Smart Money NBA Bets For Friday 2/19/2021
Mike’s Year to Date Record: 9-14
Mike’s Twitter: @MOConnor_NBA
Last week’s 3-4 showing wasn’t what I had hoped, but it’s progress. We’re trending in the right direction here, and this is the week that we make it in the black.
We’ve got an action-packed slate tonight, so let’s get into some picks.
Top Matchups to Bet on Tonight
Golden State Warriors @ Orlando Magic: Warriors -4 (-110)
Draymond Green remains listed as questionable for this game, which gives me some degree of pause here. But provided Green is available, I love this line for the Warriors. The injury-riddled Magic have barely any guards left on the roster, which figures to make life difficult defending Stephen Curry.
The Warriors pulled out a 111-105 win over this Magic team last Thursday, and that came despite James Ennis III, Dwayne Bacon, and Terrence Ross all having hot shooting nights. If their shooting normalizes to any degree, the Warriors cover this line comfortably.
Chicago Bulls @ Philadelphia 76ers: Bulls +8 (-110)
Joel Embiid’s back isn’t quite right, Ben Simmons is coming off of the flu, and the Sixers have always had trouble guarding Zach LaVine. My thinking here is that the Sixers will continue to look somewhat sluggish – they lost three straight before nearly blowing a massive lead to Houston on Wednesday – and that LaVine and the Bulls will light the Sixers up on the offensive end.
Between Embiid and Simmons possibly being a stop slow and the fact that the Sixers’ bench has been horrendous without Shake Milton, and I like the Bulls’ chances here.
Oklahoma City Thunder @ Milwaukee Bucks: Thunder +10.5 (-110)
Vegas continues to underestimate the Thunder, and it continues to make me money. The Thunder have lost just two games all month by 11 or more, and actually beat this Bucks team last Sunday without Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.
The Bucks are on the second end of a back-to-back, they are once again without Jrue Holiday (they’ve looked lost without him), and they have simply looked mediocre all year. Oh, and also: the Thunder have Al Horford, who has always guarded Giannis Antetokounmpo well.
I’m not entirely sure where the logic lies behind the Bucks being massive favorites here. Take the Thunder to cover.
Utah Jazz @ Los Angeles Clippers: Jazz -4.5 (+135)
I’m finally coming around on the Jazz being one of the legitimately elite teams in the NBA. They are just steamrolling anything in their path right now. They obliterated the Clippers by 18 on Wednesday night, and I like their chances to cover the spread once again.
The Jazz are winners of nine straight, and only one of those games was within a single-digit margin. Throw in the fact that they’re likely getting Mike Conley back after a six-game absence, and I love their chances here. The Clippers are relatively weak when it comes to defending guards, so Conley and Donovan Mitchell should have no problem getting to their spots.
Best Player Props for Tonight
Chicago Bulls @ Philadelphia 76ers: Zach LaVine Over 28.5 Points (-137)
I touched earlier on why I expect LaVine to have a big night. He’s been playing incredible ball of late, and a slightly sluggish Sixers team should allow him to continue that trend. 28.5 points is right on his average for the year, and the favorable circumstances here will put him over the top.
Golden State Warriors @ Orlando Magic: Andrew Wiggins Over 18.5 Points (-110)
Regardless of whether or not Draymond Green plays, I love Wiggins’ chances of hitting his over. The Magic are the type of team that likes to play aggressive defensive schemes, which means plenty of help will head Stephen Curry’s way, freeing up Wiggins. They are also quite thin on wing defense, to begin with, so Wiggins will also have chances to create shots out of pick and rolls or isolations.
There you have it – my six NBA picks for tonight. Make sure to check out what our TomBox sports betting algorithm predicts for the games tonight!