Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#535 Detroit Pistons vs.
#536 Los Angeles Clippers
Friday, November 26, 2021 at 3:40pm EST
Staples Center, Los Angeles
Written by Jordy

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The Detroit Pistons hope to avoid a fifth straight loss in Friday’s road trip to the STAPLES Center to take on the Los Angeles Clippers. A murderer’s row slate of games has taken the already struggling Pistons further into the abyss. They recently failed to cover as 15-point dogs on the road against the defending champion Milwaukee Bucks. However, they weren’t alone in those failures with the Pistons also coming up short in covering as 2.5-point favorites in a 112-104 upset loss to the Dallas Mavericks.

Too soon for “bust talk” for Cunningham

We’re living in a weird time where people want results right away. Good things take a little while, and great things take even longer.

Cade Cunningham hasn’t even been playing in the NBA for a full month, and the negative Ned and Nancys of the world are already chirping. The No. 1 overall pick of the 2021 NBA Draft wasn’t going to be averaging 20-plus points in his first month in an NBA uniform. Love it or hate it, there are going to be down performances like the one he had against the Milwaukee Bucks, along with pretty much the entire team.

Things could get even tougher with a game against the Clippers coming up on Friday. The offense might be missing the elite playmaking abilities of a Kawhi Leonard, but Paul George is doing his part in making this one of the scrappiest teams in the Western Conference. Detroit has the worst scoring offense in the league with the team averaging 98.8 points per game this season.

Jerami Grant is a solid player that has yet to reach his full potential, even though he’s leading the team with an average of 19 points per game. That obviously isn’t good enough when Detroit is facing some of the upper-echelon teams in the league.

Second-year guard Killian Hayes is doubtful for this game with a thumb injury, while Frank Jackson is probable with an ankle ailment.

Clippers’ lacking offense is concerning

Sure, defense is good and all, but this is the era of high-powered offenses. If you aren’t getting buckets, you aren’t competing for championships, period.

The Clippers desperately need Kawhi Leonard to shift some of the balance of power back in their hands. As of right now, Paul George, Reggie Jackson and Ivica Zubac are the only players on the roster averaging in double scoring figures.

They have been riding the struggle-bus since the start of the season.

But they’ve made up for it the best they can on the defensive end of the floor. Defense alone isn’t winning championships, but it can keep would-be blowouts competitive. This Clippers team isn’t afraid of competing regardless of the opposition. They certainly shouldn’t find fear in a Pistons defense that’s ranked in the bottom-half of the league in efficiency.

If there was ever a night for a breakout offensive performance for the Clippers, it would be against this Pistons team at the STAPLES Center. Veteran forward Nicolas Batum is still listed as out due to being placed in the COVID-19 health and safety protocol.

Best Bets for this Game

Full-Game Side Bet

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If this game was in Detroit, I’d run as fast as I could from this side pick.

The Pistons may not be winning a lot of games, but they’re typically keeping things competitive in their home building this season. However, things change drastically when they’re playing on the road.

Detroit is minus-11.8 points when they’re the visiting team. That’s a big problem when heading to the STAPLES Center to take on one of the best defensive teams in basketball. Opponents are averaging only 42.3 percent shooting when facing the Clippers this season. The difficulty in getting buckets will be taken up a notch in this game.

I’m also expecting the Clippers to open up a bit more on the offensive end with the Pistons clearly struggling to get stops on defense. They’re still a work in progress with many on the team trying to figure out their identity. Paul George and the Clippers are going to roll in this game.

I’m laying the points.

Prediction: Los Angeles Clippers (11.5)

Full-Game Total Pick

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The Pistons are averaging a sad 98.8 points per game this season. They’re still a work in progress with several young players like rookie Cade Cunningham lacking experience. The team sits dead last with an average of 40.7 percent shooting. That’s an ugly statistic that’s going to be met with some serious defensive resistance from the Clippers. Even without Kawhi Leonard on the floor, the Clippers boast the No. 2-ranked defense right now behind the Golden State Warriors. They aren’t making it easy on anyone this season. Give me the under on Friday.

Prediction: Under (206.5)
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Written By Jordy McElroy , "Jordy"

Born in Germany and raised in the beautiful state of Tennessee, Jordy McElroy is a storyteller of sports, a sports betting enthusiast, and a semi-deep thinker. Being a New England Patriots fan means he's a six-time Super Bowl winner as well, which means you'd have to be a fool to ignore his advice. Prior to joining our team here at Winners & Whiners, Jordy’s work appeared on CNN.com, FOX Sports, Bleacher Report, USA TODAY, and BJPenn.com. There are no beaches where he comes from -- just rolling hills, green valleys, and all the Sun Drop you can drink.