Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:56 AM
Friday's Best Bets
It's a busy night in the NBA with 11 games on tap, and there is a nice mix of games overall. The late night slate is where most of the eyes will be drawn towards with Milwaukee/Utah, Philadelphia/Denver, Brooklyn/Portland and Miami/LA Lakers capping off the night. All four of those games bring some intriguing story lines with them but they aren't the only betting options out there by any means.
Some of the early game betting options that look intriguing include Atlanta +2.5 and Toronto/New Orleans Under 233, but like I said, it's the late games that are going to get the attention, so that's where my attention has gone.
And with it there are two totals that fit similar profiles with line moves from opening going the other way, so hopefully we can take advantage of these current numbers being arguably a little higher then they likely should be.
Friday NBA Best Bets
Best Bet #1: Brooklyn/Portland Under 237
Best Bet#2: Miami/LA Lakers Under 217.5
The profile that I'm referring to for these two games is teams on the latter end of a back-to-back. It's still early in this young season and guys are just finding their legs now in terms of finding mid-season form, and that's led to some interesting results in these quick turnaround spots.
League wide, NBA teams without rest are 10-19 -1 O/U this year, and tonight we've got both Portland and Miami fitting that profile. Both of their totals opened much lower then what's currently out there – Portland at 233 and Miami at 215.5, so these jumps up that they've taken do have to have some respectability attached to them. But going against the grain in the NBA is usually not a bad thing, especially when the betting percentages currently up at Vegasinsider.com have strong majorities on the high side of these totals already.
In terms of the specifics, it's hard not to like the 'under' in the Heat/Lakers game a bit more for multiple reasons. For one, Miami is coming off one of their best offensive performances of the year last night when they hung 124 on Phoenix in the road win, and against a Lakers team that's got a bit more size, and a much more willingness to play defense, I doubt we see the Heat have that kind of offensive success tonight.
This is also the end of a three-game road trip out west for Miami, playing all three of those games in four nights. They no-showed in Denver to begin the trip, bounced back with a strong win in Phoenix last night, and will aim to put up a fight for as long as they can with the Lakers this evening. But as I said, guys are still trying to find their legs in terms of being in peak game shape these days, and three games in four nights in early November is where you'll likely see plenty of fatigue set in.
At the same time, LA is returning home after their own three-game road trip, and probably aren't in any hurry to get in a track meet either. It's not like they are one of the younger teams in the league this year, and with how they turned up the defensive intensity in that 4th quarter comeback win against Chicago last time out, they know they can go into shutdown mode when needed. LA also welcomes the defending champs into town on Sunday, so chances of this being potentially a sluggish and sloppy game for LA exist as well. The Lakers have yet to have two consecutive 'over's cash this year either.
The Brooklyn/Portland game is interesting in the sense that the total has jumped up by a significant margin already, and you do get Portland coming off an 'under' result last night. That 'under' came about because of some very poor shooting in the 1st half vs the Clippers, and while the Blazers got it going in the 2nd half, they couldn't hold on late.
Brooklyn is far from the defensive team that the Clippers are, and with multiple days of rest since their last game, the Nets may want to push the pace as quick as possible early to see just how good those legs on the Blazers feel. Portland is also one of the few teams that's 1-0 O/U in the latter part of a back-to-back, and when you put that perspective all together you can understand the early support for the 'over.'
But needing 238 points is still a big ask, even in today's NBA where that's basically a pace of 60 points per frame. Portland games have eclipsed that mark in two of their last three, but those two totals closed no higher then 224.5, as expecting and getting a high point total like that are two different things. This is also just the third home game of the season for Portland, and having played in seven games (including tonight's) in six different cities over the span of 13 days can't be conducive to playing at an optimal level.
With the 'unders' hitting at basically a 2-1 clip in these back-to-back spots, taking both of these games to go low should provide a split at worst.