Moore’s Monday NBA Angles & Betting Picks: Riding With the Over on a Crazy-High Total
Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Joe Ingles and Donovan Mitchell
Here are some angles for Monday’s NBA slate based on matchups and trends…
HEAT AT CAVALIERS
- Spread: Heat -6.5
- Total: 222.5
- Time: 7 p.m. ET
THE ANGLE: THE CAVS CAN’T HANG WITH GOOD TEAMS
Even before the Cavs’ season started spiraling, they struggled against teams over .500. They’re surprisingly decent vs. bad teams (12-16 vs. teams under .500). But against teams over .500, the Cavaliers are 7-15-1 ATS this season.
The Heat have been fading a bit, as I wrote they were likely to a month back, and they are just 4-9 ATS on the road vs. teams under .500. But this line definitely reflects those factors.
Even with Jimmy Butler out, this line should be higher with where the Cavs are at. They beat the Wizards in the “it was the coach’s fault!” game but then got drubbed by the Heat over the weekend. Teams at home who lost the previous game against the opponent inside of a week on the road are 8-12 ATS this season.
The number is the key here, but I think it has value.
THE PLAY: Miami -6.5
HAWKS AT 76ERS
- Spread: 76ers -8.5
- Total: 229
- Time: 7 p.m. ET
THE ANGLE: BETTER DEFENSE, WORSE OFFENSE
The Hawks can’t stop anyone, so this makes me nervous, but in the three games Ben Simmons has missed this season, opponents have averaged 103 points.
Meanwhile, the Sixers are without not only Simmons, but Tobias Harris as well. They don’t have a lot of offensive weapons to begin with, and losing Harris is a pretty big deal.
The Hawks’ team total is 110. The Hawks put up 127 on the Sixers already this season, but also only put up 103 in another matchup.
I’ll trust the Sixers’ defense to handle Atlanta and the injuries to slow down the Sixers.
THE PLAY: Under 229, Hawks team total under 110
MAGIC AT NETS
- Spread: Nets -4
- Total: 214
- Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
THE ANGLE: WHAT THE HELL?
The Magic should not be four-point dogs to this Nets team. Brooklyn’s been sliding. Kyrie Irving’s injury isn’t a factor, either for or against them, because they’re used to him being out. This is just the second time the Magic are dogs to a sub.-.500 East team this season. But against Eastern Conference teams under .500 this year, Orlando is 11-5 ATS, including 6-2 on the road.
If this were 2.5 I’d feel differently. But the Nets struggle in the post, and Nikola Vucevic still draws breath. Orlando struggles to score, but they have perimeter defenders to manage Spencer Dinwiddie and Caris LeVert.
At over a possession differential, I’ll take the points.
THE PLAY: Magic +4
TIMBERWOLVES AT MAVERICKS
- Spread: Mavs -13
- Total: 239
- Time: 8:30 p.m. ET
THE ANGLE: NO REST, NO DEFENSE, NO LIMIT
This is a high total, don’t get me wrong. But Minnesota, even without Karl-Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell, have guys who will put up points by the simple virtue of how many 3’s they take.
The Wolves are on a back to back. In Mavericks games vs. teams on a back to back, the over is 6-1-1 this season. The over is 5-1 since the Wolves’ deadline trade of Andrew Wiggins, Gorgui Dieng, Robert Covington, and more. They give no resistance, and both teams absolutely bomb threes.
If you want to be more precise, grab the Mavericks’ total of 126, as crazy high as that is, but the over of 239 I think is safe, too.
THE PLAY: Over 239, Mavs team total over 126
SUNS AT JAZZ
- Spread: Jazz -8
- Total: 224.5
- Time: 9 p.m. ET
THE ANGLE: UTAH CAN ONLY BEAT ONE TYPE OF TEAM, THE SUNS’ TYPE
I am out on Utah after its inability to do anything vs. the smallball Rockets. I think that was a defining game Saturday. However, these are the games they win, and cover.
In the Quin Snyder era, the Jazz are 36-25-4 (59%) ATS at home vs. Western Conference teams under .500 and 25-9-3 (74%) when favored by less than eight points. The way to think of that is “Western Conference bad teams are often overvalued by the market based on market size and perception of the West being so much tougher, which exaggerates their number vs. a low-ticket-count team like Utah.”
The Suns aren’t bad, they’re just not good enough to hang within single-digits on the road vs. a Jazz team that is likely going to take out their frustrations on the Suns. Devin Booker is 5-9 ATS in his career vs. Utah, 2-4-1 on the road.
THE PLAY: Jazz -8