The LA Lakers are firing on all cylinders this season, going 6-0 on the road to begin their campaign; they are on the verge of making a new franchise record for the best start on the road in their illustrious history. LeBron James and co. are coming off a dominating performance against the Houston Rockets, beating them twice in as many games.
Dennis Schroder will visit his former team, the OKC Thunder, for the first time this season. He was traded in the off-season by the OKC Thunder for Danny Green and Jaden McDaniels.
Emotions will be running high for the young guard, as he aims to deliver a big-game night for his new team. Schroder is averaging 14.3 points, 4.8 assists and four rebounds in 12 games for the LA Lakers this season.
Fixture: LA Lakers vs OKC Thunder Prediction - NBA Season 2020-21.
Date & Time: Wednesday, January 13th, 2021 8:00 PM ET. (Sunday 6:30 AM IST).
Venue: Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, OK.
James and Schroder were seen having a lively exchange in their last matchup with the Houston Rockets.
Schroder bet with Lebron that the latter will miss a three-pointer; King James obliged with a no-look dagger and then turned around and told him 'it's a bet', much to laughter from the LA Lakers bench.
In his post-game interview, coach Frank Vogel said:
"That exchange is telling of how the LA Lakers are coming together".
Meanwhile, like the LA Lakers, the OKC Thunder have also done well on the road this season, going 5-1 to open their campaign.
However, they have struggled big-time at home, losing all four games thus far. The OKC Thunder have a new lineup this season, with Danilo Gallinari, Chris Paul and Dennis Schroder going off to join new teams.
The OKC Thunder are sitting in ninth position in the West with a .500 season record. On the bright side, the OKC Thunder have six players, led by Shai Gilgeous-Alexander who is averaging 20.9 points per game in ten games, scoring in double digits this season.
LA Lakers Preview
The LA Lakers enter this contest with the best record in the league. They sit atop the Western Conference with a 9-3 start to their campaign as they head to Wednesday's matchup with the OKC Thunder.
The defending champions are playing with purpose and will roll in with a hot streak of three consecutive wins behind them.
However, the LA Lakers could be without Anthony Davis for this matchup, as he is recovering from a toe injury. Wesley Matthews has been ruled out due to swelling in his right Achilles tendon, while Jared Dudley is being monitored on a day-to-day basis.
Key Player – LeBron James
LeBron James has been living up to his title of 'King James', as he is playing phenomenal basketball for the LA Lakers this season.
James has been the driving force behind the LA Lakers' success and looks primed to take the team all the way to the NBA Finals again this year. He could be a key player in this matchup as the LA Lakers endeavor to create a record for the best road start in their history.
This season, James is averaging 24.2 points, 8.3 rebounds and 7.5 assists in 12 games. He is shooting the ball at 48.6% from the field and 36% from beyond the arc.
LA Lakers Predicted Lineup
G LeBron James, G Dennis Schroeder, F Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, F Markieff Morris P, C Marc Gasol.
OKC Thunder Preview
The OKC Thunder are off to a decent start to their 2020-21 campaign and enter this game with a 5-5 record.
The Thunder have a new lineup this season, and their coach Mark Daigneault has been pleased with how his players are playing with each other.
The OKC Thunder shook up their roster in the off-season and are in rebuilding mode. As a result, the team will have some good nights and some not so good ones.
Nevertheless, the OKC Thunder will face an uphill battle on Wednesday, as they face the hottest team - the LA Lakers - in the league this season.
Key Player – Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
For the OKC Thunder, their best bet coming into Wednesday's game could be Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.
The talented point guard is leading the team this season but would need to post the biggest game of this season to match up with the offensive prowess of the red-hot LA Lakers.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is averaging 20.9 points, 5.7 rebounds and 6.3 assists in ten games so far. He is shooting at 49% from the field and 35% from the three-point line.
OKC Thunder Predicted Lineup
G Shai Gilgeous Alexander, G George Hill, F Luguentz Dort, F Darius Bazley, C Al Horford.
Lakers vs Thunder Match Prediction
While the OKC Thunder have had a good start to their season, they have been terrible on their homecourt.
Meanwhile, the LA Lakers are coming in with a three-game win streak and a perfect away record this season.
LeBron James will be eager to register a big win and put this game down in the history books. The Lakers are the heavy favorites to take the win.
Where to watch Lakers vs Thunder?
The local coverage of the game will be available on Fox Sports Oklahoma and Spectrum SportsNet. Fans can also live-stream this matchup via the NBA League Pass.Published 13 Jan 2021, 20:34 IST