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Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 14:01 PM

Wednesday's Tip Sheet

ATS Rankings | Totals Report | Injuries

Game of the Night: Raptors at Kings – 10:05 PM EST

When the schedule was released three months ago, it would have been hard for the public to circle this game as one to keep an eye out for. However, Toronto (10-1 SU, 6-5 ATS) owns the best record in the Eastern Conference and Sacramento (6-4 SU, 7-3 ATS) is one of the biggest surprises in the league through 10 games.

The Raptors finish off a four-game western road swing after beating the Suns, Lakers, and Jazz. The last two victories came without the services of leading scorer Kawhi Leonard, who is sidelined with a left ankle injury. Toronto has won three of four games without Leonard, while scoring 117, 121, and 124 points in road wins at Washington, Phoenix, and Los Angeles respectively. In Monday’s 124-111 triumph over the struggling Jazz, Toronto used balanced scoring (four players putting up either 16 or 17 points), while the team shot 57% from the floor.

Sacramento started the season at 1-3 as it looked like another year staring at the lottery. However, the Kings rebounded by winning five straight games, including back-to-back home underdog victories against Memphis and Washington. The Kings continued their hot ways on the road with solid showings in underdog wins at Miami and Orlando prior to blowing out Atlanta by 31 points. Sacramento’s road trip came to a screeching halt in a 144-109 setback at Milwaukee on Sunday, but own a perfect 5-0 ATS record as an underdog of nine points or fewer this season.

The Kings begin a four-game homestand that continues with the Wolves, Lakers, and Spurs invading Golden 1 Center over the next week. Sacramento swept Toronto in both 2016 and 2017 seasons, but the Raptors picked up a pair of 15-point wins over the Kings last season, while covering each time.

(Next) Beasts of the East?

The Celtics and Raptors are currently the two teams favored to win the Eastern Conference. Amongst the next tier of teams that are likely to qualify for the second round of the playoffs are the 76ers and Pacers. Philadelphia (6-5 SU, 7-4 ATS) travels to Bankers Life Fieldhouse seeking its first road win of the season after starting 0-5 away from the City of Brotherly Love. To make matters worse, the Sixers have yet to cover a road contest, while dropping a 25-point decision at Brooklyn on Sunday as four-point favorites.

The Pacers (7-4 SU, 6-5 ATS) couldn’t quite capitalize off their dramatic victory over Boston in Monday’s home affair against Houston. The Rockets pulled away from the Pacers in the fourth quarter of a 98-94 defeat, the third time this season that Indiana has scored below 94 points in a game. Indiana has yet to drop consecutive games this season by going 3-0 SU/ATS off a defeat, while seeing the UNDER cash in four of five games at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Turn the Music Up

The Jazz (4-6 SU, 4-6 ATS) have yet to win a game at Vivint Smart Home Arena this season, posting an 0-4 SU/ATS mark at home. Utah will try to end this dubious mark tonight against Dallas, as the Jazz are coming off a 13-point loss to the red-hot Raptors on Monday. Leading scorer Donovan Mitchell is expected to return tonight for the Jazz after missing Monday with an ankle injury.

Utah and Dallas are meeting up for the second time this season after the Jazz knocked off the Mavericks at American Airlines Center on October 28 as 4 ½-point favorites, 113-104. That loss for the Mavs (3-7 SU, 6-4 ATS) was part of a six-game slide that eventually ended in last night’s 119-100 home blowout of the slumping Wizards. Dallas has competed well in the role of a road underdog this season by going 3-0 ATS, as the Mavs covered in losses to the Raptors, Spurs, and Lakers.

The Butler Did It

Yes, Jimmy Butler played a game for the Timberwolves recently. The disgruntled swingman scored 20 points in Monday’s loss to the Clippers, as Minnesota is being careful with Butler, who it has been looking to trade. The Wolves (4-7 SU, 4-7 ATS) seek their first road win tonight as they remain in Los Angeles to face the Lakers. Minnesota is 0-6 away from Target Center, but edged Los Angeles on October 29 as 1 ½-point underdogs, 124-120.

The Lakers (4-6 SU, 3-7 ATS) have started slowly with LeBron James wearing Purple and Gold, which includes a 1-4 ATS mark the last five games. L.A. has covered one game at Staples Center in five opportunities, which coincidentally came in a seven-point win over Denver, handing the Nuggets their lone loss on the season. Since going OVER the total against Minnesota, the Lakers have hit the UNDER in three straight games, all with totals of 234 ½ and higher as tonight’s total sits at 236 ½.

Scratching Back Home

The Grizzlies (5-4 SU, 5-4 ATS) head back to FedEx Forum after dropping the final two games of their three-game road trip at Phoenix and Golden State. Memphis was tied with the defending champions at halftime on Monday, but the Warriors outscored the Grizzlies, 34-15 in the third quarter and picked up a cover as 14-point favorites in a 117-101 win. The Grizzlies have been solid at home so far by going 3-0 SU/ATS, but are listed as ‘dogs at FedEx for the first time this season.

The Nuggets (9-1 SU, 7-3 ATS) keep rolling after rallying past the Celtics on Monday, 115-107, led by Jamal Murray’s 48 points. Denver is riding a five-game winning streak, while owning a 4-1 ATS mark as a favorite of five points or less. The Nuggets captured three of four meetings from the Grizzlies last season, but Memphis cashed in both opportunities as a home underdog, while all four matchups finished UNDER the total.

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

Kevin Rogers can be followed on Twitter at virogers.

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