These odds were taken from Bovada at 9:39 pm CT on 12/16/2017.
The losses kept coming on Saturday, as the Oklahoma City Thunder didn’t come close to taking down the Knicks in New York. I was well aware of the chance the Thunder would be tired after their 3OT battle in Philly the night prior, but really felt they could take down a Knicks team that wouldn’t have either Kristaps Porzingis or Tim Hardaway Jr.
Sadly, that wasn’t the case and I’m now 11-17 on the year with my TSG NBA picks. I had a decent start initially, but my current drought has things looking pretty rough.
The hope is to get back on track to close out the week, but the pickings are admittedly slim on a tiny 4-game NBA betting slate. The game of the night is undoubtedly an interesting matchup between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Washington Wizards, but I prefer the value in a likely shootout between the Indiana Pacers and Brooklyn Nets.
Let’s dive into this matchup and see about getting a win:
Indiana Pacers (-3) @ Brooklyn Nets (+3) Total: 217
Indiana is the better team at first glance in just about every regard. They took a nice 140-131 win earlier this year over the Nets and have won four straight games in this series. D’Angelo Russell and Jeremy Lin were on hand for that one, but that still should serve as a solid example of the pace and upside this game could provide.
The Pacers have also been impressive (17-12) against the spread this year and enter this explosive showdown with the NBA’s 6th most efficient offense.
Both teams will be looking to get on the winning path, as both the Nets and Pacers have dropped each of their last two contests. Neither has been too high or low lately, however, with both teams going a pedestrian 5-5 over their last 10 contests.
While the Pacers impress offensively and have more star power, the Nets look like they can hang in this one on paper. That was certainly the case when these teams first met this year, while the Nets boast the league’s 2nd best pace. They’ve also been really pesky when it comes to ATS data, as they’re a stellar 17-11 against the spread and are also a solid 4-2 ATS as a home underdog.
I’m not really interested in figuring out if this is a nice spot for the Pacers or Nets to will their way to a win. Instead, I’m attacking the Over in a matchup that demands it. These two teams combined for an absurd 271 points the last time they faced off and their styles align for a very fast-paced and explosive showdown.
The best part is bettors are getting value here. A few days back I marveled at a low 213 Total in a Warriors game and that was weighed down by the Dallas Mavericks only putting 97 points on the board. In this one, both teams are capable of generating solid offense and there’s also very little defense to be concerned about.
Indiana has some defensive chops in terms of individual talent, but they’re still just 17th in defensive efficiency. Brooklyn (20th) is a little further down the ladder and I think it’s fair to expect a good amount of scoring out of two teams that don’t defend and love to run.
A Total of 217 is a great value on paper and with this game at the Barclays Center, it makes sense for the Nets to show up and keep it competitive. The only real risks would be the game getting out of hand or the Nets not putting points up, but they’re only getting added scoring help with new additions Jahlil Okafor and Nik Stauskas finally seeing court time.
Neither of these teams are all that reliable in terms of getting wins right now, but this looks like a fun, competitive game that should threaten the Over.
Both teams play into this Over quite a bit. Not only are they both averaging over 107 points per game on the year, but their recent form points to the Over, as well. That’s certainly the case defensively for Brooklyn, who have given up 120 and 111 points in each of their last two games. The story is similar for the Pacers, who have allowed 100+ points in each of their last four contests.
I love the value you can get with Indy (-3) or straight up, but the Nets can be dangerous at home. Ultimately, I like the offensive upside and pace for both sides and think the Over hits. If you can find a Total that’s slightly lower, even better.