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  1. #1
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    NBA 2015 - 2016 season picks

    Detroit Pistons – Utah Jazz

    Recommendation: Pistons ML

    Odds: 2.04

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket

    Stake: 1 unit (flat staking)

    Detroit destroyed Atlanta on the boards, having 59-40 advantage last night. Now it’s time for their home opener and it comes against one of the up-and-coming young West teams, Utah Jazz. Won’t spend too many words on Detroit, they need to show some consistency to make me believer, yet I have to admit I really liked their effort last night.

    Utah are the 4th youngest team in the league and they really have abundance of talent in all lines. Frenchman Gobert recorded a remarkable season last year and kicked his Turkish counterpart Enes Kanter out of the starting role (and the team afterwards, he was traded to Oklahoma). Trey Burke is the star among a few other young, fast and explosive guards (but his game still needs a lot of polishing). Forward Gordon Hayward is the future franchise player without a doubt. He’s all around type of player and already shows good leadership on the court, I predict a bright future ahead of him.

    Yet I can’t totally agree with oddsmakers who make Jazz a small fav in Detroit. It’s a small edge really as it should be a 50-50 type of game but I feel Pistons have better chance of continuing their good momentum after last night win and start the season 2-0 at home.

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  2. #2
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    NBA Minnesota Timberwolves – Portland Trailblazers

    Recommendation: OVER 203

    Odds: 1.925

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    Rejuvenated Minny welcomes Portland in Traget Center tonight. I guess Wolves will get a close win and send their fans home happy with a stunning 3-0 start (well, they didn’t meet quite an opposition really). Anyway I much more like OVER here, it’s way ‘’surer’’ call in my humble opinion.

    Minnesota showed decent game overall so far, bad opponents or not. They will hardly reach the play-offs of course, too weak defense, but at least offense is running and clicking under fresh Ricky Rubio distribution skills. Their Nr. 1 Draft pick, Karl-Anthony Towns, also showed a lot of promise with a fine display against Denver, shooting 11 from 19 for 28 points and adding 14 rebounds and 4 blocks to his tally!

    Portland is a team in transition, I doubt anyone on the upper management levels or among the players believe they have what it takes to reach the play-offs this season, after dumping 4 starters from last year line-up. At least though Damian Lillard is the undisputed franchise player now and he seems delighted with his role on the rebuilding team. C.J. McCollum is a very nice compliment to Lillard in the backcourt too, this young fella definitely can score the ball and I envision bright future ahead of him too.

    So what we have, 2 teams with clearly offensive mindsets (and personnel allowance) and total line of 203? Win or lose, I buy that, thank you very much, Vegas!

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  3. #3
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    NBA Atlanta Hawks – Washington Wizards

    Recommendation: OVER 203

    Odds: 1.917

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    Atlanta and Washington resume their rivalry in Southeast Division tonight. Hawks recorded a very nice 60-win regular season last year and saw Wizards out in 6 games during the Conference semifinals. It wasn’t as easy series for them as it sounds though, Washington kept most of the games close, especially the last ones. I very much suspect Hawks will continue their dominance over the opponent at home floor in Atlanta tonight but am much more interested in the total line bettingwise.

    Hawks rediscovered their mojo after the disappointing loss against Detroit at home in the opener. They not only recorded 6 straight wins but really found their rhythm in offense, corresponding with the return of key sharpshooter Kyle Korver in play. They still has the usual problems in rebounding the ball of course, that couldn’t be addressed easily but it’s just their way to win games with very good shooting percentage, thus lowering the weight of the rebounding factor Smiley

    Wizards will be highly motivated to dethrone Atlanta from the top of the division on their turn. As I’ve mentioned last time when speaking of them, everything’s about the strong backcourt here, Bradley Beal and John Wall. These guys like to run, penetrate and score, competing with whomever the opponents guard player is, and competing between themselves for the franchise player honors too (in a good manner for now) !

    You probably know by now where I’m leading you, OVER is the recommendation here.

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  4. #4
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    Los Angeles Clippers - Memphis Grizzlies

    Recommendation: UNDER 199

    Odds: 1.97

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    Clippers and Memphis resume their hard-fought rivalry from the past 3-4 seasons tonight and I will be quite surprised if the game doesn’t have at least a pinch of play-off intensity and atmosphere in it, with the whole history between these 2 teams!

    Clippers feel really sorry for themselves currently, after heavy close defeats against top rivals like Houston and GSW. Both games features some questionable situations and referee calls, gone mostly against Clipps, and Doc and his boys are angry at the world right now. So it will be fight for every ball from them but star point guard and floor general Chris Paul will likely miss the game again because of strained groin. His replacement is Doc’s son, the young Rivers, and he’s not up to the task really (albeit only a few players around the league could fill Paul’s boots in all honesty). So Clippers offense shouldn’t be so fluent tonight.

    Memphis also has their share of problems, some of their performances were quite flat for a contending team. Rumours are flying in the air about possible Zach Randolph trade (he is questionable tonight btw) and the atmosphere in the team is not perfect according all reports. What can they do to turn it around? What else except relying to their trade mark, the grinding stuffing defense.

    So we have two teams quite desperate for the win (or at least for a good stabile game to steady the ship), not really liking each other, to put it mildly. They’ve gone over this total line only 1 from 4 meetings last season and I strongly favour this trend to continue tonight.

