Los Angeles Lakers (3-4 SU, 3-4 ATS, 2-5 O/U) vs. Portland Trail Blazers (4-3 SU, 3-3-1 ATS, 2-5 O/U)
NBA: Thursday, November 2, 2017, Moda Center at the Rose Quarter, Portland, Oregon, 10:30 pm ET
Line: Portland -7.5; Over/Under: 210.5
It’s a matchup between a pair of Western Conference foes up in the Pacific Northwest. The Los Angeles Lakers are on the road as they take on the Portland Trail Blazers Thursday night. Los Angeles had lost two straight before whipping Detroit 113-93 at home Tuesday night. Portland has alternated wins and losses in their last six as they were beaten 99-85 at home by the Raptors Monday night: they were in Utah to face the Jazz Wednesday. The Lakers hold a 118-102 edge in the all-time regular season series but the Trail Blazers have won the last 12 meetings.
Los Angeles Lakers Seek to Reach .500
Los Angeles seemed likely to be fodder for a Pistons team that had won three straight, including road wins over the Clippers and Warriors. Instead, the Lakers responded and took Detroit to the woodshed: they’ll try to reach .500 with a win here. After leading by three after the opening quarter, Los Angeles took control by outscoring Detroit 33-23 in the second: they didn’t look back the rest of the way. The Lakers shot a solid 49.5 percent from the floor, including 12 of 26 from three point range, and won the rebounding battle 53-44. Julius Randle had 17 points to lead seven Lakers in double figures in the win.
The Lakers are 19th in the league in scoring offense as they put up 103.4 points per game. Los Angeles is 7th in rebounding with 46.6 per contest and tied for 6th in assists with 23.4 per game. The Lakers stand 18th in the league in scoring defense as they allow 106.6 points per night. Brook Lopez is manning the middle in his first year with the team, contributing 11.7 points plus 4.7 rebounds per contest. Brandon Ingram averages 14.4 points per game while Jordan Clarkson chips in a team-leading 14.7 points a night. Lonzo Ball adds 10.4 points, 7.3 rebounds and seven assists per game, Larry Nance Jr. averages 11.1 points plus 7.9 boards while Kyle Kuzma is good for 14 points a contest. Julius Randle, Luol Deng, Corey Brewer and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope are going to be key for coach Luke Walton’s group. The Lakers are 11th in the league in field goal percentage as they shoot 45.6 percent as a team. Los Angeles is 28th in the league with 7.4 triples per game while standing 29th in three point shooting at 30.6 percent from downtown.
Portland Trail Blazers Look to Stop Bricklaying
Portland was on the road in Utah in a matchup of Northwest Division rivals Wednesday night. The Trail Blazers are putting up their share of points but their offensive execution has to improve. Portland entered Wednesday night eighth in the Western Conference but just one game behind conference-leading Memphis. The Trail Blazers were part of a four-way tie in the Northwest Division with Utah, Oklahoma City and Minnesota. Portland is 2-2 at home and had gone 3-1 against Western Conference competition so far this season entering Wednesday.
The Trail Blazers come into this one 9th in the league in scoring with 107.6 points per game. The Trail Blazers are 2nd in the league in rebounding as they collect 49.7 boards a night. Portland is 26th in the league in assists with 19.3 per contest. The Trail Blazers are above average defensively as they come in 6th in the league by allowing 98.3 points a night. Damian Lillard is leading the team in scoring for the Blazers as he rings up 24.3 points per game while dishing out 5.7 assists per contest. C.J. McCollum (23.2 points) and Maurice Harkless are both veteran options for the Blazers. Al-Farouq Aminu, Jusuf Nurkic (12.6 points, 7.7 rebounds), Pat Connaughton, Ed Davis, Meyers Leonard and Evan Turner (10.1 points, 4.3 assists) all contribute solidly on the offensive end for Portland’s attack. Portland is tied for 24th in the league in field goal percentage by shooting 42.8 percent from the floor. The Trail Blazers are knocking down 11 three pointers a night, which is 8th in the league, while ranking 2nd in the league by shooting 42.1 percent from downtown.
- Lakers are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 vs. Western Conference
- Trail Blazers are 7-1-1 ATS in their last 9 games playing on 0 days rest
- Trail Blazers are 9-2-1 ATS in their last 12 games vs. a team with a losing straight up record
The Lakers are coming off a big win over the Pistons while Portland is going to play their second game in as many nights and third game in four nights here. Los Angeles has had a little breather after whipping Detroit but the fact remains that the Lakers are very young. With youth comes inexperience and inconsistency. It’s tough to back a team like that, especially on the road against a veteran team like Portland. The Trail Blazers, for all their struggles, are putting up points and they’ve been good defensively. Look for Portland to come out of this one on the right side of the ledger.
Pick: Portland Trail Blazers -7.5
Los Angeles has to feel good about their win over the Pistons after seeing both the Clippers and Warriors fail to beat Detroit on their own floor. The Lakers are still searching for consistency though and it’s been lacking, especially on the road. Portland has been struggling to shoot the ball but it seems their issues are limited to inside the arc as they’re second in the league in three point shooting entering Wednesday. If the Trail Blazers remember how to shoot from 20 feet and in, they could be a dangerous team.
The under is 4-0 in the Lakers’ last 4 overall, 4-0 in their last 4 vs. a team with a winning straight up record, 5-1 in their last 6 games playing on 1 day of rest and 4-1 in their last five road games. Portland has seen the under go 4-0 in their last four on Thursday, 8-3 in their last 11 vs. a team with a losing straight up record and 5-2 in their last seven overall. The teams have stayed under the total in eight of their last 11 meetings, look for this to be more of the same.