NBA Picks & Parlay of the Weekend | March 2

darren cooper
Darren Cooper
NBA Parlay of the Weekend
NBA Picks and Parlay of the Weekend

All eyes on LA tonight as LeBron James tries to become the first NBA player to go over 40,000 career point when the Lakers host the defending NBA champion Denver Nuggets. The Nuggets have won the last seven meetings against the Lakers, but will they be able to overcome the emotions tonight? Plus, just how many points will LeBron score. We’ve got the parlay you want.

Denver Nuggets at LA Lakers Spread Best Bet

Lakers -1.5 (-110) at FanDuel

Denver has dominated this series lately, winning the last seven meetings - including a sweep of the 2023 Western Conference finals - by an average margin of 9.5 points. The Nuggets sit 41-19, third in the West this year, but are just 26-33-1 against the spread and may be without Jamal Murray who sprained his ankle in a win over the Heat.

Once again though, the Lakers are the story. LA has won nine of their last 12. They’re 10th in the Western Conference, but they have a big lead on the Jazz in 11th place, in other words, the Lakers are getting in the playoffs, probably the Play-In Tournament just like they did last year.

It’s easy to get tired of the Lakers soap opera, but this game sets up perfectly for LeBron and LA to make a statement. The game is on national TV, LeBron is going for the milestone. LA is usually able to raise their level of play when they want and no Murray would be huge for Denver. 

Take Lakers to cover.

Denver Nuggets at LA Lakers Total Best Bet

Under 228.5 (-110) at FanDuel

Of this parlay, the total is toughest one to figure. I’m usually all about the over, and when you think about the Lakers and LeBron tonight and all the emotions, it’s easy to see them going for 120 easy.

But after looking things over, it looks unlikely. Good teams in the NBA still play defense. Denver’s last three games have all hit the under, and in their last five games, they’ve allowed 103.6 points. Plus Denver is the biggest under bet in the NBA. They’re 21-38-1 over/under this season.

LA’s last five games they’ve scored 119 points, but that includes an OT win over the lowly Wizards. The Lakers average 117.3 a night and are 32-28-1 over/under.

This game should have a playoff feel, and in the Western final last year, only one of the four games went over this total of 228.5.

I’m usually an over guy, but take the under tonight.

LeBron James Points Best Bet

Over 25.5 (-108) at FanDuel

Betting on a big LeBron James performance is fun, and reliable. The King is 39-years-old and still the most unstoppable force in the NBA. He may not show his fastball every night, but he still has it and can use it when he wants to.

Tonight is a night where he will use it. 40,000 points really isn’t anything but a number. LeBron has downplayed it some, but what really matters to LeBron is the fact that LA hasn’t beaten the Nuggets in a while. James had 25 points in their last meeting with Denver. He’s averaged 26.4 points over his last 10 games.

LA is going to go to him early to get him the record and then he will have to score late to pull out the win.

This is his night and a great night to go over.

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Parlay summary

Born and raised in Louisiana, Darren Cooper has a fond appreciation for bayous, Mardi Gras beads and the sports betting industry. Darren has worked for multiple print and online publications since 1998, primarily as a sports columnist in the Northeast. He’s covered a Super Bowl (it was a blowout), the World Series (same) and the NBA Draft (man, those guys are tall). For the last few years he’s dug deep into the sports gambling industry as it exploded across America, learning how the legal sausage is made and how while all the sportsbooks look the same, they all have different identities and styles. He’s learned to always bet within his means -- and take the under. When not in front of his computer creating, Darren spends time with his three boys. He runs, reads and is always looking for the next big thing to write about.