Gambling Outsiders Week Five: Lakers, 76ers battle on Friday

Jan 27, 2022; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis (3) and Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) talk before the opening tip off at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

In this 2022-23 NBA season, we here at Lakers Outsiders will be providing a weekly gambling blog to our readers! Donny McHenry (@donny_mchenry) and Alex Torres (@alextorres_11) will both provide two bets each week, with each bet including our reasoning for why we like it. One bet will be related to a Lakers game, while the other one will be related to a random other NBA game going on that week.

In our last Gambling Outsiders post, both of our writers went 1-1 in their picks. With Alex out-of-the-office this week, Donny has prepared a bet for tonight’s Lakers-76ers game in addition to two other bets he’s focused on around the Association.

Donny’s Bets

Joel Embiid under on points total of 31.5 -120

I don’t think there will be a lot of points scored in this game. I think the Lakers will try to revert back to feeding Anthony Davis like they were doing before he caught the flu in Cleveland vs. the Cavaliers. I think they’ll quickly realize that that’s not going to work well given Davis’s recovery from the flu in addition to the fact that he will be going up against the largest and most dominant center he’s faced all season in Joel Embiid.

Because of that, I’d probably pick AD’s under on points of 25.5 as well. But, to be honest, I feel just as strongly about Embiid not being able to eclipse 31.5. And since this is, in fact, a Lakers blog… I’ll go ahead and pick against the 76ers instead of against the Lakers.

This is a bit of a hot take as Embiid scored 39 recently vs. the Rockets and 35 before that against the Grizzlies. However, before those two games he laid a duck against the Cavaliers in the form of a 19-point performance. And that was when the Cavs were still without Jarrett Allen. The Grizzlies had Jaren Jackson playing limited minutes as he continues to ramp up after his return, with Steven Adams and no one on the Rockets actually standing a chance in limiting Embiid. Anthony Davis and the Lakers’ defense on the other hand? I think even if they lose, it’d be because of the 76ers’ 6th-ranked 3-point percentage instead of a monster Embiid game.

Bucks -1 vs. Mavericks -115

Pelicans +1.5 (add +100 moneyline) vs. Suns -110

I’m going to keep it short and simple with these two bets: I think the Bucks are just the far better team when compared to the Mavericks, and I think the Pelicans are currently playing much better basketball compared to the Suns.

The Mavericks are currently on a roll, winners of four of their last five. They’re also 10-3 at home. However, the Bucks recently beat them 124-115, and I they’re no slouch on the road winning six of their nine games outside of Milwaukee. I simply don’t think the Mavs have an answer for Giannis Antetokounmpo, and now the Bucks have Khris Middleton who they did not have in that most recent matchup vs. the Mavericks. Give me the Bucks.

Meanwhile, the Suns have lost three of their last four games including their most recent game which was a 125-98 beatdown served up by the Boston Celtics in Phoenix. This is very concerning, especially when you consider the Suns are much better at home than they are on the road, where they are 4-6. I don’t see them being able to make it 5-6 in New Orleans, especially with how Zion Williamson seems to be heating up. He’s averaging 28.0 points per game in his last three contests on 61.7% field-goal shooting with 10.3 RPG as well.

Donny’s record on the year: 4-4

Alex’s Bets

***Alex is out on a little Lakers Outsiders paternity leave. Go wish him congratulations on Twitter for his new baby boy: @alextorres_11***

Alex’s record on the year: 5-3

All odds via DraftKings Sportsbook at the time of this being published.

NOTE: Gambling involves risk and neither Lakers Outsiders itself or the writers of this article are liable for any losses or damages incurred by the reader, either directly or indirectly, as a result of the use or misuse of its information and/or recommendations.

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