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  • Writer's picture@WizeOwlSports

Nov 22 NBA Action: Portland Blazers @ Los Angeles Lakers

Portland Trail Blazers ML (-135) @ Los Angeles Lakers

The Blazers have strung together two consecutive covers, including a win outright versus the Clippers Friday. Our system expects Portland to extend their streak to two in a row straight up and three versus the number Sunday when they meet the Lakers under Los Angeles bright lights.

Our multi-factor computer prediction methodology makes the visiting Trail Blazers to be about 5 points better than the Lakers tonight. Our preferred power rankings approach though is more skeptical, endorsing the Blazers for the win, but not the cover. Accordingly, we pass on the spread and pay up a bit to back Portland on the moneyline.

A ramped up defensive intensity was on display when Portland faced the Clippers two days ago. While the Blazers rank 13th on the season by opponents true shooting percentage, Portland rises to 4th in the sort when considering teams last game. The Blazers improved play against the ball is unlikely to be a fluke, as the Trail Blazers are 3rd by this same measure over their last three games.

While it seems Portland has recommitted to guarding the ball, the Lakers have been hard pressed to manufacture points of late, posting an anemic 91 most recently versus the Raptors at home Friday. In fact, LA has logged triple digits in the scoring column only once in their last seven games.

Recent betting trends likewise support the Blazers. In head-to-head play, Portland has won the last five meetings outright, the last 3 versus the number and the last 5 at Staples Center.

Bottom line: We are looking for Portland's improved defense to hinder the Lakers offense sufficiently for the road team to secure the win. A Blazer's cover appears quite possible, however, we are content to pay up for Portland on the moneyline.

Happy betting!!

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