The Heat face an interesting potential stumbling block on their road to the most consecutive wins in NBA history when they travel to Milwaukee tonight. They have won twenty games in a row and are favored by a healthy five and a half points tonight, however more than a few pundits are claiming that tonight could be the end of a glorious month and a half of victories. I’m shying off an official pick tonight because of the spread, but I do think the Heat go blackjack tonight and run their streak to 21.
The Lakers have an interesting challenge tonight as well. They are nearly a double-digit underdog tonight in Indianapolis, with Kobe Bryant still listed as “out indefinitely.” Since I don’t know exactly WHAT that means, I’d avoid wagering on tonight’s game as well. It’s too much of a wildcard for my taste.
Instead, for tonight’s pick let’s take a look at the two hottest teams in the “Non-Heat” category; a pair of teams that would have the collective hoops world going gaga if not for the aforementioned Miami Heat. Both Memphis and Denver seem incapable of losing – but they play tonight, so something has to give. Let’s take a look at just WHOM that will be…
Memphis Grizzlies at Denver Nuggets -5
Memphis enters tonight’s game winners of six in a row, and winners of 14 of 15 with their only misstep being… yep, at Miami. All of those wins have come in the post Rudy Gay era, which underscores a point made a while back here – that scoring numbers aren’t nearly as important as efficiency. The Grizz are a little less dynamic and flamboyant without Gay, but they are a much more efficient team and seemingly more focused as well. They are actually percentage points ahead of the Clippers for the 3rd spot in the West – and nearly anyone has seemed to even notice. A win tonight would certainly grab some attention…
That’s because Denver is even hotter than the Grizz. They are looking to establish their longest win streak in thirty years. They have won 11 straight overall and 15 straight at home. Their home record of 28-3 is the best in the NBA and they’ve won many of those games in dominant fashion. They just beat the Knicks by 23 (and it could have been 100), the Clippers by 15 and the Lakers by 11. Good teams come into Denver playing good basketball… and leave with their tails between their legs.
I like Denver to keep up their ridiculous play at home tonight in a fun and entertaining game that could very well be a preview of an insanely good first round playoff series. However, for tonight, home court advantage will prove just enough to earn the Nuggets another home cover.
Free Pick: Denver Nuggets -5