NBA Predictions, Picks & Betting Odds (Wednesday, Dec. 18): Injury Uncertainty Creating Betting Value


Photo credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond

Dec 18, 2019, 03:00 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.

Yesterday I finished 2-0 for +1.0 unit. 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 Nets -130 and it closed at Nets -135 (won)
  • I bet Hawks-Knicks over 224.5 and it closed at 225.5 (won)

Both bets hit, and we got a little CLV in the process. I got tied up last night and wasn’t able to grab the third game of yesterday’s writeup — under in Suns-Clippers — but that hit as well. Unfortunately I wasn’t around to grab those Pacers odds when it was announced Anthony Davis was out, either.

It’s been a tough start to the season for betting based on injury news and beating the market, but it’s starting to turn around, as it was always going to. It seemed like every day an injury would move a line 3-4 points, but the injured team would still cover. Either that was fluky and likely to change or the NBA global betting market is wildly inefficient.

It’s highly likely that the reason is the former and not the latter, and last night was a nice turnaround for things.

Anyway, let’s dive into today’s slate and find some angles.

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

YTD Record:

  • Overall: 141-117-2
  • Spreads: 53-49-2
  • Totals: 42-40
  • Moneylines: 12-6
  • Props: 29-22

Jump To: Odds & Analysis | Projected Starting Lineups & Injury NewsPlayer Props | DFS Values & Strategy | My Bets

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Betting Odds and Analysis

  • 7 p.m. ET: Chicago Bulls at Washington Wizards (-1.5), 229.5
  • 7 p.m. ET: Charlotte Hornets at Cleveland Cavaliers (-3), 212.5
  • 7 p.m. ET: Toronto Raptors (-3.5) at Detroit Pistons, 217
  • 7 p.m. ET: Miami Heat at Philadelphia 76ers (-8), 209.5
  • 8 p.m. ET: Memphis Grizzlies at OKC Thunder (-6.5), 219
  • 8 p.m. ET: New Orleans Pelicans at Minnesota Timberwolves (-7), 231
  • 9 p.m. ET: Orlando Magic at Denver Nuggets (-9.5), 204
  • 9:30 p.m. ET: Boston Celtics (-2) at Dallas Mavericks, 217.5
  • 10 p.m. ET: Golden State Warriors at Portland Trail Blazers (-9.5), 220

Today’s a great day to find value based on impending injury news. Let’s run through a couple angles I’m eyeing.

Raptors at Pistons

Both Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond ended up sitting out for the Pistons on Monday, and Detroit fell to the lowly Wizards, 133-119. They’re both questionable to suit up today.

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