Moore’s Wednesday NBA Betting Angles, Picks: The Memphis Grizzlies Are Live Dogs

Credit:

Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Ja Morant #12 of the Memphis Grizzlies at FedExForum.

Here are some betting angles for Wednesday’s NBA games based on matchups and trends.


Odds as of Wednesday and via DraftKings. Get up to a $1,000 sign-up bonus at DraftKings today or see more offers and reviews for the best online sportsbooks.


CELTICS AT CAVALIERS 

  • Spread: Celtics -4
  • Over/Under: 217.5
  • Time: 7 p.m. ET

THE ANGLE: Do. Not. Touch.

Let’s start with the old John Ewing note on one of my favorite songs, Brad Stevens on a back-to-back:

So the question becomes “is being only a four-point favorite to the worst team in the East like being an underdog?” And the answer is “probably.”

However … Kemba Walker is out, Jaylen Brown is questionable, Jayson Tatum is probable, Gordon Hayward is questionable and Marcus Smart may be suspended.

That is literally every above-B-minus player on the Celtics.

So take the Cavs, right? No! Letdown spots for a terrible team? Look at last night. The Apocalypse Warriors went into Denver and beat the Nuggets who were coming off a win over the Raptors Sunday. March is weird and dangerous; this spot is even more weird, and dangerous.

If Tatum plays, I might grab the Celtics as long as it drops below -4. But even then, I’ll be very cautious. Tread lightly, folks.

THE ANGLE: Avoid like COVID-19

THUNDER AT PISTONS

  • Spread: Thunder -8
  • Over/Under: 211
  • Time: 7 p.m. ET

THE ANGLE: Can’t Duck the Thunder

OKC got rocked this past week by the Bucks and the Clippers, and are probably looking to take it out on someone.

These are what I have termed “The Apocalypse Pistons” because their roster looks like the apocalypse happened and this is what is left (not to be confused with the Apocalypse Warriors).

Derrick Rose is out, Brandon Knight is questionable. Danilo Gallinari is out for rest, but the Thunder are 6-2-1 against the spread without him this season and 7-2 straight up. OKC is 13-3 (81%) ATS vs. sub-.500 teams on the road this season. However, they’re just 3-2 as a road favorite this season.

Again, the letdown effect and the weird winds of March are blowing. But I want to give OKC one more game to show they’re not really in a swoon, they just played great teams.

THE PLAY: Thunder -8
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

MAGIC AT HEAT 

  • Spread: Heat -7
  • Over/Under: 219.5
  • Time: 7:30 p.m. ET

THE ANGLE: Selectivity

So I’m still largely fading the Heat. They’ve gone 5-9 since I wrote this article in late January. The win over the Bucks was a choice spot, and a credit to them. But I still think there’s value in finding the right spots for their regression.

This is not one of them.

The Magic are 1-9 straight up with a -3.9 spread differential this season vs. teams that are top-10 in offense and middle-10 in defense, as the Heat are, via Cleaning The Glass. 538’s RAPTOR has this as Heat -6.5 so it’s in line with the projections. The Heat are 11-1 with a +3.8 spread differential vs. teams that are bottom-ten in offense, as the Magic are.

The Magic are just going to have a hard time keeping up with the Heat. Eventually the Heat’s advantage in 3-point shooting is going to create separation, and the Magic offense can’t keep pace.

THE PLAY: Heat -7 | Over 219.5
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

GRIZZLIES AT NETS

  • Spread: Nets -1.5
  • Over/Under: 223.5
  • Time: 7:30 p.m. ET

THE ANGLE: A Great Letdown Spot

The Nets are coming off a huge win against the Celtics in overtime Tuesday. Caris LeVert outscored the entire Celtics team in the fourth quarter and overtime.

Now they’re on a back to back facing the Grizzlies, who are fighting for their playoff lives without Jaren Jackson Jr. and Brandon Clarke.

The Nets this season are 3-8 ATS with a rest disadvantage. The Grizz won the first matchup in Memphis early in the season with Ja Morant getting the better of the now-injured Kyrie Irving.

Memphis has answered the call when things got tough for them following the All-Star Break, and sometimes teams play their best with adversity. The Nets’ pick-and-roll coverage will struggle with Morant, and they have been good enough defensively to take advantage of an emotionally drained Nets team.

The Grizzlies are live dogs, here.

THE PLAY: Grizzlies ML (+102)
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

BULLS AT TIMBERWOLVES 

  • Spread: T-Wolves -2.5
  • Over/Under: 231.5
  • Time: 8 p.m. ET

THE ANGLE: I’m Doing the Bad Thing (Again)

Welcome back to me being sucked in by the Chicago friggin’ Bulls.

God, I hate them. I hate them so much.

Deep breath

OK. Otto Porter is back, and the Bulls are 5-5 ATS this season in games where Porter plays, and .500 overall the last two seasons.

That’s not great. But it’s better.

The Bulls are undervalued because Porter’s not a guy who’s going to significantly move the market line. The Bulls’ defense has fallen off a cliff since Kris Dunn got hurt, but the offense has shown some signs of life.

Meanwhile, the Wolves are at home (league-worst 6-22 ATS), on a back-to-back (2-5-1 ATS), while the Bulls Are 7-6-1 ATS this season with rest advantage.

Minnesota got a big win against a truly terrible Pelicans defense on Tuesday. Let’s project the Bulls to be not-as-bad as they have been defensively, call them a middle-10 defensive team. The Wolves are 29th in spread differential vs. those teams, with a -4.4.

The PLAY: The Bulls +2.5
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

PELICANS AT MAVERICKS

  • Spread: Mavericks -6
  • Over/Under: 239.5
  • Time: 9:30 p.m. ET

THE ANGLE: No Defense Required

The total on this has dropped four points from open, despite 91% of the money currently on the over. The total was absurdly high at 242.5, and I don’t know that four points is enough to sway me.

But I know this: the Pelicans are 4-0 straight-up this season with a +11.9 spread differential vs. teams that are top-10 in offense and bottom-10 in defense. Dallas is 17th in defense, and seventh in the league since the All-Star break.

I do not believe this is a good defense. I think this is a very bad defense.

I don’t like the moneyline, but I’m getting two possessions on a Pelicans team fighting for its life on a back to back vs. Dallas. The Pelicans are 9-5 on rest disadvantage this season and should Zion Williamson play on the back-to-back as the Pels have indicated, he’ll wreck Kristaps Porzingis at center, who doesn’t have the core strength to keep up.

Throw in a Jrue Holiday opportunity on Luka Doncic and the spread is too high.

THE PLAY: Pelicans +6
[Bet now at DraftKings. NJ, PA, IN and WV only.]

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