Detroit at Oakland (-4) (-110)
The situation strongly favors Oakland as the Titans are coming off two emotional wins over Valparaiso (59-57) and Youngstown State (83-81) and are primed for a letdown tonight against a 9-17 Oakland squad. It’s also difficult to trust the Titans on the road where they are 4-9 SU and averaging just 64.2 points per game on 37.4% shooting from the field and 28.8% from beyond the arc. In contrast, Oakland is 8-3 at home this season where the Golden Grizzlies are averaging 82.9 points per game on 47.3% shooting from the floor and 39.0% from three-point territory. Overall, Detroit is 0.4 points per game better than average offensively (71.8 points per game against teams that would combine to allow 71.4 points per game), while the Grizzlies are 3.7 points per game better than average offensively (73.5 points per game against teams that would combine to allow 69.8 points per game).
The problem for Oakland this season has been a defense that is yielding 77.4 points per game on 48.8% from the field and 39.0% from beyond the arc. Let’s also note that the Grizzlies are allowing an alarming 79.0 points per game to conference opponents (52.4% FG; 43.1% 3-PT) and 80.2 points over their last five games (53.3% FG; 45.4% 3-PT). Overall, Oakland is 4.6 points per game worse than average defensively, which gives the Titans a 4.8 points per game advantage on the offensive end of the floor. However, Oakland also possesses an advantage offensively in this contest as the Titans are 0.4 points per game worse than average defensively (70.5 points per game to teams that would combine to average 70.1 points per game), thereby giving the Grizzlies a 4.1 points per game advantage when shooting the rock.
Another concern that some bettors may have about Oakland is the fact that the Grizzlies are a money-burning 4-14 ATS at home versus teams with a losing record, including 2-11 ATS late in the regular season. However, Oakland head coach Greg Kampe has turned this series into a legitimate rivalry so I would be surprised to see anything less than a focused effort from the Grizzlies tonight. The fact that tonight’s game is also being broadcast on ESPNU will also serve to enhance Oakland’s enthusiasm before a packed Athletics Center O’Rena. The real letdown is likely to involve Detroit, who is 3-11 ATS versus teams with a win percentage between .200 and .400 and is coming off two exhausting wins, one of which was an upset over Valparaiso on the road.
Pro Edge Sports Pick: Oakland (-4) (-110)