The NBA kinda sorta makes way for NFL’s Thursday Night Football by only offering a 4-game slate.
There is a solid NBA TV doubleheader featuring the Dallas Mavericks at Brooklyn Nets and the Miami Heat at Golden State Warriors. Both of which we are betting on.
Below, I’ll break down the cases for the Mavericks and Heat against the spread (ATS) and a player prop in the Memphis Grizzlies vs. Sacramento Kings game.
Dallas Mavericks (1-2) at Brooklyn Nets (1-3)
Betting Details (DraftKings)
- Moneyline (ML): MAVERICKS (-120), Nets (+100)
- ATS: Mavericks -1.5 (-110), Nets +1.5 (-110)
- Total (O/U) — 227.5 — OVER: -110, U: -110
The Mavs had a huge ‘rest edge’ in this spot.
Dallas got upset 113-111 at the New Orleans Pelicans as 5.5-point road favorites without their two young All-Stars Brandon Ingram and Zion Williamson.
Hand-up: I was on the wrong side of that one and took an L. I stand by my analysis, the Mavs just sucked that night and Luka Doncic shot them out of it.
But, last season, the Mavericks were 10-3 straight up (SU) vs. teams playing the 2nd in a back-to-bac (B2B) with a +13.7 adjusted net rating (nRTG) and +7.1 ATS margin, per CleaningTheGlass.com (CTG).
While the Nets were 3-11 SU in the 2nd of a B2B with a -4.8 adjusted nRTG and a -8.1 ATS margin last season, which ranked dead-last in the NBA, according to CTG.
Everybody is picking on Ben Simmons
Memphis Grizzlies Ja Morant baited Simmons into committing his last foul in Memphis’s win over the Nets Monday.
Milwaukee Bucks Giannis Antetokounmpo little brothered Simmons in the 2nd half of Milwaukee’s victory vs. Brooklyn Wednesday.
Luka smells blood in the water and is gonna light Simmons’ ass up. Plus the Nets with Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving in general should motivate Luka.
Also, Mavs G Spencer Dinwiddie’s revenge game against his former employer who shipped him off to shit-ass D.C. to increase KD and Kyrie’s usage.
Not only that but Dallas tends to bounce back from losses …
Dallas after a loss is ‘easy money’
The Mavs are 28-11 ATS following a loss since the beginning of last season (+6.6 ATS differential). “Motivation” is one of the biggest factors in regular-season NBA basketball. If you can isolate which team is more motivated then that’s the side to bet on.
The Mavs are clearly the more motivated team in this spot coming off the loss with Dinwiddie’s revenge game and Luka’s statement game.
NBA Best Bet #1: Mavericks (-120) at DraftKings Sportbooks, down to -140
Miami Heat (2-3) at Golden State (2-2)
Betting Details (DraftKings)
- ML: HEAT (+250), Warriors (-300)
- ATS: HEAT +7 (-110), Warriors -7 (-110)
- Total (O/U) — 225.5 — O: -110, U: -110
Miami has the edge in 3-point shooting
What?!? That’s right, I give the Heat the edge from behind the arc. Last season, Miami was 1st in 3-point shooting percentage and 2nd in defensive 3-point shooting percentage.
In the Heat-Warriors meeting in Golden State last season, Miami held Steph Curry to nine points on 17.6% shooting and 1-for-10 from deep in a 115-108 loss.
But, the Heat covered as 10-point underdogs. That spread was so large because Miami was without several rotation players including 3-time All-Defense PF Bam Adebayo.
Bam allows the Heat to extend their perimeter because he locks down the paint and the mid-range. Adebayo is the main reason Miami leads the NBA in paint points per game (PPG) allowed.
The Heat are one of the few teams that can legitimately hang with the Warriors in a shooting contest. Miami has five guards that can hit threes and Golden State’s defense has been trash thus far.
Here’s a look at how many points the Warriors have allowed in their last three games: 128 vs. the Denver Nuggets Friday, 125 vs. the Sacramento Kings Sunday, and 134 at the Phoenix Suns Tuesday.
Miami has another strength-on-weakness edge over Golden State …
The Heat will win the free-throw battle
Miami All-Star wing Jimmy Butler always gets to the foul line. Butler is one of the few non-floppers in the NBA and legitimately earns his free throws. He’s a big reason that the Heat were 3rd in non-garbage time free-throw rate last season, per CTG.
Golden State on the other hand sent opponents to the charity stripe at the 7th-highest rate in the league last season. We all know Warriors Draymond Green can get a little aggressive.
Also, Splash Bro Klay Thompson randomly got thrown out of the Warriors-Suns game for an on-court skirmish with Phoenix SG Devin Booker.
Perhaps Butler can get under Golden State’s skin or just bait them into fouls in a crafty basketball way. Don’t forget notorious flopper and foul-baiter: Heat PG Kyle Lowry.
Between 3-point shooting and referee manipulating, Miami has an edge in two of the “four factors”. I can also make a pro-Heat case for the other two …
Miami can win the battle for possessions
The most important thing in basketball is possessions. You gain or lose possessions through rebounding and ball security.
Well, Golden State gets clumsy with the rock and Miami is a better rebounding team. The Warriors had the 2nd-worst offensive turnover rate (TOV%) in the NBA last season.
The Heat was 3rd in defensive TOV%. Also, Miami has better adjusted offensive and defensive rebounding rates than Golden State (per CTG) thus far.
Even if the Heat cannot out-shoot the Warriors maybe Miami gets more shot attempts by beating Golden State on the glass and in the turnover battle.
The betting market’s temperature
Miami appears to be the sharp side of the Heat-Warriors market. Per VSIN, more than 70% of the action early Thursday was on Golden State.
However, the Heat have gone from 7.5-point underdogs on the opener down to the current number. Hmmm. This “reverse line movement” is suspicious, to say the least.
NBA Best Bet #2: Heat +7 (-110) at DraftKings Sportsbook and ‘sprinkle’ on Miami’s ML (+250)
Grizzlies SG Desmond Bane OVER 19.5 points (-115)
Betting Details (DraftKings)
- OVER: -115
- Under: -115
The Sacramento Kings (0-3) host the Memphis Grizzlies (3-1) Thursday at Golden 1 Center for a 10 p.m. ET tip-off.
If Bane improves his 2-point shooting percentage, he’ll be a finalist for the NBA’s Most Improved Player award. He is Memphis’s 2nd-leading scorer at 20.5 PPG, knocking down 41.0% of his threes but only 35.5% of his twos.
But, this should be a get-right game for Bane in the short- and mid-range because Sactown’s frontcourt has two subpar defenders with rookie PF Keegan Murray and C Domantas Sabonis.
Bane is Memphis’s 3-point specialist and makes the perfect 2-guard for Grizzlies PG Ja Morant. He is 3rd in the entire NBA in adjusted on/off nRTG at +45.0 points per 100 possessions, per CTG.
Also, Bane is getting the required usage in Memphis’s offense to go Over this points prop (19.5). His usage rate this season is nearly 6% higher than his career average.
Finally, Bane has a career 64.2% true shooting rate (.516/.481/1.000) in five career games vs. the Kings (four starts). Bane scored 24 and 28 points in two of his three games against Sacramento last season.
NBA Best Bet #3: Memphis Grizzlies Desmond Bane OVER 19.5 (-115) points at DraftKings Sportsbook, up to -130
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