Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:05 AM

Monday's Tip Sheet

Game of the Night: Blazers at Pistons – 7:05 PM EST

Portland (29-24 SU, 25-23-5 ATS) wraps up a rough three-game road trip after falling at Toronto and Boston. The Raptors blew out the Blazers on Friday, 130-105, as Portland trailed by 19 points after one quarter. Terry Stotts’ club built a 16-point halftime lead over the under-manned Celtics on Sunday, but Portland dropped a heart-breaker at the buzzer on Al Horford’s jumper, 97-96. Portland slipped to 2-6 in its last eight games away from the Moda Center, with four of those losses to strong playoff contenders (Toronto, Boston, Minnesota, and Houston).

The Pistons (25-26 SU, 25-24-2 ATS) are hitting their stride following the acquisition of Blake Griffin from the Clippers last week. Detroit upset Cleveland in the first game after the trade, then Griffin recorded a 24-point, 10-rebound effort in his Pistons’ debut, a 104-102 victory over the Grizzlies last Thursday. The Pistons held off the Heat on Saturday, 111-107, but failed to cash as 4 ½-point favorites to fall to 0-2 ATS with Griffin in the lineup.

Detroit is currently on a 5-0 OVER run, while each of the past five meetings with Portland eclipsed the OVER. Last season, these two teams needed overtime in each of the two matchups as the Pistons captured both games. Detroit edged Portland at the Moda Center, 125-124 as 3 ½-point underdogs, while the Pistons held off the Blazers at the Palace of Auburn Hills, 120-113 to pick up their fourth straight win in the series.

Not Hitting the Wall

Losing an All-Star player would normally set a team back, but that’s not the case in Washington. The Wizards (30-22 SU, 24-28 ATS) are riding a four-game winning streak since John Wall was sidelined with a left knee injury. Washington didn’t suffer a letdown on Saturday following consecutive home underdog wins over Oklahoma City and Toronto, as the Wizards chased the Magic, 115-98 as 4 ½-point favorites.

The Pacers (30-24 SU, 29-25 ATS) have pulled off six consecutive victories at Bankers Life Fieldhouse following Saturday’s 100-92 triumph over the 76ers. Each of the last five home wins have come against teams at .500 or below, as Indiana looks for better results against Washington after dropping three of four matchups last season.

New Orleans vs. Old Orleans

The Jazz didn’t make the playoffs in their first five seasons in New Orleans before shipping out to Salt Lake City in 1979. Utah (24-28 SU, 28-24 ATS) eventually put together a 20-year run of playoff appearances before failing to make the postseason in 2004. Quin Snyder’s team is coming off a division title last season, but the Jazz have fallen on hard times by sitting in last place of the Northwest.

However, the Jazz are starting to climb back to life after winning their fifth straight game on Saturday, 120-111 at San Antonio as six-point underdogs. Besides beating the Spurs, Utah also knocked off Toronto and Golden State in this stretch, while topping the 120-point mark in three consecutive contests.

Utah heads to New Orleans to face a Pelicans’ (28-24 SU, 26-25-1 ATS) squad that has lost three of four games since DeMarcus Cousins tore his Achilles’ tendon on January 26 against Houston. The latest defeat came at Minnesota on Saturday, 118-107, the fourth loss to the Wolves this season, in spite of Anthony Davis pouring in 38 points for New Orleans. The Jazz and Pelicans have split two meetings this season in Salt Lake City, while Utah has won three of the past four visits to Smoothie King Center since 2015.

Buzzing Around

For the third time this season, the Hornets (23-29 SU, 23-25-4 ATS) have put together a three-game winning streak. Charlotte torched Atlanta (123 points) and Indiana (133 points) prior to rallying past Phoenix on Sunday, 115-110. Although the Hornets failed to cover as 6 ½-point road favorites, the Hornets used a 20-2 run to start the fourth quarter and overcame 41% shooting from the floor to pick up their eighth away victory of the season.

Charlotte continues its four-game road swing against Western Conference foes as the Hornets head to Denver. The Nuggets (28-25 SU, 24-26-3 ATS) have experienced quite a week against three of the league’s top teams at home. Denver lost in the final seconds to Boston on Monday, but bounced back with a game-winning three-pointer at the buzzer to knock off Oklahoma City on Thursday. The Nuggets rallied past the defending champion Warriors on Saturday, 115-108 as five-point underdogs, improving to 3-1 SU/ATS as a home ‘dog.

Earlier this season, the Hornets ripped the Nuggets, 110-93 as two-point home ‘dogs in late October, the third consecutive win by Charlotte over Denver since March 2017. Each of the past six meetings at Pepsi Center have finished UNDER the total, while the Hornets are 3-1 SU/ATS in their previous four trips to Denver.

Sunshine State Showdown

Following a victory at Dallas to begin its four-game road trip, the Heat (29-24 SU, 25-25-3 ATS) cooled off the final three contests by losing at Cleveland, Philadelphia, and Detroit. All three defeats were decided by six points or less, capped off by Saturday’s 111-107 setback to the Pistons, but the Heat barely cashed as 4 ½-point ‘dogs. That high-scoring affair snapped a six-game UNDER streak, as well as ending a six-game stretch of scoring fewer than 100 points.

Miami returns home to battle Orlando (15-36 SU, 22-28-1 ATS), who had its eight-game covering streak as an underdog snapped in Saturday’s 115-98 home loss to Washington as 4 ½-point ‘dogs. Five ATS wins during that stretch came as a double-digit ‘dog, while the Magic have cashed in six straight games on the highway. Orlando topped Miami in the season opener at home, but the Heat have captured the last two matchups, including a six-point victory at Amway Center in late December.

Late Night Action

A pair of last-place squads meet up in Sacramento as the Kings entertain the Bulls. Chicago has dropped six consecutive games, including a pair of double-digit defeats to the Clippers and Blazers on its three-game road swing. The Kings fell apart in the fourth quarter of Saturday’s 106-99 defeat to the Mavericks to fall to 1-8 SU/ATS in their last nine games at Golden 1 Center. The Bulls had claimed five straight matchups with the Kings prior to Sacramento’s 106-105 close-shave win at the United Center in December.

The Mavericks have won only four of 15 games in 2018, but one of those victories came on Saturday at Sacramento. Dallas snapped a six-game stretch of scoring less than 100 points by putting up 106, while ending a six-game UNDER streak. The Mavs head to Staples Center to face the Clippers, who have won three of the past four contests, including a 10-point triumph over the Bulls on Saturday afternoon. Dallas and L.A. have split a pair of meetings this season as both teams have exchanged blowout wins on their home court.

You can reach Kevin Rogers via e-mail at [email protected]

Kevin Rogers can be followed on Twitter at virogers.

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