On this presidential inauguration day, when we now have so much to be thankful for, the NBA has blessed us with no less than 11 basketball games, and most of them are good ones. A look at several of them shows great action for sports gamblers.
Nets Take On The Cavs
For sheer star power, it would be hard to beat the 9-6 Brooklyn Nets hosting the 6-7 Cleveland Cavaliers as 10-point favorites and featuring basketballs’ latest ‘dynamic duo’ of Kevin Durant and James Harden, who are still on sort of a honeymoon. That would normally be enough star power to justify the -10. But hold on, it has just been announced that Kyrie Irving, who has been away from the team for ‘personal reasons’ for two weeks, is going to suit up against the Cavs tonight.
Irving didn’t want to talk about the reasons for his absence, however it is being reported that the NBA All Star bought a home for George Floyd’s family during his ‘personal time.’
The Dallas Mavericks are going to be tough to beat given that they are determined to end their first three game losing streak since 2018. The 6-7 Mavs will travel to Indianapolis to take on the 8-5 Pacers in what is virtually a pick, but Dallas will be without the services of SF Tim Hardaway Jr., out with a groin injury, and at least five other members of the team are out with COVID-19 protocols. The Pacers were soundly beaten by the LA Clippers 129-96 on Sunday and will be looking for a little comeback of their own.
76ers Host The Celtics
Doc Richards and the 9-5 76ers will welcome in the 8-4 Boston Celtics for a matchup game. Seth Curry is questionable with a non-injury issue. Philadelphia has been kicked around for the past week or so with COVID-19 issues so it won’t be until game time that we find out just who is playing for the 76ers. On the Celtics side, COVID-19 protocols still have Jayson Tatum and Carsen Edwards unavailable to play tonight.
The 5-7 Toronto Raptors are on a roll and look to extend a three game winning streak tonight. They will be traveling down to Florida to meet the 5-8 Miami Heat, but the game will be held in Tampa Bay. The Raptors are coming off an impressive victory over the Dallas Mavericks 116-93 on Monday.
Once again, COVID-19 has affected a good team and both Jimmy Butler and Avery Bradley will be out for the evening for the Heat. So, the Raptors are 4-point favorites with the Over/Under set at 222.
Hawks Fly To Detroit
Up north, the Detroit Pistons will host the Atlanta Hawks as 4.5-point underdogs. The over and under is set at 226. 6-7 The Hawks are beset with injuries themselves all seemingly related to legs. PG Trae Young has a sore heel, SF De’Andre Hunter has a busted knee, PF Danilo Gallinari twisted his ankle and SG Cam Reddish has hurt his knee. Finally, big SG Bogdan Bogdanovich is also out with a knee injury.
Out west, the 7-6 Golden State Warriors travel to San Antonio to take on coach Greg Popovich and his 8-6 Spurs as one-point favorites. The Over/Under for this game is set at 231 with the Spurs looking relatively healthy while Golden State continues without the services of SG Klay Thompson with a busted Achilles and SF Andrew Wiggins with a knee injury.
Last but not least, the 7-6 Memphis Grizzlies are arguably the hottest team in the NBA at the moment having won five in a row and headed up to Portland to take on the 8-6 Trailblazers as just one point favorites with the Over/Under set at 223 and both teams looking relatively healthy.