Detroit Pistons at Los Angeles Lakers Picks - January 9

Written by:
Tyrone Black
Published on:

The absence of LeBron James has seriously impacted the Los Angeles Lakers. It shouldn’t come as a complete surprise since they were awful before his arrival and their reliance on him has become evident.


The following article is courtesy of our friends at Bookmaker

The King remains out with a groin injury sustained on Christmas Day and the Lakers are just 2-5 without him. However, they won in Dallas their last time out thanks to some passionate play from Little Ball and Brandon Ingram. The game is also a homecoming for Detroit Pistons star Blake Griffin, who makes his first appearance on the Staples Center floor since being traded by the Clippers last season.

Detroit Pistons at Los Angeles Lakers

Date and Time: Wednesday, January 9, 2019, 10:30 p.m. ET

Location: Staples Center, Los Angeles, CA

Opening NBA Odds: Lakers -1.5, O/U 218

Pistons at Lakers TV Coverage: ESPN

The Pistons were a threat in the Eastern Conference until about six weeks ago. Remember they won their first four games of the season and after knocking off the defending champion Warriors on Dec. 1 they were 13-7. But they’ve been in a deep slump since then losing 14 of their last 18 games while going just 5-12-1 against the NBA betting line.

There were a few times when it looked like the Pistons were ready to snap out of their funk. They ended a five-game losing streak with a win over Boston and after a narrow loss to Milwaukee the Pistons won a rare road game against the Wolves. That didn’t take. Ending a recent four-game road trip with a win over Memphis, the Pistons returned home, but again failed to sustain any momentum. They lost to Utah and San Antonio in their most recent games and take a 6-11 road record to LA to open a four-game road swing.

It should be an emotional night for Griffin, who will be playing inside Staples Center for the first time since being traded by the Clippers. And he’s been the bedrock of the Pistons foundation since the deal. He tallied 34 points in consecutive losses to the Jazz and Spurs and leads the team in scoring with 25.3 points per game and assists with 5.2 per outing. Once he gets over the jitters, expect a big night from Griffin on the live betting lines at BookMaker.eu.

Without LeBron the Lakers are clearly a different team. But it’s not just his absence that’s affected the team. Rajon Rondo injured his hand the same day LeBron got hurt and the lineup has been void of veteran leadership. There are veterans on the roster, but none that can lead a team as well as the King.

So the Lakers need their youngsters to pick up the slack and that just hasn’t happened. Following a 20-point loss to Minnesota on Saturday where Ball went scoreless and Ingram scored 13 points on 5 of 16 shooting, Luke Walton challenged his two young lottery picks to be more passionate about the game and show some fight.

Apparently the speech worked because the two sparked the Lakers to a comeback win in Dallas the next night. Ball scored 21 points with seven rebounds and five assists while Ingram added a season-best 29 points with six assists. The Lakers outscored the Mavs 53-30 after the break, overcoming a 13-point halftime deficit to break a three-game losing streak. “I just thought we had to step up,” Ball said.

We don’t know if that type of play is going to continue. But that outburst against one of the better home teams in the league shows how good the pair can be. And the Lakers also welcomed back Kyle Kuzma after he missed a few games with a back injury. The trio combined for 63 points, 15 rebounds and 14 assists against the Mavs.

Injury Report

We’re not sure when James is going to return from his groin issue and Rondo is out until at least the end of January, so the Lakers will have to get by in the meantime. The Pistons are dealing with some injury concerns of their own.

With backup point guard Ish Smith still sidelined and Zaza Pachulia missing the last four outings, Detroit’s second unit has been consistently outplayed. “We’re a little out of sorts with Zaza out, with Ish out. We’re trying to put a Band-Aid on it until they get back,” head coach Dwane Casey. They are close to a return, but it won’t be on Tuesday.

Pistons at Lakers NBA Picks

For Lakers fans here’s hoping that Walton’s message stays with Ball, Ingram and the rest of the team. LeBron isn’t coming to the rescue anytime soon and in order to stay among the top-eight in the West, the Lakers need to win games like this one. They are at home against a fading team that’s missing a few key players. While the rest of the lineup has struggled, Griffin and Andre Drummond have produced for Detroit. That’s not going to be enough on this night, however. BI, Ball and Kuzma know what they have to do and they’ll do it to get the Lakers a cover on the NBA betting line.

Pistons at Lakers Score Prediction: Lakers 110, Pistons 105

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