Lakers vs. Pelicans Prediction: NBA Odds, Point Spread

Jeremy Perry | Updated Mar 01, 2020

Zion Williamson and LeBron James, Pelicans, Lakers, 2020

The Pelicans are 26-33 on the year, but what’s worse is their home record. They are just 12-17 on their home court, which is among the worst home records in the NBA.

L.A. Lakers
March 01, 2020, 8:00 PM ET
Smoothie King Center
New Orleans

The New Orleans Pelicans looked like a complete mess early in the season when they started with just seven wins in their first 30 games. They’ve been a completely different animal of late as they’ve won 19 of their last 29 games. That’s propelled them into the playoff conversation as they entered Saturday just two games back of the Memphis Grizzlies for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference. With the young Grizzlies stumbling (having lost five in a row before their matchup with the Lakers), the Pelicans can close even more ground on Sunday.

The challenge is New Orleans will be hosting the best team in the Western Conference. We’ll have to see which stars play and which don’t as it is a back-to-back situation for the Lakers but the Pelicans have already lost three times to the Lakers this season. Can they find a way through on Sunday – or at least cover?

NBA Point Spread and Betting Analysis

The Lakers have absolutely owned Southeast Division opponents this season as they’ve won 13 of 15 games against them while going 10-4-1 against the spread. They have also played very well in this series as they’ve won five straight, averaging 122.0 points per game in those contests.

The Pelicans are 26-33 on the year, which is obviously not great but what’s worse is their home record. They are just 12-17 on their home court, which is among the worst home records in the NBA. They are just 9-21 against teams with a winning record and are 12-16 against the spread in those games.

Los Angeles Lakers

The Lakers have easily been the best team in the Western Conference this season as they hold a healthy lead for the No. 1 seed. That’s important because they’re probably going to do a lot of “load management” with LeBron James down the stretch of the season and this affords them that opportunity. He rested on Thursday and he might rest again on Sunday.

Regardless, the guy the Pelicans might want to put a greater effort into containing is former franchise star Anthony Davis. He has eaten them up in the three meetings, averaging 36.0 points per game with 12.0 rebounds, 2.7 blocks, 2.3 steals, 1.7 assists and 1.3 threes per game. He’s also averaging an incredible 10.7 free throw attempts per game. If they don’t have an answer for him, the Lakers will probably win regardless of whether or not James plays.

New Orleans Pelicans

The Pelicans roll into Sunday’s game with some momentum. They’ve won six of their last eight games with the two losses coming to Oklahoma City and the Lakers. The Pelicans played well in that Tuesday loss in Los Angeles but came up short in a number of categories. They shot just 29.6% from three, were -6 on the glass and -4 with turnovers.

Zion Williamson has been a big catalyst behind the Pelicans playoff push as he’s averaging a healthy 25.7 points per game this month along with 6.2 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 1.0 steals while shooting 57.1% from the field. He’ll need to have another big game on Sunday if the Pelicans are to push for the win.

Who Will Win Lakers vs. Pelicans?