NBA Odds, Picks & Projections: Betting Analysis for Celtics vs. Hornets, More (Wednesday, March 9)
Adam Glanzman/Getty Images. Pictured: Jayson Tatum #0 of the Boston Celtics.
- NBA betting expert Raheem Palmer is firing up his model once again for Wednesday night's basketball games.
- He's analyzing totals on Celtics-Hornets, Bucks-Hawks and Magic-Pelicans.
- Check out his model projections for tonight's 12-game NBA slate below.
It’s going to be a busy Wednesday across the Association with a ton of teams in action tonight.
As usual, you’ll projected team totals, projected combined totals, projected spreads for the matchup and the implied odds for the moneyline. But through the end of the season, I’m also looking at first-half numbers for each game on the Wednesday night slate.
NBA Projections Model
NBA Odds & Picks
Although projections give us a solid baseline for what a number should be, it’s also important to handicap each matchup for things that the numbers can’t tell us.
Check out my analysis for tonight’s 12-game slate.
Note: My projections won’t be updated in real-time throughout the day, but Action’s PRO Projections tool is dynamic and will reflect the latest injury and lineup news.
Boston Celtics vs. Charlotte Hornets
This total has been steamed down from the opener of 227 but I personally don’t agree with the line move. The Charlotte Hornets play at a blistering pace, second-fastest among all NBA teams at 100.7 possessions a game.
Along with a ranking 20th in Defensive Rating (112.7), the Boston Celtics which are third in offensive rating scoring 121.4 points per 100 possessions over the last two weeks.
Given the Celtics recent offensive surge, we’ve seen this team’s games fly over the total in two straight games and it’s tough to imagine it slowing down in this spot. While the Celtics have the best defense in the league, this unit has slipped a bit during the past two weeks and with the pace of this game, that should be enough to help this total go over.
Milwaukee Bucks vs. Atlanta Hawks
It’s very difficult to trust either one of these defenses at this point. The Bucks have a championship pedigree and have held top five defenses during the Mike Budenholzer era.
That hasn’t been the case this season for a team that has played deep into the postseason the last few years and is missing a key defensive piece in Lopez. Over the past two weeks the Bucks are just 18th in Defensive Rating, allowing 116.0 points per 100 possessions in their non garbage time minutes.
Fortunately for the Bucks, their offense has been the best in the league over the past two weeks and that should continue against a Hawks defense which has struggled all season ranking 26th in Defensive Rating (114.6). The Bucks are fifth in pace (100) and fifth in offensive length of possession (14 seconds) and while we could see it slow down a bit on the back-to-back, I still expect both offenses to be efficient.
The Hawks have put up Offensive Ratings north of 120 in both meeting against the Bucks this season. I don’t see that changing here. I played the over at 236.5, but I still like the over at the current number with my model making this game 241.
Orlando Magic vs. New Orleans Pelicans
The Orlando Magic and New Orleans Pelicans have been the top two defensive teams in the league since the All-Star break, allowing 104.9 and 105.8 points per 100 possessions respectively. They happen to meet each other tonight, just one night after playing games against the Phoenix Suns and Memphis Grizzlies, respectively. Nonetheless, this feels like a prime spot for an under with my model making this total 217 and the market making this total 223.
The Pelicans are 21st in pace (97.5) and 18th in Offensive Length of Possession (14.8 seconds). While the Magic play a lot faster, ranking 10th in pace (99.3) and eighth in Offensive Length of Possession (14.4), this is one of the worst offensive teams in the league, scoring just 104.2 points per 100 possessions in their non garbage time minutes, 29th among NBA teams. The Pelicans defense also ranks 25th in Defensive Length of Possession (14.8) so they have a way of forcing opposing teams into using up more of the shot clock.
In addition, with both teams playing a back-to-back we could see a slower pace than normal as well as less than optimal efficiency. The Pelicans are scoring just 107.0 points per 100 possessions on zero days rest, while the Magic are scoring just 98.9 on the second leg of a back-to-back. I’ll play the under 223.