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  5. #5
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    NBA Philadelphia 76ers - Toronto Raptors

    Recommendation: Raptors - 8

    Odds: 1.854

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    The spread seems a bit steep here at first sight, moreover the game is at Wells Fargo, Philly. Sixers will be the most pathetic team in the league for another season though (yes, even Lakers are better Smiley and this seems set in stone. Their coach Brett Brown still insist that his team can compete with anyone in the league (let’s take a minute and laugh at him) but when the talent and effort aren’t there, all is just wishful thinking. Sixers may welcome Nerlens Noel back in the squad tonight after injury but this doesn’t bother me too much, the guy is not showing any promise to fulfill his potential currently. Even the bright spot, rookie center Okafor, can’t help Philly too much. He records very nice stats for a rookie but this just doesn’t transfer directly in teams ratings.

    Raptors suffered a setback after their shockingly good start to the season, or more like the reality hit them hard. It’s true though that Toronto’s last loss against Knicks was a bit harsh, coming after a very bad referee decision in the key possession (Carmelo Anthony was clearly out of bounds and it should have been Raptors ball). So Toronto will be angry mad and motivated on 100 % for victory, I just hope they escape some stupid backdoor cover. Carrol and Terence Ross are questionable again for tonight (both will likely miss the game in fact) but DeRozan and Kyle Lowry showed their old form against New York, so more of the same, please!

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  6. #6
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    NBA New York Knicks - Cleveland Cavaliers

    Recommendation: Cavaliers – 6

    Odds: 1.862

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    From the school of blindingly obvious, I like Cavs here. They’re in form, 7 straight wins after the single loss in the opener and I’m sure Bron will give many and much to follow Steph Curry winning streak as long as he can. The game is in MSG but LBJ doesn’t usually pay attention to such details. He’s still the most dominant player in the game (definitely not the one with best skill set) and will surely try to impose his will on Carmelo, the rest of the Knicks team (pretty mediocre, excluding the rookie Porzingis), referees and even Spike Lee, the most famous Knicks fan Smiley Kevin Love is making way stronger season so far, reminding the old Love from Minny. Quite surprisingly, Mo Williams is fitting very well in Kyrie’s boots, making assists and providing scoring when needed.

    Knicks recorded 4 wins from 9 games but primarily against moderate opponents. They already lost by 10 points in Cleveland in the first game in the series and I doubt something could really change tonight. Carmelo is hit or miss, ok, but even if he scores 35 tonight, Knicks could still find a way to lose badly. Porzingis is great talent for the future of course, just not a deciding factor now. Jose Calderon has his best years left long beside him in his career and the returning from injury Arron Afflalo is rusty.

    So this is it, LBJ having an OK night should get the job done here.

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  7. #7
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    NBA Brooklyn Nets vs Atlanta Hawks

    Recommendation: Hawks - 4

    Odds: 1.862

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    Surprise, surprise, I’m backing Atlanta here against Brooklyn. It’s more a play against miserable Nets of course than a super confidence in Atlanta after their last struggles. Brooklyn’s season is already over, even after only 10 games into the season. They’re 1-9 and if someone in the organization or among the fans still believes in something good for this season, he’s probably the biggest optimist in the world. It’s not about tanking of course, too early stage of the season but this will happen later on. Lack of motivation, skill and veteran age are more than enough troublemakers for Nets currently.

    Atlanta will miss starting PG Jeff Teague but second string German teen Schroedder (remember that villain from Teenage Mutant Turtles, ha!) is a capable replacement, already showing great promise for his NBA career. Hawks will probably be outrebounded tonight, they’re around the bottom teams in the league in rebounding. I guess it will be the only category Nets could have an advantage. Moreover Nets make many silly turnovers and their offense is totally ineffective and inadequate at some points. Joe Johnson is way past the point where he was able to provide high class 1 to 1 isolation offensive production and Brook Lopez can’t do it all alone.

    In a nutshell, Atlanta just need to have an average to good game and will win easily; they have full dominance in the series in recent years btw. Nets need quite a spectacular shooting night, in addition to Hawks bad one, to have a chance. The choice is clear.

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  8. #8
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    NBA Milwaukee Bucks - Detroit Pistons

    Recommendation: Bucks ML

    Odds: 2.27

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    Milwaukee so big underdog at home against Detroit just doesn’t feel right. It’s true Bucks are not playing well lately but they lost 3 road games where it was ‘’supposed’’ to lose – against Washington, Cleveland and Indiana. Before these 3 losses, they actually defeated Cavaliers here. Jason Kidd was a player I really admired and a coach to watch for the future. I’m sure he’ll make the needed defensive adjustments so his team return back to winning ways. Center Greg Monroe will be extra motivated for sure against his former team. The management decided to put the franchise in the hands of the younger Andre Drummond and he has bigger potential than Greg indeed, yet Monroe is not a big man to be easily dismissed.

    Detroit have lost their momentum from early season on the road, 1-5 in their last 6 trips. Playing against the Bucks has proved to be a hard task for Detroit last season when they went only 1-3, so it should be at least 50-50 game tonight.

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  9. #9
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    NBA Minnesota Timberwolves - Atlanta Hawks

    Recommendation: OVER 205

    Odds: 1.909

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    Minnesota surprised Atlanta earlier this month, winning 117-107 on the road. It’s the third straight time and 4 out of last 5 when these teams entertain the public with high scoring games. I fully expect tonight’s game to follow suit and this total line seem a bit low by a couple of points.

