Wednesday NBA Odds & Picks: Best Bets for Raptors vs. Grizzlies, Pistons vs. Bucks & More (November 24)
Stephen Gosling/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Bam Adebayo #13 of the Miami Heat.
- Tonight's NBA slate is loaded with 13 games on the night before Thanksgiving.
- Our analysts have their eyes on three games, including the defending champs hosting Cade Cunningham and the Pistons.
- Continue reading for our full breakdown of the slate and favorite picks for the night.
Before the NFL and all of the holiday trimmings take center stage on Thursday, the NBA has a massive 13-game slate on Wednesday night. Tonight’s national TV matchups should be enough to fill bettors up: Brooklyn Nets vs. Boston Celtics (7:30 p.m. ET on ESPN) and Philadelphia 76ers vs. Golden State Warriors (10 p.m. ET on ESPN).
But our NBA analysts have three more bets that they are eyeing on tonight’s loaded schedule. They are betting one spread, one total and one prop. You can find their analysis and best bets below.
NBA Odds & Picks
The Grizzlies have gone over in four straight games and they’ve averaged 117.5 points per game in this timeframe.
According to NBA Advanced Stats, the Grizzlies’ overall Offensive Rating is 12th in the league (108.4), but they have improved week-by-week for the past three weeks. In fact, in their last five games, they are third in Offensive Rating.
Dillon Brooks is listed as questionable for tonight’s game, but if the inefficient gunner misses this game, expect more minutes for the red-hot Desmond Bane, which is great for the Grizzlies’ offense.
The Grizzlies’ defense continues to trend the wrong direction, which is great for overs. They are currently ranked dead last in Defensive Rating (113.8) and they have seen that metric worsen week-by-week for the past three weeks. De’Anthony Melton will be out for tonight’s game and his absence hurts their defense even more.
The Raptors are 5-1 to the over in their last six games. They started the season off with low-scoring games and a strong defensive identity, but it has since fallen off a cliff. They rank 21st in Defensive Rating (109.4) this season and they have the worst Defensive Rating in the league in their last five games.
On the other hand, the scoring has improved. Pascal Siakam’s return and having Khem Birch move into the starting lineup has given their offense a boost.
I recommend a pick on the over up to 221.5.
Miami Heat vs. Minnesota Timberwolves
Raheem Palmer: The Miami Heat have covered the number in all three games in which they’ve played back-to-back games including wins against the Grizzlies and Wizards and a 109-112 loss to the Clippers in a game they were short handed in the absence of Jimmy Butler.
My model makes the Heat a favorite and it feels like the market is overpricing the impact of this team playing on a back-to-back. Nonetheless, Miami’s ability to play well on zero days rest should continue here against the Minnesota Timberwolves who come four straight wins against the Kings, Spurs, Grizzlies and Pelicans who aren’t exactly a murderers row of NBA teams.
This is a step up in class for the Timberwolves who are 6-2 against teams below .500 and 2-7 against teams above .500. Although the Heat struggled with the Pistons last night, they still came away with an eight point win in a game in which they shot just 31% from behind the arc.
The Heat are 4th in Defensive Rating (104.4) in their non garbage time minutes according to Cleaning the Glass and should have no problems limiting a Timberwolves offense which is just 24th in the half court, scoring 86.8 points per possession.
I’ll back the Heat as I feel like the market has overcorrected in this spot.
Detroit Pistons vs. Milwaukee Bucks
Brandon Anderson: Don’t look now, but it looks like the Pistons have figured out that Cade Cunningham can pass.
Cunningham is an elite passer. His size gives him a big advantage and allows him to pass over smaller defenders at any angle and with either hand. Cunningham is being called a “small forward” and he’s a do-everything prospect, but his passing is what makes him truly special as a prospect and he was always going to become a lead initiator in time. And it looks like that time is now.
Cunningham didn’t get to initiate the offense much in his Summer League appearances. Detroit wasn’t letting him spend much time on the ball, making him earn it. An ankle injury kept him out of preseason and the start of the year, and it was a slow start from there. Over his first seven games as a pro, Cunningham averaged 3.0 assists per game with no more than four in any game. Per NBA Advanced Stats, he averaged 6.6 potential assists per game.
Over the last five games, everything has changed. Cunningham doubled his career-high with eight assists against the Kings, and he’s taken much more of the creation load ever since.
Over the last five games, he’s recorded at least six assists in all five games, averaging 7.2 APG. That’s not just a fluke or hot shooting by his teammates, either. Cade has 63 potential assists over the last five games, a whopping 12.7 per game and almost double what he had done over the first seven games.
Tonight won’t be easy with Jrue Holiday and Giannis Antetokounmpo menacing defenders, but Cunningham is starting to show his mettle and he should be up for the challenge.
And with 15.8 points, 7.4 rebounds, and 7.2 assists per game over the last five plus his first of what will be many triple-doubles, he’s starting to compile the sort of numbers that will make him a top Rookie of the Year contender too (+325 at PointsBet).
For now, especially with Killian Hayes out again leaving more of the ball for Cade, we’ll just stick with the No. 1 pick’s assists over. I’ll play to -150.