Lakers vs Grizzlies Prediction & Picks Tonight

Lakers vs Grizzlies Prediction & Picks Tonight article feature image

Credit: Ja Morant #12 of the Memphis Grizzlies looks on as LeBron James #6 of the Los Angeles Lakers stands in the background during Game Five of the Western Conference First Round Playoffs at FedExForum. (Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images)

  • The Memphis Grizzlies take on the Los Angeles Lakers in this Friday night NBA showdown.
  • Our NBA betting expert is looking to take the points with the road 'dog in this one.
  • Find the latest Grizzlies-Lakers odds, plus a pick and prediction, below.

Lakers vs Grizzlies Prediction & Picks

Friday, Jan. 5
10 p.m.
Grizzlies +4.5 (-112)

Here's everything you need to know about Lakers vs Grizzlies on Friday, Jan. 5 — our expert prediction and betting picks for tonight.

The Lakers have slipped into a big funk, losing eight of their last 10 heading into play on Friday. Now, they'll have to find a way to crack a tough Grizzlies defense which has only improved since the return of Ja Morant.

Can Los Angeles come up with a big win as a home favorite, which has traditionally been a spot which it has thrived in?

Let's get to our Lakers vs Grizzlies prediction and pick.

Lakers vs Grizzlies Prediction

Pick: Grizzlies +4.5 (-112)

Grizzlies Betting Outlook

The Memphis Grizzlies are a team that's going to rely on their defense to win games. They've maintained an efficiency rating right around the league's top 10 all season long, and since the return of Ja Morant this unit has risen to new heights, ranking ninth in the league over the last nine games.

The strength of this team surely lies inside. Sure, their rebounding numbers have not quite been what we've seen in years past, but this team still ranks third in the NBA when it comes to defending at the rim and despite the losses of Brandon Clarke and Steven Adams this frontcourt has remained incredibly productive, at least on the defensive end.

The offensive numbers don't look too good for Memphis, and not much has changed on that front since Morant rejoined the team after his suspension, but we do know this team will shoot the 3 with great frequency, ranking fifth in the NBA in outside shooting tendency. The Grizzlies are still ranked just 28th in 3-point shooting since the Morant return eight games ago, so it will take a pretty big mismatch for this team to look productive on offense.

Lakers Betting Outlook

This game against the Lakers may constitute as just that. L.A. has been just the 18th-best 3-point defense according to Cleaning the Glass, and over the last 10 games those numbers have only gotten worse with this squad allowing 39.7% of shots to fall from outside, all while shooting a miserable 34.9% from outside.

We do know the Lakers love to score inside. They've taken the second-most shots per possession within four feet, according to Cleaning the Glass, and they've wound up converting at the seventh-best clip in the game. L.A.'s outside shooting may be letting it down once again this season, but once it gets within 10 feet of the rim things have generally been palatable on that end.

We should note here that the Lakers are once again listing LeBron James as questionable for this game — this time due to an ankle issue. Rui Hachimura is already missing from the lineup, and D'Angelo Russell is expected to miss another game with a tailbone contusion, which could put the depth of this team into question.

Things have generally gone well for the Lakers at home, however. They're 11-5 straight up in these contests and 10-4 as the home favorite, so they will be feeling good about their chances here. Their 3-point shooting has been marginally worse in L.A., but they've been about one point better overall per 100 possessions.

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Lakers vs Grizzlies Picks, Odds

Friday, Jan 5
10 p.m. ET
Grizzlies Odds
-110o / -110u
Lakers Odds
-110o / -110u
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

Betting on the Lakers to lose at home as a favorite hasn't been a very fun experience this season, but they're just 6-7 against the spread in these games and in general at home are 6-9 ATS. This has all the makings of another painful matchup, with the Grizzlies resting on strong front court defense to win them games and the Lakers struggling to shoot the ball from outside.

Memphis has really only been beaten from the arc this year, where they rank in the bottom five of the league, but with the Lakers shooting just 34.8% from 3 at home this season and struggling to shoot in general, this game should be a pretty tight affair.

I'll be taking the points here with a Grizzlies team which has defended exceptionally over the last few weeks. We do know they love to shoot from outside, and the Lakers have been quite generous in that area. They should find the open looks they need to capitalize on good defensive play down low and bring this one close to an upset on the road.

Pick: Grizzlies +4.5 (-112)

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Sean Treppedi
May 23, 2024 UTC