NBA Picks: Raptors vs Nets Point Spread
Toronto Raptors at Brooklyn Nets Odds
Whenever basketball fans wish for quick, painless success for their favorite NBA team, friends should point to the Brooklyn Nets as a case study of instant gratification gone wrong. Trading three first round draft picks and prospects for Garnett, Pierce and Terry made Mikhail Prokorov feel like “the basketball god smiled on the Nets.” Hindsight has been exceptionally ironic, as the trade plunged Brooklyn into basketball hell. Toronto built through drafting and acquiring useful personnel without breaking the salary cap. As a result, teams are embarrassed to lose to Brooklyn, and the Raptors no longer surprise opponents.
Toronto’s been having difficulties at the power forward position, losing Jared Sullinger before the regular season began. Recently, Patrick Patterson has been on the mend with knee issues. Mercifully, Toronto’s in the midst of a soft spot in the schedule, playing four of five games against terrible opponents, giving coach Casey a chance to let Patterson rest.
If Sullinger and Patterson regain full form and fitness, Toronto will be able to shape the lineup to match any small ball configuration. Brooklyn’s missing Jeremy Lin, which will create further difficulty dealing with Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan.
Raptors at Nets NBA Prediction
Bet Toronto Raptors (-714) at Sportsbetting.com
For the past few years, the Raptors have been getting revenge against the Brooklyn Nets for their game seven playoff loss in 2014. As of late, the entire association has been using the Nets as their whipping boys, defeating Brooklyn by double digits often. The Nets have lost ten straight, including blowouts of fifteen points or more. They rank bottom five in almost all measurable offensive and defensive stats, with the exception of pace. Incredibly, the Nets play horribly and faster than any other NBA squad, ranking first with an average of 104.4 possessions per game. This increases the probability of blowout losses, and the severity of these defeats.
Adjusting for strength of opponent, the Nets have a net rating of -8.81 after 40 games, by far the worst in the NBA. The next worst net rating belongs to the Philadelphia 76ers, who beat the Nets by twenty points less than ten days ago. Toronto’s an elite offensive unit, capable of scoring big against the best defensive teams, which has resulted in a top three offensive rating all year.
There’s little doubt that Toronto will demolish Brooklyn, and a spread of 11.5 should be an easy target for the Raptors to achieve. The totals number sits at 226.5, which is a considerable amount of scoring to predict in any NBA matchup.
However, Toronto sits in the middle of the pack defensively, while Brooklyn prefers to avoid guarding at an NBA level. The last two games Brooklyn has played resulted in more than 240 points scored, so betting over on a 226.5 total doesn’t represent a big stretch, even if it’s a slightly riskier bet than wagering on Toronto beating the spread.
NBA Picks Tonight | January 17, 2017
After a busy schedule on MLK Day, the NBA features a relaxed lineup this evening. Tuesday features five matchups, including two of the top three western conference powers. The Houston Rockets should be able to roll over the Miami Heat, while the San Antonio Spurs should be able to beat a spread of 11 against the Minnesota Timberwolves. The Denver Nuggets are listed as moneyline underdogs against the Lakers, despite the Nuggets residing four games ahead of them in the standings. Since Los Angeles in in the middle of a four-game losing streak and the Nuggets have won two straight, the payout for Denver is solid given the risk.
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