NBA Best Bets – 10/18/22

Paolo Banchero is an easy play for Rookie of the Year. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Orlando Magic (+145) @ Detroit Pistons (-160)

The main storyline is Jaden Ivey (+460) and Paolo Banchero (+200) kicking off their NBA careers against each other. These are the two frontrunners for Rookie of the Year, and neither could have an easier game to start the season. One, if not both, of these guys, will pop off in this game, so grab some props.

Paolo Banchero Over 14.5 Points (-111) & Over 6.5 Rebounds (+108)
Jaden Ivey Over 11.5 Points (+100)

Regardless of that, these were still two of the three worst teams in the NBA last season. Orlando did nothing to improve except for adding draft picks, and this Pistons’ only notable addition outside of draft picks was Bojan Bogdanovic. In short, these teams will still be sorry this year.

Not only do they lose a lot, but they also lose big. Last year, the Pistons and Magic were two of the three lowest-scoring teams in the league. While Bacnhero and Ivey should help their respective teams, it’s not going to be an overnight change. Bettors should still ride the under on this one.

Orlando +2.5 (-110) & Under 217 Points (-110)
Kyrie Irving, Ben Simmons, and Kevin Durant take the court together for the first time. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

New Orleans Pelicans (+125) @ Brooklyn Nets (-140)

This is probably the most exciting game on the slate as both Ben Simmons and Zion Williamson make their long-awaited return. Zion hasn’t played in a game since May of 2021, and this is Simmons’ first game since June 2020.

We also have the rare occurrence of Kyrie and KD playing together. This is Durant’s third season on the Nets — Kyrie’s fourth, and yet tonight will only be the 45th time they have been on the court at the same time.

There are many questions surrounding both of these teams. How good is this Pelicans team with a healthy Williamson? Has Simmons overcome his fear of shooting? How strong are the Nets with KD and Kyrie playing together? The Nets have far more issues than the Pelicans, and it will likely take the Nets a few games to find their rhythm. So the Pelicans have a great opportunity to open the season with a win.

New Orleans +2 (-110)


Charlotte Hornets (-121) @ San Antonio Spurs (+105)

Of all the games on the slate today, this one jumps off the page. There is no reason for the spread to be this tight. The Hornets will likely play without LaMelo Ball, but they are still much better than the Spurs. San Antonio will be one of the worst teams in the league this year.

It’s unclear what the plan is in San Antonio, as they have been a consistent playoff threat for decades, but it seems like Gregg Popovich is throwing in the towel on this season. He was quoted saying, “Nobody here should go to Vegas with the thought of betting on us to win the championship,”

While he certainly isn’t going to just roll over, the Hornets should be able to beat a team like San Antonio without LaMelo.

Charlotte -1.5 (-110)



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