Lakers vs Pelicans Picks and Predictions for March 23

Updated: March 23, 2021

Brandon Ingram has been cooking offensively, with two 30-point games in his last three contests, and should benefit from an undermanned Lakers team without LeBron James.

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In Los Angeles’ first game without LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the team lost to Phoenix by 17 points. Now, the group has to face a New Orleans team that could use an easy win as it fights for a spot in the postseason.

The Pelicans are just 18-24 on the season, but they are 12-10 at home and that should give them some confidence here.

Will Stan Van Gundy’s team take advantage of a shorthanded opponent? Find out in our free NBA betting picks and predictions for Lakers vs. Pelicans on Tuesday, March 23 at 7:30 p.m. ET at the Smoothie King Center.

Los Angeles Lakers at New Orleans Pelicans betting preview


Lakers: LeBron James F (Out), Anthony Davis F (Out), Marc Gasol C (Out).
Pelicans: Lonzo Ball G (Questionable), JJ Redick G (Out).
Find our latest NBA injury reports.

Betting trend to know

The Pelicans are 4-1 ATS in their last five games. Find more NBA betting trends for Lakers vs. Pelicans.

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The line opened at New Orleans -5.5, with the total at 221.5. Early action favored the Pelicans and the Under. Check back later for a full report from Patrick!

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Against the spread (ATS) pick

The Lakers are going to go through some pains without LeBron, as he was playing at an MVP level to keep the team afloat. Without Davis, Los Angeles was able to continue to play some good basketball, but this team is full of role players that feed off of stars. Without them, it’s hard for the rest of the guys to generate offense. For now, the Lakers are relying on Dennis Schroder, Kyle Kuzma, and Montrezl Harrell as their top scoring options, and that’s just not a recipe for success. Those three might occasionally put up some good numbers, but Los Angeles is now counting on minutes from guys that really shouldn’t be getting them. 

The Pelicans are coming off a five-point road win over the Nuggets last game, so they should be rather confident. But they also are somewhat desperate right now. Now that we’re in the second half of the season, teams are starting to think about the playoffs. At the moment, New Orleans is a couple of games back from the 10th spot in the Western Conference standings. That means the Pelicans can really use a win over this shorthanded Lakers team. With that, it’s unlikely that they’ll let up in this one, even if it can be a bit disappointing facing teams that are missing their stars. 

Also, Brandon Ingram and Zion Williamson are both cooking offensively right now and should be able to stay hot against the Lakers. Ingram is the one that should really get it going, as the Lakers will miss having LeBron guarding him on the wing. 

PREDICTION: Pelicans -6 (-110) 

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Over/Under pick

Without LeBron and Davis, the Lakers are no longer the defensive team that is currently first in the league in defensive rating.

In Sunday’s meeting with the Suns, the Lakers let up 111 points, but Phoenix is one of the few teams in the league that plays at a slow pace. The Pelicans, however, like to get up and down the floor, which is why a lot of their games turn into shootouts. The Lakers should be able to find more success on the offensive end against this New Orleans team, but the Pelicans are also going to get theirs.

This might not be a game that’s played in the 240s, but this number seems a little too low. 

PREDICTION: Over 222.0 (-110) 

Player prop pick

Even in a 17-point loss to the Suns, Schroder had 22 points for the Lakers. He was 8 for 14 from the floor in that game, and he should have even more of a green light moving forward.

With LeBron on the shelf, Schroder is easily the best creator that Los Angeles has, so the team will need him to make some plays. And in a game that should be somewhat up and down, he’ll have a lot of opportunities to score.

Also, if Lonzo Ball does sit out, that makes life on Schroder even easier. Ball is a great perimeter defender, so it’s one less option for New Orleans to throw at the Los Angeles point guard. 

PREDICTION: Dennis Schroder Over 18.5 Points (-112) 

Lakers vs Pelicans betting card

  • Pelicans -6 (-110) 
  • Over 222.0 (-110) 
  • Dennis Schroder Over 18.5 Points (-112)

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