NBA Odds & Picks: Our Staff’s Best Bets for Hornets vs. Wizards, Hawks vs. Suns (Tuesday, March 30)
Sean Gardner/Getty Images. Pictured: Jae Crowder #99, Mikal Bridges #25, Chris Paul #3 of the Phoenix Suns.
Tuesday’s NBA schedule gives us just four games to choose from and our analysts are eyeing two matchups on the slate, including an East vs. West matchup in the late game between the Atlanta Hawks and Phoenix Suns.
Check out where they are finding some betting value on Tuesday’s short slate.
NBA Odds & Picks
Charlotte Hornets vs. Washington Wizards
Malik Smith: The Washington Wizards play the Charlotte Hornets at home in the Capital One arena Tuesday night, which has been a profitable spot to play their first half over this season.
BetMGM has the first half total for this game listed at 115.5 and when the first half closes above 115 in Wizards home games, the over is 10-7 this season. Wizards home games have also gone 4-1 to the over in the first half when they play on the second night of a back-to-back.
Since the LaMelo Ball injury, the Hornets are playing at the second-slowest first-half Pace in the NBA (93.75), however, they are scoring 123.8 points per 100 possessions over that same span.
The Wizards are one of the fastest teams in the league over that span (108.25 Pace) and that has held up throughout the season, too. Bradley Beal is questionable to play Tuesday after sitting out last night, but the Wizards hardly missed him with Russell Westbrook’s historic line.
This team can score on offense regardless of who is in their lineup and I think we’ll see that play out again tonight. I like the over 115.5 here and would bet it up to 116.5.
Atlanta Hawks vs. Phoenix Suns
Brandon Anderson: It certainly feels like the Atlanta Hawks have figured things out.
After starting the year 14-20, the Hawks fired head coach Lloyd Pierce and turned things over to Nate McMillan. The Hawks reeled off eight straight wins, are 9-3 since the switch, and their defense ranks close to top 10 now that they’ve installed the defensive-minded McMillan.
It’s a nice narrative, but it’s quite misleading. The real difference in Atlanta wasn’t the coach but the personnel. Atlanta is finally almost entirely healthy and, shockingly, the team is actually better when its best players are available.
Atlanta’s defense has far been better this season with Clint Capela and De’Andre Hunter on the floor, and veterans Danilo Gallinari and Bogdan Bogdanovic were added this offseason to stabilize this roster and add spacing to the offense.
There’s another pretty obvious reason the Hawks finally started winning games: the competition changed. Here are the opponents they faced during their winning streak: Heat, Magic, Raptors, Kings, Cavaliers, Rockets, Thunder, Lakers.
The Hawks have won just one of their past four games since, and that was against the Warriors without Stephen Curry. But when suddenly the schedule swung and the Clippers and Nuggets showed up, Atlanta wilted.
Isn’t this pretty much what we expected from the Hawks this season? It’s good that the Hawks are taking care of the dregs of the league, but the Suns are elite; they belong in the group with the Clippers and Nuggets.
The Hawks are 4-8 against the top eight teams in NBA title odds right now, and six of those eight losses are by eight or more points.
Atlanta is improved, but the Suns have been better all along. I trust the better team to get the win and the cover and would play Phoenix up to -6.5.