Smart Money NBA Picks For Friday 2/5/2021
Mike’s Year to Date Record: 5-5
Mike’s Twitter: @MOConnor_NBA
After a brief hiatus last week, I’m back with some NBA picks for this Friday and looking to rebound from a disappointing 2-4 performance two weeks ago. That’s what I get for trusting the Nets to look like a competent defensive team. Tonight, we’ve got nine NBA games including a heavyweight Celtics-Clippers matchup. Let’s get into some Friday night NBA picks to make you money.
Smart Money NBA Betting Picks for Tonight’s Action
Chicago Bulls @ Orlando Magic: Bulls -2 (-112)
The Magic have lost six of their last seven, their offense is sputtering, and they have a ton of injuries. The Bulls have looked shaky to me recently, but I’m still betting on them handling this struggling, injured Magic team. Zach LaVine will bounce back from his awful shooting night against the Knicks on Wednesday, and the Bulls take this one handily.
Brooklyn Nets vs. Toronto Raptors: Nets -5 (-112)
No OG Anunoby means that there’s no one on the Raptors to slow down Kevin Durant (good luck, Pascal Siakam). Combine that with the fact that the Nets are starting to figure things out defensively, and the fact that Toronto has been just plain mediocre for the majority of the year, and I’m very comfortable betting on Brooklyn to cover the spread here.
Also: a lot of the success that Toronto has had in the past with slowing down star players has been the result of ultra-aggressive and at times gimmicky defense (think the box-and-one against Curry in the finals). There’s no opportunity for that when going against a team with the firepower the Nets have. If Toronto gets into their bag of tricks defensively, they’ll get smoked.
Boston Celtics @ Los Angeles Clippers: Under 220 Points (-109)
The thinking here is that since the two teams are similarly constructed, it’ll be tough for either one to score. Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum will slow down Paul George and Kawhi Leonard, and vice versa. Kemba Walker is also questionable for this game, and if he sits, I’m not sure where the Celtics go for offense. Without Payton Pritchard, their bench is also very thin, and they lack any kind of microwave scoring. Take the under on this one.
Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Minnesota Timberwolves: Timberwolves -1 (-110)
This is a bit of a risky pick since both teams have major injury issues with some key players’ statuses up in the air. However, I think Minnesota has a tad bit more depth from a shot creation standpoint, so I’m betting on them. With OKC missing George Hill and potentially Shai Gilgeous-Alexander as well, I have absolutely no idea where they turn for offense. Is Al Horford going to score 50?
Regardless of whether D’Angelo Russell plays (currently listed as questionable at the time of this publishing), the Wolves at least have Malik Beasley, Anthony Edwards, Ricky Rubio, and others to create shots. If SGA’s health makes a sudden turnaround and he winds up playing, I may live to regret this, but I’m investing heavily in the Timberwolves against the spread here.
Top Player Props for Tonight’s NBA Action
Miami Heat vs. Washington Wizards: Duncan Robinson Over 12.5 Points (-110)
Robinson is averaging 13.4 points on the season. And the Heat are going up against a horrendous defensive team in Washington. The bet here is that Washington falls asleep off the ball and leaves Robinson open for kick-outs from Jimmy Butler or Goran Dragić with regularity.
Detroit Pistons @ Phoenix Suns: Jerami Grant Over 21.5 Points (-110)
Grant is averaging 23.7 points on the season, and the Suns have a lack of wing defenders to keep up with Grant and his athleticism. My guess is that Jae Crowder gets the assignment, and Grant has a few inches and quite a bit of length over Crowder. Plus, given that the Pistons are a considerable underdog in this game, I’m expecting Grant to try to carry the load offensively to keep his team in the game.