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One of our expert hoops handicappers' gives his best picks for today's games

Saturday night saw Tim Duncan making his coaching debut with the San Antonio Spurs after coach Greg Popovich was ejected, and Paul George dropping 37 points in a Clippers win.

On Sunday, both the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics look to continue to build on their 10-win first-place starts to the season.

Take a look at today’s NBA picks:


Atlanta Hawks @ Los Angeles Lakers, 9:30 PM

  • The Lakers have a 102 record as a favorite, and are 8-4 against the spread which is third best in the NBA. Hawks/Lakers stats taken from Statschecker.

The Lakers sit atop of the Western Conference by a half game with a (10-2) record.

Los Angeles narrowly avoided an upset at home by defeating the Sacramento Kings 99-97 on Friday night.

LeBron James stuffed the stat sheet with a double-double and a team-high 29 points and 11 assists, adding four rebounds and three steals.

The Atlanta Hawks (4-7) fell hard on the road, losing 150-101 to the Los Angeles Clippers.

All five Hawks players scored in double figures as Trae Young led the way doing what he could. Young had a tough night shooting yet managed to score 20 points on 4-of-16 shooting with six assists and five rebounds.

The Lakers are 6-1 at home this season and although they’ve played well against the spread, 13.5 points is too much for me to fade against the sneaky Hawks.

Take Atlanta to cover (+13.5) on the road.

2u - Atlanta Hawks (+13.5) @ -105

Boston Celtics (-2.5) @ Sacramento Kings, 3:30 PM:

  • The Celtics have a 74-1 (62.5%) ATS record against the Kings since 2013-14. Celtics/Kings stats taken from Statschecker.

The Boston Celtics are the hottest team in basketball on a 10-game winning streak, and hold the top spot in the Eastern Conference at (10-1).

Boston kept their streak alive on the road and avoided an upset by defeating the Golden State Warriors 105-100.

Three Celtics starters scored above 20 points - Jayson Tatum, Kemba Walker and Jaylen Brown. Tatum had a team-high 24 points and eight rebounds, Brown added 22 points and eight rebounds, and Walker had 20 points with five assists and five rebounds.

The Sacramento Kings (4-7) snapped a two-game winning streak, falling on the road to the Lakers 99-97.

With team-leading scorer De’Aaron Fox sidelined, Buddy Hield scored 21 points with eight rebounds in a losing effort.

Despite a close game in LA, my expectation is Boston takes care of business in Sacramento against the short-handed Kings.

1u - Boston Celtics (-2.5) @ -110

Denver Nuggets (-6.5) @ Memphis Grizzlies, 6:00 PM:

  • The Nuggets have a 412 (25.0%) W/L record against the Grizzlies at FedExForum since 2010-11. Nuggets/Grizzlies stats taken from Statschecker.

The Denver Nuggets (8-3) got back on track and have won five of the last six games after defeating the Brooklyn Nets 101-93 on Thursday night.

Nikola Jokic led the way with a solid double-double scoring 18 points on 8-14 shooting with 10 rebounds and three assists.

The Memphis Grizzlies (5-7) picked up a third consecutive win following a narrow 107-106 upset win over the Utah Jazz.

Rookie Ja Morant continued to be a stud scoring a team-high 25 points on 9-of-22 shooting with eight assists. Jae Crowder contributed a double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds.

Memphis has caught a second wind and seem consistent as of late. Look for the Grizzlies to keep this close, and potentially win outright against Denver.

1u - Memphis Grizzlies (+6.5) @ -105

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