More than two thirds of the league will be in action on Saturday, so we’re going to try something a little different for today’s column: I’ll give one or two stats per team that should come into play when figuring out which way to lean on the eight most interesting games of the day. Let’s get to it:
Portland Trail Blazers at New York Knicks
Portland: According to Cleaning the Glass, the Blazers are the third worst team in the NBA with a negative 3.4 point differential relative to the Vegas spread. They also haven’t covered three consecutive games all season long, and they’ve covered the last two before this one.
New York: Conversely to the Blazers, the Knicks are the second best team in the NBA with a positive 3.3 point differential relative to the Vegas spread. They also covered their last game against Portland on January 24, which was the fifth road affair in six games for the Knicks.
The Pick: New York + 1.5 - Click To Bet
Denver Nuggets at Sacramento Kings
Denver: The Nuggets have the fifth ranked offense in the NBA this season but only the 10th ranked offense over the last two weeks.
Sacramento: The Kings have the 30th ranked defense in the NBA this season but the eighth ranked defense over the last two weeks. They have also covered six spreads in a row, and have the third best point differential relative to the Vegas spread over the last 14 days.
The Pick: Sacramento +2.5 - Click To Bet
Brooklyn Nets at Philadelphia 76ers
Brooklyn: They have a 121.5 offensive rating over their last dozen games, which is not only tops in the league by nearly two points over that time, but would be the highest in NBA history by a considerable margin.
Philadelphia: Over those same dozen games, Philly’s defense – the backbone of their team – has fallen from the second-place ranking it held after 11 games all the way down to 11th place. They are 9-3 over that span, but have not faced a single top-five offense during that time.
The Pick: Philadelphia -1.5 - Click To Bet
San Antonio Spurs at Houston Rockets
San Antonio: The Spurs have the 24th ranked effective field goal percentage in the league on the season. When they don’t shoot well, they lose, going just 1-6 in their seven worst shooting games of the year.
Houston: The Rockets have the number one defense in the league over the last two weeks according to Cleaning the Glass, and for the year they have given up the third lowest effective field goal percentage to opposing teams. They’ve also won seven of eight overall and covered six of those contests.
The Pick: Houston -1.5 - Click To Bet
Golden State Warriors at Dallas Mavericks
Golden State: The Warriors are 11-0 when they score over 108 points this season.
Dallas: The Mavericks have given up more than 108 points in 13 consecutive games
The Pick: Golden State + 4 - Click To Bet
Memphis Grizzlies at New Orleans Pelicans
Memphis: The Grizzlies have the highest point differential relative to the Vegas spread in the NBA. Over the last two weeks, they have exceeded their Vegas spread by 14.0 points per game, which is the best margin in the NBA by nearly five points over that time frame.
New Orleans: New Orleans entered play on Friday night as one of only three teams to cover the spread in 40 percent of their games or less. They face a Memphis team that is 6th in the league in defense and the Pels are 1-10 when they score fewer than 113 points.
The Pick: Memphis +1 - Click To Bet
Detroit Pistons at Los Angeles Lakers
Los Angeles: The Lakers never lost multiple games to an under-.500 team last season. They lost to Detroit a week ago, and LeBron James does not have a short memory.
Detroit: The Pistons are playing on the second night of a back to back. They entered Friday night with the worst winning percentage in the NBA.
The Pick: Los Angeles -14 - Click To Bet