NBA Picks And Predictions
Today’s NBA Betting Lines and Odds Analysis
Toronto Raptors (-4) vs. Atlanta Hawks (+4)
Beating the Raptors at home these days is tough. They can bend you with their defense and break you with their offense. They are the greatest threat to the Cleveland Cavaliers’ Eastern Conference throne, and that’s not going to change anytime soon.
But the Hawks are playing some of their best basketball of the season. Dennis Schroder and Jeff Teague are backcourt revelations, while Al Horford and Paul Millsap continue to wage their usual, devastating damage up front.
DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry are always liable to explode, sending the Raptors to a double-digit victory regardless of their opponent. But this conference rivalry should be tightly contested wire to wire.
The Pick: Hawks (+4)
San Antonio Spurs (-12.5) vs. Chicago Bulls (+12.5)
The Spurs have thus far been unbeatable at home. Literally. Their average margin of victory comfortably exceeds the 12.5 points they’re favored by, and it looks as if Gregg Popovich will be deploying most, if not all, of his key players.
The Bulls, meanwhile, are still missing Jimmy Butler as he continues rehabbing a sore left knee. They have shown the ability to get up against big opponents, and their relatively uptempo play style could throw San Antonio for a whirl. But it’s unlikley. The Spurs are built to destroy every opponent that isn’t named the Golden State Warriors, and the Bulls, let alone the shorthanded Bulls, are no exception.
The Pick: Spurs (-12.5)
Denver Nuggets (-7.5) vs. Phoenix Suns (+7.5)
Although the Suns have started to figure things out on the offensive end, they’re still very bad. They have no defense of which to speak, and their shortcomings were on full display during their Wednesday night blowout at the hands of the lowly New York Knicks.
The Nuggets are still missing their leading scorer in Danilo Gallinari and have been inconsistent at best this season. But the Pepsi Center is their refuge. They play a style that allows them to exploit the change in altitude, and that impacts every opponent walking through the door. The Suns will be no different and are actually worse off, because, well, they’re the Suns.
The Pick: Nuggets (-7.5)
Los Angeles Lakers (+9.5) vs. Cleveland Cavaliers (-9.5)
One of these days the Cavaliers are going to stop just barely beating clearly inferior opponents. Is that day today? On the tail end of a back-to-back? Against a streaking Lakers team? When they put forth a largely unimpressive effort against the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday?
Yes. Yes, it is.
Keep an eye on the line if you’re not prepared to bet now. It could move if the Cavaliers decide to hand LeBron James, Kyrie Irving or Kevin Love a rest day. But so long as the Cavaliers plan on trotting out the entire crew at Staples Center, there are very few reasons to think that they won’t blaze past the Lakers by a double-digit point margin. Bet on a Cleveland blowout with confidence.
The Pick: Cavaliers (-9.5)More articles...