Oklahoma City Thunder @ Houston Rockets
When: Monday January 20th @ 5PM
Where: Toyota Center, Houston
Odds: Oklahoma City Thunder +220 Houston Rockets -270
The NBA celebrates Martin Luther King Day with a full schedule of fixtures with the highlight being the Western Conference clash between the OKC Thunder and Houston Rockets.
Our Pick: Oklahoma City Thunder (+6.5) -108
The Thunder travel to Houston to face their old foes, the Rockets, on Monday evening.
Oklahoma’s recent run of good form has seen them close the gap on the 6th placed Rockets to just three games. Chris Paul, traded for Russell Westbrook in the off-season, has formed a formidable front-court partnership with young Canadian Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.
Houston has lost each of their last three games by double-digit scores and Mike D’Antoni will look to right the ship with a win here. 2018 NBA MVP James Harden leads the league in scoring and he will be crucial to any Houston success here. ‘The Beard’ is averaging 37.1 points-per-game and he is on course to break Michael Jordan’s single season scoring records.
These sides met just over a week ago with the Thunder prevailing on a scoreline of 113-92. Home court advantage will play its part and the Rockets should close the gap considerably, possibly even win. However, the Thunder are 5-0 Against The Spread in their last five games as road underdogs and we expect that trend to continue.
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Los Angeles Clippers @ Dallas Mavericks
When: Tuesday 21st January @ 8:30PM
Where: American Airlines Center, Dallas
The Dallas Mavericks host Larry O’Brien favourites the LA Clippers on Tuesday night.
Our Pick: Dallas Mavericks (Moneyline)
The Mavericks have a chance to make a statement on home court on Tuesday night. It’s fair to say that Dallas has taken a leap this season in terms of NBA standings. They are now playoff certainties and some people’s outside bet for a run at the Western Conference. Their strong start to the season had people crowning Luka Doncic as this year’s MVP and whispers of another Finals appearance were echoing around the American Airlines Center. Recent injuries to Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis have brought them back to reality and their 15-point defeat to the Clippers at the end of November showed they are some way off the top table yet.
The Clippers have strolled their way to 2nd seed in the Western Conference. At full strength, they are a match for any roster and they are rightly listed as joint favourites at +300 alongside the Lakers to lift the Larry O’Brien trophy at the end of the season.
Porzingis should return to the starting line-up for this one and we fancy the Mavericks to just shade it at home. Bet on the Mavs with VIPCasino.
Memphis Grizzlies @ Boston Celtics
When: Wednesday 22nd January @ 7:30PM
Where: TD Garden, Boston
The Memphis Grizzlies are the form team in the NBA with seven wins in their last seven games. They travel to face the Boston Celtics on Wednesday night.
Our Pick: Boston Celtics (Moneyline)
Both of these sides are also in action on Monday night. The Grizzlies host the New Orleans Pelicans while Boston hosts the Lakers.
On current form, we should expect the Grizzlies to come into Wednesday night’s game with nine wins from their last ten games. They’re currently sitting in 8th position in the Western Conference with a potential 1st Round playoff match-up with the Lakers to look forward to. Taylor Jenkins’ side have been powered by the dynamic duo of Ja Morant and Jaren Jackson Jr. Morant has been of the breakout stars in the NBA this season. The No. 2 draft pick is averaging 18 points-per-game and seven assists.
The Celtics have slipped down to fourth in the Eastern Conference after losing their last three games. Brad Stevens will want to correct that slide fairly quickly with the Indiana Pacers and Philadelphia 76ers only half a game back.
Overall, the Celtics have been very strong on home court this season with a 16-5 record at TD Garden. We expect them to pick up another W and begin to rise up the rankings again before the All-Star break.
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