The play-in tournament is behind us and we’re on to the first round. We’ll be doing previews for every series. Here is the Los Angeles Lakers vs Phoenix Suns betting preview.

Here’s what I’m thinking for the first round of the NBA playoffs. Below this blurb are all the ranks for each team that I will discuss. Use this as a resource. I’ve consolidated offensive and defensive ranks (equation at bottom of table), offensive and defensive preferences, and pace of play. I’ve also tacked on recent performance, key injuries, and betting trends.

The hope is that we find overlap between a team strength and another team weakness, or vice versa. This is nothing more than a guide. I’ll be making a few picks at the end, but I hope more than anything that this helps give you a look into how each team matches up.

These series previews will be all-encompassing. Logically, any advantage that would apply for one team should hold pat for the entire series.

Let’s get to it. Follow me on Twitter, @griffybets, for all things NBA this postseason. Drop me a line with any feedback or ideas for stats you’d like to see included!

Los Angeles LakersPhoenix Suns
Offense rank: 22

Threes rank: 24

Pts in paint: 7


Defense rank: 2

Perimeter D: 2

Opp. pts in paint: 19


Pace: 22

Offense rank: 4

Threes rank: 8

Pts in paint: 22


Defense rank: 6

Perimeter D: 8

Opp. pts in paint: 15


Pace: 23

Last 10 GamesLast 10 Games



ATS recordATS record



O/U recordO/U record




Odds to win SeriesOdds to win Series


Regular Season Head-to-Head
Suns won 2-1
  • Offensive/Defensive ranks calculated by averaging (points per game, EFG% and efficiency)
  • Pace calculated by averaging (field goals attempted per game and possessions per game)
  • Threes/Perimeter defense calculated by averaging (threes made per game and 3P%)

Shoutout to for the above stats. That site has everything you could ever ask for – this is just a taste of the numbers they consolidate for you. Consider perusing the site to dig into areas of the game you’re curious about.

Series Schedule: Los Angeles Lakers vs Phoenix Suns

Game 1: Sunday 5/23 at 3:30 PM

Game 2: 5/25

Game 3: 5/27

Game 4: 5/30

Game 5: 6/1

Game 6: 6/3

Game 7: 6/5

Thoughts on the Series: Los Angeles Lakers vs Phoenix Suns

Chris Paul Speaks Out On Devin Booker's All-Star Snub: “We Go As Booker Goes And We Know That”

Phoenix has been one of the NBA’s best teams all season. Securing the two seed in the loaded West is no small feat, and these rankings have consistently had them as one of the three or four best teams in the league.

The Lakers won their way into this matchup, winning the play-in game against the Warriors. The reason they found themselves so low in the standings is due to the extended absence of both LeBron and Anthony Davis. They’re both back now, so the numbers above don’t quite accurately reflect this team’s capabilities.

This is a tough one for me – we have to respect the Lakers as defending champs, but since I’ve been tracking these numbers I’ve been enamored by Phoenix.

I’m torn. I think I’m taking the odds and betting on the Suns to win this series.

Stat Leaders for Each Team

If you want to include some Lakers/Suns in your DFS lineups or prop picks, the below players are where I’d recommend starting.

Los Angeles

  • LeBron James: 40.5 PRApg
  • Anthony Davis: 21.8 ppg, 7.9 rpg
  • Andre Drummond: 10.2 rpg


  • Devin Booker: 25.6 ppg
  • Chris Paul: 16.4 ppg, 8.9 apg
  • DeAndre Ayton: 10.5 rpg
  • Jae Crowder: 6.3 3PApg

Favorite Bets for the Series

Lakers vs. Suns, Three Things to Know: March 2, 2021 | Los Angeles Lakers

I’m betting on the Suns to win this series. This was a tough reward for being the two seed, and the odds reflect that. It’s why I like the value.

This is not a series to target for props or DFS players, with two of the best defenses in the NBA.

Consider the under on a nightly basis, with two bottom-ten teams in pace and two top-ten defenses.

GriffyBets Nightly Targets: UNDER points

Series winner: Phoenix

Stay tuned for more NBA betting previews throughout the week. We’ll be breaking down each series here on

Related reading:

+ posts

Griffin’s working to find betting value where others may not. With a main focus on the NFL, consider Griffin your go-to resource for matchup breakdowns, including in the trenches and receivers vs. corners. Follow @griffybets on Twitter for more articles and videos. NBA breakdowns will be the primary focus during the NFL offseason.