IT’S a busy day of action in the NBA and w have quite a few plays on offer today.
Here’s a look at our best bets for the action ahead:
Toronto Raptors @ New York Knicks
Less than a week ago the Raptors dismantled New York by 23 points as 7.5 point favourites at home.
Now, they travel to New York and find themselves only 4.5 point favourites? The simple fact is New York should not be gaining three points purely on home court in a match up where they were clearly out of their element.
We know the Knicks at Madison Square Garden are a different proposition altogether but the bookies are either overvaluing New York or severely undervaluing Toronto.
The Raptors have won the last eight straight meetings with the Knicks, and have covered the line in five of the last seven against them.
Kristaps Porzingis was held to his worst night of the season against the Raptors a week ago – shooting 3-for-13 and finishing with 13 points and four rebounds – and while those numbers may improve slightly he’ll again find it tough against the likes of Serg Ibaka and Jonas Valanciunas in the paint.
Ibaka is comfortable moving out to the perimeter as well and won’t be beaten easily by the Latvian here.
It seems Dwayne Casey has his players working perfectly in tangent at the moment, with the team covering the spread in their last four straight games and winning six of their last seven overall.
Offensively, they’ve average 117 points per game during in those wins and it’s hard to see how a Knicks team that still allows 103.6 points per game can possibly slow them down.
We have a strong lean on the road team here and have them covering 70% of the time, which is great value for the small-ish line that’s available.
Tip: Toronto Raptors -4.0 @ $1.92 (William Hill)
As we mentioned previously, Porzingis struggled drastically against the Raptors last week and while we do see his numbers (in particular his scoring) increasing this time out, he’ll still be given a tough time on the boards.
Toronto are by no means a terrific rebounding team but they do a good job of getting bodies on opponents big mean and boxing out for their guards to come and sweep up missed shots.
With very few offensive rebounding opportunities it’s hard to see how Porzingis will eclipse the 7.0 total being set for him on the market.
In his last six games, the European forward has gone above this total just once – when he pulled down eight boards against the Pacers. With the Raptors likely pushing the tempo and making easy baskets in transition his odds of clearing 7.0 are low according to our data.
While we’d prefer the hook of 7.5 for added value we still love taking him under the total in this one.
Tip: Kristaps Porzingis u/7.0 rebounds @ $1.88 (Crownbet)
Boston Celtics @ Miami Heat
– Boston Celtics @ $1.80
– Hassan Whiteside u/31.5 points & rebounds @ $1.88