Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:00 AM

Tuesday's Tip Sheet

ATS Rankings | Totals Report | Injuries

Game of the Night: Raptors at 76ers – 8:05 PM EST

These two Atlantic division foes are in the mix to represent the Eastern Conference in the NBA Finals along with Milwaukee and Boston. The Raptors (38-16 SU, 24-30 ATS) sit atop the Atlantic as they are coming off a 121-103 home victory over the Clippers on Super Bowl Sunday. Toronto dropped 42 second quarter points to open up a 14-point halftime lead, while Kawhi Leonard led the Raptors with 18 points to help Toronto improve to 22-5 at home.

The 76ers (34-19 SU, 25-28 ATS) return home from a 2-2 west coast swing, with the major highlight coming last Thursday as Philadelphia snapped Golden State’s 11-game winning streak, 113-104 as eight-point underdogs. However, Philadelphia’s trip ended on a sour note as the Sixers were tripped up at Sacramento on Saturday, 115-108 as three-point favorites. Jimmy Butler and Joel Embiid each scored 29 points for Philadelphia, but Ben Simmons was the only other 76er to post double-figures (22 points) as the Sixers cashed their fifth UNDER in the past six road games.

The home team has dominated the series this season as all three wins have come by double-digits. Toronto ripped Philadelphia, 129-112 in late October behind Leonard’s 31 points, while the Raptors topped the 76ers by 11 in December. Three weeks later, the 76ers broke through with a 126-101 blowout at Wells Fargo Center as Leonard sat out on the second end of a back-to-back set. The Raptors have struggled as an underdog recently by posting a 1-5 SU and 2-4 ATS mark when receiving points since winning at Golden State in mid-December.

Lighten the Load

After taking Saturday night’s loss off to the Warriors due to “load maintenance,” LeBron James is expected to return to the Lakers’ (27-26 SU, 23-28-2 ATS) lineup tonight as they continue a six-game road trip at Indiana. James was a late scratch in Saturday’s primetime showdown with the defending champions as the Lakers barely covered as 14 ½-point underdogs in a 115-101 setback at Golden State. James is suiting up for his game outside of California since December 18 at Brooklyn, as the Lakers own an impressive 7-2 ATS mark in their last nine road games.

The Pacers (34-19 SU, 26-27 ATS) began their four-game road trip with a pair of losses at Washington and Orlando, but ended on a solid note by winning at Miami and New Orleans. Indiana withstood a late Pelicans’ rally on Monday, but held on for a 109-107 win as 3 ½-point favorites. Darren Collison paced Indiana with 22 points, but the Pacers slipped to 1-6 ATS the last seven games overall.

Indiana won and covered in its first three opportunities as a home underdog this season before getting humbled by Golden State as seven-point ‘dogs, 132-100 in late January. The Lakers jumped out to a 23-point lead against the Pacers earlier this season at Staples Center, as L.A. held off Indiana, 104-96 to cash as five-point favorites in November. The Pacers have captured each of the past five home matchups with the Lakers since 2014, while Indiana owns a 4-1 ATS mark in this span.

Heat Wrecked

Home is not where the heart is for the Heat (24-27 SU, 26-25 ATS), who dropped all three games at American Airlines Arena last week. Two losses came by double-digits to Chicago and Oklahoma City, while falling to Indiana, 95-88 on Saturday to fall to 0-4 SU/ATS the last four home contests. Miami embarks on a six-game road swing that starts in Portland as the Heat outlasted the Blazers at the AAA in late October, 120-111 to end a five-game skid in the series.

The Blazers (32-20 SU, 29-23 ATS) extended their home winning streak to eight games in a 132-105 blowout of the Jazz last Wednesday. However, Portland hasn’t played in six days as the Blazers try to avoid a look-ahead spot with the Spurs invading the Moda Center on Thursday. The Blazers have won 10 consecutive home games against Eastern Conference opponents since losing to the Wizards in overtime in October.

Home Buzz

The Hornets (26-26 SU, 27-25 ATS) are looking to bust above the .500 mark for the first time since December 21 as Charlotte is the leader of the Southeast division heading into tonight’s action. Since a 1-5 start to begin 2019, the Hornets have buzzed back by winning seven of 10 games, including all five games at Spectrum Center. Granted, four of the five victories have come against teams with losing records, but the Hornets own the fifth-most home wins in the Eastern Conference with 19, while posting a 7-1 ATS record in their last eight home contests as a single-digit favorite.

The Clippers (29-25 SU, 29-25 ATS) erased a 25-point deficit in Saturday’s epic comeback triumph at Detroit, but fell short the next afternoon in an 18-point setback at Toronto. Los Angeles continues its six-game trip tonight in Charlotte looking to pull off the season sweep of the Hornets. The Clippers slammed the Hornets, 128-109 in early January to cash as 6 ½-point favorites, while L.A. improved to 8-1 in the past nine meetings with Charlotte since 2014.

Magic Traction

Eight times this season, Orlando (22-31 SU, 27-25-1 ATS) has won consecutive games. However, the Magic have picked up three straight wins only once, as Orlando tries to accomplish that feat again after beating Indiana and Brooklyn at home. The opening loss on their homestand came to Oklahoma City last Tuesday, 126-117 as Paul George scored 31 of his 37 points in the opening half.

The Thunder (33-19 SU, 29-23 ATS) saw their seven-game winning streak end in Sunday’s 134-129 defeat at Boston as 3 ½-point underdogs. OKC cashed the OVER for the sixth time in the last seven games, while George continued his red-hot scoring season by putting up 37 points. Since getting tripped up by Washington and Minnesota at home as heavy favorites in early January, the Thunder have won four of their past five at Chesapeake Energy Arena.

Orlando has covered in each of its past four visits to Oklahoma City, while not losing by more than seven points in three of those losses. Since going on an 0-7 ATS run as a road underdog from December 10 through January 9, the Magic has cashed in their last three in this role, including as an 8 ½-point ‘dog at Houston in a 103-98 setback on January 27.

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

Kevin Rogers can be followed on Twitter at virogers.

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