The Los Angeles Lakers (20-25, 11-11 home) matchup for the first time this season against the Memphis Grizzlies (31-13, 11-10 away) in a Western Conference showdown in the City of Angels. Friday’s tilt is the first of three meetings between the two teams during the regular season.
The conference contest tips off at 10 p.m. EST inside crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles, California. Memphis is a seven-point road favorite, while the over/under total is 242 points.
What to Know – Memphis Grizzlies
The Grizzlies bring the NBA’s longest winning streak into the game, tying a franchise record 11 wins in a row. Memphis is in second place in the Western Conference, sitting a half-game back of the Denver Nuggets.
Offensively, Memphis is fifth in the league averaging 117.5 points per game, thanks to 47.3% shooting from the field and 37.4% from the 3-point line. The Grizzlies defense ranks eighth in the NBA, surrendering 111.7 ppg, 44.5% shooting from the floor, and 36.4% from deep.
The scoring duo of Ja Morant (27.4 ppg) and Desmond Bane (21.8 ppg) paces the Grizzlies offense that is one of the best in the league. Jaren Jackson Jr. (16.5 ppg) and Dillion Brooks (16.3 ppg) are two starters that can also light up a scoreboard on a given night.
Memphis is 22-20-2 against the spread this season and 8-12-1 ATS in road matchups. The Grizzlies are 4-2 ATS in their previous six contests against the Lakers.
What to Know – Los Angeles Lakers
Los Angeles hopes to start stringing some victories together after dropping three of its last four contests. The Lakers are currently on the outside looking in of the NBA Playoff and in the cellar of the Pacific Division.
The Lakers offense sits eighth in the NBA, scoring 116.9 ppg and hitting 48.6% of their shots from the floor and 33.7% from beyond the arc. Defensively, Los Angeles is 27th amongst 30 teams allowing opponents to score 118.0 ppg, shoot 47.4% from the field, and 35.9% from three.
LeBron James continues to dominate the NBA leading the Lakers in scoring averaging 29.8 points per game. James has had to step up offensive with the team’s second-leading scorer, Anthony Davis, sidelined with an injury. Russell Westbrook is next in line for scoring, pouring in 15.8 ppg in a reserve role.
The Lakers are 20-23-2 ATS this year with an 11-10-1 mark ATS on their home hardwood. Los Angeles is 5-2 ATS over its last seven games against opponents from the Southwest Division.
The Pick is In
James is listed as day-to-day, but if the future Hall of Famer can go, look for the Lakers to keep this one close on its home floor. Memphis heads to Los Angeles to begin a five-game road swing out West, so expect the Grizzlies to be conservative with the starters’ minutes.
The Pick: Los Angeles Lakers +7