Kings vs Magic Odds, Picks & Predictions (Saturday, March 23)

Kings vs Magic Odds, Picks & Predictions (Saturday, March 23) article feature image

Getty Images. Pictued: Franz Wagner.

Kings vs Magic Odds

Saturday, March 23
7 p.m. ET
NBA League Pass
Kings Odds
-110 / -110
Magic Odds
-110 / -110
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

Here's everything you need to know about the Kings vs Magic on Saturday, March 23 — our expert prediction and betting picks for today's game.

Kings vs Magic odds have the Magic as 2.5-point favorites on the spread with a game total over/under of 219.5 at BetMGM. I'm targeting the spread for my Kings vs Magic prediction.

The Magic are on a heater, winning five straight games and entering a tough matchup with the Kings with the utmost confidence. Orlando encounters a Sacramento team that is slightly injured and has had to rely on its defense amidst a highly volatile period for its offense. But, will that be enough to cover the spread on Saturday?

Let's get into my NBA betting preview and Kings vs Magic pick.

Sacramento Kings

Defense hasn't always been Sacramento's calling card, but it has kept this team afloat over the last few weeks amidst a smattering of injuries. The Kings rank fifth on the defensive end for the month of March — and they have sorely needed that defensive effort.

The Sacramento offense has deserted the team in recent games against the Grizzlies, Wizards, Knicks and Rockets. Though, given the strength of schedule, we certainly have to ask some questions about how well this team is playing at the moment despite their four wins in six games.

Kevin Huerter and Trey Lyles are once again absent for the road team, which casts a cloud over Sacramento's range of outcomes. With two shooters missing, the Kings' 3-point accuracy has dropped by around three points in the month of March — ranking just 26th in the NBA over that span.

They remain a strong team up front thanks to the efforts of Domantas Sabonis; nevertheless, the Kings still take more shots from 3 than almost every team in the NBA.

Sacramento hasn't even done a spectacular job of defending the 3-point line, allowing a poor 37.1% shooting percentage from outside. Though, that's technically better than what Sacramento has done all season long.

As is the case offensively, this is a team which has been best within four feet of the rim. Along the same lines, rebounding has been one of Sacramento's greatest strengths.

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Orlando Magic

Everything that the Kings have been able to do to win games — the Magic have arguably done better. The Magic are a close second to the Kings in the rebounding department for the month of March and rank second defensively for the month. While the schedule has also been kind to Orlando, its run of form dates back all the way to Feb. 27, winning 10 times in that 12-game span.

Orlando enters with top-10 marks at the rim and against the 3, though this month we've seen a slight drop-off in rim defense and a big uptick in production at the arc. Orlando has also continued to do a stellar job at forcing turnovers, ranking second in the NBA with more than 15 forced turnovers per game. Sacramento ranks 17th in limiting turnovers and will also be up against a team ranked fourth at protecting the ball.

The Magic's defense has certainly carried it this season, but during the last month they have picked things up offensively — charged by the fifth-best field goal percentage within four feet of the rim. It's a sizable improvement in an area they already had a ton of success this year, but another encouraging note is that this team's dreadful 3-point shooting has also leveled to a league-average mark.

Kings vs. Magic

Betting Pick & Prediction

The Kings simply need to win the battle at the 3-point line to win this game, given how frequently they take outside shots. Not only are they up against a strong 3-point defense, but they also must overcome their struggles on the road, where their shooting numbers have dipped by more than two percentage points.

I'm concerned for the Kings inside, too, because Orlando has bullied almost every team it has faced in the restricted area. Granted, this is not exactly a weakness for Sacramento, but it will ultimately be an area where it cannot gain an edge against one of the best frontcourts in the NBA.

Take away some rebounds and points down low and one of the strengths of this defense, and I think that equates to a convincing victory for the Magic. They're a whopping 16-3 against the spread as home favorites this season, which again is going to throw a wet blanket over the Kings' impressive 12-7 mark ATS as road underdogs.

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Doug Ziefel
May 22, 2024 UTC