LA Lakers v Detroit Pistons
The news that Kobe Bryant is back practicing can only lift the Los Angeles Lakers. And with a dreadful 4-7 start to the new NBA season, the perennial pacesetters need all the help they can get, even if their totem is unlikely to return until next month at the earliest.
The Lakers host the Detroit Pistons tonight on a run of four defeats out of five and having hung their hat on defence during their recent championship runs, they’ve been unable to catch a bus of late, giving up an average of 104.3 points per night while scoring at a clip of 98.1, with Jodie Meeks providing their primary spark.
Inside, they’re a wreck, with just 36 per game in the paint but that’s where Detroit have been gaining success, getting a league-high 51.2 each time, fuelled by a fast break system. The Lakers are among the worst in stopping breakaways so expect the Pistons to push the pace and to go inside when that option is not available.
That can give Detroit the advantage on a handicap of -2.5 at 1.91 and it might push the total points above the line of 204 at 1.90.
Sacramento Kings v Memphis Grizzlies
The Grizzlies are still toiling and are 1-3 on the road so far. They might hope for better tonight on their travels at the Sacramento Kings, who are 2-4 at home with their lone accomplishment going to their fans who set a new noise record on Friday night.
Their team could do with creating a little more buzz of its own, especially if Greivis Vasquez can cut back on the turnovers and DeMarcus Cousins finds a little more consistency.
But Memphis are slowly improving. Back them at -2 on the handicap at 1.91 but look under the total points line of 189.
Best bet: Take Detroit over the LA Lakers on the match handicap of -2.5 at 1.91.