NBA Playoffs: Los Angeles Lakers vs. Memphis Grizzlies Betting Preview
Despite being the visitors, the Los Angeles Lakers (1-0) will try to steal both of the first two games of their series with the Memphis Grizzlies (0-1) on Wednesday. This game will be played at FedExForum, with tipoff scheduled for 7:30 pm ET.
The Lakers are the slight favorites despite playing on the road. They are -112 to win, while the Grizzlies’ moneyline sits at -104. The spread features Memphis as 1-point underdogs (-112), and the over/under for total points is 227 (-110).
LeBron James Hopes To Lead Lakers To Commanding Lead
He might be 38 years old, but LeBron James continues to show why he is one of the best players of all time. He averaged 28.9 points, 8.3 rebounds, and 6.8 assists on the season. In Game 1 of this series, he helped the Lakers to a 128-112 win with a 21 points, 11-rebound performance.
Now, James and company will look to take a commanding 2-0 lead back to Los Angeles if they can pick up the win on Wednesday.
Despite James and Anthony Davis dealing with foot injuries, they are both probable for this game. In the first contest, Davis ended with 22 points and 12 rebounds.
The biggest thing that Los Angeles has going for them is their depth. In addition to James and Davis, Rui Hachimura (29 points, 6 rebounds), Austin Reeves (23 points), and D’Angelo Russell (19 points, 7 assists) all had sensational games.
As a unit, the Lakers rank sixth in the NBA in scoring, averaging 117.2 points per game. They rank 19th in scoring defense, allowing opponents 116.4 points per game.
Grizzlies Holding Their Breath On Ja Morant Status
If losing Game 1 to the Lakers wasn’t bad enough, the Memphis Grizzlies also suffered a critical injury as Ja Morant injured his hand in the fourth quarter. Now, the Grizzlies are collectively holding their breath, as he is currently listed as questionable for this game.
During the regular season, Morant led the team in scoring, averaging 26.2 points to go along with 5.9 rebounds and 8.1 assists. In 30 minutes during Game 1, he went for 18 points and six rebounds.
The primary force for the Grizzlies in the opening game was Jaren Jackson Jr, who had a game-high 31 points. Desmond Bane (22 points, six assists, five rebounds) and Dillon Brooks (15 points, four rebounds) also had excellent games.
The Grizzlies rank 13th in scoring defense, allowing opponents an average of 113.2 points per game (119 over their last three contests). They rank ninth in scoring, averaging 116.9 points per game (119.6 at home).
Take Lakers To Win On The Road
Looking at the trends, the Lakers are 8-1 in their last nine games and 4-2 against the spread in their previous six games against the Grizzlies.
As for Memphis, they are 14-2 in their last 16 home games, but they are just 1-5 against the spread in their previous six.
This one comes down to health; for once, the Lakers have the edge. Both LeBron James and Anthony Davis are banged up, but the genuine concern in this one will be how effective Ja Morant will be for the Grizzlies, if he can even suit up.
With the depth of the Lakers and the Grizzlies having a less than 100% Ja Morant, it seems like an excellent opportunity for Los Angeles to win another road game.
Take Los Angeles to win this one outright at -112.