    Reigning Rookie of the Year Andrew Wiggins played well in the first game in the series and is very hot lately. He is a superstar in the making and nothing could possibly prevent him, health issues aside, from fulfilling his potential in a few seasons. Ricky Rubio is also doing tremendous job in distributing the ball and adding assists to his tally, facilitating Wolves’ offensive rhythm. Last but not least, rookie center Towns is also making headlines with his contributions on both sides of the floor.

    Atlanta weakness is the rebounding as always, so Minny could rely on a few second chance points on the shoulders of Towns and Garnett. Hawks strength at the other hand lies in smooth ball movement, leading to many uncontested / easy shots and they are usually very effective at converting these.

    Here’s hoping that both teams play their usual game then, it should be enough.

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  10. #10
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    NBA Indiana Pacers - Chicago Bulls

    Recommendation: UNDER 198

    Odds: 1.934

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    The oddsmakers continue to give a bit higher line for the total in this match-up and I will continue backing it. My Pacers are real hot right now and maybe this is the reason for this line but…. It’s one thing to play against weak defensive teams like Wizards and Bucks (right now Bucks are terrible in defense, not in principle), and completely different story to play against stifling defense like Bulls’ one. Indiana are red-hot from beyond the arc but Chicago guards should be able to limit Pacers a bit in this area or at least slow down Pacers offensive rhythm.

    Bulls conclude their road trip tonight and tiredness would be a factor too. They did well, 2-1 in this trip with the expected loss against GSW. They struggle to create easy scoring opportunities though, even with Derrick Rose on the floor. It was totally evident against Portland, they led comfortably with 10+ points at some stage in the beginning of the 4th Q and then started choking quite badly. Shot clock violations, slow tempo attacks, desperate shots, etc. I rate Pacers better than Portland in every aspect of course so can’t really see Bulls solving this problem area tonight.

    All in all, this should be slow tempo game, at least Bulls will try to play slowly so I think UNDER is the best option.

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  11. #11
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    NBA Milwaukee Bucks - Denver Nuggets

    Recommendation: Bucks - 3

    Odds: 1.80

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    This would be a battle between two struggling teams. Denver are nasty with a single win in their last 8 games, 6 straight losses. Bucks are not much better frankly speaking, 2 wins out of their last 8. Their performance has been a bit better in the last games though, especially yesterday against Charlotte. Only the weak long distance shooting percentage prevented them from keeping the game much closer, and it was still a match in the last 2 minutes.

    The reason behind the improved performance was Jason Kidd decision to shake up the starting line-up a bit. He replaced Jabari Parker and Michael Carter-Williams with Mayo and Bayless respectively. This move boosted the defense which was vital for Bucks. No doubt that MCW and Parker are better players than their back-ups and will return to the starting line-up sooner rather than later but at least for now they should provide good ball distribution and attacking options in the second unit minutes.

    Denver will likely have Kenneth Faried back tonight but I doubt he can do something to turn their season around. They just lack enough talent. Gallinari is a good sharp-shooter but too inconsistent in the other parts of the game. Nuggets management is just waiting a few seasons for rookie PG Mudiay to grow up so they can start the rebuilding process around him.

    Teams exchanged home wins last season. Denver already recorded a win against Bucks on their home floor earlier this month but it was very close one, 103-102. Milwaukee’s turn now and I strongly favor the chance of history repeating this season.

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  12. #12
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    NBA Houston Rockets - New Orleans Pelicans

    Recommendation: Rockets - 4

    Odds: 1.952

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    I liked very much what I saw yesterday from Pelicans, in terms of how they failed to hold on to their lead and fell miserably to the pressure applied by veteran Grizzlies. No reason to quit the boat now then and I continue to fade New Orleans. They’re obviously back to back and play in Houston where the clock is also ticking for Rockets to finally turn their season around a bit.

    It’s not that I like Houston as a team, they rely solely on Dwight and The Beard, yet having 2 go-to guys is always better than having only one (Davis for Pelicans). Rockets improved their game, albeit by a small degree after the coach change. Harden should be happy now and let’s hope he will finally start delivering too. Once in a shooting rhythm, he is hard to stop in making 3’s and penetrating to the rim, even against excellent rim protector and paint defender like Anthony Davis. Dwight Howard have rested a bit after coming home from Houston last game in Detroit and should be able to contain Davis scoring threat on Rockets behalf subsequently.

    New Orleans are tragic on the road so far with 1-9 record and have lost 7 of 8 against this opponent here. They truly split the series last season 2-2 (each team winning also a road game) but Pelicans were better then, plus it’s a tough spot for them and I’ll be surprised to see anything different than a Rockets win here.

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  13. #13
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    Toronto Raptors - Golden State Warriors

    Recommendation: OVER 208

    Odds: 2.02

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    Toronto went as close as it gets to beating champions GSW this season. They almost completed an epic come back from double digit points deficit in the first game in the series this season. GSW still found a way to win it 115-110 in the end, quite obviously, as they are still undefeated. The last minutes featured a few disputed referee calls which went in GSW favour and Raptors should really feel a bit angry and motivated for revenge tonight.

    It’s easier said than done though, it would need a very special effort for any team to defeat Warriors for the first time during the season. Toronto are without starting center Valanciunas (broken hand) so the hard task of protecting the paint against the fast penetrations from GSW backcourt will fall to backup Bismack Biyombo. I very much doubt this will mean quite a lot of easy lay-ups for Curry and Co. Plus Golden State always have their 3-point shooting and they just need to hit a very average percentage in order to reach around 110 points in any given game.

