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New Orleans Pelicans vs. Los Angeles Lakers - 11/8/13

Los Angeles Lakers (2-3) at New Orleans Pelicans (2-3)

NBA Basketball: Friday, November 8, 2013 at 8:00 pm (New Orleans Arena)

The Line: New Orleans Pelicans -9.5 -- Over/Under: 202 See the Latest Odds

TV:

The New Orleans Hornets square off against the visiting Los Angeles Lakers on Friday night from the Big Easy

Head to head, the Lakers are 4-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings in New Orleans while the road team is 22-7 ATS in the last 29 meetings and the underdog is 21-10 ATS in the last 31 meetings. The Pelicans are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400, but just 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games overall. The Lakers on the other hand are 3-0-1 ATS in their last 4 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of less than .400, but just 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games playing on 0 days rest and 17-35-1 ATS in their last 53 road games.

New Orleans Pelicans vs. Los Angeles Lakers - 11/8/13

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sport

The New Orleans Pelicans recorded their best win of the young season on Wednesday night, defeating the Memphis Grizzlies 99-84 to improve to 2-3 overall. Just one night after going down to the surprising Phoenix Suns on their home floor, the reeling Pelicans hit the road in hopes of a quick start and they got just that as they raced out to a 33-18 first-quarter lead, which setup their first road victory of the season. Anthony Davis continued his strong start to the season, posting 18 points and nine rebounds to complement his stellar defense, which has been drawing rave reviews in the early stages of the season. Eric Gordon also had a strong outing with a team-high 19 points while Tyreke Evans chipped in with 16 of his own to go along with his seven assists.

(Note: This was written before the Lakers game in Houston on Thursday night)

As far as the Los Angeles Lakers are concerned, it’s all about staying afloat until Kobe Bryant can make his much anticipated return to the hardwood. Through the first week and bit of action, the Lakers are currently sitting with a 2-3 record, however, their opening five games have all been against likely playoffs teams. Los Angeles hasn’t had any trouble scoring the ball without Bryant, yet it’s been on the defensive end where they have struggled as they giving up an average of 109 points per game, which is the second-worst mark in the league. The Lakers have also really struggled away from home, dropping games in Golden State and Dallas by a combined 50 points.

There’s no doubting the Lakers play away from home thus far has been poor at best, but I’m having trouble taking the Pelicans as near on double-digit favorites here. New Orleans have dropped two of three at home this season and while Anthony Davis looms as a massive problem, the Lakers still have Pau Gasol and a host a good outside shooters, which will keep this one within single digits…

Dan’s Pick: Los Angeles +9.5

Follow me on Twitter @Dan_SCP

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