NBA Picks - Brooklyn Nets vs. Dallas Mavericks (May 6, 2021)
With 11 days left in the regular season, all seven of Thursday’s games still somehow have postseason ramifications, none more so than the two national television affairs.
When he was traded from Houston to Brooklyn, James Harden was supposed to be the missing piece that was going to put the Nets over the top.
Instead, he’s just been missing.
Harden hasn’t suited up for Brooklyn since April 5, and this will mark the 20th game he’s missed since the trade. While the Nets were initially able to deal with his absence without missing too much of a beat, over their last 10 games, Brooklyn is just 5-5 and has a barely positive net rating.
In fairness, KD & Co. have faced a brutal schedule over that time, and the games they’ve lost have mostly come down to the wire. Still, facing the Mavs in Big D will be no bargain. Dallas is 7-2 over their last nine and 5-3 against the spread in their last eight.
Most concerning for Brooklyn – owners of the 27th ranked defense in the league during their recent rough patch - is that when the Mavs score, they win. Dallas is undefeated this season when they score over 120 points, with 16 wins after crossing that threshold. The Nets have allowed as many five times in their last 14 games. This makes it six out of 15.
The Pick: Dallas +4.5 @ -109 (Click here to bet)
NBA Picks - Los Angeles Lakers vs. Los Angeles Clippers (May 6, 2021)
The matchup lost some juice with the announcement that LeBron James would miss the game, but given what’s at stake, there’s still more than enough on the table to make it a good one.
For starters, the Lakers finally showed that they didn’t need the 4-time MVP to win a big game, as they used some stifling defense to bury the Nuggets earlier in the week.
It couldn’t have come at a better time. The defending champs had lost six of seven, with the only victory coming against the tanking Magic. As a result, they now find themselves in a dog fight to avoid the play-in tournament, meaning that every one of their remaining seven games is vital.
For the Clippers, they need a W almost as badly, but it has little to do with seeding. They’re all but locked into either the three or four spot, and with equal uncertainty as to who will wind up fifth and who will wind up first, the Clips don’t even know who’d they be playing regardless of their spot.
For LA’s other team, this is just about righting the ship. They’ve lost five in a row against the spread and are just 4-8 ATS in their last dozen games. No LeBron means giving more points than normal, and that’s simply not justified based on how the Clippers have been performing.
The Pick: Clippers -7.5 @ -105 (Click here to bet)
Other NBA Games - Thursday, May 6
Chicago Bulls at Charlotte Hornets
The Bulls are in an interesting spot, all but eliminated from playoff contention being four back of the red hot Wizards with seven games to play, and in a position to give up their pick to Orlando if it lands outside the top four. There’s still time for some tanking chicanery here, and Charlotte is fighting like heck to stay in the eighth seed. That’s enough reason to take the home team.
Washington Wizards at Toronto Raptors
Speaking of the Wizards, they were 14-3 against the spread coming into last night, and still have a chance to grab home court advantage in the bottom half of the play-in bracket. The Raptors have lost four of five and are under .500 against the spread at home this season. Go with Washington.
Memphis Grizzlies at Detroit Pistons
Detroit is a surprising 17-13-1 at home against the spread this season, but have lost seven of eight and have failed to cover in five of those contests. Meanwhile, the Grizzlies have lost four of five on the court and against the spread. This is probably a stay away, but take the points if you must.
Atlanta Hawks at Indiana Pacers
Atlanta will be playing on the second night of a back to back coming off a tough one Wednesday night against the Suns at home, while the Pacers will be playing the second consecutive night at home. Even so, Indy is dealing with rumors of a coach on the hot seat and the Hawks have been one of the top teams in the league since the break. Take them on the road here.
Oklahoma City Thunder at Golden State Warriors
Steph Curry coming off the best month of his career versus by far the worst team in the NBA for some time now. Is there really any doubt who you should take?
Thursday, May 6 NBA Expert Picks
Dallas +4.5 @ -109 (Click here to bet)
Clippers -7.5 @ -105 (Click here to bet)
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