    Toronto just can’t let themselves to play slow pace if they want to be close in 4th. Kyle Lowry is on fire lately and should take the bulk of the scoring load, feeling he should prove himself against the league’s best PG. All in all, I won’t be surprised to see the same kind of result as in the first game. Toronto plus the points are also a slightly attracting option but I just don’t have the balls to fade GSW until they record that first loss, even with close to double digit spreads

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  14. #14
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    NBA Cleveland Cavaliers - Portland Trail Blazers

    Recommendation: UNDER 200

    Odds: 1.917

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    Cleveland should win this game of course but the spread is kinda steep, almost double digit. They can cover it but I’m always cautious with one man teams big spreads (unless this man is called Michael Jordan) as just so many things may go wrong!

    Portland are b2b after a hard match in Milwaukee yesterday. Some fatigue factor could come in play but more importantly their shooting percentage dropped quite significantly in the last few games. This is pretty normal, frankly speaking, as they rely heavily on their 2 stars Lillard and McCollum to carry the offensive load. Both are good shooters but too streaky and inconsistent, at least at this stage in their careers.

    Mo Williams got some knock in the last game but is expected to play tonight, so Cavs perimeter defense is looking decent with him and Dellavedova as backup. LeBron will take the attack calls in the 4th quarter as usual and this will slow the pace down a bit.

    Both meetings in the series went comfortably below this line so I’ve a reason to fully expect the same result today.

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    NBA Washington Wizards - Houston Rockets

    Recommendation: Wizards - 3

    Odds: 1.892

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    It seems like these 2 teams are heading in a different directions currently.

    Wizards had a mini slump, some very bad no show games, caused by a rift between Superstar John Wall and Coach Randy Wittman maybe. This seems a distant past now though after a superb win in Miami. Wall showed a good leadership example, playing in the game and giving out his 100 % after he got a knee knock in the previous game. Wizards have never been world beaters so far and won’t suddenly become one from now on. They are resilient though, especially at home and should really start adjusting their home record for the season (4-6 currently). They’ve had one day of rest unlike Houston who are back to back. Center Marcin Gortat is expected to be back in the team and ready for action tonight after he attended his family in Poland for personal reasons last week.

    Rockets have even bigger problems than the ugly loss yesterday in Brooklyn. They lost Trevor Ariza after a hard fall to the floor. He was assisted in walking out of the court, never returned and his participation tonight is doubtful. Add to that the usual rest Dwight Howard gets in the second night of back to back spots (albeit no official info yet of course, it will become known shortly before game time) and the uncharacteristically bad offensive performance from Harden.

    I’m sure The Beard will be better tonight, it’s not so hard to eclipse a 10-point night after all but he will probably be entitled to guard one of Wall / Beal pair and this means a lot of easy baskets for the home team with the lack of defensive effort Harden is showing.

    In a nutshell, this is just the next ‘’normal’’ let down spot for Houston on their East trip

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  16. #16
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    NBA Utah Jazz - Oklahoma City Thunder

    Recommendation: Thunder - 3

    Odds: 1.84

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    Oklahoma looks like the real deal right now, going with strong 7 wins in the last 9 games. They’ve won comfortably against strong opponents like Atlanta and Memphis, and also have recorded an easy W here in Utah in the first game of the series, 111-89.

    No reason to expect much improved performance from Jazz tonight. They continue to sorely miss the starting center Gobert. Favors is making for a decent fill in the center position but it would be a high bid for him to contain Ibaka, Adams and Kanter all alone. No need to mention that Durant is back at the very top of his game and Russell is just … Russell. Utah have good defenders but no defender is good enough for these 2 when they’re in the zone.

    Everything’s clicking right for Thunder in the moment and any other result but an away win would be a surprise here.

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    NBA Portland Trail Blazers - New York Knicks

    Recommendation: Blazers – 3.5

    Odds: 1.98

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    These teams are heading into totally different directions right now. It’s not such a big surprise for the Knicks. The surprise was their good start of the season but the brutal reality hit them hard with 8 losses in their last 10 games. It’s all kept within the organization at this stage of course but I’d make an educated guess Phil Jackson is already actively exploring different trading opportunities for Carmelo, so Knicks collect some assets for him as they still can and start rebuilding around Porzingis. Speaking of the young kid, his production tailed off a bit lately but this is totally normal for a rookie and he has a great NBA future before him.

    Portland rebuilding season is going very well, above all expectations. They have very outside chance to reach the play-offs of course but never stop trying to win games. As I’ve said on a few occasions everything’s circled around Lillard and McCollum with Blazers. McCollum caught fire again in the last games after a mini slump and I can’t see the very average Knicks perimeter defense containing these two successfully.

    History is not so relevant because of the total Portland roster re-make, yet some trends are hard to turn around and Knicks are just in that kind of spot, with 12 losses here in the last 14 games

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    NBA Brooklyn Nets - Miami Heat

    Recommendation: Heat - 4

    Odds: 1.833

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    No surprises here, I’m in Nets fading camp again. They showed some signs of life in the close defeat against Clippers, only to erase all the good impressions with a blow-out at home against Orlando. Magic can’t really boast they have atomic offense and still Brooklyn let them shoot almost 54 % from the field, wnough said. I’ll not repeat myself either at the lack of motivation in Brooklyn too, prefer to focus on the Heat instead.

