The NBA season rolls on and we go straight in early on this time with a pick in order to try and take advantage of some poor lines early on.
MEM Grizzlies -5 to beat BKN Nets @ 1.67 (Bet365) – 3 points
The Brooklyn Nets have been struggling really badly especially now that they are on a 6 game losing streak with coach Lionel Hollins honestly looking lost with this bunch who are contributing to the highest luxury tax bill in the NBA. With the exception of Joe Johnson, the whole starting 5 has been changing regularly with Lopez, Williams, Jack, Teletovic, Bogdanovic, Garnett, Plumlee all rotating to find the best fit. Ultimately, there is a lot of unsettling for their players. The biggest problem for them is their offensive ability which has not been up to the scratch in the bottom 6 in the NBA while scoring just 96 points per game. The Nets will also be without Kevin Garnett who is suspended for this game due to altercation with Howard lat time around while Deron Williams is out with a rib injury.
The Memphis Grizzlies welcome back Zach Randolph to their starting unit including Allen, Gasol and Conley. The addition of Jeff Green, who should make his debut tonight, will add the extra dimension of scoring as well as defense to this team. The Grizzlies were the top defensive team in the NBA for a number of weeks until Randolph got injured; and now they should be back to their best. They also have a great bunch of players from the bench including Vince Carter, Courtney Lee, Beno Udrih, Leuer and Koufous to give them the added dimension on defensive ability. They have Gasol, Randolph and Allen who are in the top 10 in rebounding and steals to showcase that they can stop teams especially poor ones like the Nets tonight.
I expect the Grizzlies to cover the spread; but backing a slightly lower line in order to guarantee some success.
ATL Hawks -5 to beat BOS Celtics @ 1.66 (MarathonBet) – 3 points
The Hawks have had some great production from Millsap, Horford, Teague and Korver who have had superb year thus far and with all their starters averaging double digits; its no wonder they are winning the East. Jeff Teague has been extremely vital scoring around 25 points per game in their away run over the past 2 months, and his continued success will help this team progress to more wins. This Atlanta team is good from all angles, defense, offensive production, 3 point shooting and playing together as a team for success. They are now on a 9 game winning streak; and it looks like no.10 could be added against a Celtics team who are still rebuilding themselves.
The Celtics are rebuilding on the fly and now just got of their best player on the team from this year in Jeff Green which will hurting them. They however, have shown some resilience in the last quarter of games to fight back to try and win as was seen in the last game when they were losing by 4 entering the 4th quarter, and then beat the Pelicans by 8. The youngsters of Celtics will get to play a lot of minutes with Danny Ainge now looking to clear out the stock pile of average players such as Nelson, Prince, Brandon Bass among the tradable piece with which he could acquire further draft picks. The Celtics are a poor defensive team as they are letting in around 104 points per game.
I expect the Hawks to continue their streak, their team defense and their offensive ability to secure a nice win tonight as they lead the Eastern Conference with the best record.
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