I last handed out a pick for NBA betting back on Friday and it got you a winner. I felt a -4.5 point spread was just too light for the Detroit Pistons as they prepared to battle the Atlanta Hawks and they agreed. Detroit proceeded to stomp the Hawks, notching me a win in the process and pushing my season NBA picks record to 13-4.
Hopefully you were along for the ride and were able to cash. Either way, I’m picking up where I left off prior to the weekend and trying to get another win on Monday night.
The good news is I’m on a roll. My season record is obviously strong, but I’ve also won two straight and five of my last six. On top of that, there are a lot of options on the board tonight, as bettors get a whopping nine NBA contests to choose from.
Of the lot, my personal favorite resides in D.C., where the Washington Wizards will host the Orlando Magic.
Aaron Gordon is iffy for the second game in a row, which plays into the Magic being pretty big +7.5 point underdogs. Washington has won three games all year, though, so bettors probably want to at least consider rolling with the Magic and their fat +275 moneyline.
I can’t go there, but I do see some value in this game. Let’s see where the best bet lies:
Orlando Magic (+7.5, -105) @ Washington Wizards (-7.5, -115) Total: 222 (-108/-112)
Backing the Wiz in general feels like a reach. Doing so at home (just 1-3 there this year) isn’t any safer. I think there is value with Orlando, especially if you catch wind that Aaron Gordon will suit up and can target this spread (-105) or moneyline (+275) before Vegas moves the lines.
But there’s a better angle and that’s the Over.
Washington has been all of the bad defensively. They’re giving up 119 points per game on the year and rank 27th in defensive efficiency. Getting Dwight Howard back hasn’t really helped them. The team is 2-3 since he debuted back on November 2nd and have given up 134, 95, 119, 117 and 110 points in those five games.
They held one team below even 110 points during that stretch and that was the Knicks. Big whoop.
The team they gave up 117 to? The very Magic squad they host tonight. Washington plays fast (7th in pace) and can put up points (110 per game), but the effort and production on the defensive end of the court has been abysmal all year long.
Orlando is far from a world beater. The Magic have historically been bad on the road and come in with a 6-7 overall record. For the moment, though, the Magic are 3-2 on the road and have the second best mark (4-1) in the league against the spread when playing on the road.
This is absolutely a clash of styles for the most part, as Orlando slows things down (18th in pace) and has at least been respectable defensively (14th). But the Wizards probably are going to get it going soon and will be on their home floor, so I do have to give them a tiny edge. That should also give way to John Wall dictating the pace in this one.
It’s all about pace and zero defense. The Wizards have at least pushed for a 222 Total lately, hitting 219+ in four of their last five games.
Orlando’s pace could slow things down a bit (4-9 with the Over/Under), but bettors have seen Wizards games hit the Over in 8 of 12 games. Considering the way the league has trended this year (there are three other games on this slate alone with a higher Total), I tend to think these two getting to 223 is quite doable.
Washington may very well win and cover, but points is where I’ll be putting my stock tonight.