    Nets are one of Miami’s favourite opponents in recent times. They have 6 consecutive wins over them, including a 4-game clean sweep last regular season. Heat beat teams with defense and they got the most efficient shot blocker in the game in the moment in Hassan Whiteside. So Brook Lopez will get a very decent match in the paint tonight. Trading rumours are circling around Hassan by the way in the last couple of days, involving possible swaps between him and Dwight Howard or DeMacrus Cousins. Miami organization is of course denying all trade rumours, albeit the old fox Pat Riley will listen carefully to every single possibility as Hassan should be a max-contract player next summer and Heat will hardly be able to afford that. Nothing is coming with immediate effect though. Riley is a very clever man and should realize that swapping Hassan for Dwight is a stupid move, even allowing for the contract situation. DeMarcus is way more decent alternative but I don’t believe Kings will let him go so easily.

    So in a nutshell, Hassan should be ready to play and strong as always, he’s not a trouble-making guy anyway. Dragic got a tooth knocked off in the last game but should be ready to play too, so Heat in full strength should deal with Nets more or less easily.

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    NBA Miami Heat - Toronto Raptors

    Recommendation: Heat - 4

    Odds: 1.847

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    Again exploiting the tough schedule of the visiting team here. They are one of unlucky few teams to have a game yesterday night. Even more painfully, they’ve lost in OT in Charlotte after almost feeling the win in their hands with DeRozan scoring from the half court… only if Raptors’ coach hadn’t signaled for a time-out a second before the shot.

    So as a reward Toronto have to play another team playing hard defense. This is a little underestimation indeed as Miami leads Eastern Conference in points allowed and opponent’s shooting percentage. Raptors continue to play without starting center Valanciunas and DeMarr Caroll is also still on the sidelines with a knee injury. These two severely limit the team’s big men rotation and offensive power and I’m pretty sure Whiteside and Chris Bosh will have advantage tonight. Luol Deng is likely to miss the game for Miami at the other hand but he’s not much of a contributor as this stage of his career anyway.

    Last season Toronto won the season series 2-1 but Miami has tremendous advantage over them in the last seasons (ok, LBJ was still in Miami). Heat won comfortably the first game this season here 96-76 so another double digit win would be just in the correct order of things

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    NBA Minnesota Timberwolves - San Antonio Spurs

    Recommendation: OVER 196

    Odds: 2.00

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    Minny are shaky at home and have notoriously bad match-up against San Antonio, so I easily skipped the thought of backing them plus a ton of points. They’ve raised their offensive game to much better level compared to season beginning though. Lead by Ricky Rubio on the point, the ball movement and shot selection have been very decent in the last 5-6 games of theirs indeed.

    They still make a ton of turnovers which cost them losses in close games, yet Wolves surpass or get close to 100 points on regular basis currently. It will be way tougher game tonight than last easy win over Brooklyn as SAS have undisputed advantage in the series.

    Still Pop doesn’t like too many useless efforts thrown on the court once the win is secured. If they lead by 20 midway through the 4th Q, it’s easy to think they’ll let Minny score a bunch of easy lay-ups.

    Teams have surpassed this total line in 6 of the last 7 games between them, so hopefully this exact trend continues tonight.

  21. #21
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    NBA Chicago Bulls - Indiana Pacers

    Recommendation: UNDER 201

    Odds: 2.00

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    This game has all the necessary requisitions to be a low scoring one. Indiana and Chicago have been old rivals in the Central Division, going back to the old school times when MJ used to face Reggie Miller in a series of epic encounters and thrash talking battles J No love lost between the teams ever after and most games have some play-off bound atmosphere around them.

    Chicago have underperformed a bit this season as I’ve mentioned before. This is mainly caused by Rose / Butler competition for the stardom of being the franchise player, something which drops both guys’ game performances IMO. Things are not going into the right direction as Jimmy Boy is allowing himself a public critics on the coach, etc., so it’s highly probable a major change is coming over the hill for Bulls, i.e. Rose trade (so Butler is happy), coach change, etc. Until that happens though it seems Chicago like to reserve their best performance for the league’s better teams, where Indiana surely belongs.

    Pacers got back on the track with 2 consecutive wins after 3 games losing streak. Paul George is in the middle of a shooting slump but Monta Ellis and the bench guys have compensated it; yet Pacers usually don’t provide high scoring games without their leader and franchise player George being hot. Paul will surely be matched against Jimmy on both ends of the floor tonight, so will see whose player’ claims are more valid.

    I definitely think Pacers have chances to take this game but usually find it very hard to win in Chicago. These teams already exchanged one win this season, each taking his respective home game. The last 8 games in the series have finished under the total line here and I see very good chances this trend to continue

    from Bside’s Basketball Corner newsletter

  22. #22
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    NBA Orlando Magic - Indiana Pacers

    Recommendation: UNDER 198.5

    Odds: 1.97

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    Both teams need the win here, I expect quite hard-fought and physical game.

    Orlando have looked completely lost defensively in their last 3 road losses and Coach Skiles has publicly expressed that he expects way better defensive attitude tonight. Orlando enjoys strong home record so a better performance is surely on the cards, albeit I’m not sure Magic will be able to defeat Pacers.

