What’s Happening Tonight In The NBA
NBA Game Predictions & Betting Tips
Cleveland Cavaliers (-15.5) vs. Brooklyn Nets (+15.5)
There is no doubt the Cavaliers will want revenge for their loss to the Nets last week, and they are playing at home, so there’s that. But the Cavaliers are a collective mess by their own standards, and while the Nets aren’t even close to championship contenders, the idea that Cleveland is a strong candidate to win by more than 15 points ranks as absurd. Take Brooklyn, and feel mostly good about it.
The Pick: Nets (+15.5)
Indiana Pacers (-7.5) vs. Orlando Magic (+7.5)
The Magic are not a good road team. That’s basically all you need to know. They sometimes play strong defense, but that won’t be enough to stalemate a Pacers squad that is both strong at home and better than Orlando on both offense and defense. Unless Indiana’s head coach, Frank Vogel, inexplicably decides to hand Paul George a rest day, there’s no reason not to take the Pacers.
The Pick: Pacers (-7.5)
Houston Rockets (-5.5) vs. Chicago Bulls (+5.5)
Is it possible to be playing your best basketball of the season and still losing a ton of games? Yes, yes it is. The Rockets are living proof. Their defense is still sludge, but the offense is humming and they’ve shown an ability to build huge leads and erase even bigger ones. The Bulls’ defense is always a threat to slow things down in their favor, but it’s difficult to invest in a Chicago squad that’s playing as if it’s already given up on this season.
The Pick: Rockets (-5.5)
New Orleans Pelicans (+6) vs. Denver Nuggets (-6)
Props to the Pelicans’ placeholders for putting up one hell of a fight against the San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday night. That effort, though, is bound to have taken a lot out of them. The Nuggets are no juggernaut by any measure, and their road performances this year have bordered on gross. But they carry enough power to cover this spread when facing New Orleans’ pool of reserves who are working on the tail end of a back to back.
The Pick: Nuggets (-6)
Oklahoma City Thunder (-15.5) vs. Los Angeles Clippers (+15.5)
This spread is enormous. And for good reason. With the fourth seed in the Western Conference just about wrapped up, Clippers head coach Doc Rivers is electing to sit DeAndre Jordan, Chris Paul, J.J. Redick and Paul Pierce. Throw in the fact that Blake Griffin isn’t yet eligible to play, and Los Angeles should not only bend, but break against Oklahoma City. The issue? There’s also a chance that Thunder head coach Billy Donovan decides to rest some of his studs. But Kevin Durant and Serge Ibaka took off during the Thunder’s loss to the Detroit Pistons, so they should be playing. Donovan could ask Westbrook to sit, but Westbrook isn’t the type to let that fly. Cautiously roll with Oklahoma City here.
The Pick: Thunder (-15.5)
Portland Trail Blazers (-3.5) vs. Boston Celtics (+3.5)
Despite what the national television schedule says, this is really the game of the night. The Celtics are expected to have Jae Crowder back, and the Blazers have been tough to beat at home. Both squads are also still jostling for postseason seeding, drumming up the interest in this one even further. Of the two, though, it’s the Celtics who, at full strength, are more balanced. They match the Blazers’ speed, rival their offensive efficiency and topple their defense. So long as Crowder is still on pace to play, take the points they’re getting as fast as you can.
The Pick: Celtics (+3.5)More articles...