Clippers vs. Raptors Betting Picks & Odds: Will Toronto Turn Around Recent Slide?
USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: LA Clippers F Kawhi Leonard (2), Toronto Raptors F Pascal Siakam (43).
Los Angeles Clippers at Toronto Raptors Betting Picks & Odds
- Spread: Clippers -2.5
- Over/Under: 221.5
- Time: 7 p.m. ET
- TV Channel: ESPN
Odds as of Wednesday afternoon and via FanDuel, where Action Network users get a risk-free bet up to $500.
Kawhi Leonard played a total of 84 games in a Toronto Raptors uniform, so it feels odd to label this a homecoming for the two-time NBA Finals MVP.
But since he won the Raptors their first championship in franchise history, we can expect the new Raptors to remind Leonard of what’s he left behind for Los Angeles.
Our NBA crew breaks down how they plan to bet this matchup.
Betting Trend to Know
The Raptors (16-7) are 2.5-point underdogs at home against the Clippers (18-7) in Leonard’s return. Since 2005, good teams (win rate of at least 66%) like Toronto have been bad bets as home dogs early in the season.
Home Underdogs with .660 Win Percentage:
- Oct-Dec: 61-74-3 (45%) ATS
- Jan-April: 53-42-1 (56%) ATS
Leonard returns to Toronto tonight, and 68% of bettors are laying the points with the Raptors.
Sharps, on the other hand, have turned their attention to the total. Fifty-one percent of tickets have hit the under, suggesting relatively balanced action.
But Sports Insights’ Bet Signals, which track and report professional betting action in real-time, are reporting two Steam Moves on the over, citing two specific instances of market-moving money from respected bettors driving up this total.
Unsurprisingly, this number has traveled from an opener of 220 to 222 in reaction. Recently, there has been a Steam Move on the under at 222.5, showing buyback at that number.
See the full sharp report here.
Mears: How I’m Betting Tonight’s Game
This is a fascinating game for a variety of reasons. Will Pascal Siakam hold his own against the Clippers’ superstar wings? How will Kawhi Leonard and Paul George continue to look together and what’s their true ceiling? Is Kyle Lowry’s comeback throwing off Toronto? Will the Raps be more motivated than usual against Kawhi? What’s with the recent downswing?
Let’s start with that last question, which I think is perhaps the most important one for today. The Raptors were able to get a win in Chicago on Monday night, but it was by just one point and they put up 93 points as a team. Prior to that, they had dropped three in a row, albeit to good teams in Philly, Houston and Miami.
Still, two of those were at home, and none of the games were within even six points. Lowry was atrocious in his return to the court against Miami, and the Raps have been playing the last couple games without Fred VanVleet, who is questionable to suit up tonight. The on/off metrics around Lowry continue to be terrible: The team has been 9.5 points per 100 possessions worse with him on the floor this season.
But overall, I think the Raptors have had some poor luck lately. In their recent four-game skid, they’ve posted atrocious shooting numbers, particularly from outside. But according to NBA.com, during that stretch they’ve gotten wide-open shots on the fourth-most possessions; the issue is they’ve converted those at a bottom-five rate. On “open” shots, they’re posting an ungodly 35.0% eFG% over the last four games. That’ll come up.
That doesn’t mean necessarily the Raptors are the side to bet tonight, though.
The Clips are obviously crazy talented, and they have some advantages here. Both teams love to get out in transition this year — at top-five rates, in fact — and while the Clips limit those, the Raps absolutely don’t. They’re allowing those high-value possessions the third-most in the league.
Further, perhaps the Raptors’ biggest weakness this season on both sides of the ball is rebounding: They’re 27th in offensive rebounding and 29th on defense. That’s not ideal against a Clippers team with Montrezl Harrell and huge, athletic wings that is first in the league in offensive rebounding.
The Clips have an inferior shot profile given their love of mid-rangers, but they should also get many more opportunities via the glass. As a result, I don’t think there’s a lot of value in the spread; it’s right where I personally have it.
But I think the over still offers a bit of value, and we wrote earlier today that sharp bettors have been attacking this side, too. With the Raptors likely seeing some shooting luck, the Clips likely hitting the offensive glass for easy buckets and both teams pushing the pace, I’ll take the over. — Bryan Mears
Update: I thought Fred VanVleet might make his return tonight, but he’s been ruled out. As a result, I grabbed the Clips at -2.5 and I’m off the over here. The Raps have posted an eFG% 4.7% worse without FVV on the floor, and that’s over a larger sample — not just their recent woes.
Editor’s note: The opinions on this game are from the individual writers and are based on their research, analysis and perspective. They are independent of, and may not always match with, the algorithm-driven Best Bets from Sports Insights.