NBA Odds & Betting Picks: Our Best Bets for Friday’s Jazz vs. Mavericks & Timberwolves vs. 76ers (Jan. 29)
Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Jordan Clarkson #00 of the Utah Jazz.
- The top two teams in the East and West made it to our experts' best bets for Friday night.
- See where they are finding an edge in two matchups tonight: 76ers vs. Timberwolves and Mavericks vs. Jazz.
Hello, Friday. We’ve been waiting for you.
Tonight’s NBA schedule is loaded with 10 games and anchored by two national TV games: Milwaukee Bucks vs. Utah Jazz (7:30 p.m. ET on ESPN) and Dallas Mavericks vs. Utah Jazz (10 p.m. ET on ESPN).
Our NBA crew has zeroed in on bets involving the top team in each conference. You can find their analysis and picks on those games below.
NBA Odds & Picks
76ers vs. Timberwolves
Brandon Anderson: This should have been a great matchup between two of the most talented big men in the game, but we won’t be getting that matchup.
Karl-Anthony Towns is still sidelined in the health protocols, and Joel Embiid is listed as questionable after that nasty fall he took the other night when LeBron James gave him a two-hand shove under the basket.
It wouldn’t be a surprise to see Embiid sit this one out. In fact, it would be more of a surprise to see him play. This line is suspiciously low, which suggests the books expect Embiid to sit. If Embiid plays, our Sixers bet will have significant CLV, so that’s some serious upside potential for us.
Even with Embiid out, though, the Sixers should be in pretty good shape here. Towns isn’t the only one missing for the Wolves. D’Angelo Russell is questionable as well, and though the Timberwolves might be a little more fun to watch without DLo out there, it’s usually not a great sign when a team is 4-13 and missing their best two players.
The Timberwolves continue to be absolutely miserable without Towns. They were bad enough to secure the No. 1 draft pick a year ago when Towns missed a huge chunk of the season, and they’re currently 2-11 straight up without him this season. Nine of those 11 losses have come by double digits, and their average losing margin is a full 10.0 points.
The Sixers aren’t particularly great without Embiid either. They’re 0-4 this season without him, but they were missing pretty much the entire starting lineup in one of those and multiple starters in another.
I trust Ben Simmons, Tobias Harris, and Seth Curry enough to get the job done against a bad Wolves team that needs to make a change.
Mavericks vs. Jazz
Raheem Palmer: If you read my projections piece Wednesday, you’ll know that these two teams played and we played the under 225 with the Jazz winning 116-104. Now they meet again and the total is listed at 221.5.
While that line eventually closed 222, I still stand by my thought process that the market shouldn’t be adjusting these spreads and totals game to game based on one result. These teams played at a Pace of 96.4 possessions, but it was the Mavericks who single-handedly kept this total under. They scored just 19 points in the first quarter and 16 points in the fourth quarter. In a more competitive game down the stretch that game likely goes over.
Donovan Mitchell is questionable for this matchup, according to our Action Labs injury dashboard, as he works his way through the league’s concussion protocol. This is game I’d like to get ahead of before he’s officially announced in as this line is likely to jump should he play.
If he doesn’t play I still feel confident in playing an over with a Jazz team that is fourth in Offensive Rating scoring 114.2 points per 100 possessions while averaging a league leading 16.6 made 3s per game.
Nevertheless, I’m going to fade the adjustment here and play this game over the total of 221.5 with my projections making this game 222. It’s not a huge edge but what we saw the other day makes me feel confident.