vegas is basically a suburb of Los Angeles when it comes to sports betting...I'll be VERY interested in that Knicks/Lakers game.

Back on Christmas Day I talked about the longshot possibilities for New York to win the East. Even though we're less than a week into the new season, I don't think anybody's picking the Knicks (or anyone else for that matter) to outplay the Miami Heat this year. Miami certainly didn't go backwards in the offseason. Current weaknesses of the new-look Knicks were exposed in a late-Wednesday loss at Golden State 92-78.

With the Lakers, this just isn't a team that's seen as a true top contender at the moment. Many insiders believe the Clippers have passed them as "best team in Los Angeles." Even if that's not true, you can't suggest right now that the Lakers are better than teams like Oklahoma City or San Antonio. Given the subtraction of Lamar Odom from their lineup, they may not be any better than Denver and maybe a couple of others.

As I was handicapping the Knicks/Lakers game late last night, these similarities occurred to me:

  • Both have superstar frontline talent but weak benches. There are just a few guys on both teams who HAVE to go out and win the game. The rest are just role players or dead weight. When the stars struggled shooting for the Knicks at Golden State, the team could only manage 78 total points.

  • Both have troubles defending the shooting zones. Tyson Chandler is a great addition for the Knicks in terms of guarding the basket. And, the Lakers still have a lot of length in the paint with Pao Gasol and Andrew Bynum. But, opponents can work the ball around for open numbers because overall defensive movement is so poor. That's how Dallas crushed the Lakers in the playoffs last year. That's part of how Golden State outplayed the Knicks Wednesday.

  • Both have a head coach who's basically "half a coach." Mike Brown, new head coach of the Lakers, is seen as a defensive guy whose offensive gameplans are way too simple. Mike Dantoni of New York is an offensive guy who has no idea how to coach defense. Champions must be able to play on both sides of the floor. Last year's champion Dallas wasn't a defensive juggernaut, but they could at least force shooters outside their comfort zones.

  • Both could be in trouble in terms of excelling night in and night out this year because of the condensed schedules. You don't want to run your superstars into the ground. Yet, these are teams who can only win when their superstars are carrying a very heavy load. That's really going to hurt THIS year.

Tonight's matchup won't give us a perfect read for season expectations because Andrew Bynum is still out of action for one more game because of his suspension. But, this is a fatigue spot for both teams. The Knicks are on night two of a back-to-back, while the Lakers are playing their fourth game in five nights even though they had Wednesday off.

Even if you don't have money going on this game...I strongly advise you to stay up late and study the teams. You may find five or six winners over the next few weeks based on what you learn tonight.

Will WAYNE ALLYN ROOT have money going on this game? You'll have to sign up for service to find out! You can do that right here at the website. And, as I said at the top, this is a GREAT day to be in action because we have my Early Season Bowl Game of the Year and a great basketball schedule. If you have any questions about service packages, call my handicapping office at 1-877-766-8946.

There's still plenty of time to finish out 2011 strong...and 2012 is going to start off with a big bang thanks to the NFL season finales on January 1st, and the annual New Year's Bowls going on January 2nd.

Who's the Kobe Bryant of sports handicapping? Who's the Carmelo Anthony of sports handicapping? Who's the Notre Dame of sports handicapping? Who's the Heisman Trophy winner....every year...of sports handicapping? It's none other than WAYNE ALLYN ROOT!

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