The Los Angeles Lakers will either start making sweet music together or become a cautionary ballad when their current seven-game “Grammy” trip comes to a close on Feb. 10.
The “Grammy” trip, which pushes the Lakers out of their home due to the yearly music award show in Los Angeles, hasn’t been kind to L.A. backers. Last year, Los Angeles went 3-3 SU and 2-4 ATS and boasts a 12-9 SU and 10-10-1 ATS record during the early February road swing over the past three seasons.
This year, Los Angeles has been horrible away from the Staples Center, posting a 5-16 SU and 6-14-1 ATS mark, including Wednesday’s 92-86 loss as a 3-point favorite to the Phoenix Suns which opened the seven-game road stretch.
The loss at Phoenix comes with some added bitterness. Center Dwight Howard re-injured his nagging shoulder and power forward Pau Gasol continues to grumble about his new role coming off the bench. Los Angeles heads to Minnesota Friday before stops in Detroit, Brooklyn, Boston, Charlotte and finally Miami.
Peter Korner, founder of the Nevada-based odds service The Sports Club, says L.A. should be an underdog for most of those road games – especially if Howard misses time. However, the betting market may move the Lakers into the role of short favorites in each game but the finale against the Heat.
“We aren’t giving them very much credit, but the betting public is respecting them,” Korner told Covers. “By name, they have all those great players, but results – bottom line – are the difference. But bettors are still giving them respect, especially with short spreads.”
The Lakers seemed to be on the rise before kicking off the annual trip. They had strung together three straight wins for just the third time this season, punctuated by a victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder Sunday.
Los Angeles currently sits at 20-26 (18-27-1 ATS) and in 10th place in the Western Conference. Online sportsbook Matchbook.com has the Lakers priced as +129 long shots to make the postseason (-141 to miss).
“The Lakers need a streak to get that record above .500,” says Korner. “They have to do something soon, because these older players are going to have a hard time getting going and you don’t know about Dwight Howard and his shoulder going all out.”