NBA Best Bets Today: Odds, predictions and picks for Thursday, March 2nd




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!

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: 52-57 | Units: -7.38 | ROI: -6.95%

There are no best bets as of this morning. I will be monitoring the injury report for Joel Embiid’s status, and should he play the 76ers will be in my pocket tonight.

NBA Games & Odds

*Philadelphia 76ers at Dallas Mavericks (-3, 227.5)

Joel Embiid missed Philadelphia’s win over Miami on Wednesday due to the foot injury he’s been dealing with all season. The mystery surrounding his status is the only reason this number is 3.5 consensus as of this morning. At 3.5 this number says that Dallas rates as the slightly better team, and that is just not true if Embiid is going to play tonight. Even if Embiid is not on the floor, the Mavericks are no lock to take care of the 76ers, as we learned last night in Miami. The Kyrie Irving and Luka Doncic pairing has produced mixed results. 

Dallas is 1-4 SU and ATS in the games that both have played, and that is largely due to a defense that is not getting any better. The Mavericks are already the eighth worst defense in the league, and when Doncic and Irving are on the floor they allow 118.7 points per 100 possessions. This miserable defensive effort has been on display in the last two games, where they allowed 1.333 points per possession in the second half to the Lakers and 1.258 per possession to the Pacers for the game. If it is announced that Embiid is available, jump on the 76ers before it’s too late.

Indiana Pacers (-4, 239.5) at San Antonio Spurs

San Antonio ruined a lot of parlays on Tuesday when it scored an outright win over Utah as a 9.5-point underdog. The victory snapped an 0-16 SU slide, and it improved their record to 3-14 ATS in its last 17 games. Fading these tanking teams is always a popular play down the stretch of the season, but bettors must realize this is a factor already baked into these betting. However, that is not usually the case and we are seeing an example of that with this game. Despite the questionable status of Tyrese Haliburton the market is moving toward Indiana this morning. Without Haliburton on the floor the Pacers have been outscored by 6.8 points per 100 possessions and their offensive rating of 109.0 ranks in the 13th percentile. If Haliburton plays the Pacers are certainly live to cover this number on the road, but for the market to jump to fade the Spurs without clarity on Haliburton shows bettors are just blindly fading this team.

Los Angeles Clippers (-2.5, 234) at Golden State Warriors

Los Angeles is 0-3 SU and ATS since returning from the All-Star break, and the newly constructed starting lineup is not working out. In the possessions with Russell Westbrook, Paul George and Kawhi Leonard on the floor together the Clippers have a -14.8 net rating, and that is mostly due to allowing 1.207 points per possession. These new lineups will be tested once again tonight against Golden State, but the market seems to be in on the spot for Los Angeles, as this number is up to 3.5 consensus as of this morning. The Warriors showed the ability to take advantage of poor defenses last time out when they dismantled the Trail Blazers for 1.255 points per possession in a 123-105 win at home, and the team is 25-7 SU/21-11 ATS at home this season. As someone who rates Los Angeles somewhat high when fully healthy I would say I agree with the line move, but at some point the Clippers need to show the results with this new roster construction.

Toronto Raptors (-1.5, 224) at Washington Wizards

The market is still too high on Toronto’s power rating, but there is no denying that the Raptors are playing better basketball. Toronto is 8-2 SU/4-6 ATS in its last 10 games, but it has only outscored its opponents by 1.5 points per 100 possessions over that span while laying an average of 5.5 points. This might be the buy-low point for Raptors backers to take advantage of though. Monte Morris is going to miss his third consecutive game with injury, and Washington has an issue with turnovers. The Wizards are 17th in turnover rate (14.4%) and the Raptors not only force the most turnovers in the league, but they lead the league in points added per 100 possessions through transition offense off steals (2.6).