On Tuesday night, the Phoenix Suns and New Orleans Pelicans have an 8:00 p.m. EST tip-off scheduled at Smoothie King Arena. Phoenix goes into New Orleans riding a lot of confidence following a 140-111 win versus the Lakers on Sunday.
It was a strong response from the Suns after the underrated Toronto Raptors knocked them off by a score of 117-112. The Suns had won four of five games before the Raptors went to the desert for a 5-point win. Phoenix regained their step in a hurry versus the Lakers.
That's how you bounce back. pic.twitter.com/vsmrUzQ62L
— x – Phoenix Suns (@Suns) March 14, 2022
The game was over before fans could get into their seats at Crypto.com Arena. The Suns carried a 48-22 lead into the second quarter and didn’t need to do much else. The Suns are 54-14 on the season and first in the Western Conference with the win.
Phoenix isn’t bothered by any team at the moment and is clear of the Memphis Grizzlies and Golden State Warriors by 7.5 games. Golden State was a strong contender, but the injury to Draymond Green shook that team up considerably.
Golden State is tough when they’re healthy. Green is back on the floor now, though, and barring another injury, he will be there in the playoffs. The Suns may be clear at the moment, but everyone starts at 0-0 when the playoffs open.
The Pelicans are banged up and limping going into tonight. They are on the heels of a win over the Houston Rockets, 130-105, but the Rockets haven’t been trying, and this was their first win in five games. They didn’t come close in a 142-120 loss to the Charlotte Hornets before the win.
UNREAL JAXSON!!! ? pic.twitter.com/CPtbq0qFq8
— New Orleans Pelicans (@PelicansNBA) March 14, 2022
New Orleans is 28-40 and 10th going into this meeting. A team 12 games under .500 shouldn’t be in the postseason discussion, but they are in the mix for the play-in tournament. It’s going to be tough if injuries drag on for Brandon Ingram, who is dealing with a bad hamstring.
Former Blazer, CJ McCollum, is absent in Covid protocol currently. That leaves the Pelicans without Ingram, McCollum, Larry Nance Jr., and of course Zion Williamson. Zion is a given at this point. Head below for our free Suns vs. Pelicans prediction on March 15, 2022.
Phoenix Suns vs. New Orleans Pelicans Betting Odds and Team Statistics:
The following odds are courtesy of BetOnline:
|Phoenix Suns||-5.5 (-110)||-250||Over 228 (-110)|
|New Orleans Pelicans||+5.5 (-110)||+210||Under 228 (-110)|
|Team Data||Phoenix Suns||New Orleans Pelicans|
|Points Per Game||114.0||108.2|
|Points Against Per Game||106.1||109.9|
|Field Goal %||48.3||45.4|
|Three Point %||36.2||33.0|
Suns vs. Pelicans Prediction:
The main thing for the Suns going into tonight is that they don’t take their eyes off the prize and have a letdown following a blowout over the Lakers.
Following a 29-point win, it could be easy for the Suns to go into this one lazy. However, beating the Lakers isn’t seen as a big win these days.
Defeating the Lakers is like beating up on someone while they’re down. In any case, everything came together for the Suns in that win.
Overall, the Suns are the best team in the NBA, with a field goal percentage of 48.3%. They’ve been shooting at a high clip all season and doing it without Chris Paul.
Paul is not expected back until April, as he continues to nurse a thumb injury. With the Suns cruising to first in the West, there isn’t any reason to rush him back on the floor.
Phoenix Suns vs. New Orleans Pelicans Betting Trends:
- 4-1 ATS in their previous five games versus a team with a losing record at home
- 9-4 ATS in their previous 13 games on the road
- 7-3 ATS in their previous ten games on a Tuesday
- 4-1 ATS in their previous five games at New Orleans
- 5-2 ATS in their previous seven games versus the Pelicans
- 1-4 ATS in their previous five games
- 2-6 ATS in their previous eight games as an underdog at home
- 2-5 ATS in their previous seven games versus a team with a winning percentage worse than 60%
- 6-12 overall in their previous 18 games as an underdog
- 2-5 ATS in their previous seven games versus the Suns
The Suns are well-balanced and can win games with their defense as well. They are masters at adjusting their game plan and playing to a team’s weakness.
Overall, the Suns are third in the NBA with a 44.1% field goal percentage against. They are tops in the league with a 33.5% three-point percentage against.
Better success from the three is where the Pelicans have to improve for next season. New Orleans is 28th in the league, with a three-point success rate of 33%.
They are just 22nd in the league with 108.2 points per game on 45.4% shooting from the field. The Pelicans will be without key offensive assets on the floor, as I noted above as well.
In their most recent meeting, the Pelicans cleared easily for a 117-102 win at Phoenix on February 25. Ingram and McCollum were both catalysts with 28 and 32 points. They will not be on the floor tonight, though.
Maybe this isn’t a blowout, but the Suns should handle a Pelicans team that isn’t close to full strength tonight. Look for the Suns to edge ahead for a 9-12 point win in New Orleans.