Magic vs. Suns Odds, Pick, Prediction | NBA Betting Preview
Pictured: Markelle Fultz of the Orlando Magic. (Photo by Ronald Cortes/Getty Images)
- Orlando continues its road trip with a Thursday night visit to Phoenix.
- The Suns have lost three straight games and are looking to get back on track as they battle for playoff positioning.
- Jacob McKenna previews the game and offers up his best bet below.
Magic vs. Suns Odds
|Time||10 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.|
The Orlando Magic find themselves in the middle of a four-game road trip that continues Thursday in Phoenix with a game against the Suns.
Orlando is coming off a rough 132-114 loss to the Spurs on Tuesday. That marked the Magic’s fourth loss in the past five games, dropping them to 13th in the Eastern Conference.
Phoenix hasn’t played much better though. The Suns enter this matchup having lost three straight games, a losing streak that comes after Phoenix won its first four games of the month.
Neither one of these teams is playing good basketball at the moment, giving each a good shot to get back in the win column if things start clicking again. That being said, here’s my betting prediction for the Orlando Magic vs Phoenix Suns matchup.
March hasn’t been kind to Orlando. The Magic have tumbled down the standings as they’ve struggled on the defensive end of the floor.
According to NBA.com, the Magic own a 120.9 Defensive Rating this month. That ranks 29th in the NBA, in front of only Sacramento, so it should come as no surprise that the Magic are just 2-5 this month.
Opponents are getting anything they want against Orlando and are shooting an incredible 51.8% from the floor and 40.1% from behind the arc. As a result, Orlando is surrendering an average of 125.4 points per game this month, the most in the NBA by nearly two points.
However, the Magic have been surprisingly good on the offensive end this month, posting the 10th-best Offensive Rating (116.0). That is up from Orlando’s 111.6 season rating.
Orlando is shooting 48.5% from the floor and generating 102.05 Offensive Possessions per game this month according to NBA.com, both of which are improvements from its season averages.
As all NBA fans know, the Phoenix Suns made the biggest deal of the trade deadline, sending Mikal Bridges, Cam Johnson, Jae Crowder and four first-round picks to Brooklyn for Kevin Durant.
That trade was made when Durant was still sidelined with an injury, raising some concerns about Phoenix’s perimeter offense and defense in the immediate future. Those concerns have started to become a reality for Phoenix over the past week, largely because Durant remains sidelined after injuring his ankle.
The Suns offense has crater during this three-game losing streak. In the first four games of the month, Phoenix posted an 126.5 Offensive Rating, but in the past three games, that rating has fallen to 109.1.
Phoenix also continues to trend in the wrong direction on the defensive end of the floor. The Suns rank 26th in the NBA in Defensive Rating over the past three games and are allowing opponents to shoot 49.8% from the floor and 40.7% from behind the arc.
It’s clear neither one of these squads is heading in the right direction entering this matchup, but I think Orlando is in a position to keep this game close.
The Magic are 16-9-1 against the spread against Western Conference opponents, the fifth-best ATS record in the league. Orlando is also 17-13-1 ATS as an away underdog this season.
Additionally, Orlando has already held its ground against Phoenix once this season, defeating the Suns 114-97 in November.
The Suns are struggling on both ends of the court and are lacking a perimeter presence outside of Devin Booker. I think that opens up the door a bit for an Orlando team that has played well recently on the offensive end. I would play the spread down to 5.5.
Pick: Magic +7.5 | Play to +5.5
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