NBA Best Bets Today: Odds, predictions and picks for Thursday, March 16th

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Welcome to the daily NBA best bets page, your source for analysis on the betting lines for the day in professional hoops. For updates throughout the day follow me on Twitter, and make sure to subscribe to the Hardwood Handicappers podcast!

Top NBA Resources:

All game lines via the VSiN NBA odds page

Stay up to date on injury news with our injury report page as well.

*Indicates team is on the second leg of a back-to-back
**Lines are opening numbers

Best Bets

Record: 58-65 | Units: -9.92 | ROI: -8.26%

None this morning on a short slate with some injury concerns. Oh, and it’s the first round of the NCAA Tournament!

Speaking of, make sure to check out all of our great NCAA Tournament coverage. It is a sure fire way to get the Round of 64 started on the right note.

NBA Games & Odds

Denver Nuggets (-12.5, 228.5) at Detroit Pistons

Jaden Ivey should be on the floor tonight for Detroit, but six other key role players remain out for the Pistons. Denver has dropped its last four and is 1-4 SU/0-5 ATS in its last five contests with a -8.8 net rating. The Nuggets’ defense has been abysmal during this slide, allowing 123.2 points per 100 possessions, so it would be hard to swallow these many points with them. With Ivery on the floor Detroit’s frequency of transition plays off live rebounds jumps by 3.0% which is something that could bother Denver, as it comes into this game 30th in transition defense off live rebounds (130.3). However, the Pistons are still not effective in those possessions, ranking 30th themselves in transition offense off live rebounds (110.1). With no real edge either way it’s easy to pass this one up.

*Sacramento Kings at Brooklyn Nets (-2.5, 237.5)

This is a game which I want to bet over the total and it seems the market agrees with my premise, but there is some hesitation on my part. With Sacramento playing on no rest we do not have access to its injury report, and something tells me there is a chance we see De’Aaron Fox pop up on the report. Fox has been dealing with wrist injury that has caused him to miss time, and there was a moment last night when he seemed to tweak his right ankle. The last thing I want to do is bet this over 237.5 and be caught with my pants down should he be listed as questionable. If he does play this is a candidate to go over the total.

Oklahoma City Thunder at Toronto Raptors (-5.5, 230.5)

Toronto grabbed a win over Denver the other day to snap a three-game slide, but this team has been wildly inconsistent ATS, which signifies the market is too high on its rating. The Raptors are 5-8 ATS in their last 13 games with a -1.3 net rating, and they face a Thunder team which can exploit one of their biggest weaknesses: transition defense. Oklahoma City adds 2.6 points per 100 possessions through transition offense, and Toronto comes into this game 22nd in that category defensively (3.0).

Indiana Pacers at Milwaukee Bucks (-13.5, 238)

There are too many key players in this game with a questionable tag to realistically play this so early in the day. For Indiana, Tyrese Haliburton, Buddy Hield and Myles Turner are all in question to play, and Brook Lopez could miss the game for Milwaukee. It’s a simple handicap this morning. Just wait for clarification before jumping in. 

Orlando Magic at Phoenix Suns (-7, 228)

Orlando is 3-8 ATS in its last 11 games, and the market has certainly turned on a team which it loved about a month ago. Phoenix is 0-3 SU and ATS since winning the first game without Kevin Durant, and its downfall has been a defense that has given up 119.9 points per 100 possessions. It is not surprising that the Suns cannot score efficiently without Durant, but the inability to defend is a surprise. Until that facet of their game improves its hard to lay such a number, even at home.