Monday NBA Predictions, Picks & Betting Odds (Dec. 2): Trust the Bulls’ Offense Against the Kings?


Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine (8), Sacramento Kings forward Harry Giles III (20).

Dec 03, 2019, 08:20 PM EST

This NBA season, I’m trying something new. I’m going to write a daily piece that highlights everything bettors and DFS players need to know for that night’s slate. For more on what to expect, read the inaugural piece.

On Friday I finished 1-2 for -0.1 units. While I don’t want to get sucked into the past, I think it’s worth reviewing things each day.

The best way to do that is to look at closing line value (CLV), which is just measuring whether the line you bet moved for or against you by closing.

  • I bet Knicks +8 and it closed at Knicks +6.5 (won)
  • I bet Jazz-Grizzlies over 222.5 and it closed at 223 (lost)
  • I bet Bulls-Blazers over 226 and it closed at 227 (lost)

What do you know? Another day of positive CLV across pretty much all games but a mediocre record. At least I’m consistent, I guess.

The Knicks ended up barely holding on despite being up by 12 points at halftime. They were outscored by 18 points in the fourth quarter but managed to still cover the 6.5-point closing spread.

One thing worth noting in that game was the spread value of Al Horford and Josh Richardson, both of whom were out. Those guys have been very valuable this season, with Richardson in particular posting a +11.4 on/off differential. The Sixers are loaded up front but don’t have a lot of depth, which makes them vulnerable if one but especially two starters are out.

So you might think that just 1.5 points (it was at -8 before the injury news) is too little for those guys. And it likely is against a good team, but you can’t just calculate player value in a vacuum. Who the team is playing matters a lot; Richardson and Horford being out probably moves the spread at least three points against a top-tier team.

Anyway, enough about Friday’s games. Let’s get to today’s six-game slate and find some angles.

Note: For updates, see the chat at the bottom of this post.

YTD Record:

  • Overall: 110-94-1
  • Spreads: 37-37-1
  • Totals: 36-31
  • Moneylines: 7-5
  • Props: 27-21

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Betting Odds and Analysis

  • 7 p.m. ET: Phoenix Suns (-4.5) at Charlotte Hornets, 224.5
  • 7 p.m. ET: Utah Jazz at Philadelphia 76ers (-5.5), 208.5
  • 7:30 p.m. ET: Golden State Warriors at Atlanta Hawks (-6.5), 222.5
  • 8 p.m. ET: Indiana Pacers (-9.5) at Memphis Grizzlies, 216
  • 8 p.m. ET: New York Knicks at Milwaukee Bucks (-17), 220
  • 10 p.m. ET: Chicago Bulls at Sacramento Kings (-5.5), 212

Let’s run through a couple angles I’m eyeing.

Pacers at Grizzlies

The Grizzlies not only covered last night as a 12-point dog in Minnesota but actually won outright despite missing Ja Morant.

Morant is out again tonight, and the Grizz could be super thin, which isn’t particularly ideal for a back-to-back. Kyle Anderson and Brandon Clarke have been ruled out, and Jonas Valanciunas is questionable with an illness.

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