    Indiana haven’t enjoyed much success in the New Year either, with 1 win in 3 matches. Starting PG George Hill was out last game with a food poisoning and his status is unclear today. His backup C. J. Miles left the game with right arm injury, also questionable. So Pacers will likely be a bit short on the ball distribution position and their ball movement may struggle.

    Both teams should start feeling some tiredness after the grueling holiday schedule, another pointer in the slower paced-game direction. Pacers drew first blood this season, defeating Magic in Indiana in a low scoring affair, 97-84. I fully expect something similar for one of the teams tonight, whoever shoots the ball better wins it

    from Bside’s Basketball Corner newsletter

  23. #23
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    NBA Los Angeles Clippers - Charlotte Hornets

    Recommendation: Clippers - 6.5

    Odds: 1.877

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    You’ll hardly find a better example for two teams going in opposing directions.

    Clippers are red-hot, riding 7-game winning streak, and most impressive of all, without their leading scorer Blake Griffin. It’s true they haven’t played any of the NBA power-houses, yet most of these wins came quite easy and comfortably, with a few starters on the bench in the waning trash minutes. They’ve won in Charlotte during this streak, 122-117.

    Hornets lost 5 in a row and are quite pathetic honestly. They just broke on the defensive end. Well, their excuse is the continuing injury crisis. They lack a player or two almost in every game. Big Al Jefferson is oit until mid Feb somewhere, and Nic Batum is questionable for tonight. Zeller will try to fill up the slack in the center tonight but I can only wish him luck against the monster that is DeAndre.

    Redick has helped significantly in carrying the offensive load for the Clipps, Chris Paul is as smooth as ever distributing the ball, and Charlotte should do a small wonder to escape defeat tonight, most probably a double digit one

    from Bside’s Basketball Corner newsletter

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    NBA San Antonio Spurs - Cleveland Cavaliers

    Recommendation: Cavs + 7

    Odds: 1.925

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    This game is the highlight of the night and has the potential to turn into instant classic.

    Both teams are in top 3 of the strongest basketball teams in the world right now (read top 3 in NBA ). San Antonio dynasty is on pace to record maybe the best regular season in franchise history, too bad for them GSW are stealing the best part of the plaudits with that shameless 36-3 record. Spurs have tuned their home floor into a real fortress, being unbeaten here so far with 22-0.

    Things are not looking quite promising for King James and his Cavaliers then. Let’s not forget that Cleveland was the last team to defeat SAS here in a regular season game, 128-125 in OT game last March. Cleveland are not so dominating over their opponents on the stats end, yet they also run 8-game winning streak of their own. It’s well known LBJ likes to impose a revenge on teams which have made him suffer in the past, and San Antonio definitely fall into that category. Kyrie is also very much the old Kyrie before his lengthy absence and has a definitive advantage in speed over his counterpart Tony Parker.

    It’s simple, two excellent teams will play basketball from another planet. Spurs chances seem slightly better really, but that’s why we get plus 6-7 points spread, not a neglectable insurance at all, so I feel it’s a must try here for the Cavs

    from Bside’s Basketball Corner newsletter

  25. #25
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    NBA Houston Rockets - Detroit Pistons

    Recommendation: OVER 206

    Odds: 1.884

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    The first game in the series finished 116-105 for Detroit and it will be pretty normal to expect a bounce back from Rockets and split for the season. I very much prefer the OVER play though as many reasons support the probability for an entertaining game.

    Houston have always relied on outscoring the opponent to win games, and frankly speaking they’re quite good at it. Detroit held them to under 40 % from the field in the first game and still let 106 points. Pistons themselves have slipped badly on the defensive end in their last 4-5 games, allowing close to 105 opponents’ points. Stan Van Gundy publicly expressed his disgust with his boys defensive effort but it’s easier said than done, especially when you play against a superstar looking at the referees everytime when somebody breathe too close to him.

    We’ll surely see quite a lot of heck-a tactics tonight, respectively Howard and Drummond. This is usually done in the early seconds of a possession so generally leads to a few more possessions being played in every quarter after the first one. If both centers make a miracle and score like 60 % from FT, that will surely be welcomed at my end too

    from Bside’s Basketball Corner newsletter

  26. #26
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    NBA New York Knicks - Los Angeles Clippers

    Recommendation: OVER 205

    Odds: 1.943

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket

    The frantic schedule is taking its toll as usual for the weeks preceding the All-Star weekend. Too many players are injured and their participation in tonight’s games is questionable, or at least their level of performance if they still dress up.

    Luckily the situation in this game is way clearer and I very much like this total line. Knicks have only 2 rotation players (Seraphin and lance Thomas) with knocks but they’re not so important. New York are perfect so far on their homestand with 2 wins out of 2 games. They were achieved against Sixers and Jazz though, both in overtimes and Knicks allowed 113 and 111 points respectively. So their defense is hardly at the required level, to speak mildly. Carmelo & Porzingis tandem is clicking at the other side of the floor though and this is what I need from them tonight.

    Clippers played yesterday in Cleveland, lost by 13 points. The score doesn’t make them much justice though as the match was closer as a level of performance. So tiredness is a minus of course, yet Knicks defense is not at a world-beating standard as I said. Chris Paul is angry because of his omission of All-Star starters and will likely go for some 25+ points again, nobody is even close to stopping him the whole Big Apple, let alone Knicks roster. Redick leads NBA in 3-pts. percentage with just under 50 % efficiency, and DeAndre will just do some DeAndre things (dunking on people and making 50 % from FT).

