Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:55 AM

Wednesday's Best Bets

It's a solid slate of games on the NBA betting board tonight, as there is a bit of something for everyone in terms of what teams are out there taking the floor. Being that Wednesday is more of a high-profile day for the league, there are some matchups that stand out more then others, but I've honed in on a specific role for two teams tonight that has led to one-sided betting results this year.

Hopefully that pattern can continue tonight, so let's get right to the picks:

Brooklyn at Philadelphia (ESPN, 7:05 p.m. ET)

Best Bet #1: Brooklyn/Philadelphia Under 223
Odds provided by DraftKings (IN, NJ & PA only)
Odds Subject to Change

After losing 118-117 at home last night ot cap off a .500 four-game homestand, the Nets have a brief trip to Philadelphia tonight before heading back home for another three games – against the Bucks, Sixers, and Lakers no less. So this next four-game stretch is going to be a tough one for the Nets, and to start it all off they've got to play the first game vs Philly without rest.

The good news for Brooklyn is that they did get Kyrie Irving back recently, and while he's still recovering from his injury, his legs are fresh. How he fits in with this team is a debate for another day, but having Irving back for this brutal stretch of games is key for thsi Brooklyn team that's trying to get back on track.

Yet, I'm not too concerned with that, as it's the total that I'm looking at here, as the Nets are the only team remaining in the league that are perfect to the 'under' when playing the latter half of a back-to-back (0-4 O/U). Those past four occurrences have resulted in games that have never had more then 222 total points scored in them, as there was even a game with OKC last week that needed OT to have it decided and it still landed on just 214 points even with the extra five minutes.

Not only are the Nets perfect to the 'under' in this spot this year, but they've already done it with Philly as the opponent as well. That December 15th game was a dominant 109-89 win for the Nets, as it came 24 hours after losing to Toronto by eight. Last night's loss to Utah came by 11 so you can see the similarities there, and not having to worry about containing Joel Embiid on Philly's offensive side of things is a nice plus as well.

Now, there has been a big total spike from open on this total (it opened in the 218.5/219 range) as it appears the majority of the market believes the Irving addition and no Embiid (on Philly's defensive end), will lead to this run of 'unders' halting for Brooklyn when they are without rest. Without question that's a significant move and should be respected, but as is often the case with these big movers, there is going to be a time where you've got to start looking the other way, and at 223 or above, that's the number for me to do so.

From Philly's standpoint, this is not a team that you can expect to light up the scoreboard every time out there, as their offensive production can be suspect at best. They've had sub-100 point efforts in four of their last eight games overall, and you aren't going to surpass too many totals in today's NBA with sub-100-point nights offensively. Again, another piece of evidence why the huge move upwards may not be warranted, and while the Sixers have been much better offensively at home of late, they are still just 9-15 O/U this year with a single day off between games themselves.

Put it all together, and these two teams should find a way to stay below this 223 total.

Portland at Houston (ESPN, 9:35 p.m. ET)

Best Bet #2: Portland/Houston Under 236
Odds provided by DraftKings (IN, NJ & PA only)
Odds Subject to Change

This is another total that's seen some movement already, as a 236 open quickly moved to 234.5 before being bought up again to it's original resting place. Given the star power the two teams involved have on their sidelines, you can understand the shift upwards after that initial drop more in this game then the Nets/Sixers one, but when it all shakes out later tonight, I do believe the end result from a totals betting view will be the same: Under.

That's because the Rockets are playing for the second consecutive night as well this evening, and like Brooklyn, they have been one of the league's best 'under' teams in that role this year (1-4 O/U). With the Rockets starting the year with the oldest average age in the Association (30.24 years), seeing them fall victim to some tired legs in spots like this one isn't surprising in the slightest.

So while on paper a backcourt showdown between Lillard/McCollum and Westbrook/Harden may have offensive-minded fans salivating at the possibilities of what could happen tonight, the situation with Houston on a back-to-back does suggest that that battle may not end up being as spectacular as some may think. Don't get me wrong, any one of those four guys could go off on a moment's notice, and they all could put up very good stat lines tonight, but remember, that's already accounted for in a mid-230's total, and when the numbers are this high, you do need a lot to go right throughout the majority of the game. You can't have prolonged offensive dry spells (individually or combined), and should the refs decide that they are sick and tired of seeing James Harden free throws every 5th trip down the floor, you aren't going to get those much needed “freebie” points from the charity stripe as often either.

So give me the low side of tonight's total, as Portland is on a 2-9 O/U run in their last 11 on the road, and 3-5 O/U this year when they have had more rest then their opponent for a particular game. Houston is 1-6 O/U when they are the proud owners of the rest disadvantage in a particular matchup, and with that on top of their back-to-back O/U record, going 'under' a big number of 236 is a relatively easy bet to fire on.

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