NBA expert Dave Gray takes on this weekend’s £25,000 Pick 5 Point Margin pool. Check out his NBA betting tips and join his Syndicate.
NBA betting tips
Lakers @ Pacers, Saturday 18:00
The Lakers may currently be sitting in the seventh seed and at real danger of having to play in the play-in tournament but there should be no doubt that they are one of the league’s best teams and the favourites to make it out of the Western Conference. With LeBron James and Anthony Davis both now back and healthy and ready to push for back-to-back championships, they will be a formidable matchup for anybody in the playoffs.
The Pacers have very little to play for and are very likely to sit starters to rest up for their play-in games. What would have already been a one-sided affair could be an even easier matchup for Los Angeles. The only worry for a massive win is that the Lakers start to rest players themselves at the end, but we should see a comfortable win.
Selections: Lakers 9-12, 13-16
Suns @ Spurs, Saturday 19:00
The Suns have a real shot to secure the number one seed and they’ll give themselves every chance to do so here. A year ago they were the story of the NBA bubble as they went on a superb 8-0 run. Since then they have added Chris Paul who has really taken them to another level. But make no mistake, it is Devin Booker who is the star of this team. He has always been a phenomenal scorer but defensively he has really stepped it up. Many will overlook them as we head to the postseason but they are going to be a real threat for any team.
Like the Pacers, the Spurs are already locked in to a play-in spot and have very little to play for. This should be an easy win for the Suns, who even if they rest starters at some point in this game, have excellent depth and this is reflected in our NBA betting tips.
Selections: Suns 13-16, 17-20
Hornets @ Wizards, Sunday 18:00
This one could be a preview of one of next week’s play-in tournament games. The Hornets are already in and the Wizards just need one win or a loss for the Bulls to secure their spot. That does make this one a really hard game to call as both teams could have very little on the line.
The Hornets have one of the weaker benches in the league and that makes me lean towards Washington here. It is probably one to play it safe, though, and go for a tight match up that could go either way. This one feels the toughest leg to call.
Selections: Hornets 1-4, Wizards 1-4, 5-8
Celtics @ Knicks, Sunday 18:00
The Celtics have once again been a disappointment this season. They have had countless injury issues and the news that Jaylen Brown will miss the rest of the season is perhaps the biggest blow of them all. They do have Jayson Tatum, who is a star. He really struggled to recover from COVID but since the All Star break he is been excellent. Without Brown, though, their chances of a title run are very slim.
The Knicks are perhaps the story of the 2021 season. They have had a completely unexpected breakout to make the playoffs for the first time in eight years. From Julius Randle to first year coach Tom Thibodeau, the Knicks have been very good all season. Both are likely to win most improved player and coach of the year respectively.
With a quick turnaround to Tuesday’s play in games I would expect to see those Celtics players that are actually healthy sitting this one out.
Selections: Knicks 1-4, 5-8, 9-12
Cavaliers @ Nets, Monday 00:00
The Nets are the one team that can really claim to have a stronger set of players than the Lakers. Second in offence to only the Bucks, with Kevin Durant, James Harden and Kyrie Irving they have the firepower to outscore anybody. Defensively they probably need to improve if they are going to win the title, but that should not matter in this one.
Cleveland have the worst offence in the entire NBA and, even if Brooklyn decide to rest up ready for the playoffs, this one is unlikely to be too competitive. Working out just how many the Nets will win by is perhaps the hard thing because of the chances that Durant and co could miss most or all of the game but they still have a chance of getting the first seed so they have at least some incentive to win this one.
Selections: Nets 9-12, 13-16
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