    I expect a sort of 102-108 game, more likely for Clipps, let’s see

    from Bside’s Basketball Corner newsletter

  27. #27
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    Los Angeles Clippers - Chicago Bulls

    Recommendation: Bulls + 5.5

    Odds: 1.925

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    It seems like q quite risky play but I am inclined to think Chicago have better chance than the spread and odds suggests. Clippers play good ball lately, no denying the obvious. Their pure stats line reads only 3 losses in the last 10 games. A more detailed glimpse behind the curtain though shows 2 of the wins came after OT, 2 of the losses were against good rivals (Cavs and Raptors), and finally LA really rode their luck in the wins over Indy and Atlanta.

    It seems like variance will make a move on them in a negative way very soon, moreover they tend to struggle on the offensive end against teams with decent perimeter defense (so Redick and Paul don't shoot too many uncontested threes) and a strong paint protectors (so DeAndre doesn't dunk too many times a game).

    Chicago definitely fills both categories. They are up and down this season generally, pretty poor stretch currently. Yet Bulls took nice wins over solid opponents like Detroit and Cleveland on the road, plus performed in a dominating fashion over Lakers (well, not really a great accomplishment). The spirit is high and Bulls surely want to make everything possible to record a road sweep over the Los Angeles teams. Rose will be additionally motivated to show a few good things against a top notch PG like Paul, Jimmy Boy should be also in a positive mood after being selected as an All-Star reserve. Pau Gasol and Gibson will have a hard but far than impossible task of slowing down DeAndre in the paint.

    All in all, the spread gives us a good cushion, it's a point or two bigger than what I expected

    from Bside’s Basketball Corner newsletter

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  28. #28
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    NBA Boston Celtics - Oklahoma City Thunder /

    Recommendation: Thunder -4

    Odds: 1.84

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    Boston’s need is slightly greater here arguably but it’s NBA and the motivation factor very rarely wins games by itself. Boston and Miami will fight each other till the last regular season game (probably) for the third seed in the East.

    Unfortunately, Boston seem like a team going through a rough patch lately. They lost against Houston here at Boston Garden and against Indiana yesterday. Celtics continue to play without forward Jay Crowder who is one of their better defenders (maybe even the best defender on the roster) and proven scorers like Harden and Paul George exploited this absence.

    Oklahoma never have troubles with scoring when both Durant and Westbrook play and there’s no doubt they’ll punish Boston too (not that Crowder could possibly stop any of these 2). Thunder recorded a very fine and confident win over Portland, by 20+ points and are ready to start this mini 3-game road trip on the right foot. Isaiah Thomas, Celtics best player this season, will be in quite a disadvantage against Russell, and Thunder have a bunch of decent big bodies in the frontcourt to throw at Sullinger, Amir Johnson and Jerebko.

    Boston took advantage of Durant’s absence in November to win in Oklahoma, the revenge is best served cold though and is coming back at them tonight

    from Basketball Betting Service Newsletter

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  29. #29
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    NBA Indiana Pacers - Oklahoma City Thunder

    Recommendation: Thunder - 3

    Odds: 1.877

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    Going against my favourite Pacers here as I don’t see too many chances for them tonight unfortunately. They are still on pace for landing our antepost bet on them for a positive season record and I doubt Indiana will let so big turnaround in their fortune as to miss the play-offs. First round exit is on the cards though and it’s evident that this team needs a second (semi-)star to help Paulie Gold as Monta Ellis can’t fill properly this role anymore.

    Pacers have lost 2 of the last 3 and have been outrebounded in these games. Myles Turner production dwindled which is very much excusable for a rookie but George’s shooting percentage lately (around 35 %) is not really.

    Thunder are roaring, at least when playing lesser teams J

    They’ve lost the first game in the series in Oklahoma and revenge should be a big factor for both Westbrook and Durant. Russell is having his best season arguably, recording triple-doubles with speed, being achieved only by Grant Hill and J-Kidd before. Oklahoma won easily against Sixers, preserved some energy for tonight’s game. Indiana won’t give up easily but Oklahoma will prevail in the end.

    from Basketball Betting Service Newsletter

  30. #30
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    Washington Wizards - Atlanta Hawks

    Recommendation: Wizards ML

    Odds: 1.943

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    I can’t quite agree with Hawks being the slight favourite here (at least with the opening lines). Wizards just won in a nice fashion over them (this is home-and-home series) in Atlanta, 117-102. Washington were way more aggressive, determined and motivated team and there’s no reason why they won’t play in the same way tonight.

    Atlanta are still a decent team and could bounce back strongly of course but they usually struggle here in Washington, at least in the regular season games. Wizards have won 4 of the last 5 regular season meetings in the series and boast a very strong home form overall, with only 1 loss in their last 10 home games. They have stepped up the pedal just on time to launch their challenge for the last remaining East play-off spot and will try to record their 6th straight win.

    They are clicking evidently, John Wall is playing like a player with no real flaw right now, Bradley Beal is shaking off some rust after the injury and the frontcourt is reliable with Gortat, backup Nene and the recent addition of the Morris twin (always got their names wrong, so they’re both Morris twins for me, now when in different teams J ).

