Smart Money NBA Week 1 Picks For Wednesday 10/20/2021

October 20, 2021by Mike O'Connor0
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Smart Money NBA Week 1 Picks For Wednesday 10/20/2021

Smart Money NBA Week 1 Picks For Wednesday 10/20/2021: Coby White & Zach LaVine - Chicago Bulls @ Detroit Pistons
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Mike’s Twitter: @MOConnor_NBA

Mike’s Year to Date Record: 0-0

I’m very happy to be back again this year doing weekly picks. Much like every NBA player on every NBA team, the feeling of a fresh start and an 0-0 record has me excited. With a fun slate of NBA games ahead tonight, here are my picks to help you start this season in the black.

Smart Money NBA Betting Picks for Tonight’s Action

Washington Wizards @ Toronto Raptors: Raptors -2.5 (-110) 

This is a battle between two new-look teams, but I lean much more confidently on Toronto. After somewhat of a lost season last year, they return re-energized and re-engineered for improvement. This is their first game in Toronto since March of 2020. So you can bet that they will be juiced up for this one.  On a tactical level, the Raptors have always been good against one-man shows like the Wizards’ Bradley Beal-centric offense. They throw a whole bunch of gimmicky coverages at stars and usually end up flustering them. I like their chances of covering 2.5 points here

Philadelphia 76ers @ New Orleans Pelicans: Sixers -4 (-110)

While it’s not comfortable to bet on the Sixers with all of the drama surrounding them right now, they are simply the better team by a country mile in the talent department. Especially without Zion Williamson, the Pelicans are an extremely underwhelming offensive team, and the Sixers should be able to run away with this one.  One could also argue that the effect of the Simmons drama could have a positive impact – the team could be galvanized by playing without him. With how Joel Embiid has spoken about Simmons throughout training camp, I have to think that he’ll be motivated to prove to himself and to the world that he doesn’t need Simmons to succeed. So give me the Sixers -4 all day here

Chicago Bulls @ Detroit Pistons: Bulls -5 (-110)

Especially with Cade Cunningham being out, I feel very confident in the Bulls’ ability to make this one a blowout. The Pistons remain bereft of talent, and with all the energy and excitement around the Bulls, one has to think that they’ll come out ready to play in this game.  The Pistons are extremely weak on guard depth. And the Bulls just acquired two players (Lonzo Ball and Alex Caruso), who are capable of making life quite difficult for opposing guards. Additionally, the Pistons’ lack of wing defense will make for a tough time containing Zach LaVine and DeMar DeRozan. Take the Bulls here. Caesars Sportsbook RF5000 - 936x114

Cleveland Cavaliers @ Memphis Grizzlies: Cavaliers +7.5 (-110)

This is a lot of points for the Cavs to be getting here. I think that this team could surpass expectations on the season and that Vegas might be sleeping on them a bit. I’m generally not one to bet on inefficient scorers like Collin Sexton, but especially in wacky early season environments like this, I like betting on a guard who I know could catch fire.  Across the board, the Cavs have young players who could easily surprise this season. Darius Garland is someone who many have pegged as a breakout candidate. And Isaac Okoro could emerge as a defensive stopper. With all the young firepower they have, 7.5 is a lot of points for them to be getting against a mediocre Memphis team.

Top Player Props for Tonight’s NBA Action

Philadelphia 76ers @ New Orleans Pelicans: Joel Embiid is Top Point Scorer (-150)

This is easy pickings. Yes, Jonas Valančiūnas has always defended Embiid well, but Embiid has also never had this much shooting around him. With all of the space that he’ll have to operate in, Embiid will have a field day

Chicago Bulls @ Detroit Pistons: Zach LaVine Over 24.5 Points (-113)

Much of what I said earlier could be applied here. The Pistons are thin on wing defense. LaVine and the Bulls will be motivated. And the offense should flow heavily through LaVine. LaVine averaged 27.4 points per game last season, so this number should be relatively easy for him to hit. PointsBet - Deposit Bonus Up to $250

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