The Los Angeles Lakers are in downtown Detroit at Little Caesars Arena on Thursday night for a date with the Detroit Pistons. This could be seen as a classic trap spot for the Lakers on the road. However, after coming up short against the Philadelphia 76ers last night by a point, the Lakers may not choose to be lazy in this one. The Lakers nearly erased a slow start to win, but didn’t have enough in the tank at the wire and lost 107-106.
It was a good effort by the Lakers to not give in and fold, though it still counts as a loss in the standings. The defeat for the Lakers is only their first loss on the road. Overall, they fall to 14-5 on the season going into Detroit on Thursday evening. The loss ended a three-game winning streak for the Lakers.
They were in tough against a pesky Cleveland Cavaliers team on Monday. The Lakers were in control in that one, but the Cavaliers made the Lakers work for a 115-108 win. Cleveland may not be ready to contend in the East, but are trending in the right direction at least. The Pistons were in Cleveland last night, so they’ll be playing on a back-to-back as well. It’s an even playing field at Little Caesars Arena, and both squads are coming off losses.
The Pistons faded away in the second-half last night against the Cavs. They were up a point at halftime, though Cleveland fought back to make it look easy in the next half. The Pistons were out scored by 17 points in that one, as the Blake Griffin-less Pistons couldn’t solely rely on Jerami Grant. Grant has developed from a role player to a leading-playmaker in Detroit with the Pistons.
That said, the potential Most Improved Player in the NBA, is not working with talent around him. It’s probably what makes his rise even more impressive. The former Denver Nugget will need a big performance at home tonight to keep his team in this. Head below for our free Lakers vs. Pistons pick on January 28, 2021.
LA Lakers vs. Detroit Pistons NBA Betting Odds:
Lakers vs. Pistons Prediction:
The last two games might have been a wake up call for the Lakers. Should we really be saying wake up call for a 15-4 team? Maybe not, but the Lakers were playing lazy against the Cavaliers, and it carried over to last night against the 76ers. The Lakers were down late and went on a 13-0 run to take a 107-105 lead. Tobias Harris ended the run with a three ball at 3 seconds on the clock to preserve the win for the 76ers.
If Harris misses that shot, I think we’re talking about a big letdown spot for the Lakers in Detroit. However, here we are, and we’re discussing the Lakers getting a wake up call after going through the motions for most of that outing and in Cleveland. They were able to get by against an average Cavaliers team with that approach, but didn’t work against the better 76ers.
In any event, the Lakers can’t look great every week this season. Despite their talent, there are going to be lulls for the Lakers. The Lakers own the second-best defense in the league, as they’ve conceded just 104.6 points against per game. Detroit is such a one-dimensional team that I don’t if they’re going to bother the Lakers’ defense much. Following a loss, expect the intensity level to be turned up defensively for the Lakers in Detroit.
The Pistons can hang their hat on the fact that they battled hard in their most recent outing against the Lakers. They welcomed the Lakers to Detroit on January 5, 2020 and held up well in a 106-99 loss. However, the Pistons still had Andre Drummond clogging the paint then, and Derrick Rose went off for 28 points. Depending on Rose to show up like that tonight to help out Jemari Grant isn’t on my list of things I feel very confident in on Thursday. If he does, sure, the Pistons stay around and likely cover. Look for the Lakers to pull away in the second-half for a win by at least ten points.