Wednesday's Tip Sheet
February 14, 2018
By Kevin Rogers
Editor's Note: Kevin Rogers has won five straight NBA selections and is currently on a 7-2 run. He is locked and loaded with a pair of Wednesday night winners. Click to win!
Game of the Night: Warriors (-5 ½, 225 ½) at Blazers – 10:35 PM EST
Golden State (44-13 SU, 26-30-1 ATS) crushed Phoenix on Monday night, 129-83 as head coach Steve Kerr took a backseat and let his players coach in that victory. It really didn’t matter who drew up the plays as the Warriors shot 58% from the floor, led by Stephen Curry’s 22 points, while Golden State outscored Phoenix in the second half, 67-38 to easily cash as 16-point favorites. The defending champions finished the first half of the season with a 22-7 home record, as the Warriors lost a total of nine regular season games at Oracle Arena the previous three seasons combined.
Portland (31-26 SU, 27-25-5 ATS) had its nine-game home winning streak snapped in Sunday’s 115-96 setback to Utah, while falling to 2-4 ATS the last six contests. The Jazz outscored the Blazers in the third quarter, 38-19 to take firm control in spite of Damian Lillard posting a 39-point effort. The Portland All-Star guard compiled 89 points in the two-game stretch against Sacramento last Friday and Utah on Sunday, as the Blazers dropped to 4-2 ATS this season when Lillard scores at least 35 points.
The Warriors swept the Blazers out of the first round of the playoffs last season, while going 8-0 against Portland in 2016-17. Golden State continued its domination of Portland with a 111-104 home victory in mid-December, but failed to cash as 8 ½-point favorites. The Warriors are riding an 11-game winning streak against the Blazers dating back to May 2016 as the last regular season win in the series by Portland came in February 2016 at the Moda Center, 137-105 as Lillard blew up for 51 points.
Not So Lucky
Following a terrific start to the season, the Celtics (40-18 SU, 34-22-2 ATS) aren’t playing their best basketball heading into the All-Star break. Boston has lost three of its past four games, including consecutive home setbacks to Indiana and Cleveland in which they failed to bust the 100-point mark. In Sunday’s 22-point defeat to the Cavaliers, the Celtics shot 10-of-38 from three-point range, including a 1-of-7 effort from Kyrie Irving.
The Clippers (29-26 SU, 30-24-1 ATS) invade TD Garden as L.A. continues its seven-game road trip. Since losing at home to Boston on January 24, the Clippers have won six of their past eight contests, including a 114-101 triumph at Brooklyn on Monday as 4 ½-point favorites.
L.A. is currently on an eight-game UNDER run, including five straight UNDERS registered away from Staples Center. The Clippers have responded well as a road underdog with rest by going 5-2 ATS in the last seven in this situation, including recent victories at Golden State, New Orleans, and Detroit.
Last week, the Pistons (27-29 SU, 26-28-2 ATS) pulled off their fifth straight win on their homestand and were undefeated with Blake Griffin in the lineup. Fast-forward seven days and Detroit has lost three consecutive games, while giving up 118 points in recent defeats to Atlanta and New Orleans. Since Griffin joined the lineup, the Pistons are 1-6 ATS as all seven games Detroit has been listed in the favorite role.
Detroit catches Atlanta for the second time in four days after getting tripped up at Philips Arena on Sunday, 118-115 as 3 ½-point favorites. The Hawks (18-40 SU, 30-26-2 ATS) became the first Eastern Conference team to suffer 40 losses on the season following Tuesday’s 97-92 setback at Milwaukee. Atlanta rallied in the fourth quarter to cash as 7 ½-point underdogs, but the Hawks have won just twice in 12 tries with no rest this season.
Cool it Now
The Heat (30-27 SU, 27-27-3 ATS) have hit the skids of late by losing six of the past seven games, including Tuesday’s 115-112 defeat at Toronto. Miami managed a cover as eight-point underdogs, but the Heat have allowed at least 109 points in four of the last five contests. Seven players scored in double-figures for Miami, including 10 points and 11 rebounds off the bench for recently acquired Dwyane Wade.
Miami heads to Philadelphia for the second time this month, looking to avenge a 103-97 loss as four-point ‘dogs on February 2. The 76ers (29-25 SU, 31-22-1 ATS) extended their home winning streak to 10 in Monday’s 108-92 triumph over the short-handed Knicks as 11 ½-point favorites.
The Sixers received balanced scoring with six players posting double-figures, but the most impressive stat line came from reserve guard T.J. McConnell, who recorded a triple-double with 10 points, 10 rebounds, and 11 assists. During Philadelphia’s 10-game home winning streak, the 76ers have covered all 10 times, while limiting the last three opponents to 98 points or fewer.
Keep Up the Pace
One of the top stories from the first half of the season has been the resurgence of the Pacers (32-25 SU, 31-26 ATS), who weren’t expected to make the playoffs after Paul George was dealt to the Thunder in the offseason. Indiana has compiled an 8-3 record since late January, which includes six victories at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. The Pacers have been a productive road favorite this season at 4-2 SU/ATS as they venture to Brooklyn looking for the four-game season sweep of the Nets.
Brooklyn (19-39 SU, 33-25 ATS) limp into Wednesday’s action with losses in six consecutive games and a 1-10 record in the past 11 trips to the court. The Nets erased a 28-point deficit and forced overtime before falling short in Saturday’s loss to New Orleans, while dropping a 13-point decision to the Clippers on Monday. Brooklyn has lost six straight meetings with Indiana, but covered as 9 ½-point ‘dogs in a 123-119 overtime road loss in late December.
The Rockets (43-13 SU, 28-27-1 ATS) grabbed their ninth consecutive victory in Tuesday’s 126-108 triumph at Minnesota as 3 ½-point favorites. Houston improved to 10-2 ATS in the last 12 opportunities as a single-digit favorite, but Mike D’Antoni’s team has slumped to a dreadful 1-10-1 ATS mark in the previous 12 games when laying at least 10 points. The Rockets will be in the latter position on Wednesday as they welcome in the Kings.
Sacramento (18-38 SU, 24-29-3 ATS) remains in the Lone Star State after holding off Dallas on Tuesday, 114-109 as seven-point underdogs. The Kings moved to 6-1 ATS in the last seven games on the highway, while cashing the OVER in six of the past eight contests overall. Sacramento has dropped six consecutive meetings with Houston, including a 105-100 setback at Golden 1 Center as seven-point underdogs in mid-October.
The first half of the season for the Pelicans (30-26 SU, 28-27-1 ATS) has seen plenty of ups and downs, as New Orleans looks to finish on a high-note with a three-game winning streak. The Pelicans bounced back from a 1-5 stretch to pick up road victories at Brooklyn and Detroit, capped off by a 15-point rout of the Pistons on Monday. New Orleans will try to fix a recent 1-7 ATS run in the role of a home favorite as the Pelicans host the Lakers.
Los Angeles (23-32 SU, 29-26 ATS) had its four-game hot streak snapped in Saturday’s 130-123 loss at Dallas as three-point underdogs. Isaiah Thomas posted 22 points in his Lakers’ debut, as Los Angeles shot nearly 55% from the floor and knocked down 16 three-pointers in the defeat. In spite of the setback, the Lakers own a solid 12-5 ATS record the last 17 games, even though eight of those covers came at home.
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