Lakers vs. Thunder Game 2: Los Angeles Falls Flat as an Underdog of This Kind

Everyone will say the right things in the locker room after suffering a 119-90 blowout loss as 7.5-point road underdogs to the Oklahoma City Thunder on Monday night, but the Los Angeles Lakers find themselves in a must-win situation in Game 2.

Las Vegas oddsmakers are still convinced that the Lakers will head back to Southern California down 2-0 in this best-of-seven Western Conference semifinal series, opening them up as 7.5-point underdogs, while the total stands at 195.5.

Los Angeles may have some star power with guard Kobe Bryant and Andrew Bynum, but that hasn't helped the franchise when playing as road underdogs of 6.5 to nine points this season. The Lakers allowed 113.2 points in that situation, losing all four games by an average of 21.2 points.

Oklahoma City lands in a favorable spot to maintain its home-court advantage, posting a 40-6 record as a home favorite in this point range since the start of the 2010 season, including an 11-2 mark this year. The Thunder have won all three playoff games inside Chesapeake Energy Arena this year, with all three going "over" the total.

Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook had little trouble scoring points against a fatigued Lakers' defense that was coming off a hard-fought seven-game series against the Denver Nuggets, combining for 52 points in just over 53 minutes of action.

The Thunder are well on their way to registering their second four-game sweep to open the 2012 NBA playoffs, as they already gained revenge in dropping last year's Western Conference Finals to the Dallas Mavericks.

Oklahoma City may be able to hand Los Angeles, who knocked the Thunder out of the playoff's first round two years ago, the same fate, unless the Lakers are able to steal a victory in Game 2.

The season is on the line Wednesday night.


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