Hawks vs. Nets NBA Odds & Picks: Target Brooklyn’s Total Against Atlanta
Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Kyrie Irving (left) high-fives Kevin Durant.
- The 3-0 Atlanta Hawks hit the road to face the Brooklyn Nets on Wednesday in what should be a scoring frenzy.
- Will the Nets snap their two-game losing streak or will the Hawks remain undefeated?
- Joe Dellera breaks down Wednesday's high-powered matchup, including his betting pick.
Hawks vs. Nets Odds
|Hawks Odds||+7.5 [BET NOW]|
|Nets Odds||-7.5 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||+245 / -305 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||239 [BET NOW]|
|Time||7:30 p.m. ET|
|TV||NBA League Pass|
The upstart (and undefeated) Atlanta Hawks travel to Brooklyn to take on the Nets, who recently lost Spencer Dinwiddie indefinitely to a torn ACL.
Will this hit to the Nets’ depth impact this matchup? Let’s analyze both teams and find out where there may be some betting value.
The Hawks look to remain undefeated in this matchup after starting the season 3-0. However, after two encouraging defensive performances against the Bulls and the Grizzlies, the Hawks were scorched for 120 points against the Pistons who were without Blake Griffin or Derrick Rose, and entrusted their offense to a rookie point guard.
This looked much more like a win from last year’s Hawks, who were third-worst in Defensive Rating (114.4), per NBA Advanced Stats.
Atlanta may be without a few players for this matchup. Tony Snell is listed as out and Danilo Gallinari is listed as questionable. Keep an eye on his status with our Labs Insiders Tool.
Atlanta has played at a top-10 Pace for the past two seasons, but just running the floor does not equate to efficiency on the offensive or defensive side of the ball. The Hawks have the No. 1 offense in the league, per Cleaning the Glass. However, they have the 14th-ranked defense, and the teams they’ve played so far are all in the bottom half of the league on offense (Memphis 18th, Detroit 26th, Chicago 29th) and defense (Memphis 19th, Detroit 21st, Chicago 28th).
Atlanta has been buoyed to a 3-0 record by playing basement teams and shooting 59.1% eFG% compared to an expected eFG% of 53.9%. While the Hawks made significant moves this offseason and are absolutely better than last season, they’ve yet to be truly tested.
The Nets look to get back on track after two consecutive losses to the Grizzlies and the Hornets, but they’ll have to do so without Dinwiddie.
While I would expect Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving to play since they are not listed on the injury report and this is not a back-to-back scenario, it’s always important to keep an eye on their rest status.
This team is great. The Nets play relatively fast with an average Pace of 103.3, but what’s most impressive is their defense. They have the best defense in the league so far this season and give up only 98.2 points per 100 possessions, compared to the league average of 110.1.
They’ve done this by limiting their opponents to just a 45.7% eFG%, largely protecting the 3-point line. Brooklyn’s opponents have taken 28.6% of their shots from 3-point range and have shot an abysmal 29.7% from behind the arc. The Hawks will certainly put this to the test, as they shoot 42.7% of all their shots from 3-point range and have made 43.1% of them, per Cleaning the Glass.
This matchup pits Atlanta’s No. 1 offense (123.7 points per 100 possessions) against Brooklyn’s No. 1 defense (98.2). This will be Atlanta’s first true test this season, and I’m not sold on the Hawks as legitimate contenders.
Even with the loss of Dinwiddie, the Nets have plenty of offensive firepower to cook the Hawks’ defense. Irving played one game last season against the Hawks and scored 21 points in 19 minutes on 10-of-11 shooting. Kyrie and KD should have a field day.
On the flip side, Durant has looked great on the defensive side of the ball; he’s basically a 7-footer who is nimble enough to close out on the perimeter and obstruct 3-point shots as well as defend the paint.
I’m curious to see this matchup, because of Atlanta’s reliance on the 3-ball while Brooklyn has limited 3s effectively. I think this Nets defense is legit, and their ability to switch 1 through 4 at will is invaluable — especially if Clint Capela is not fully ramped up in his second game back from his injury.
I lean toward the under of 240.5, but I have reservations because of the potential for garbage time and the Nets not using their most optimal lineup.
Since the start of the 2019 season, when the opening total is 235 or higher, the under has gone 80-64-2, per Bet Labs. However, when the home team is a favorite of 5 or more points, the under is just 22-24.
Both teams play fast and the Hawks’ defense won’t be able to slow down the Nets. We are only a few games into the season, so sample size is small, but in all lineups with Durant and Irving on the court and Dinwiddie off, the Nets score 126.6 points per 100 possessions while holding defenses to 101.3, per Cleaning the Glass.
I’m backing Brooklyn to right the ship and put up some points against this porous Atlanta defense.
Pick: Nets team total over 123.5 (-108)