The 2019-20 NBA season is rolling and we have a huge slate this Monday.
On every big slate this season, PlayPicks is providing our top bets against the spread and against point totals for all the NBA games.
Injuries can always play a factor into the point spreads listed by US sportsbooks like DraftKings Sportsbook and FanDuel Sportsbook in the NBA. Keep an eye on the status of star players with any sort of nagging injury or “load management” concerns as well.
In this column, we will list three of our best bets against the spread with data to support our picks. Then, we will list the following games on the NBA slate in order of our confidence in analyzing the matchup.
Keep in mind that lines can often shift when players are announced out due to rest or injury.
NBA January 6 Best Bets
Utah Jazz (-3) at New Orleans Pelicans
Oddsmakers are still not buying into Utah’s recent run of success, with the Jazz opening as modest 2.5-point favorites at New Orleans tonight. The Pelicans have played much better lately, but Utah leads the NBA with a 14.6 net rating during a 4-game win streak. The Jazz has covered in 7 straight games and is rocking a 113.9 offensive rating over its last four road games.
New Orleans is 6-11 with a rough 111.6 defensive rating at home and the Pelicans offense is likely to struggle against a lengthy Jazz team that can limit Brandon Ingram‘s production. Utah is up to 7th in defensive rating after a solid stretch of play and defeated the Pelicans, 128-120, earlier this season. Another good offensive outing combined with better defense should yield a cover on the road.
Chicago Bulls (+9.5) at Dallas Mavericks
Aside from a blowout win over Golden State, the Mavericks have not looked like the same type of unstoppable team since Luka Doncic returned from his ankle sprain. They’re 1-3 with a -3.1 net rating and rank 17th in offensive rating (109.8) over their last 4 contests. Dallas is 7-11 ATS at home and 7-9 ATS against ECF foes.
Chicago ranks 7th in defensive rating (106.9) with a 6-10 record on the road. The Bulls are 7-2 ATS as road underdogs and 14-8 ATS after a loss. The Bulls will have a much easier time getting to the rim with Kristaps Porzingis (knee) out and an easier time defending the 3-point line if Tim Hardaway Jr. (hamstring) sits again. Chicago yields the fourth-fewest 3s per game (10.8) at the fourth-lowest clip (.334%), so this team is capable of containing the Mavericks space-and-pace offense to keep this game within single digits.
Golden State Warriors (+10.5) at Sacramento Kings
This line has only moved slightly after opening at Warriors +11.5 and it’s still quite exploitable with a double-digit spread. The Kings have been awful lately with a -4.1 net rating while dropping 7 of their last 8 contests. The Warriors haven’t been much better with a -1.5 net rating during that span, but did win four straight before their current 4-game losing streak.
Golden State is expected to be without D’Angelo Russell (thumb) and Draymond Green (ankle) tonight. That creates a bit more risk, but they were able to hang around for a 4-point loss in San Antonio without Russell and the Kings are hardly blowing teams away with a -2.5 PPG differential at home. Sacramento is 6-11 ATS at home and 5-9 ATS as a favorite this season. Since the Kings play at the second-slowest pace in the NBA, it’s hard to imagine them pulling away from an athletic young Warriors team.
NBA January 6 Picks Against The Spread
Indiana Pacers (-5) at Charlotte Hornets
The Pacers will miss Malcolm Brogdon (back), but are still good enough to win a slow-paced game and use their superior defense to shut down Charlotte’s limited offense.
Denver Nuggets (-7.5) at Atlanta Hawks
The Hawks surprisingly gave the Celtics a run in Boston, but should regress with John Collins (back) and Jabari Parker (illness) both questionable.
Brooklyn Nets (+5) at Orlando Magic
The Magic plays at a snail’s pace and the Nets excel in a halfcourt game.
Oklahoma City Thunder (+7.5) at Philadelphia 76ers
The Sixers are dysfunctional right now and the Thunder has capitalized on every weakness while posting the league’s best ATS record (23-12) this season.
Washington Wizards (+8.5) vs Boston Celtics
Kemba Walker (illness) is still out for the Celtics and they’ll miss his scoring against a surprisingly feisty Wizards team. Feel free to bail on Washington if Bradley Beal sits.
San Antonio Spurs (+7) vs Milwaukee Bucks
Gregg Popovich will have just enough tricks against former pupil Mike Budenholzer to allow the Spurs to cover at home. They only lost by 9 (127-118) in Milwaukee on Saturday.