January 16, 2014
By Kevin Rogers
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Kings at Grizzlies - 8:05 PM EST
Sacramento: 14-23 SU, 16-20-1 ATS
Memphis: 19-19 SU, 17-20-1 ATS
The Grizzlies have woken up from the doldrums recently by winning four straight games to climb back to the .500 mark. Memphis returns to FedEx Forum for a pair of games starting Friday against Sacramento, as the Grizzlies go for their second victory over the Kings this season. Back in mid-November, Memphis completed a perfect 4-0 SU/ATS trek through California, which included a 97-86 triumph at Sacramento as 2 ½-point favorites, the fifth straight win in the series.
The Kings picked up a solid wire-to-wire victory at Minnesota as 9 ½-point underdogs on Wednesday, 111-108. Sacramento is in the midst of a six-game road trip, as Mike Malone's club has won four of their past five contests to get out of the Pacific Division cellar. The Kings are scoring in bunches on the highway recently, posting seven consecutive 'overs' on the road, while going 11-3 to the 'over' in the last 14 games overall.
Blazers at Spurs - 8:35 PM EST
Portland: 29-9 SU, 22-16 ATS
San Antonio: 31-8 SU, 20-19 ATS
The Blazers head back on the highway after sweeping a three-game homestand against the Magic, Celtics, and Cavaliers. Portland was in danger of losing to Cleveland on Wednesday, but broke a 96-96 tie late with a 12-0 run to cash as 10 ½-point favorites and pull off the season sweep of the Cavs. Terry Stotts' team will do the Texas Triangle over the next few days, as the Blazers won their home opener this season against the Spurs, 115-105 as 2 ½-point underdogs. Since the start of December, the Blazers have won six of nine road games, while putting together a 6-1 ATS record this season as an away 'dog.
San Antonio is rolling with a six-game winning streak, as Gregg Popovich's club has scored at least 100 points in 11 consecutive contests. The Spurs failed to cash in each of their last two wins over the Jazz and Pelicans, but the defending Western Conference champions are 4-1 ATS this season when coming off consecutive ATS losses. San Antonio is riding a nice 'over' run at home since mid-November, sailing 'over' the total in 13 of the previous 16 games at the AT&T Center.
Mavericks at Suns - 9:05 PM EST
Dallas: 23-17 SU, 22-18 ATS
Phoenix: 22-16 SU, 25-12-1 ATS
The Mavericks squandered a 17-point lead with less than five minutes left in Wednesday's shocking loss to the Clippers, as Dallas tries to get on track at Phoenix. Rick Carlisle's club did cover as 4 ½-point road underdogs, the sixth cover in the past seven away contests, while going 'under' the total in four of the last five on the highway. The last time the Mavs headed to the Valley back in December, Dallas fell to Phoenix, 123-108 as 2 ½-point underdogs, while allowing 38 points in the opening quarter. Phoenix shot lights out in that victory, nailing 15 three-pointers and converting 20-of-22 free throws.
The Suns snapped a three-game skid after holding off the struggling Lakers on Wednesday, 121-114, but Phoenix failed to cover as 10 ½-point favorites. Since the start of January, Jeff Hornacek's squad has won just three of eight games, which coincides with the loss of leading scorer Eric Bledsoe to a knee injury. However, Phoenix has scorched the books off an ATS loss, putting together an 8-2 ATS record when coming off a non-cover.
Warriors at Thunder - 9:35 PM EST
Golden State: 25-15 SU, 18-20-2 ATS
Oklahoma City: 29-10 SU, 21-18 ATS
One of these two teams (if not, both) will likely qualify for the Western Conference Finals this season, as the Thunder and Warriors have exchanged a pair of one-point home victories. Andre Iguodala's fall-away jumper on the buzzer lifted Golden State past Oklahoma City, 116-115 on November 14 in Oakland, but the Thunder cashed as five-point 'dogs. Two weeks later, the Thunder staved off the Warriors in overtime, 113-112, as Golden State took the money as 7 ½-point 'dogs.
The Warriors head back on the highway after finishing off a 6-1 post-Christmas road trip against Eastern Conference foes. Mark Jackson's team will look to get back on track after dropping a 123-116 contest to the Nuggets on Wednesday, as Golden State has won six of its past seven games off a defeat dating back to the start of December. The Thunder are playing with no rest following Thursday's comeback victory at Houston, as OKC is 1-1 SU/ATS this season at home on the second of a back-to-back, which includes a 104-98 setback to Toronto as 10 ½-point favorites in late December.
You can reach Kevin Rogers via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
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