Sucker Plays: Bet Both LA Teams Wednesday In The NBA

It's chalky (and probably dumb) but my two favorite sides in the NBA on Wednesday are two road favorites that have let me down several times this season.

Below, I'll give my reasons for betting the Los Angeles Lakers at the Chicago Bulls and the Los Angeles Clippers at the Memphis Grizzlies. Also, I squeeze in a player prop for the Detroit Pistons vs. the Oklahoma City Thunder.

(BUYER BEWARE: We are in the NBA’s “load management” and “tanking” eras. It's best to wait until the final injury reports come out before placing a bet).

Los Angeles Lakers (37-38) at Chicago Bulls (36-39), 8:10 p.m. ET

The Bulls beat the Lakers 118-108 sans PG D'Angelo Russell as 5-point underdogs in LA Sunday. Then lost to the Clippers in the same building the next night.

LAL has been off since Sunday and should be a little healthier Wednesday vs. Chicago. The Lakers are 5-1 against the spread (ATS) in their last six games on days rest and needed the extra rest to get their ducks in a row.

Russell has been upgraded to "probable" on the injury report and it will be LeBron James' 2nd game back from injury. He's only been in LA for 11 games but Russell has by far the best on/off net rating on the Lakers.

Also, Anthony Davis was his typical passive self when LeBron returned to the floor. LeBron is "questionable" and if he misses it might help LAL's ball movement.

Davis scored 15 points on 6-of-8 shooting in the Lakers' loss to the Bulls on Sunday. The eight shots is the problem. LAL needs AD to be more aggressive offensively and I bet he will be more comfy Wednesday.

Sportsbooks are begging for pro-Chicago action. The Bulls are 7-3 in their last 10 games and smacked around the Lakers on Sunday. Yet LAL is -2 favorites in Chicago?!

The Lakers are 8th in both offensive and defensive shot quality, per (CTG). The Bulls are 21st in offensive shot quality and 27th defensively. LAL attempts a ton of shots at the rim and Chicago operates in the mid-range.

However, Bulls C Nikola Vucevic is one of the worst defensive bigs in the NBA. The Lakers have a lot of size and length on the wing to defend Chicago wings DeMar DeRozan and Zach LaVine.

Between these teams' shot profiles and the revenge angle, LAL is the right side Wednesday.

NBA Best Bet #1: Lakers -2.5 (-115) at DraftKings Sportsbook, up to -3

Los Angeles Clippers (40-36) at Memphis Grizzlies (48-27), 8 p.m. ET

You could make an argument for fading both teams because of their injury reports. But, Memphis's injury report is more concerning than LAC's.

The Grizzlies are without C Steven Adams and PF Jaren Jackson Jr. and SG Desmond Bane are listed as "doubtful" as well. Jackson, Adams, and Bane are Memphis' three leaders in on/off net rating, per CTG.

Clippers All-Star Paul George will miss Wednesday's game but Kawhi Leonard has been ballin' lately. This month, Kawhi is averaging 25.8 points per game on 54.2% shooting (43.1% from behind the arc).

LAC's other injury absence — PF Marcus Morris — is addition by subtraction. Being an LA resident, there are some Clippers fans in my life. They've expressed frustration with LAC coach Ty Lue for keeping Morris in the rotation.

According to CTG, Morris has a -0.6 adjusted on/off net rating. However, the Clippers score 6.5 more points per 100 possessions in non-garbage time when Morris's replacement — Nicolas Batum — is on the floor.

This is a Pros vs. Joe's game in the betting market. Per, more cash in the consensus market is on the Clippers and more bets are on the Grizzlies. Typically, it's wise to follow the money when it's counter to the public.

NBA Best Bet #2 at Clippers (-135) moneyline at DraftKings Sportsbook

PS Player Prop: Detroit Pistons James Wiseman 13.5 points vs. OKC Thunder

The Warriors gave up on Wiseman who is a No. 2 overall pick from 2020 and sent him to the Pistons around the trade deadline. Detroit is giving Wiseman the reps he needs and he's started the last 15 games.

Wiseman has scored more than 13.5 points in 10 of those 15 games. Since joining the Pistons, Wiseman has the 2nd-highest usage rate and has the best effective field goal shooting of any starter.

His high usage rate should continue considering Detroit's injury report. The Pistons are missing three starters — PG Cade Cunningham, C Isaiah Stewart and SF Bojan Bogdanovic — and a couple of rotation players.

Also, Wiseman operates where OKC's defense is vulnerable: The mid-range. Per CTG, 91% of Wiseman's attempts come from the mid-range and the Thunder are 19th in defensive field goal percentage vs. mid-range shots.