Lakers vs Nuggets Game 4 Winner Predicted by ESPN

Lakers vs Nuggets Game 4 Winner Predicted by ESPN

The Los Angeles Lakers and Denver Nuggets will square off on Thursday night for Game 4 of their Western Conference Finals showdown.

ESPN recently developed a computer model to predict the outcome of looming games.

According to the Worldwide Leader in Sports, Los Angeles has a 59.9 percent chance of emerging from this one victorious.

Game 4
Game 4

That falls roughly in line with how oddsmakers envision it going down, seeing as the Lakers are currently 6-point favorites.

Interestingly enough, if you just look at the last eight quarters of play, Denver has arguably been the superior team. Obviously the Lakers came out strong in Game 1, but by Game 2 things evened out. In Game 3, the Nuggets largely dominated from start to finish.

LeBron James put up a triple double in the last outing, but it didn’t ultimately have much of an impact on the game.

What did have an impact was Anthony Davis grabbing a mere two rebounds for the day, and the combination of Alex Caruso and Rajon Rondo going 0 for 7 from beyond the arc.

The Lakers need role players to step up, be it Caruso, Rondo, Markieff Morris or Kyle Kuzma. If they don’t, this could turn into a long night for the No. 1 team in the West.

After Game 3, James suggested that turnovers really buried his squad.

“They played better than us, more aggressive than us through three quarters,” he said.

“We had 16 turnovers for 25 points and put them to the line 29 times. It’s not going to be winning ingredients for us if we continue to do that. And we knew that, even after Game 2, we talked about that, trying to assure that. Got to be better than that Game 4.”

While turnovers are always problematic, the far more glaring thing to come out of the last outing was the free throw disparity.

After complaining about LA shooting nine more free throws in Game 1, Denver has seen the roles reverse.

Over Games 2 and 3, the Nuggets have shot a combined 21 more free throws than the Lakers.

It got so bad that Lakers head coach Frank Vogel said they reached out to the league.

“We’re dealing with the fouls through the proper channels with the league,” he said.

Meanwhile, Nuggets head coach Mike Malone believes the disparity is the result of increased aggressiveness by his guys.

“We’re in this series,” he said.

“We let them know we’re not going anywhere. That’s what you guys have done this whole postseason. That’s why everybody is rooting for us. Keep on showing that grit and resilience and playing for each other.”

Thursday night will mark both teams’ most important game of the year.

If the Lakers win, they’ll be up 3-1. And while being up 3-1 over these Nuggets is not the same thing as being up 3-1 on other groups, it will be a massive momentum shifter.

If Denver wins, then suddenly they have all the momentum and the Lakers will face a legitimate challenge for the first time in these playoffs.

Game 4 between the Lakers and Nuggets will tip off at 6:00 pm PT and air on TNT.

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Anthony Amador

A graduate from the University of Texas, Anthony Amador has been credentialed to cover the Houston Texans, Dallas Cowboys, San Antonio Spurs, Dallas Mavericks and high school games all over the Lone Star State. Currently, his primary beats are the NBA, MLB, NFL and UFC.

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