NBA Odds & Betting Picks: Our Staff’s Best Bets for Nuggets vs. Mavericks, Timberwolves vs. Warriors (Monday, Jan. 25)
Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors.
We kick off another week in the NBA with 10 games on Monday night (Kings vs. Grizzlies is postponed), including two national tv matchups: Miami Heat vs. Brooklyn Nets (7:30 p.m. ET) and Minnesota Timberwolves vs.Golden State Warriors (10:30 p.m. ET).
Both matchups, among others, made it into our crews’ top plays for Monday night. You can find their analysis and picks on those games below.
NBA Odds & Picks
Heat vs. Nets | Lakers vs. Cavaliers | Timberwolves vs. Warriors
Brandon Anderson: Some days I just don’t feel like screwing around with spreads and lines and sweating out backdoor covers. Today is one of those days. Instead, I’m putting together what I’m calling the MVP Moneyline Parlay.
We start with the Lakers over the Cavs. LeBron James is 14-1 lifetime against his old team from Cleveland. The one loss came a full decade ago against Cavaliers luminaries Anthony Parker and J.J. Hickson. Cleveland has been better than expected, hanging around .500 with tough defense, but the Cavs still can’t score and the Lakers should handle them with ease.
Next up are the Warriors over the Wolves. Golden State already beat the Wolves once this season — a year ago when they traded for Minnesota’s upcoming 2021 first-round draft pick. The Wolves have been one of the worst teams in the NBA this season and are barely an NBA team at all without Karl-Anthony Towns. Minnesota can’t score. Steph Curry definitely can. All the better that the Wolves might be missing D’Angelo Russell too.
The last one looks trickiest, just because the Brooklyn Nets can’t seem to beat the Washington Generals without some late game drama, but we’ll trust Kevin Durant, James Harden, and Kyrie Irving to outlast Gabe Vincent’s Miami Heat. I know the Nets just lost twice to the Cavs, and I know these Heat just pushed them to the limit on Saturday, but I have to trust the massive talent gap here.
Trust the MVPs. Trust the talent. Parlaying the three moneyline together comes out to almost exactly even odds. I’m keeping it easy tonight and letting the MVPs do the work for me.
Nuggets vs. Mavericks
Raheem Palmer: The last time these two teams played the Nuggets squandered a 12-point second half lead in matter of minutes. While Kristraps Porzingis didn’t play for that matchup, this was otherwise a full strength Mavericks team with Dorian Finney-Smith, Josh Richardson and Maxi Kleber who hit the go ahead three in regulation and was 3-of-5 from behind the arc.
While the Mavericks have found something offensively recently playing a starting lineup of Doncic-Brunson-Hardway-Green-Porzingis, they are just 3-4 in their last seven games and are coming off a 133-108 blowout loss at the hands of the Houston Rockets without Victor Oladipo. Kristraps Porzingis hasn’t exactly found his footing since returning from his knee injury and Nikola Jokic should win these minutes.
While the Nuggets are just 9-7 on the year, they’re fifth in SRS (3.23) and have the fifth-highest Net Rating in the league this season. Looking at their Pythagorean Win Expectation, this team is playing more like a 10-6 win team than a 9-7 win team.
When you consider that this Nuggets team has the third most efficient offense in the league scoring 114.9 points per game facing a Mavericks team that is just 20th in Offensive Rating, scoring just 108.1 points per possession over it’s last seven games since they’ve been shorthanded due to COVID-19 concerns, this is a game in which we could see the Nuggets boat race the Mavericks.
There’s been some movement on this game pushing this line from Nuggets +1.5 through the zero making the Nuggets a favorite but I’m not sure that’s enough. I’ll lay the 1.5 and look for the Nuggets to improve on their 9-7 record as Nikola Jokic continues his stellar MVP caliber season.