Lakers vs. Grizzlies Odds & Picks: Betting Value on the Over/Under Hinges on Injury News
Mitchell Leff/Getty Images. Pictured: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope of the Los Angeles Lakers talks to teammate LeBron James.
- The Lakers and Grizzlies face off Sunday night in Memphis, but injuries are the main story.
- Kentavious Caldwell-Pope will sit for the Lakers with an ankle injury and Ja Morant is still out for the Grizz.
- Joe Dellera explains how to bet this game based on the injury news.
Editors note: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope has been ruled out of Sunday’s game with a sprained ankle. For real-time updates to the Lakers’ lineup, check out the NBA Insiders lineups page.
Lakers vs. Grizzlies Odds
|Lakers Odds||-10.5 [BET NOW]|
|Grizzlies Odds||+10.5 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||-550 / +400 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||225.5 [BET NOW]|
|Time||6 p.m. ET|
The Los Angeles Lakers take on the Memphis Grizzlies as double-digit favorites on the road in Memphis. The Grizzlies were scrappy against the Lakers last season, but will be down two of their young stars and facing a well oiled machine.
Can the Grizzlies put up a fight without Ja Morant or will LeBron James and Co. secure an easy victory?
Los Angeles Lakers
The Lakers are listing Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and James as questionable for this game. LeBron has been playing through his sprained ankle so he’s on the right side of questionable, while Caldwell-Pope did not return after he injured his ankle during Friday’s win over the Spurs.
Stay updated on their injury status using our Fantasy Labs Insider Tool.
This season, the Lakers have played a bit faster than last season by about one possession per game. And they entered play on Saturday with the fourth-best point differential in the league +9.8, per Cleaning the Glass.
The big difference between this season and last is that the Lakers’ defense is not the primary reason for this differential. Last year, the Lakers had the No. 3 defense in the league and even though it has only been six games, their defense was just 11th at the beginning of play on Saturday, per Cleaning the Glass.
This difference can be attributed to Montrezl Harrell. He has not had the offensive impact that you’d expect, the Lakers are minus-10 points per 100 possessions on offense in lineups with him against without him. Defensively, they give up a whopping 7.5 more points when he’s in the lineup, per Cleaning the Glass.
Harrell is a sieve on defense, but we’d expect the offensive deficiencies to change since he has been a positive on offense throughout his career.
Despite this, the potential absence of Caldwell-Pope cannot be understated. He has a +17.1 point differential for the Lakers including +15.7 on offense, per Cleaning the Glass. If he misses this game, it thins the Lakers’ bench and means more minutes for Kyle Kuzma and those who normally wouldn’t see much, if any, time.
The Grizzlies enter this game without reigning Rookie of the Year, Morant, and they also are listing Grayson Allen and Xavier Tillman as questionable. Justise Winslow will miss this game (as he has every other contest this season) due to his hip injury.
The Grizzlies miss Morant. They’re already the 23rd-ranked team in point differential (-3.9), but what’s even more staggering about this is that Memphis is +8.5 points per 100 possessions when Morant is on the Court and -23.3 in all lineups when he is off, per Cleaning the Glass.
Whenever a team’s best player goes down, you’d expect the team to be worse, but this type of difference is dramatic to see. Even last season, the Grizzlies were just -1.8 points per 100 when Morant was off the court. The personnel is obviously different from last season, but -23.3 is staggeringly bad.
In this spot, it’s generally profitable to fade road double-digit favorites that made the playoffs in the previous season against teams that missed the playoffs. This hits at a 52.8% rate, per BetLabs.
My problem here is that the Grizzlies have been brutal without Morant on the floor, and even though they stole a game against the Nets, who were without Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, they were blown out by the Celtics and then beat a Hornets team that got 2-of-22 combined shooting from Terry Rozier and Devonte Graham.
I’m not sold on the Grizzlies without Morant so while this is generally a profitable spot, I don’t think I can recommend taking the points.
Given the injuries to both squads, I lean toward the under. It’s generally been profitable to bet unders in the LeBron era with the Lakers and since the start of 2018, the under is 90-68-1 for LA.
It has also been profitable to be unders when the home team is a double-digit underdog; since 2005 the under hits 52.3% of the time in this situation, per BetLabs.
If Caldwell-Pope does not play, fire away on the under because I think the Lakers rotations will be damaged. If he does play, I’ll take the Lakers 1H before this game extends into garbage time.
Pick: Under 225.5 (if Caldwell-Pope sits) | Lakers 1H -6.5 (if Caldwell-Pope plays)