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NBA Odds, Expert Picks, Predictions: 4 Best Bets For Wednesday, Including Celtics vs. Hawks, Rockets vs. Mavericks (November 16)

NBA Odds, Expert Picks, Predictions: 4 Best Bets For Wednesday, Including Celtics vs. Hawks, Rockets vs. Mavericks (November 16) article feature image
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Bob Levey/Getty Images. Pictured: Jalen Green #4 of the Houston Rockets.

Wednesday NBA slates are for the people and today’s schedule of games do not disappoint. Anchoring tonight’s 10-game slate are two battles between potential contenders in the East and West: Celtics vs. Hawks (7:30 p.m. ET) and Warriors vs. Suns (10 p.m. ET).

Our betting analysts are split on the former matchup and they are aligned on another off-the-radar game in Texas. Below they give their in-depth analysis and four best bets for Wednesday night’s games.

NBA Odds & Picks

Click on a pick to skip ahead
Celtics vs. Hawks Moneyline
Celtics vs. Hawks Spread
Rockets vs. Mavericks Spread
Rockets vs. Mavericks Spread

Boston Celtics vs. Atlanta Hawks

Pick
Hawks +115
Book
Caesars
Tipoff
7:30 p.m. ET
TV
ESPN

Chris Baker: I think the Hawks have value as a home dog on Wednesday night with Malcolm Brogdon and Marcus Smart both on the fence to play tonight for the Celtics.

The Celtics have been lighting defenses up as they rank first in Offensive Rating by far. Much of their offensive success has been predicated on their ability to shoot the 3-ball well as they rank fifth in 3-point accuracy (38.3%) and first in 3-point attempt frequency (43.5%). They have been the complete opposite of the hawks as Atlanta ranks dead-last in frequency (27.0%) and 27th in accuracy (32.7%) from behind the arc.

Normally I wouldn’t back a team that is so decidedly losing the math advantage, but I think that the Hawks matchup well here and are due for some regression. The Hawks rank 11th in Offensive Rating despite being horrible from deep, which tells me that this offense is legitimate and when the 3s start falling teams better watch out.

On defense, the Hawks are always struggling to hide Trae Young, but the Celtics aren’t a team that needs or expects scoring from the guard positions, especially with Brogdon and potentially Smart out.

The Hawks should be able to survive on defense with Deandre Hunter and John Collins matched up on Tatum and Brown. Their defense also does a great job of rotating and limiting 3s as they rank fourth-best in the NBA in opponent 3-point frequency (32.3%).

This team is poised to start regressing from the field and I like this spot for them with multiple key Celtics guards questionable.


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Boston Celtics vs. Atlanta Hawks

Pick
Celtics -1.5
Book
BetMGM

Joe Dellera: As Chris noted above, the Celtics have listed Marcus Smart (ankle) on the injury report as probable to play, but Malcolm Brogdon (hamstring) is to be considered doubtful. Collectively they are worth about a point to the spread, but I’d expect Smart to play.

The Celtics are scoring at an unrelenting Pace with the No. 1 offense in the league at an Adjusted Offensive Rating of 119.8, which is complemented by their league-best Net Rating and 57.3% eFG%. Their offense is an absolute wagon and Jayson Tatum is scoring a career-high 31.9 points per game.

The big takeaway regarding Boston is their reliance on the 3-point shot — they are taking 43.5% of their attempts from downtown while making 38.3% of them and they are leading the league in 3s made per game at 15.6.

On the flip side, Atlanta has dramatically changed their shot profile from last season and are taking just 27% of their shots from 3 point range, an 8% downward swing and is the lowest frequency in the league.

On the defensive front, Atlanta has defended the 3 ball well; however, the only team that the Hawks have played that possesses a top 10 3 point percentage as a team is the Utah Jazz (10th) and they lost that game 125 – 119 and were outscored from 3-point range 51 – 24.

This is Atlanta’s first real test against an offense that relies on the 3 ball so heavily, and their Adjusted Net Rating of +1.3 compared to Boston’s of +6.6 is significant. Lay the points and back Boston.


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Houston Rockets vs. Dallas Mavericks

Pick
Rockets +9
Book
BetRivers

Jim Turvey: This was discussed at length on BUCKETS, so if you listened to that stellar podcast already, consider this complimentary.

I was, however, already on the Rockets as a heavy lean, but Matt Moore’s notes on the Dallas post-game presser, hinting that either Spencer Dinwiddie or Luka Doncic could sit, moved this from lean to best bet, with the potential for a hedge down the line.

However, this is not just a bet on rumor. As noted, this was a heavy lean already, and here’s why. The Mavericks don’t excel in any of the things that Houston does poorly. Houston ranks 30th in fast break defense, but Dallas ranks 29th in fast break scoring. Houston has the worst defense against 2-pointers, but Dallas takes the fewest twos of any team in the league.

The Mavs also play with the slowest pace in the NBA which always makes the blowouts a little bit harder.

Add it all together and the look on Houston +9 is a great play.

Now, if what Matt suggested happens and Doncic sits, this number could be long gone by the time you read this. I would not suggest Houston at something like +5 with Doncic out. This play is strictly on a pre-injury report timeline.

However, if Doncic does play and the line stays here, I still like it as a play, but the best bet nature is in part due to the potential ability to actually play Dallas -5 and chase a middle if Doncic is out.


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Houston Rockets vs. Dallas Mavericks

Pick
Rockets +9
Book
BetRivers
Tipoff
8:30 p.m. ET
TV
NBA League Pass

Andrew O’Connor-Watts: Hold your nose and jump, folks, because we’re betting the Rockets.

This is a bet on the spot and the recent trends more than it is on the number (I make this game closer to -12 all things being equal). But, based on how incapable the Mavericks are at covering, especially at home, +9 still feels like a lot.

The Mavs played a hard-fought game against the Clippers at home last night, and staved off a monster second-half comeback from Paul George and company to improve to 8-5 on the season and 7-1 at home.

However, the Mavs are just 1-6-1 ATS in Dallas with their lone home cover coming in their home opener against the Grizzlies on Oct. 22. Since then, the Mavs have yet to cover at home, while the Rockets are 3-2 ATS in their last five road games.

The Rockets have also improved offensively of late, boasting a 113.7 Offensive Rating in the last five games, compared to the Mavericks whose offense has fallen to third-last in that span at 107.2.

The question will be surrounding the Rockets’ atrocious defense which ranks 30th in Defensive Rating (121.4) compared to the Mavericks who rank fifth in that metric (108.2).

Some big money brought this down from 9.5 last night, but I would get in now before it moves any more. The Action Network App’s PRO Report has tracked some sharp money on the Rockets and ideally we want the Rockets with as many points as we can. Don’t take less than +8.5.


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