The Los Angeles Clippers will take the floor for their ninth road game in the past 10 outings Thursday night. Sort of.
The Clippers, who returned to the Staples Center off an eight-game road swing to defeat the Houston Rockets Wednesday, are visitors in their own house – dubbed the away side versus the Los Angeles Lakers in the final game before the All-Star break.
Oddsmakers have the Clippers set as 3-point favorites Thursday, a spread that most “road” teams don’t get when playing the Lakers in Los Angeles. According to Aron Black of Bet365.com, oddsmakers don’t discount the Clippers much in these Staples Center showdowns.
“Obviously, given the season ticket allocations, the crowds would be pro whichever team is the home team,” Black told Covers. “But in L.A., the Clips are becoming much cooler to support, which is really important in La-La Land.”
“The Lakers have had so long to get most of the celebrity support, but more and more folk are starting to jump on the Clippers bandwagon,” says Black. “So, their fans would be more vocal now when playing as the visitors against the Lakers.”
There is something to be said for fan support in these Battles for Los Angeles. Heading into Thursday’s tilt, the “home” team is 9-3 ATS in the last 12 meetings between the Clippers and Lakers, including their most recent contest – a 107-102 home win for the Clippers as 4.5-point favorites on Jan. 4.
In fact, the Clippers have dominated their roommates when it comes to covering the spread in recent wars, going 11-4 ATS in the last 15 meetings overall. The Clippers have won and covered in both games with the Lakers this season.
“I wouldn’t say we put much into this ourselves,” Black says of the home-court advantage. “It’s just one of those things that’s built into prices in general.”
The total for Thursday's game is 199 points. The Clippers and Lakers have played over in seven straight meetings.