Tuesday February 9 - Picks & Predictions For Today's NBA Slate
The top teams in each conference are both in action on Tuesday night, each against a formidable opponent. Plus, the back end of a two-game set with one significant change since the teams last played.
The train keeps moving.
Make it a 14-1-1 betting record over the last 16 games for the Jazz. Their most recent cover – a 103-95 victory in Indiana to finish an undefeated East Coast trip – was closer than most of the wins that have dotted their league-best 19-5 record.
It was also somewhat of an anomalous performance. The Jazz were only 13-for-42 from deep, good for a 31 percent conversion rate. That’s the lowest mark of the season for Utah, who has five rotation regulars hitting above 40 percent from long range.
Enter the Celtics, who have been top 10 in the league in both limiting the frequency of opponents’ threes and preventing them from going in. If there were ever a team that could continue Utah’s cold shooting for one additional night, it might be them.
On the flip side, the Jazz are second in defense this season and third in the last two weeks. Boston’s offense has hit patches of stagnation all year long, failing to hit 100 points five times, while only scoring over 120 once in the last three weeks. Given the fact that Utah averages over 114 points per game – not to mention them being the surest bet in sports right now – they get the nod.
The Pick: Utah - 4.5 - Click To Bet
Philly sits atop the East with a 17-7 record that includes 13 covers against 10 beats and one push, but they’re a different team away from home, going just 6-5 on the road and a 4-5-2 record for bettors.
In the Kings, they get one of the hottest teams in the NBA. Not only does Sacramento have a winning record at home, but they’ve covered eight spreads in a row overall. De’Aaron Fox was just announced as the NBA’s Player of the Week and Tyrese Haliburton is the current favorite for Rookie of the Year.
Sacramento also carries the best spread differential in the NBA over the last two weeks according to Cleaning the Glass, whereas Philly has the 9th worst. During that time frame, the Kings actually have a better net rating than the Sixers.
Ride the coaster for as long as it goes. The Kings are officially good.
The Pick: Sacramento + 4.5 - Click To Bet
Miami Heat at New York Knicks
Back for round two.
These two teams just played, and what was a two-point game with just under two minutes to go ended up getting covered by Miami by a half a point, 109-103.
There’s a chance it shouldn’t have been that close. New York has had a number of bright spots this season, but 3-point shooting hasn’t been one of them. On average, the Knicks hit fewer triples than all but one other team and convert them at a bottom-10 rate.
But on Sunday afternoon, they tied their season high with 16 makes from long range on a season high 42 attempts. That included a career high seven bombs from Reggie Bullock, who coming into the afternoon had made more than three just twice. Julius Randle and RJ Barrett have also been riding hot streaks from behind the arc.
Without those conversions, the Knicks offense might have been even more stuck in the mud than it has often been, evinced by their bottom seven ranking. The wild card here might be Derrick Rose, who New York acquired for Dennis Smith Jr and a second rounder. With as well as he knows head coach Tom Thibodeau, Rose should be able to make an immediate impact whenever he gets a chance to play. It could be Tuesday.
The Knicks have shown grit all year and Miami has yet to win three games in a row this season. They’ve won two straight, so stick with the trend here.
The Pick: New York - Click To Bet
The Nets will be without Kevin Durant but should be getting Kyrie Irving back after a sprained finger caused him to miss Saturday’s loss to Philly. Against a Pistons team who kicked their tank into high gear with the acquisition of Dennis Smith Jr, that should be more than enough.
John Wall will be back after a one-game absence, joining Victor Oladipo in a Rockets lineup that has vaulted to second in the league in defense but that just gave up 119 in a blowout loss to Charlotte on Monday night. In the Pelicans, they get a team riding a three-game winning streak, and more importantly, one not playing the second half of a back to back. Go with the well-rested home squad.
They played Monday night, and it was a close game throughout. That’s to be expected from two solid teams in the thick of the West playoff race. Take the points.
Portland has covered four of six while Orlando has failed to cover five of six. The Magic also have the second worst net rating in the league over the last two weeks. Don’t overthink this one.