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

Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons stole the show on Wednesday night with his first career made three-pointer, while Luka Doncic recorded a 35-point triple-double in the Dallas Mavericks’ 48-point win over the Golden State Warriors.

On Thursday night, Carmelo Anthony and the Portland Trail Blazers travel to Milwaukee to take on reigning NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Bucks.

Here’s a look at today’s NBA picks:


New Orleans Pelicans (+4.5) @ Phoenix Suns, 10:30 PM:

  • The Suns have a 15 W/L record against the Pelicans at home since 2016-17.
  • Phoenix has a 916 ATS record in night games against the Pelicans since 2012-13. Stat courtesy of Statschecker.

The Phoenix Suns (7-6) fell short of a comeback effort and dropped a second straight game after losing to the Sacramento Kings 120-116.

Devin Booker was lights out shooting 10-of-20 from the field for 30 points, eight assists, five rebounds and two steals.

Kelly Oubre Jr. made plays on both ends of the floor with 20 points, eight rebounds and five steals.

New Orleans hits the road to begin a three-game road trip after picking up back-to-back wins for the first time this season. The Pelicans (5-9) spoiled Carmelo Anthony’s return to the NBA by defeating the Portland Trail Blazers 115-104.

Jrue Holiday posted a double-double with a team-high 22 points and 11 assists with five rebounds.

Brandon Ingram was next in line with 21 points on 8-of-20 shooting with seven rebounds, five assists and two steals. JJ Redick added 18 points on 6-of-12 shooting including four made threes.

New Orleans has struggled on the road (1-5), yet I’m taking them with the points (+4.5) to keep this close in Phoenix.

2u - New Orleans Pelicans (+4.5) @ +100

Portland Trail Blazers (-11.5) @ Milwaukee Bucks, 8:00 PM

  • The Bucks have a 123-1 ATS record against the Trail Blazers since 2011-12, including 4-1-1 ATS in night games against Portland since 2016-17. Stats courtesy of Statschecker.

The Milwaukee Bucks (11-2) won a fifth straight game after outlasting the Atlanta Hawks 135-127 on Tuesday night.

Giannis Antetokounmpo muscled his way to a 14th consecutive double-double with a team-high 33 points,11 rebounds and four assists.

Eric Bledsoe contributed 28 points on 8-of-17 shooting with seven rebounds and five assists.

Led by the reigning MVP, Milwaukee has the second-best offense in the NBA averaging (118.5 ppg).

Meanwhile, Portland (5-10) have been on a downward spiral, losing eight of the last 10 games.

The Trail Blazers’ struggles continued in New Orleans despite Anthony’s team debut, losing to the Pelicans 115-104.

Anthony scored 10 points on 4-of-14 shooting and grabbed four rebounds. CJ McCollum contributed a team-high 22 points and five assists.

Portland was without team-leading scorer Damian Lillard who was dealing with back spasms and his presence was missed. Lillard leads the team in points (28.6 ppg) and assists (7.1 apg) this season.

If Lillard remains out, Milwaukee should easily cover this spread (-11.5) at home.

1u - Milwaukee Bucks (-11.5) @ -110

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By Stephen Rodriguez


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