The Portland Trail Blazers visit the Staples Center and face the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday night.
This will mark the first NBA game at the Staples Center since the tragic death of Lakers legend Kobe Bryant who figured in an accident last weekend. The Blazers head to Los Angeles having won three out of their last four games played while the Lakers head home after a blowout loss to the Philadelphia 76ers last week. The Lakers’ game with the Clippers earlier this week was postponed to mourn the death of Bryant. The Lakers beat the Blazers in their first two meetings of the year.
Dame’s First Career Triple-Double
Portland is coming off a win over the Houston Rockets last Wednesday night to spoil James Harden’s return from a two-game absence. The Blazers have won three out of their last five games played and they are a far 16 games behind the Lakers in the team standings. Portland is 9-16 SU on the road this year and they have won just two of their last five away games.
Damian Lillard recorded his first career triple-double in their last outing. Dame scored 36 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and issued 11 assists in the win over the Rockets. Lillard has scored at least 30 points in Portland’s last six games which is a franchise record. Trevor Ariza scored 21 points in his third game with the Blazers.
The Blazers are 11th in the league in scoring at 113.0 points per game this season. They are only 24th overall in scoring defense at 114.8 points per game allowed. Portland is in the Top 10 in rebounding at 8th with an average of 46.0 boards grabbed per contest. They are last in the NBA in passing at 19.9 assists per game.
Odds from BetOnline as of 01/31/20
Mourning Kobe’s Death
The Lakers are mourning the death of their legend Kobe Bryant who died in a helicopter accident last weekend. The Lakers head to this game coming off a loss to the Sixers with their game against the Clippers earlier this week postponed in the wake of Bryant’s death. Los Angeles is still the top seed in the West and they have won three out of their last five games played.
Los Angeles heads to this emotional game with a healthy roster. Anthony Davis leads the Lakers in scoring at 26.5 points per game while shooting 50% from the field. AD is also averaging 9.1 rebounds, 1.5 steals and 2.5 blocks per game. LeBron James is the NBA’s assist leader at 10.7 assists per game while scoring 25.3 points per game.
The Lakers are the 8th highest-scoring team in the NBA at 113.5 points per game this season. They have the 6th best scoring defense at 106.3 points per game allowed this season. Los Angeles is 15th overall in rebounding at 45.5 boards hauled per contest and are 7th in passing at 25.8 assists per game.
Portland is 3-7 SU in their last 10 games played. The Blazers are 1-3 SU in their last four games played on the road. Los Angeles is 7-3 SU in their last 10 games played. The Lakers are 6-1 SU in their last seven games played. Head to head, the Lakers are 4-6 SU in their last 10 games played against the Blazers. Los Angeles is just 1-10 SU in their last 11 home games against Portland.
The Blazers have won three out of their last four games played and Damian Lillard is having a terrific stretch. He is averaging 45.6 points per game in his last five games played. Lillard scored a career-high 61 against the Warriors, put up 50 in his first game since Bryant’s death and is coming off his first career triple-double.
The Lakers are coming off a blowout loss to the Lakers. They are just 3-2 in their last five games played. Los Angeles has a healthy roster right now with no listed injuries and if this team plays at full strength, they are tough to beat. This is going to be a special night in Los Angeles and I think the Lakers will be ready.
I think we’re going to have an emotional night here. The Lakers have not played since losing to the Sixers. They are mourning Kobe Bryant’s death and would want to put on a show for their fallen hero. LeBron James has the pressure to deliver the goods as he is Bryant’s heir apparent in Lala Land. I like the Lakers to win big here.
Prediction: Los Angeles Lakers
Other Bets to Make
Portland is 5-13 ATS in their last 18 games played. The Blazers are 3-9 ATS in their last 12 games played on the road, and 2-9 ATS in their last 11 games against the Western Conference. Los Angeles is 2-4 ATS in their last six games played. The Lakers are 2-1 ATS in their last three games played at home, 2-4 ATS in their last six January games, and 6-1 ATS in their last seven games against the Northwest Division. Head to head, the Lakers are 6-4 ATS in their last 10 games played against the Blazers, including 5-0 ATS in their last five meetings.
Odds from BetOnline as of 01/30/20
This is going to be one emotional night at the Staples Center. It’s probably going to be the most tear-jerking things you’ll ever see in the NBA. This is what scares me here because there is no question that the Lakers are the better team here and have played much better than the Blazers this season. But this could work both ways. The emotional part of this could be draining but it could also be the spark that lights the fire in the Lakers. I won’t blame you if you won’t agree but I think that the tragedy brings out the best in the Lakers and their fans will be behind them.
Prediction: Lakers -12
The total has gone over in five out of the last eight games played by Portland. The under is 14-10-1 in the Blazers’ 25 road games played this season. The total has gone over in six out of their last seven games against the Pacific Division. The total has gone over in seven out of the last nine games played by the Lakers. The over is 2-1 in Los Angeles’ last three home games, and 4-1 in their last five games against the West. Head to head, the total has gone over in three out of the last four meetings between these two teams.
Odds from BetOnline as of 01/30/20
Los Angeles ranks 6th in scoring defense but on a night like this, I think they want to put on an offensive show to honor their fallen legend. The Lakers are 8th in scoring and they have plenty of scorers on board. Portland’s defense is leaky and they are in the bottom 7 in scoring defense. They are also just outside the Top 10 in scoring at #11. I like these teams to put on a high-scoring game on Friday night.
Prediction: Over 230