    Overall, Wizards" arguments sound more solid here

    from Basketball Betting Service Newsletter

  31. #31
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    NBA Orlando Magic - Chicago Bulls

    Recommendation: UNDER 210

    Odds: 1.909

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    Things are not looking good for Bulls at the moment but they put them in this bad position on their own. Chicago lost both home-and-home series with out-of-picture Knicks and the worst thing was the performance. Pau Gasol is healing a lingering injury and his missing is crucial; he remains questionable for tonight. Jimmy Butler still can’t rediscover his shooting touch after the injury and it seems that this will be his task for the next season, missing the play-offs now like a serious threat. In these circumstances Bulls should turn to their tested weapon, the defense. Winning tonight’s game in Orlando is a must, otherwise they can say farewell to post season right away.

    Orlando have been pretty pathetic but they’re in off-season mode already. Oladipo will probably miss tonight’s game again and he’s one of their leading scorers.

    Teams have not passed this total line in 5 of their last 6 meetings, including both previous games so far this season. That’s why this line seems a bit on the high side for me, even if Orlando is playing without pressure and target to achieve. Bulls are still deserved favourites to win it but I doubt it will be an easy one, something like 95-100 sound good enough J

    from Basketball Service Newsletter

  32. #32
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    NBA Cleveland Cavaliers - Houston Rockets

    Recommendation: Cavs ML

    Odds: 1.833

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    LeBron will be given a rest tonight and this is why we have so low spread on Cleveland at home against a mediocre team like Houston. Cavs have more than enough quality in their roster to win this without LBJ of course; the question is will they be motivated enough? I think yes, as Tyronn Lue won’t be completely happy until they secure the first seed mathematically. Plus, Kevin Love and Kyrie will want to show they can be superstars on their own and not be held by the hand from the King all the way. Kyrie especially should be extra fired up because of the yellow gossips of his girlfriend dumping him, this must be really irritating for him at this important stage of the season, true or false. This is the perfect moment he proves his critics wrong.

    Houston will scramble with Dallas and Utah for the last 2 remaining play-off spots till the very end of the regular season most probably. Rockets have proved on many occasions they terribly need a real leader and not just 2 stars fighting with each other and caring for their personal stats mainly. This is the decisive time of the season and Rockets mostly fail lately. They have won only 4 games in their last 10 (1 in the last 5!). The last one in Indiana was a close one really but just showed once again Rockets are not gritty enough this season. The only factor that worries me a bit is Marcus Beasley. He is very reliable on the offensive end and really brings a spark from the bench. Cleveland second unit is overall better though, quite naturally. Houston’s defensive attitude is the usual failure cause anyway, so I’m pretty confident in the home win here.

    from Basketball Service Newsletter

  33. #33
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    NBA: Utah Jazz - San Antonio Spurs

    Recommendation: OVER 183

    Odds: 2.00

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket


    Utah are a top defensive team beyond any doubt. They’ve put another great run lately in their quest to catch the last play-off train, holding teams to under 90 points in their last 10 games or so. The only small problem is San Antonio is one of the teams Jazz can’t really slow down, but this could be said about many other NBA teams anyway.

    This is the 4th and final game in the season series. Spurs have won all 3 so far and a clean sweep is on the cards, regardless of the fact that Jazz are in greater need. Both games in San Antonio have gone comfortably over this line (198 and 221 points) and only the first meeting here was a defensive battle (96-78 for Sours). I’m inclined to believe exactly that game was a blip out of the trend though, as Jazz still weren’t able to contain Spurs. Tonight they just have to gamble and give everything they got for the win. Winning would mean scoring at least 95 points though, and this is the optimistic scenario!

    Popovich hasn’t announced yet any players to be given a full rest tonight, but it’s not excluded he changes his mind. I expect Spurs’ Big 3 plus Kahwi to play limited minutes in all cases though, as the win here brings very small value for them as it’s a road game and doesn’t mess with their unbeaten home games record. I like San Antonio bench a lot, it’s a bit stating the obvious their bench is one of the two best in the league (along with GSW one of course). Second unit don’t play as tough defense as the starters really (completely in line with our target tonight) but still remain remarkably effective on the offensive end.

    A home win wouldn’t be a total shock in these conditions, but the spread is on the low side (+3, + 4 points). I can easily see more scenarios ending with a road win, something in the range of 100-95 for SA

    from Basketball Service Newsletter

  34. #34
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    NBA Philadelphia 76ers - New York Knicks

    Recommendation: OVER 204

    Odds: 1.892

    Bookmaker: Pinnaclesports / Sportmarket



    It’s a friendly game basically so I don’t see any of the teams playing hard defense. They can’t play good D anyway, even more so now, without a real incentive

    Sixers should be slightly more motivated to win here in order to record a mini winning streak of 2 games, something they haven’t succeed to do so far through this season. They also have a new general manager, so a win would be a proper start for the young Colangelo. Philly are guaranteed to finish as the worst team in the league, the tanking job is done long ago. Carl Landry and Canaan found a good shooting form in the last games and I guess they will carry the scoring load again.

    New York will probably miss Porzingis again and this is kinda good for the OVER chances as Carmelo is way the better and faster shooter of course, and I prefer him having unlimited shot attempts against a broken Philly defense. Knicks young players will probably get extended minutes again, so more running and easy points off Sixers numerous turnovers hopefully.

    I still think Philly has slightly better chance to edge this. The spread is only 3 points in their favor though, not enough to instill a huge confidence in a team with only 10 wins so far. Something like 110-105 (in any direction) sounds about right here.

    from Basketball Service Newsletter

  35. #35
    thanks for collections

 

 

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