NBA Playoffs Betting Picks: Our Best Bets For Raptors vs. Nets and Nuggets vs. Jazz (Sunday, Aug. 23)
Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Donovan Mitchell #45 of the Utah Jazz dunks the ball against the Denver Nuggets.
Sunday’s slate of Game 4s could spell be the end of some teams in the bubble, with the Philadelphia 76ers and Brooklyn Nets in a 3-0 hole heading into the day’s action. Meanwhile, the Denver Nuggets and Dallas Mavericks have a chance to tie up their respective series at 2-2 with a win.
So, where’s the value today? Our staff is here to break down their favorite NBA bets for Saturday’s slate and has found angles in two of the four games:
- 6:30 p.m. ET: Toronto Raptors vs. Brooklyn Nets
- 9 p.m. ET: Denver Nuggets vs. Utah Jazz
Sunday NBA Betting Picks
Joe Dellera: Raptors vs. Nets
|Raptors odds||-13 [BET NOW]|
|Nets odds||+13 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||-1076/+700 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||217.5 [BET NOW]|
|Time||6:30 p.m. ET|
Per Cleaning the Glass, the Raptors have covered the spread by an average of 7.3 points per game this series.
Additionally, it’s been profitable to fade teams that have had losing streaks of three or more games — a profile that applies to the Nets, who are down 0-3 in this series and actually lost their final game before the playoffs began.
You can trust the Raptors to take care of business and cover this spread. And while I also am tempted by the Nets’ team under (102), I’ll likely stick with a side.
THE PICK: Raptors -13
Matt Moore: Nuggets vs. Jazz
|Nuggets odds||+3 [BET NOW]|
|Jazz odds||-3 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||+135/-162 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||216.5 [BET NOW]|
|Time||3:30 p.m. ET|
The Jazz have hit their team total over in all three games of this series. Denver completely quit in the third quarter of Game 2 and then completely quit by midway through the first quarter of Game 3. It was complete capitulation and the Nuggets have no more counters. They tried every conceivable adjustment and it only made the Jazz better.
Meanwhile, the Jazz are humming. Mike Conley is back, giving them another 3-point threat. Donovan Mitchell is making a leap into superstardom and against this defense can get whatever he wants, whether it’s attacking the rim, pulling up from distance, or passing to shooters.
I have zero faith in Denver’s effort or commitment, and even if they do bring it, it is likely they try to win with 130 points. They can’t hold Utah down.
The numbers in this series have been built on the pace of the series, which is glacial. That’s how bad Denver’s defense has been. They’ve given up all these points on a per possession basis.
Trusting recency bias in the playoffs is dangerous, but while I don’t think it’s impossible (though unlikely given their collective surrender in Game 3) that the Nuggets win, they will not suddenly become a better defensive team, especially with Gary Harris still doubtful for Game 4.
The PICK: Jazz over 110.5 (+100)
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Brandon Anderson: Nuggets vs. Jazz
The Nuggets-Jazz series has been the single most unpredictable matchup of the first round. In Game 1, Donovan Mitchell scored the third-most points in postseason history only for the Jazz to come up short in overtime. Mitchell has continued to be on fire all series, and the Nuggets laid a complete egg in Game 3.
But I am going with the yo-yo here. Denver is a very good team with a lot of talent that has consistently won games over the last several years. This team is still short Gary Harris and Will Barton, and the replacements haven’t done well, but Denver will not go away that quickly.
The Nuggets still have the best player in the series, even if he hasn’t played like it yet, and Murray and Porter are X-factors. Utah has been a better team so far, but these teams feel like a coin flip each game so I am riding the underdog here. I’ll play Denver down to +125.
The Pick: Nuggets ML +135