NBA: Hornets (-9) Vs Thunder $
This is a big line but it does not concern me as many other matchups. The Hornets trail only the Jazz in points scored this season. While the Thunder are dead last in the NBA in scoring. What this tells me is this matchup should end up in a lopsided victory more often than a normal distribution. In other words, the point spread is less likely to matter.
There is really no debate as to who is the better team. The Thunder are in a multi year rebuild that seems is taking much longer than is should. They seem to have an abundance of marginally talented players with no real upside. The notable exception is Gilgeous-Alexander, but he cannot do it alone.
The Hornets in contrast are young, talented with a deep bench. Their obvious weakness is at the defensive end, but this is a hole the Thunder may not be able to exploit considering their own problems. If the Hornets get a big lead, their bench players may even better than the Thunder starters. These situations are recipes for a blowout. I like the Hornets to get the double digit win tonight.
NBA: Celtics (-8) Vs Trail Blazers $
The Blazers have been hit hard recently with injuries. Lillard, Powell, Nance and Zeller are all still out tonight. That is essentially the heart of the team. They managed to stay afloat so far, but their results are starting to suffer. The line is several points higher than it normally would be, but I think it is justified.
The Celtics are fairly healthy at moment and I keep waiting for them to go on a run. Only Marcus Smart remains out, but reports say he is close to returning. Regardless, Dennis Schroder has been an adequate replacement. There is still the potential for the Celtics to make a trade before the deadline to secure their playoff run. The team chemistry still may need tweaking before they are considered a serious threat. But overall the Celtics are solid, (at least on paper).
When making my picks, I always lean towards healthy playoff caliber teams. I also prefer fading over-rated teams out of the playoffs especially when facing multiple core injuries. This matchup offers both.
Legend $$ – two unit bet $ – one unit bet
NBA odds provided by Odds Shark. Posted lines are as of writing time.