Milwaukee (18-25 SU, 23-20 ATS) at Miami (23-18 SU, 20-20-1 ATS)
A solid bet in the NBA is fading a team in its first game at home after a long road trip and that applies to this matchup as the Heat return from a six-game roadie that saw them go 2-4 SU and 3-3 ATS, with the two wins against the Suns and Nuggets.
The Heat opened as six-point favorites but the number has dropped to 5 ½ at most shops. Miami heads back on the road tomorrow for another five-game trip, which makes this spot even more difficult.
The Bucks have won two straight and three of their last four heading into this game, plus they should be rested since they haven’t played since Saturday when it dropped Charlotte 105-92 on the road.
Last season, Milwaukee won and covered all four meetings against Miami. The two victories at American Airlines Arena saw the Bucks win both contests by seven points and the ‘under’ cashed in each game as well. Prior to the season sweep, Miami had won eight straight and 11 of 12 against Milwaukee but it also had a guy named LeBron on its roster during this span.
Miami has gone 15-8 SU and 11-11-1 at home this season while Milwaukee has struggled to a 6-18 SU and 12-12 ATS mark on the road.
These teams will meet again in 10 days from Wisconsin.
Minnesota (13-29 SU, 17-24-1 ATS) at New Orleans (13-26 SU, 16-24 ATS)
The Pelicans are listed as five-point favorites over the Timberwolves and that line seems short considering most believe the home squad is much better despite both clubs having the same amount of wins. Despite its horrible start, New Orleans is only 5 ½ games out of the eighth and final playoff spot in the West but it needs to start winning.
Eight of the next nine for the Pelicans are at home and they’ll be favored in at least seven of those games. The Pelicans have gone 8-9 SU and 6-11 ATS at the Smoothie King Center this season while the Wolves are 7-12 SU and 12-7 ATS on the road.
New Orleans lost to Memphis 101-99 on the road last night and these situations haven’t been good for the team. The Pelicans started the season 0-7 SU and 3-4 ATS when playing on no rest but they have won their last two when facing back-to-back situations. Total bettors should note that the ‘under’ is 7-2 for New Orleans on no rest.
This will be the first meeting between the pair this season. New Orleans went 4-0 SU and 3-1 ATS against the Timberwolves last season and the two wins that took place in “The Big Easy” ended in blowouts by 48 and 22 points. The ‘over’ easily cashed in both those games.
Indiana (22-19 SU, 22-19 ATS) at Phoenix (13-29 SU, 16-26 ATS)
If there is a public trap game on the board tonight, then this is the one. These teams met last Tuesday and the Pacers drilled the Suns 116-97 as 12-point home favorites.
For the rematch, Indiana opened as a five-point favorite and it’s already up to seven at most books. Keep in mind that Indiana is 6-4 SU and 5-5 ATS as a road favorite this season and the team has struggled against the Western Conference this season, going 7-10 SU and 5-12 ATS. On the road, the Pacers are 4-6 SU and 3-7 ATS in non-conference games.
Phoenix was average at best with point guard Eric Bledsoe and losing him for the season has made things even worse. The club is 1-9 SU and 3-7 ATS since his injury and the offense has been held under 100 points in six of those games. To make matters worse, the Suns haven’t had a pulse this season versus the East, going 4-11 both SU and ATS. Only one opponent was held under the century mark, which has helped the ‘over’ 9-5-1.
Make a note that prior to last week’s loss, Phoenix had won four straight against Indiana and two of those wins came in the desert by a combined 41 points.
Lastly, possible look-ahead game on tap for Indiana with a nationally televised showdown on tap this Friday at Golden State.
Oklahoma City (30-12 SU, 18-24 ATS) at Denver (16-25 SU, 19-20-2 ATS)
The last game on the board is arguably the toughest to handicap just because the form for both clubs is very solid. Oklahoma City opened as an eight-point road favorite and it brings a four-game winning streak into this matchup against Denver, who has won three of its last four.
Delving into the Nuggets deeper, they’ve gone 4-6 in their last 10. While that doesn’t sound great, Mike Malone has this team playing well and their largest defeat during this stretch came by seven points.
OKC is clearly the better overall team and the team has been lights out when Kevin Durant returned at full strength. Since he came back in late November, the club has gone 22-5 with him in the lineup and all of the losses were by single digits.
You can definitely say Denver is due for a clunker but you can’t ignore recent wins against the Hornets, Warriors and Pacers at home.
The Thunder have won four straight and eight of their last 10 meetings against the Nuggets, which includes two wins this season. Both of those results came at home where the Thunder won by 24 and 10 points while going 1-1 ATS. OKC is just 1-2 both SU and ATS in its last three trips to the Pepsi Center.
OKC isn’t known for its defense but rookie head coach Billy Donovan has them focused lately. They’ve held four straight opponents under 100 points, all easy ‘under’ tickets. Also, the Thunder have gone 20-2 this season when holding opponents below the century mark. Denver likes to run but it does have trouble scoring (99.3 PPG) at times.
The total for this game is set at 212. OKC is one of the better ‘under’ teams (26-16) in the NBA but Denver (22-18-1) has leaned to the high side this season.