Friday’s 8-game schedule features several teams fighting for their playoff lives and trying to enter the postseason picture via the backdoor. In the East, the Pistons, Heat, Hornets and Wizards are all in action. These teams are battling it out for the final two playoff slots in their conference.
Los Angeles Lakers vs Detroit Pistons
The Los Angeles Lakers head to Motor City for a date with the Detroit Pistons on Friday night at the Little Caesars Arena in Detroit.
The Lakers are all but eliminated from the playoffs and they have shut down two of their young stars due to injury. Despite those, Los Angeles traveled to Chicago and beat the Bulls on Tuesday night to snap a five-game losing streak. Despite their slim playoff chances, LeBron James said that their aim is to finish the season strong.
James had 36 points on Tuesday and he leads the team with 27.3 points, 8.7 rebounds and 8.0 assists per game. Kyle Kuzma is averaging 18.9 points and 5.6 rebounds per game for the Lakers. Javale McGee is putting up 11.0 points, 6.6 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per contest. Rajon Rondo has been quarterbacking well with 9.0 points and 7.8 assists per game this season
The Lakers are 16th in the league scoring at 112.2 points per game. Los Angeles is also 12th in passing at 25.3 assists per game and they are ranked 7th off the glass with 4762 rebounds per outing. The Purple and Gold have the 6th worst scoring defense in the NBA at 113.9 points per game scored.
Los Angeles Lakers vs Detroit Pistons Odds
O 220 (-111)
U 220 (-111)
Odds from bet365 as of 3/15/19
The Detroit Pistons continue to hang on for their playoff lives. Detroit has seen their lead over #8 Miami drop to two games after the Heat blew away the Pistons 108-74 on Wednesday night. Detroit has now lost back to back games for the first time since January and they hope to drop a third straight when the Lakers come to town on Friday.
Blake Griffin leads Detroit’s resurgence this season. Griffin is averaging 24.9 points, 7.7 rebounds and 5.4 assists per game. His frontcourt partner Andre Drummond leads the league with 15.2 rebounds per game while also scoring 17.3 points per game. Reggie Jackson is contributing 15.2 points and 4.3 assists per game while Luke Kennard and Wayne Ellington are scoring 9.6 and 9.5 points per game, respectively.
The Pistons are 23rd in the league in teams scoring at 107.2 points per game. They are also ranked 26th in passing with 22.6 assists per game. Detroit has the 15th best rebounding average with 45.2 boards grabbed per contest and they have the NBA’s 8th best scoring defense at 107.8 points per game allowed.
Los Angeles is 3-7 SU in their last 10 games played. The Lakers are 1-3 SU in their last four road games. Detroit is 7-3 SU in their last 10 games played. The Pistons are 4-0 SU in their last four home games. Head to head, the Lakers are 6-4 SU in their last 10 games against the Pistons but Detroit is 13-6 SU in its last 19 home games against Los Angeles.
The Lakers are virtually out of the playoffs but it seems like LeBron James still wants to win. We saw that during the Lakers’ win over the Bulls the last time out. The Lakers are without Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball plus they may be without Tyson Chandler and Lance Stephenson.
The Pistons are very much in the playoff race and in fact are jockeying for position along with the Brooklyn Nets and Miami Heat. These three teams are also trying to prevent the Orlando Magic from catching up and ousting one of them so the Pistons need to win as many more games as possible.
Los Angeles is 13-20 SU on the road and the Pistons are 21-13 SU at home. Detroit needs this game more than the Lakers and this one’s played in their home floor where they have been solid all season long.
I’m picking the Detroit Pistons to beat the Los Angeles Lakers on 3/15/19
The Lakers are 2-8 ATS in their last 10 games played. Los Angeles is 1-3 ATS in their last four road games. The Pistons are 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games played. Detroit is 4-0 ATS in their last four games played at home. Head to head, the Lakers are 6-4 ATS in their last 10 meetings against the Pistons but Detroit is 5-2 ATS in their last seven road games against Los Angeles.
Los Angeles is 1-5 ATS in their last six road games and 1-8 ATS in their last nine games overall. Los Angeles is really struggling right now especially with their third leading scorer in Ingram out of action. The Pistons are 5-2 ATS in their last seven games overall and are obviously playing better than the Lakers right now. LeBron is King, no question about that. But he can’t do it alone. I just can’t trust these Lakers right now, not especially on the road.
The total has gone over in eight out of the last 12 games played on the road by the Lakers. The total has also gone over in 10 out of the last 14 games played by the Pistons. The under is 17-7 in the last 24 head to head games between the Lakers and Pistons but the over is 4-1 in the last five games between these two teams in Detroit.
Sacramento Kings vs Philadelphia 76ers
The Sacramento Kings travel to the City of Brotherly love to take on the Philadelphia 76ers on Friday Night at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia.
