The NBA postseason is moving forward – more quickly than basketball fans would like.  The action has been amazing, thanks to players like Luka Doncic making clutch plays to keep their teams alive, and there is still a lot more to be seen. Hoops will never be the same after this year, and it’s still anyone’s guess as to who will ultimately take the championship.  Today, on Aug 24, sees a few games that are certain to be taken down to the wire, so let’s have a look at out NBA picks in a little more detail.

NBA Daily Picks Aug 24, 2020

The Rockets Take Off

The Houston Rockets lead 2-1 against the Oklahoma City Thunder, and there’s no doubt that these two teams are going to fight it out until the end.  Of course, it doesn’t help when referees blow calls and even admit to making mistakes.  The Rockets took a loss at the hand of refs who dropped the ball in Game 3, and will look to turn things around when they face the Thunder today.

The last game was forced into overtime before the Thunder broke away to capture the win, 119-107.  Having two days to get their heads together, the Rockets are looking to fire things up today, even though they will have to play without power forward Luc Mbah a Moute and point guard Russell Westbrook, who is still down due to a quadricep injury.  However, they still have guard James Harden, one of the NBA’s best offensive players.

At an average of 34.3 points per game during the regular season, he has helped catapult the Rockets into the top offensive ranks in the league.  He seems to be getting better as the season advances, too, which makes him an even larger threat.

The Thunder have surprised everyone this season by making it this far, but have stumbled a couple of times.  While some may argue that they only won Game 3 because of the refs, the fact that they were able to rally and pick up five unanswered points in the waning minutes of the game says a lot about their abilities.

Having said that, though, pulling out another miracle today probably isn’t in the cards, and the Rockets, at -162, is a safe bet.  It’s also not worth taking since there isn’t much reward.  The better option would be taking Houston against the spread at -3.5 (-110), with the Rockets ready to bounce back from the recent loss.  The Over/Under of 220.5 (-110) should be worthy of some action, too, with the score most likely not being able to reach that high.  With Westbrook out, Houston has been kept to around 114 points, which would seem to indicate this NBA game won’t see a blow-out score, so the under is a good pick for Aug 24.

The Lakers Have A Reason To Impress

The LA Lakers have done well this year, despite a couple of stumbles along the way.  Basketball fans began to doubt their chances as the playoffs began thanks to an early, unexpected loss, but they’re ready to come back and take the Portland Trail Blazers today.  It’s going to be an especially poignant game, as the Lakers will be waring “Black Mamba” City Edition jerseys in commemoration of Koby Bryant, who would have turned 42 yesterday.

Apart from the extra motivation to win, the Lakers have simply played better than the Blazers in this series and now lead 2-1.  For the most part, the team is healthy, whereas Portland is having to deal with a number of NBA injuries.  Power forward Zach Collins and small forward Nassir Little are out, and point guard Damian Lillard is dealing with an injury to his left hand.  He’ll be in the game, but that injury, which might require a splint during the game, will put a crimp in his style.

This is going to be a close game.  Some have said that the Trail Blazers don’t deserve to be in the playoffs, but they have proven every step of the way that they do.  The -385 given to the Lakers and the power they’re going to bring would be enough to keep a moneyline bet off the slip for today.  The Lakers against the spread, at -7.5 (-110), is a better option, with the Blazers only having covered twice in their last five games.  The Over/Under of 224.5 (-110) has shock value, as none of the first three games of this series reached that level.  However, the battle is tightening up and both teams are going to come out with everything they have today, which should make the Over/Under hit without too much difficulty.

So, there we have it for our NBA picks and parlays on Aug 24. Going to be some tight games tonight, good luck!