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Game 5 of the 7-seed Los Angeles Lakers (3-1) vs. 2-seed Memphis Grizzlies (1-3) Wednesday is an elimination game. The tempo will be slower and the action more physical. Because of which, I’m getting UNDER vibes for Lakers-Grizzlies.
Two of the four games in this series have gone UNDER the total. However, Game 4 only went Over because Lakers-Grizzlies went to overtime with LAL winning 117-111.
The opening game of this series soared Over the total but that was because of offensive eruptions from Lakers backup big Rui Hachimura and guard Austin Reaves. Neither can be counted on as sustainable offense.
Especially against a Memphis defense that has locked opponents up at home this season. Grizzlies big Jaren Jackson Jr. is the 2023 NBA Defensive Player of the Year (DPOY) and Lakers big Anthony Davis has a DPOY-ceiling.
Lakers Vs. Grizzlies Game 5 Odds (DraftKings Sportsbook)
Memphis’s offense is rough regardless of the venue. The Grizzlies were 19th in non-garbage time effective field goal shooting (eFG%) at home and 22nd on the road, per CleaningTheGlass.com (CTG).
Furthermore, Memphis’s half-court offensive efficiency ranks 18th out of 20 postseason teams (this includes the play-in teams). The Grizzlies were 22nd in points added per 100 half-court possessions in the regular season.
But, they have the best non-garbage time defensive efficiency at home this season and 1st in defensive eFG%, according to CTG. LeBron James looks like he’s just trying to make it through the playoffs.
LeBron isn’t pushing the pace like he did in the regular season and picking the spots he wants to exert energy. When LeBron is on the floor in this series, LAL’s fastbreak frequency drops by 11.4%, per CTG.
This is a short turnaround from an overtime for a 38-year-old LeBron. He put up 22 points, grabbed 20 rebounds, dished 7 assists and played a team-high 45:28 in Game 4. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see a gassed LeBron Wednesday.
Lakers guards Dennis Schroeder and Reaves have been d-ing up in this series. Ja Morant hasn’t been creating looks for his teammates, Desmond Bane has only played one good game this series, and Memphis’s bench has been awful.
There is reverse line movement headed south of the total. Pinnacle Sportsbook opened Lakers-Grizzlies Game 5 at 222.5 and it’s down to 221.5, which is the same as DraftKings.
Pinnacle is a market-making shop whose odds other sportsbooks plagiarize. Despite most of the money in the consensus market being on the Over, Pinnacle has lowered the total from the opener. Hmmm.
BET: UNDER 221.5 (-110) in Game 5 at DraftKings, down to 220.5
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