Nets vs. Hornets Odds & Picks: Back Red-Hot Brooklyn in Charlotte
Brian Babineau/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Kyrie Irving.
- The Nets are an 8-point favorite over the Hornets on Sunday, with Charlotte on the second leg of a back-to-back.
- Brooklyn has been red-hot to start the year, and don't expect that to stop against the Hornets.
Nets vs. Hornets Odds
|Nets Odds||-8 [BET NOW]|
|Hornets Odds||+8 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||-345 / +265 [BET NOW]|
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
The Brooklyn Nets are the talk of the NBA through their first two games — both blowouts against formidable opponents. The Charlotte Hornets, meanwhile, have lost to the Cleveland Cavaliers and Oklahoma City Thunder to open the season.
Brooklyn has a former MVP and Kyrie Irving on its team and is firing on all cylinders. And it’s only a single-digit favorite over a team playing the second night of a back-to-back?
Here’s why you should back the Nets.
To say the Nets have impressed in their first two games this season would be an understatement. They became the first team since the 2008-09 Lakers to win each of its first two games by at least 20 points with blowouts of the Golden State Warriors and Boston Celtics.
The Nets lead the NBA in Net Rating (NRtg) at 26.46, according to Basketball Reference. Their offensive rating (121.12) entered Saturday’s slate of games in sixth, but it’s their defensive rating (94.66) that leads the entire league.
One ball appears to be enough for Irving and Durant, who are averaging a combined 57 points per game. Irving isn’t going to shoot 62.2% from the field for the rest of the season, but he is setting an incredible pace with his incredible ball-handling ability.
We haven’t been able to gather much about Brooklyn’s rotation from its first two games because they were blowouts. Ten Nets are averaging double-digit minutes, but Irving and Durant are averaging 29.5 and 29 per game. Especially early on, those 10 seem like good bets to get minutes as everyone gains full fitness and head coach Steve Nash (that still sounds weird) figures out his best combinations.
It’s terrifying for the rest of the NBA that the Nets are just toying around right now.
The Hornets had an off night on Saturday night against the Thunder, shooting 39.8% from the field in a defeat.
So Charlotte should have no problem on the back end of a back-to-back against the Nets, right?
The Hornets did shoot 41% from beyond the arc, but losing this early in the season to the only team that’s looking to rebuild in the Western Conference is startling. This result is coming off a seven-point loss to the Cavaliers on Wednesday to open the Hornets’ season.
While Charlotte does have a young, athletic roster, there are some big-time potential matchup issues against the Nets. It’s not like anyone in the league has an obvious matchup for Durant, but the Hornets will be relying on P.J. Washington and Miles Bridges to guard the former MVP.
As for Kyrie Irving, expect former Celtics teammate Terry Rozier to check him primarily. It could be a long day defensively and a learning experience for LaMelo Ball, who scored his first NBA points in his second game on Saturday night, if Irving finds his way onto him.
Brooklyn is red hot at the moment, and Charlotte played, and lost, on Saturday night. That’s a bad recipe for the Hornets.
The Nets will be tough to beat and will be poised for another big performance. Don’t overthink it. I’d bet Brooklyn here up to -10.
Pick: Nets -8 (up to -10)