Lakers to Hang ATS is the NBA Pick vs. Bulls on TNT

LT Profits Sports Group

Thursday, January 29, 2015 7:15 PM GMT

Each day LT Profits Sports seeks an overlay side that has a better chance of cashing than its spread, offering long term value. Here is their Side Value Play for Thursday.

 

The struggling team on a nine-game losing streak is capable of covering as large home underdogs Thursday night when the Chicago Bulls (30-17, 17-6 away) pay a visit to those Los Angeles Lakers (12-34, 6-17 home) at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA at 10:35 ET in a game televised nationally as the second game of the NBA on TNT doubleheader.

The point spread at Pinnacle Sports has Los Angeles as a decided home underdog for this contest with the current line at +9 with odds of -107.


First vs. Worst
There is absolutely no doubt which is the better of these two teams as this contest pits a first place team vs. a last place team. The Bulls are doing an excellent job of holding off LeBron James and the Cavaliers for now, as Chicago currently leads the Central Division by three games over second place Cleveland thanks to beating three top Western Conference teams in San Antonio, Dallas and especially Golden State in the last four games overall.

The Lakers meanwhile have been losing NBA picks in nine straight games and are trying to avoid their first 10-game losing streak since 1994. And to make matters worse the future is not looking too bright for the Lake Show with Kobe Bryant now out for the season with a torn rotator cuff. Los Angeles has the second worst record in the Western Conference with only the NBA-worst 8-37 Minnesota Timberwolves having a worse mark.


Bad Scheduling Spot for Bulls
Now, despite the talent disparity between these two teams, this is certainly not the best of scheduling spots for the Bulls. For starters, they are coming off of an emotional overtime road upset win of the team with the best record in the NBA, the Golden State Warriors, as 11-point underdogs, a win that snapped the Warriors’ 19-game him winning streak.

That reason alone could be enough to make this a natural letdown spot vs. a team that has been as bad as the Lakers have been this season. But wait, there’s more! This is also the first half of a back-to-back for the Bulls with undoubtedly a tougher matchup coming up tomorrow night vs. the Suns in Phoenix as Chicago continues its six-game road trip, all against teams from the tougher Western Conference except for a visit to Orlando to conclude the trip.

The game vs. the Suns Friday will be followed by tough stops in Houston and New Orleans, making this game tonight the Bulls’ best chance to take a “breather”. Thus, do not expect Chicago to run up the score as it tries to conserve some energy for tomorrow night and the tougher games soon after, and in the event the Bulls do get a big lead, look for them to clear the bench relatively early, which would leave the backdoor wide open for the Lakers.


Lakers Covered vs. Wizards
Now the Lakers have certainly been awful, but they did manage to cover as eight-point home underdogs vs. the Washington Wizards in their last game Tuesday, the same Wizards team that beat these Bulls twice within a five-day span earlier this month, once in Washington and once back in Chicago. Now we get that the Wizards were not at their best on Tuesday as they coasted their way to victory, but it would not be surprising if the Bulls did the same thing!

Chicago did win the first meeting between these teams easily 113-93 back in the Windy City, so it is not as if the Bulls need to make some sort of statement here or anything. Granted the Lakers snapped an 0-7-1 ATS skid with Tuesday’s cover, but that game did mark the fourth time during the nine-game losing streak that Los Angeles lost by single-digits, and a replay here vs. a rather indifferent opponent would be good enough to get another cover.


Chicago Struggles ATS vs. Losing Teams
Finally, while the Bulls have beaten some good teams recently as mentioned earlier, they have not been prone to blowing out bad teams as they are just 1-7 ATS in their last eight games vs. teams with losing records.

This scheduling situation suggests that the same thing could easily happen here, so while the Bulls should prevail on the court, take the big points with the Lakers at home on TNT Thursday.

[/]{"component":"oddswidget", "eventId":, "sportsbooksIds":[19,43,227,1096,999996,93,238,123,139], "LineTypeId":5, "PeriodTypeId":1}[/]

NBA Pick: Lakers +9 (-107)