Detroit Pistons (6-2) +3, o/u 202 at Los Angeles Lakers (4-3), 10:30 pm Eastern Friday, ESPN
by Zman of Predictem.com
A slightly banged up Detroit Pistons team continues its tour of the Left Coast with a visit to Los Angeles for a bout with the Lakers on the back half of an ESPN NBA double-header Friday night.
Detroit has won two of three so far on a current five-game West Coast road trip after beating the Warriors in Oakland Wednesday night 111-104. So the Pistons lead the Central Division by 2 games over both the Cleveland Cavaliers and Milwaukee Bucks.
Los Angeles beat the Rockets in Houston Wednesday night 93-90 to inch back above .500 at 4-3, which is good for third place in the Pacific Division, two games back of the first-place Phoenix Suns.
Detroit is 4-4 against the spread so far this season, and 4-2 straight up and 3-3 ATS in road games.
On the other side of the ledger, the Lakers are a profitable 5-2 vs. the numbers this season, 2-2 SU and 3-1 against the spread at home.
Since beating L.A. in the NBA championship series four season ago, the Pistons have also taken five of six regular-season meetings from the Lakers. Last season, Detroit took both games from their Western Conference counterpart, winning 97-83 in L.A. in November and 93-78 in Motown in February. The Pistons held the Lakers to 40% shooting from the floor in the two games together (61-152), out-rebounded L.A. 93-77 and limited Kobe Bryant to 37 points overall. Both games also stayed well below their totals.
This season, Detroit is outscoring opponents on average 101-94 while shooting 47% from the field, 38.5% from 3-point range and 72% from the free-throw line. The Pistons also are holding foes to 44% FG shooting and own a +1.7 rebounds-per-game margin and a 24/13 average assist-to-turnover ratio.
The Lakers are outscoring opponents 104-101, and shooting 48% from the field, 32% from long range and 74% from the line. Los Angeles is also holding foes to 43% FG shooting (5th-best in the league) and leads the league in rebounding with a +5.7 rpg margin. The Lakers also own a 22/17 average A/TO ratio.
On the injury front, Detroit may be without both G Chauncey Billups (knee) and F Antonio McDyess (shoulder) for the second consecutive game.
The o/u is 5-3 in Pistons games this season, which are averaging 195 points per, while the totals are 4-3 in Los Angeles games, which are averaging 205 points.
The Lakers opened as a three-point home chalk for Friday night’s game, with a total of 202 at most sportsbooks, and those numbers have remained steady in early betting action. Also, Los Angeles is listed at right around -155 on the moneylines, with Detroit getting +135 as road dogs.
Zman’s Pick: The Pistons without Chauncey Billups simply aren’t the same team. We’re taking the Lakers minus the three here.