Sacramento continues to tumble in the team standings with five losses in their last seven games. Because of their struggles, the Kings find themselves 4.5 games out of the playoff picture. With games running out, Sacramento needs to find their groove back and start winning games.
Buddy Hield leads the young Kings in scoring with 20.9 points per game while also grabbing 5.2 rebounds. De’Aaron Fox is having a sensational second year with 17.5 points, 7.2 assists and 1.7 steals per game. Willie Cauley-Stein leads Sacramento with 8.4 rebounds while also scoring 12.4 points per game. Bogdan Bogdanovic and Harrison Barnes are contributing 13.9 and 13.7 points per game, respectively.
The Kings are ranked 10th in the league in scoring at 113.7 points per game. They are also 10th in passing at 25.5 assists per game and are 14th off the glass with 45.4 rebounds per contest. Sacramento has the 5th worst scoring defense in the league at 114.8 opponent points per game allowed.
Sacramento Kings vs Philadelphia 76ers Odds
O 233 -110
U 233 -110
Odds from betonline.ag as of 3/15/19
The Sixers have moved up the ladder and tied the struggling Indiana Pacers at the 3rd spot in the East. Philly has won five out of their last eight games including the last two to improve to 43-25 on the season. On Tuesday night, the Sixers held off a stubborn Cleveland Cavaliers team 106-99.
Joel Embiid leads the Sixers with 27.2 points 13.6 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per game. Jimmy Butler is averaging 18.4 points, 5.1 rebounds, 3.9 assists and 1.8 steals per game while J.J. Redick is scoring 17.6 points per game. Newcomer Tobias Harris is fitting nicely with the Sixers at 19.1 points and 8.1 rebounds. Meanwhile Ben Simmons is having an all-around season with 17.1 points, 9.2 rebounds, 7.9 assists and 1.4 steals per game.
Philadelphia is ranked 5th in scoring at 114.8 points per game and they are 3rd in passing at 27.1 assists per outing. The Sixers are 4th in the NBA in rebounding at 47.4 boards per contest while they 16th in the entire NBA in terms of scoring defense at 111.5 points per game allowed.
Sacramento is 3-7 SU in their last 10 games played. The Kings are 2-4 SU in their last six road games. Philadelphia is 6-4 SU in their last 10 games played. The Sixers are 4-2 SU in their last six games. Head to head, the Kings are 7-3 SU in their last 10 meetings against the Sixers.
These teams are trending opposite ways as the Kings are slowly falling out of the playoff picture while the Sixers are surging to the top of the teams standings. Sacramento is 13-19 SU on the road and the Sixers are 27-9 SU at home. Sacramento is playing back to back games and their 4th road game in a row.
I’m picking the Philadelphia 76ers to beat a tired Sacramento Kings on 3/15/19.
The Kings are 5-4-1 ATS in their last 10 games played. Sacramento is 4-2 ATS in their last six road games. The Sixers are 4-6 ATS in their last 10 games played. Philadelphia is 3-3 ATS in their last six home games. Head to head, the Sixers are 6-4 ATS in their last 10 games against the Kings. Philadelphia is also 5-2 ATS in their last seven home games against Sacramento.
Sacramento is 1-3-1 ATS in their last five games played. The Kings are also 5-16 in their last 21 games against the Sixers. With Embiid back, the Sixers are back in business. Meanwhile, the Kings continue to miss Marvin Bagley badly. The Kings are also playing on a back to back schedule here so that makes the Sixers the “easy” choice here.
Prediction: Sixers -9
The under is 7-3 in the Kings’ last 10 games played and the total has gone under in four out of the Kings’ last six games on the road. The under is 9-1 in Philadelphia’s last 10 games played. The Sixers have seen the total go under in five out of their last six games played at home. Head to head, the under is 3-1 in the last four games between these two teams.
The trends say under but when you have two Top-10 offenses playing against each other and one of those teams are in the bottom five in scoring defense, you’ve got to like the over. Styles make fights and that should hold true here.
Prediction: Over 233
Charlotte Hornets vs Washington Wizards
The Charlotte Hornets head to the Nation’s Capital for a game against the Washington Wizards on Friday night at the Capital One Arena in Washington.
The Hornets have lost two in a row and 12 out of their last 16 games played. In their last game, Charlotte dropped a 118-106 contest to the Houston Rockets on Monday night despite Charlotte’s All-Star guard Kemba Walker pouring in 40 points along with 10 rebounds and 7 assists.
