Today's Top Picks: Why Lakers cover on the road and more NBA best bets for Thursday's slate

The NBA schedule is still very much in feast or famine mode thanks to Monday’s massive Martin Luther King Jr. Day showcase. The league decided to play 14 games on Monday, and in the interest of limiting back-to-backs, that has essentially turned this into the season’s ultimate all-or-nothing week. We had 14 games on Monday, 12 on Wednesday and will have 11 on Friday, but had just one on Tuesday and are limited to three tonight. 

A certain number of back-to-backs is a scheduling inevitability, so why not load this week up with them to ensure a sufficient and balanced supply of basketball for five days? It would certainly make tonight’s slate a bit more palatable, but given the constraints at play, here are today’s top picks for one of the lightest NBA nights of the year. 

1. Los Angeles