Winning Basketball

The Detroit Pistons have used a series of matchups against teams with losing records to put together an extended stretch of winning basketball.

They hope to continue to take advantage of favorable scheduling Tuesday night when they visit the struggling Memphis Grizzlies.

Oddsmakers from SBG Global have made Detroit -5 point spread favorites (NBA Odds) for today’s game, the over/under has been set at 204 total points (Matchup). Our public betting information shows that 91% of bets for this game have been placed on Detroit -5 (View NBA Bet Percentages).

Detroit (14-6) has won six of its last seven games and eight of 10 since Nov. 21. Only two of its opponents (Utah and New Orleans) during that stretch have had winning records.

The Grizzlies (6-14) fit right in with the Pistons' recent group of subpar opponents. Memphis has dropped four straight games overall, as well as four straight in the series with Detroit.

Following a 98-91 loss to Chicago on Friday, the Pistons bounced back Sunday as they cruised to a 104-85 home victory over Charlotte. Detroit controlled the game throughout, although it did allow the Bobcats to close within single digits at one point in the second half.

"It's hard," said Pistons forward Antonio McDyess, who had 19 points and nine rebounds. "You get out to a big lead against a team like that, and you start to lose your focus."

Chauncey Billups scored 20 points and had six assists two nights after scoring a season-high 27 in the loss to the Bulls. He's been doing a lot of his scoring from the free-throw line, going 29-for-32 from the charity stripe over his last three games.

Billups struggled in Detroit's two wins over Memphis last season, managing a total of 26 points. He excelled against the Grizzlies in 2005-06, however, with a pair of efforts scoring 30 points or more.

Memphis is mired in last place in a strong Southwest Division, where it is the only club with a losing record. The current four-game skid is the longest of the season for the Grizzlies, who dropped six in a row March 30-April 10.

A return home could help, as the Grizzlies are a competitive 4-5 on their home court compared with 2-9 in road games. Their five home defeats have all been by 10 points or fewer.

Memphis completed a winless, three-game road trip Saturday with an 86-78 defeat at Atlanta. The Grizzlies, who scored a season low, couldn't recover after a first quarter in which they managed only 10 points.

"We have to be aggressive and figure out a way to score and produce even when we are having a bad shooting night," Grizzlies center Pau Gasol said after his team combined to shoot 41.0 percent from the field.

Gasol, though, shot a respectable 6-for-12 and recorded his fourth straight double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds. Although he's scoring a career-low 17.3 points per game this season, Gasol has played well recently against the Pistons, averaging 28.3 points and 11.6 boards in his last three games versus Detroit.

These teams face each other again at Detroit in 10 days.

By: Marc Young - theSpread.com - Email Us

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