Walker leads Charlotte with 25.1 points, 5.8 assists and 1.3 steals per game. Jeremy Lamb is scoring 15.1 points and grabbing 5.6 rebounds per game while Cody Zeller leads the Hornets in rebounding with 6.8 boards per game. Zeller is also scoring 10.1 points per game and Marvin Williams is the fourth double-digit scorer at 10.6 points per game. Nicolas Batum and Malik Monk are also sharing the scoring load with 9.9 and 9.6 points per game, respectively.
Charlotte ranks 19th in the league in team scoring at 110.8 points per game. The Hornets are 22nd in the NBA in passing at 23.2 assists per game and they are also 23rd off the glass with 44.1 rebounds per game. Charlotte is 18th overall in scoring defense as they have allowed their opponents to score an average of 111.8 points per game.
Charlotte Hornets vs Washington Wizards Odds
O 232 -110
U 232 -110
Odds from betonline.ag as of 3/15/19
With 18 games left to play, the Washington Wizards are making one final playoff push. At 29-39, Washington trails 8th seeded Miami by 3.5 games and they are also just two games back of #9 Orlando Magic and #10 Charlotte Hornets. With one more game against Charlotte and Orlando next week, this Friday matchup is crucial for the Eastern Conference.
Bradley Beal leads the Wizards with 25.8 points per game while also averaging 5.3 rebounds, 5.6 assists and 1.3 steals per game. Trevor Ariza is helping out Beal with 14.8 points, 5.1 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 1.3 steals per game while the newly acquired Bobby Portis is contributing 15.5 points and 9.1 rebounds in 14 games played with the Wizards. Another new addition, Jabari Parker, is averaging 13.9 points, 6.9 rebounds and 3.1 assists as well.
Washington ranks 7th overall in team scoring at 114.4 points per game. The Wizards are 5th in assists with 26.7 dimes per contest and they are also 27th in rebounding a 41.8 boards per contest. Washington has the second-worst scoring defense in the league at 116.8 opponent points per game allowed.
Charlotte is 3-7 SU in their last 10 games played and the Hornets are 1-2 SU in their last three games on the road. Washington is 5-5 SU in their last 10 games played and the Wizards are 4-1 SU in their last five games played at home. Head to head, Charlotte is 6-4 SU in their last 10 games against Washington.
This is perhaps the most crucial matchup of the day with both teams trying to catch the final bus for the postseason. Charlotte is two games ahead of Washington in the team standings but with this game and another one next week could change the complexion of the East.
The Hornets have won just two of their last nine games played while the Wizards have won three out of their last four outings after a recent four-game slide. Charlotte leads the season series 2-1 after beating the Wizards just last Friday in Charlotte. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist has missed the last two games for the Hornets with a strained knee and is considered day to day along with Cody Zeller.
Charlotte is 9-23 SU on the road while the Wizards are 21-12 SU at home this season. I like Washington’s form heading to this game and with Charlotte possibly without Gilchrist and Zeller, Washington should have the edge. However, this is a must-win game for both teams so you have to throw away all the stats and trends because this will go down to who wants it more.
I’m going with the home teams here and picking the Washington Wizards to beat the Charlotte Hornets on 3/15/19.
The Hornets are 2-7-1 ATS in their last 10 games played. Charlotte is 1-2 ATS in their last three games on the road. The Wizards are 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games played. Washington is 4-1 ATS in their last five games at home. Head to head, the Wizards are 6-1 ATS in their last seven home games against the Hornets.
Charlotte is 1-4 ATS in their last five games against the Eastern Conference, 1-4 ATS in their last five games on the road and 0-5 ATS in their last five games overall. Washington is 4-0 ATS in their last four games when playing on one day rest, 4-0 ATS in their last four home games played and 6-0 ATS in their last six games overall. The home team is 7-2 ATS in the last nine meetings. Washington is playing better right now and they are at home too.
Prediction: Wizards -4
The total has gone over in seven out of the last 10 games played by the Hornets. The over is 3-0 in Charlotte’s last three road games. The total has gone over in six out of the last 10 games played by the Wizards. Washington has seen the total go over in three out of their last five home games.
The over is 13-4 in the Wizards’ last 17 games overall and the total has gone over in 8 out of the last 11 games played by the Hornets. The home team here has the second worst scoring defense in the league and has a Top 10 offense. I think they will carry the Hornets in a shootout.
Prediction: Over 232
Quick Predictions and Picks
- Milwaukee Bucks -190 vs Miami Heat +165, Prediction: Milwaukee Bucks
- Phoenix Suns +825 vs Houston Rockets -1200, Prediction: Houston Rockets
- Portland Trail Blazers -340 vs New Orleans Pelicans +285, Prediction: Portland Trail Blazers
- Chicago Bulls +315 vs LA Clippers -375, Prediction: Los Angeles Clippers
- New York Knicks +860 vs San Antonio Spurs -1260, Prediction: San Antonio Spurs