8 p.m. ET – New York at Brooklyn (-8½) O/U: 223½
|Teams||Spread||Money Line||Total Points|
|New York Knicks||+8½ (-105)||+290||O 223½ (-110)|
|Brooklyn Nets||-8½ (-115)||-360||U 223½ (-110)|
The 20-19 Knicks make the short New York commute to take on the 26-13 Nets on Monday night. The Knicks blew Oklahoma City out of the water on Saturday night with a 119-97 win. Brooklyn has won four in a row, most recently beating the lowly Pistons on Saturday night 100-95. These two teams met on Jan. 13 when the Nets picked a 116-109 win. However, that game was prior to Brooklyn’s acquisition of James Harden and Kyrie Irving did not play.
New York is led by first-time All-Star forward Julius Randle, who leads the team with 22.9 points, 11 rebounds, and 5.7 assists per game. Randle had a monster game on Saturday, recording a triple-double recording 26 points, 12 rebounds, and 12 assists. The Knicks will be without Elfrid Payton, Derrick Rose, and Austin Rivers on Monday night.
The Nets will be led this time by Harden and Irving, two of their Big Three. They obviously will be counted on to step it up because of the absence of Durant and his lingering hamstring injury. The Nets also acquired another big-name player in Blake Griffin after Griffin and the Detroit Pistons agreed to part ways.
The Nets are rightly favored in this game, but the value pick lies in the Over/Under total and is the best place to target this game. Harden has slowed down every offense he has ever played on and with New York stringing together a point-guard rotation, this game could easily turn into a low-scoring affair. Brooklyn O/U totals have gone under in six of its last 10 games and that trend should continue as long as Durant is sidelined. Take the under on Monday night in a game that is sure to be a grind from the opening tip to the final whistle.
*Odds courtesy of MyBookie