Both the Kings and I happily snapped unpleasant streaks last night. The Kings won their first game in eleven tries at home against the San Antonio Spurs. The 94-91 win was enormous for Sacramento. Not only did they exercise some long-lingering demons, but they also washed away the lousy taste from the gut-punch buzzer-beater loss at Memphis. The Kings are now 6-4 after playing the toughest ten-game schedule of any team in the NBA.
On a personal note, it also snapped a miserable week of NBA futility, and with that now settled, it’s time to go on a nice run and get those early season profits back. Sundays belong to the NFL, but there are a few good NBA games on the schedule. Let’s sift through a limited slate and pick up another winner.
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Today’s Free Pick:
Milwaukee Bucks at Miami Heat -4.5 (Total: 190)
The Heat started off strong but were a bit disappointing last week, dropping back-to-back games against the Pacers and Hawks. The Pacers loss was especially troubling as it came in Miami (though the Pacers consolidated the break by winning at Chicago – what are you DOING Indiana, have you seen Jahlil Okafor??). So which Miami team will we see tonight? The team that started 5-2 with wins over Dallas, Toronto and Washington, or the team that has slept-walked through the past week?
Meanwhile, Milwaukee has been a rather pleasant surprise and has shown some flashes of growth. They are only 4-5, but they are 6-3 ATS and are the only team in the NBA to hand the Grizzlies a loss so far this season. They are doing it with defense, holding opponents to 41.9% from the floor. However, they are not getting it done offensively, averaging just 91 points per game. They haven’t scored 100 in a game yet this season, and that could be a problem on the road against a Miami team that knows they can’t afford to mail in another should-win.
Miami is one of the most efficient teams in the NBA. They are shooting 47.4% from the field and have a 1.78 assist/turnover ratio – both are well above the league average. Milwaukee ranks below the league average in both categories and near the bottom of the league. If I can get the better team, the more efficient team, and get them playing at home and well-rested and only lay 4.5 points, that seems like a pretty good value.
I’ll take Bosh, Deng and Wade to lead the Heat to a nice, relatively-comfortable home win tonight in South Beach.