Blazers-Lakers Betting Preview: Back Portland as a Road Dog?

Blazers-Lakers Betting Preview: Back Portland as a Road Dog? article feature image

Photo credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Damian Lillard

Betting odds: Portland Trail Blazers at Los Angeles Lakers

  • Spread: Lakers -2.5
  • Over/Under: 223
  • Time: 10:30 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: ESPN

>> All odds as of 1:30 p.m. ET. Download The Action Network App to get real-time NBA odds and track your bets

The 10-3 Portland Trail Blazers will visit the 7-6 Los Angeles Lakers for Wednesday night’s nationally-televised prime-time matchup. These teams have already met twice this season, splitting the pair of games in Portland.

Who has the edge in this one? Our analysts discuss.

Betting Trends to Know

The Blazers are coming off a six-game home stand, during which they went 5-1 and only lost to the Lakers.

Teams over .500 that have just played at least five consecutive home games are 37-51-4 (42%) against the spread when playing their next game on the road since 2013, losing bettors 15.7 units.

Over the past two seasons, those teams are 7-17-2 ATS (29.2%), losing bettors 10.4 units.

The biggest story through the first month of the season has been the crazy scoring across the NBA. The Blazers teams have gone under the total in their past six games while the Lakers have gone under the total in their past five.

Since 2005, 16 games have been played with both teams going under the total in their past five games. The under is 10-6 in the following game, going under the total by 3.3 points per game. The under has gone 6-0 in the past six games in this spot. Evan Abrams

Mears: Why I Like the Blazers Tonight

Are the Blazers being slept on? As of Wednesday, they rank third in the NBA (per Cleaning the Glass) with a +9.7 point differential behind only the Warriors and Bucks. They’re 10-3, and they rank third in offensive efficiency and fifth in defensive efficiency.

The Lakers, meanwhile, rank 14th with a +1.2 point differential, sit 7-6, rank 11th on offense and 16th on defense. Yet this line currently suggests that these teams are essentially even on a neutral court.

I guess it makes some sense given that these teams split the pair of games in Portland. But I think that’s overselling the Lakers, who got a little lucky to win the first meeting. The Blazers shot just 17.6% from the 3-point line in that contest — that’s in the bottom one-percentile of games this season.

In the two games against the Lakers, the Blazers simply missed open shots:

  • Open shots (defender 4-6 feet away): 12.4% frequency, 32.0% three-point mark
  • Wide open shots (defender 6+ feet away): 20.4% frequency, 26.8% three-point mark

Meanwhile, the Lakers really didn’t get any 3-pointers off against Portland. In their first game, they took just 22% of their shots from behind the arc — that’s in the fifth-percentile of games this season. Portland ranks first in the league, allowing just a 49.0% effective field goal rate.

As such, if Portland sees some shooting regression on Wednesday night, I’m not sure that the Lakers offense will be able to keep up outside of a hot shooting night or really forcing the issue in transition.

I’ll take the road dog here; I think this line is a couple points too high. Bryan Mears

Editor’s note: The opinions on this game are from the individual writers and are based on their research, analysis and perspective. They are independent of, and may not always match with, the algorithm-driven Best Bets from Sports Insights.

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