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A pair of Western Conference teams square off against each other on the parquet floor in the Big Easy. The Phoenix Suns are on the road as they make the trip to face the New Orleans Pelicans Saturday night. Phoenix was in action on the road Friday night as they faced the Rockets. New Orleans was drubbed 130-113 at home by the Bucks in their last game Tuesday night: they faced Portland at home Friday night. The Pelicans lead the all-time regular season series 29-28 and have taken the last eight meetings, including two this season. In the last matchup, New Orleans took a 130-116 road win on March 1.
Phoenix Suns Close Back to Back Road Set
Phoenix was on the road in the Lone Star State as they faced the Rockets on Friday night. The Suns are in the basement of the Western Conference and have been eliminated from playoff contention. Phoenix is 2-9 in the second game of back to back situations this season. In those games, the Suns put up 104.5 points per game, which falls under their season average of 106.8 points a night. Phoenix gives up an average of 114.8 points per night in those outings, compared to their full-season mark of 115.9 points a contest.
coast to coast
— Phoenix Suns (@Suns) March 14, 2019
The Suns are 24th in the league in scoring with an average of 106.8 points per game. The Suns are 30th on the glass by collecting 40.2 boards per game. Phoenix stands 18th in the league in assists with 23.9 per contest. Phoenix is 28th in the league in scoring defense as they allow 115.9 points a night. The Suns are tied for 16th in the league in field goal percentage at 45.7 percent so far. The Suns are tied for 27th in three pointers per game with 9.6 per contest. Phoenix is 30th in three-point percentage as they splash 33 percent of their chances from long range. The Suns are 5-5 in their last 10 games, ranking tied for 14th in scoring offense with 112.1 points a game and 19th in scoring defense by allowing 114.4 points a night. Phoenix is 23rd in field goal percentage defense (46.8 percent) and 18th in three-point field goal percentage defense (35.6 percent) while ranking 18th in three-point shooting (35 percent) in that stretch. Devin Booker leads the way with 27.7 points plus 6.8 assists per game in the last 10 games. Kelly Oubre Jr. continues to produce after coming over from Washington in the Trevor Ariza deal: he puts up 18.8 points plus 5.8 rebounds a game despite shooting just 33.3 percent from beyond the arc. Deandre Ayton has been solid of late, averaging 15.3 points plus 9.3 rebounds a night while shooting 56 percent from the field in their last 10 games.
New Orleans Pelicans Hope to Snap Slide
New Orleans dropped their fourth straight game as they were knocked off at home by the Eastern Conference-leading Bucks Tuesday night. The Pelicans entered Friday 12th in the Western Conference, 9.5 games behind the Clippers for the final playoff spot. New Orleans is just 3-9 in the second game of back to back situations this season. The Pelicans average 112.7 points per game in those situations, which falls below their full season mark of 115.6 points a night. New Orleans gives up 117.2 points per game in those contests, which is worse than their full season mark of 115.6 points a game.
— NBA (@NBA) March 16, 2019
The Pelicans are 3rd in the league in scoring offense with 115.6 points per game. The Pelicans are 5th in rebounding with 47.1 boards per game while ranking 4th with 26.9 assists per contest. New Orleans is 27th in scoring defense as they give up 115.6 points per contest. New Orleans is tied for 4th in field goal percentage shooting 47.6 percent from the floor. The Pelicans are tied for 21st with 10.1 made threes per game and stand 24th in the league by converting 34.5 percent from long range this season. New Orleans is 4-6 in their last 10 games and rank 6th in the league with 115.9 points per game. The Pelicans are 27th in scoring defense by allowing 119 points a night in that stretch. Julius Randle leads the team in the last 10 games with 24.5 points plus 6.8 rebounds a night while shooting 47.3 percent from the floor. Jrue Holiday puts up 23.4 points, four rebounds and 6.4 assists per game: he is shooting 49.2 percent from the floor, including 37.3 percent from three-point range. The Pelicans have a lot of work to do in order to try and get back on track on both ends of the floor. Holiday and E’Twaun Moore are both out for this contest, dealing damage to the Pelicans’ rotation.
- Pelicans are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games playing on 0 days rest
- Pelicans are 3-1-1 ATS in their last 5 vs. Pacific Division teams
- No Key Trends
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Both teams are looking to the future as this has been a lost season. Injuries have taken a toll on both sides as the Suns have missed TJ Warren for the last 20 games with an ankle injury, who was a good secondary option after Booker. New Orleans rested Davis Friday night and he should be okay to go in this one. Holiday and Moore could be done for the year with the Pelicans having nothing to play for at this point. With that said, the Suns are just 6-29 on the road and they had to fly in after playing at Houston. New Orleans is also playing the second game of a back to back but they were at home Friday: in a game of also-rans, that’s enough to give the Pelicans the edge.
Prediction: New Orleans Pelicans -1
Full-Game Total Pick
Phoenix has struggled on both ends of the floor this season as inexperience and injuries have taken a serious toll on the franchise. The Suns also have a lot of questions about their front office and ownership decisions, making the team the basketball equivalent of a black hole. New Orleans has their own questions to answer in the offseason, specifically, what to do with guys like Davis and Holiday. Will the Pelicans extend their recent dominance of the Suns here?
The under is 5-1 in the Suns’ last 6 overall and 7-3 in their last 10 against Southwest Division teams. New Orleans has seen the under go 5-2 in their last 7 games playing on 0 days rest. Given that both teams are playing the second game of back to back situations and that both teams have injury issues, this one ends up falling under the total.
Prediction: Under 232.5