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

Some of the best sharpshooters in the game face off on Saturday night as the NBA’s leading scorer James Harden and the Houston Rockets host Devin Booker and the Phoenix Suns.

Here’s a look at today’s NBA picks:


Memphis Grizzlies @ Utah Jazz (-12), 10:00 PM:

  • The Grizzlies have a 13-26 ATS record as an away team coming off two days’ rest since 2014-15. Stat courtesy of Statschecker.

The Grizzlies and Jazz have split this season’s two meetings, both of which took place in Memphis. This time, Utah will be at home where they have enjoyed great success this season (8-2).

Utah (12-10) dropped a third consecutive game after losing 121-96 at home to the Los Angeles Lakers.

Donovan Mitchell did what he could to keep the game close by scoring a game-high 29 points on 11-of-24 shooting with five assists and four rebounds.

Memphis (6-15) lost a second straight game, falling short on the road to the Chicago Bulls 106-99.

The Jazz were short handed without rookie Ja Morant and forward Kyle Anderson, but center Jonas Valanciunas picked up the slack with a monster double-double totaling 32 points and 13 rebounds.

Utah’s defense has been top notch this season, ranking ninth best by allowing 105.9 ppg. On the other hand, Memphis ranks the fourth worst in the NBA, allowing 116.5 ppg. Take the Jazz to cover the spread (-12), especially if Morant and Anderson remain sidelined.

2u - Utah Jazz (-12) @ -110

Phoenix Suns @ Houston Rockets (-10) , 8:00 PM:

  • The Suns have a 2-3 ATS record in night games at Houston since 2016-17.
  • Houston has a 10-8 ATS record against the Suns since 2014-15. Stat courtesy of Statschecker.

Two of the highest-scoring offenses in the NBA clash tonight when the Suns travel to the Toyota Center to take on the Rockets. Houston has the second highest average of 120.8 ppg and Phoenix isn’t too far behind, ranking fifth with 115.6 ppg.

The Houston Rockets (14-7) got back on track by defeating the Toronto Raptors 119-109 on the road.

Houston’s high-powered offense has been led by the efforts of Harden who has been playing on another planet, averaging a league-high 38.7 ppg.

On Friday, the Phoenix Suns (10-11) avoided a near late-game collapse to edge out the New Orleans Pelicans 139-132 in overtime.

Booker broke out of his slump in a big way, bagging 44 points on 13-of-24 shooting with nine assists and eight rebounds. 

Phoenix has won two its last three but lost seven of its previous 10 games, and although Booker has found his form, I don’t expect that to be enough to outlast the Rockets.

1u - Houston Rockets (-10) @ -110

New Orleans Pelicans @ Dallas Mavericks (-9), 2:00 PM

  • The Dallas Mavericks have a 13-8 ATS record this season which is the fourth best in basketball.
  • New Orleans has a 5-8 ATS record in Dallas since 2010-11. Stats courtesy of Statschecker.

The Dallas Mavericks (15-6) picked up a fourth straight win after outlasting the Minnesota Timberwolves 121-114 on Thursday night.

Luka Doncic has been sensational this season, scoring the third most points in basketball (30.3 ppg). Led by Doncic, Dallas has the fourth best offense in basketball with a 118.0 ppg average.

New Orleans (6-16) dropped a seventh consecutive game after falling short of a comeback in a 139-132 defeat by the Suns. 

Lonzo Ball made plays on both ends of the court, posting a double-double with 20 points, 11 assists, six rebounds, three steals and two blocks.

The Pelicans have struggled on the road (2-8) and that is unlikely to change on Saturday. Roll with the Mavericks to easily cover the spread (-7.5).

1u - Dallas Mavericks (-9) @ -110

By Stephen Rodriguez


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