New Orleans Pelicans (15-17) vs Los Angeles Lakers (18-13)Date : 12/21/2018
Time : 10:30 PM
Location : Staples Center
Pick, Prediction, & Preview:
New Orleans Pelicans vs Los Angeles Lakers
The Los Angeles Lakers will return home to the Staples Center after playing 4 straight games on the road and they will welcome in the New Orleans Pelicans in a Western Conference clash, the opening tipoff is slated for 10:30 PM. The Lakers sit in the top 4 of the standings in a tight race while the Pelicans have been unable to find their groove in the early going.
New Orleans Pelicans's Latest Performance :
The New Orleans Pelicans have not met expectations in the early going of 2018 as they are currently sitting 2 games below .500 and 4 spots out of the top 8 in the Western Conference. The Pelicans recorded their 2nd straight loss on Wednesday against the Milwaukee Bucks in what proved to be a high-scoring affair, 123-115. The Pelicans were without two important pieces in this outing as Julius Randle and Nikola Mirotic were both sidelined with injuries. These two forwards have contributed a ton in the early going of 2018 as Randle is averaging 19.3 PG and 9.5 RPG while Mirotic is averaging 17.4 PPG and 9.2 RPG. The Pelicans were forced to run their offense completely through their star forward Anthony Davis and the former Kentucky product was able to record a double-double with 27 points and 11 rebounds. Davis is putting together a nice season for the Pelicans as he is averaging a team-high 28 PPG and 12.4 RPG. Joining Davis in the double-double department was their all-star guard Jrue Holiday as he was able to drop 25 points and dish out 12 assists in the loss. The Pelicans did receive some nice complementary scoring out of unlikely sources as Darius Miller dropped 20 points and Jahlil Okafor dropped 17.
Los Angeles Lakers's Latest Performance :
PPDespite the Los Angeles Lakers being a top team in the Western Conference they were unable to finish their recent road trip on a high note as they dropped 2 consecutive games. The latest loss for the Lakers comes against the Brooklyn Nets in a neck to neck game but they were eventually outscored 115-110. Leading the way for the Lakers was no other than LeBron James as the veteran was able to drop 36 points, grab 13 rebounds, and dish out 8 assists. James is putting up MVP caliber numbers despite him being 34-years-old as he enters this matchup averaging 28 PPG, 7.9 RPG, and 7.0 APG. Complementing James nicely this season has been the 2nd year pro out of UCLA in PG Lonzo Ball. Ball has benefited from LeBron’s presence in LA and we saw that on full display against the Nets as he dropped 23 points and grabbed 6 rebounds. Ball isn’t known as a scorer but the PG has put together an all-around type of year as he is averaging 9 PPG, 5.3 RPG, and 4.9 APG. The only other Laker to touch double-digit points was another 2nd-year pro as Kyle Kuzma was able to record a double-double with 22 points and 11 rebounds. The Lakers have a solid combination of youth and veteran star power which will prove to be a difference maker down the stretch.
How New Orleans Pelicans & Los Angeles Lakers Matchup.
Vegas Odds, Offshore Odds, & Odds ATS:
New Orleans is 15-17 ATS, 7-9 ATS on the road.
Los Angeles is 13-18 ATS, 7-8 ATS at home.
In-Depth Analysis of each team:
New Orleans ranks 2nd in the NBA in team scoring as they score an average of 116.7 PPG while Los Angeles ranks 9th as they score an average of 113.3 PPG.
Los Angeles ranks 19th in the NBA in team defense as they hold opponents to an average of 111.7 PPG while New Orleans ranks 26th as they hold opponents to an average of 115.1 PPG.
Against The Spread Selection: Los Angeles Lakers
My reason for the pick :
Both teams have dropped some games as of recent but the Los Angeles Lakers get to return home after a road trip while the Pelicans have to continue the dreaded trip. The Lakers are also in a better position in terms of health as the Pelicans are dealing with an injury bug right now. The Showtime Lakers have played well despite them losing as LeBron James has received production out of Lonzo Ball and Kyle Kuzma which has allowed them to score in bunches. The Lakers don’t really have a matchup for Anthony Davis but the same can be said about the Pelicans toward LeBron James. I am expecting the Lakers to refresh themselves at home and blow out the limping Pelicans.
Betting trends for New Orleans Pelicans:
- New Orleans is 9-8 ATS against Western Conference opponents this season.
Betting trends for Los Angeles Lakers:
- Los Angeles is 5-7 ATS after a loss this season.