Most NBA teams are down to their final two or three games and there is still so much be to be decided. Let’s get to it!
Brooklyn (-1) at Milwaukee – The Nets and Bucks enter this game with just two games remaining for each of them. The Bucks currently sit two full games ahead of the Nets as Milwaukee is in the sixth spot and Brooklyn is currently in the eighth and final spot.
A victory for the Bucks doesn’t quite clinch a playoff spot because Boston sits between these two teams so there will be work to be done. That said, a win over the Nets will go a long way towards getting that berth. For the Nets, this is more of a “must-win” game simply because the Indiana Pacers are on their heels just a game back.
Trends: The Nets are 3-7 against the spread in their last ten games on the road in Milwaukee… The Bucks are 3-6-1 ATS in their last ten games at home… Brooklyn is 8-2 straight up in their last ten games… Milwaukee is 16-4-1 ATS in their last 21 games against the Nets.
The Pick: I love the Bucks despite the hot play of Brooklyn.
Oklahoma City (+3) at Indiana – As was mentioned above, the Pacers are currently on the outside looking in when it comes to the playoffs. A win will not be easy because the Thunder come in tied with New Orleans for the final Western Conference playoff spot. The bad news is that they would lose the tie-breaker as things sit right now.
The Pacers have won four straight and six of their last ten while the Thunder have dropped six of their last ten contests.
Trends: Oklahoma City is 0-5 against the spread in their last five games… Indiana is 1-4 straight up in their last five games against the Thunder… OKC is 2-4 ATS in their last six road games… The Pacers are 10-4 SU in their last 14 games at home.
The Pick: I think I have to go with Indiana and the home-court advantage today.
New Orleans (+4.5) at Houston – I profiled the Houston-San Antonio game a couple of days ago and at that time the Rockets held the third spot in the West and the Spurs were in sixth. A Tim Duncan block of James Harden gave the Spurs the win and amazingly the roles were reversed.
Houston need not worry about falling further than sixth because of their advantage over seventh-seeded Dallas, but things are far from settled for them. Not only are they within striking distance of re-gaining the third spot they recently gave up but they are also in close proximity of Memphis who is in the second position.
Despite winning seven of their last ten games, the Rockets have dropped two in a row. New Orleans has won six of their last ten and the Pelicans know they can’t afford a loss. Nor they can rely on Oklahoma City to lose games either.
Trends: New Orleans is 6-2 straight up in their last eight games… The Rockets are 7-1 straight up in their last eight games at home versus New Orleans… The Pelicans are 7-2-1 against the spread in their last 10 games on the road in Houston… The Rockets are 1-5-1 ATS in their last seven games against the Pelicans.
The Pick: With this game meaning so much to both teams I think you lean to the home here to win, but I like New Orleans getting the points.