After what felt like a long break, the NBA is back in action. We have a solid nine-game slate to kick things off, so there are plenty of great spots to make some money today.
Memphis @ Philly
The Grizzlies took a significant step back in the games leading up to the break. That losing stretch is still fresh on everyone’s mind, and a shadow of doubt has been cast on the Grizzlies’ capabilities of winning the West.
To make things worse for a faltering Grizzlies squad, two of the best players from the East are now in the West. So after an eventful trade deadline, a weak Western Conference became much more robust.
As a result of all this, Memphis needs to come out of the break strong, and while it’s the performance against Western Conference teams that has people concerned, a win against the 76ers would be great.
The Philly offense runs through Joel Embiid, so it’s time for the newly minted All-Star Jaren Jackson Jr. to show his value and limit Embiid’s production in the paint.
Jaren Jackson Jr. Over 6.5 Rebounds (-130)
JJJ Over 1.5 Rebounds 1Q (-115)
New Orleans @ Toronto
The Pelicans return from break with a visit over the border against the Raptors.
Neither team did much at the break; each made one small transaction with San Antonio. Toronto acquired Jakob Poeltl, and New Orleans was able to steal Josh Richardson away. Decent additions, but nothing that will move the needle much.
Both teams are hoping to make the playoffs, but the Pelicans have a higher ceiling if they can return to full health. McCollum has done a great job keeping this team afloat while Zion is out, but it’s always hard to win at Scotiabank Arena.
The last four times these squads met, the home team won, but New Orleans has covered five consecutive meetings. They should win outright tonight, but taking the points is the safe play.
New Orleans +5.5 (-110)
In addition to that, the All-Star snub should have a great game. He’s had 20+ points in eight of his last ten, and he’ll be refreshed and ready to go tonight.
McCollum Over 20.5 Points (-115)
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