Thursday November 1, 2018

The November NBA action gets underway with a bang as 7 enticing fixtures await us on this Thursday slate. Joe Ingles and the Jazz head into Utah to take on the inconsistent Timberwolves in an intriguing Western Conference matchup. The Golden State Warriors also play host to the upstart New Orleans Pelicans, with the status of star big man Anthony Davis still in question. This preview will analyse our 3 best line bets of the day, whilst also providing yet another strong daily multi.

Brooklyn Nets vs Detroit Pistons (10:30am AEDT)
Pistons at the Line (+2.5)

Brooklyn Nets 

The 2-5 Nets enter this one off of 3 consecutive losses, including a defeat to the Knicks at the Garden in their last outing. Despite his poor showing in New York, a bright spot for the Nets this year has been the emergence of Shooting Guard Caris LeVert. LeVert is currently averaging 19 points, 4.6 assists and 4.4 boards on 48% shooting. Point Guard D’Angelo Russell has also performed admirably in his contract year, enjoying career highs in points, assists and field goal percentage. This is a deep and well-coached team that plays hard every night. 

Detroit Pistons 

After an impressive 4-0 start, the Pistons travel to Brooklyn after consecutive losses to the Celtics. Blake Griffin has been the standout performer on this Detroit side, averaging 28 points and 10 boards whilst shooting 55% from 3. He is capably supported in the front court by Andre Drummond, who’s averaging an impressive 18.4 points and 15.8 rebounds of his own. Through 6 games, we still don’t have a great feel for who the Pistons are as a team. I think they’re a playoff side out East and should be winning these types of road games. 

Prediction: Pistons +2.5 

Whilst they are off a back-to-back, I see strong line value on the Pistons here. They were 5-point favourites against Brooklyn on opening night, have had a strong start to the season and now find themselves as underdogs. The big man duo of Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond should prove too strong for the young Nets bigs here. I think Vegas has this line wrong and expect Detroit to grab a road win here.  

Minnesota Timberwolves vs Utah Jazz (11am AEDT)
Jazz at the Line (-2.5)

Minnesota Timberwolves 

The Timberwolves enter this one fresh off an emotional win over the Lakers on Tuesday. Jimmy Butler led the way and outplayed LeBron in this one, pouring in 32 points on 6/7 from 3. Center Karl Anthony Towns also had a strong outing, going off for 25 points, 16 rebounds, 6 assists and 4 blocks. Former MVP Derrick Rose has continued to get run on this Minnesota side, putting up 11 points, 7 boards and 7 assists against LA. Ultimately, I just don’t trust this inconsistent team against a Utah side looking like they could nab the #2 seed in the West. 

Utah Jazz 

The 4-2 Jazz will look to conclude their 4-game road trip with a win here in Minnesota. They’ve looked very strong in the past week, defeating Houston, New Orleans and Dallas by an average of over 13 points per game. Center Rudy Gobert has continued a dominant start to the season, averaging 17.7 points, 13.5 rebounds and 2.7 blocks per game so far. Donovan Mitchell is starting to look like the player we saw last year, averaging 26 points per game on over 60% shooting in this 3-game streak.  

Prediction: Jazz -2.5 

I’ve been on the Jazz every game in this 3-game win streak and I’m going back to the well again here. I think Gobert can limit Karl-Anthony Towns in this one, placing too much pressure on Jimmy Butler to carry the offense. The Jazz are a deep and versatile team that play with strong energy every night. I expect them to keep this train rolling en route to a victory here in Minnesota. 

Chicago Bulls vs Denver Nuggets (11am AEDT)
Over 226.5 Points

Chicago Bulls 

After getting massacred on Tuesday night by the Golden State Warriors, the 2-5 Chicago Bulls will be looking to restore a little dignity in this one. Their 3-point defence was absolutely atrocious, allowing Klay Thompson to go 14/24 all by himself. They had no answer for Steph Curry or Kevin Durant either, as Golden State put this one to bed by halftime. Offensively, the Bulls have shown flashes this season. In Zach LaVine, Jabari Parker and Wendell Carter Jr, they have 3 young offensive pieces that are capable of making Chicago competitive this year. 

Denver Nuggets 

The 5-1 Nuggets commence this Eastern Conference road trip after Tuesday night’s victory over New Orleans. Center Nikola Jokic continued his very strong start to the season, falling one rebound shy of another triple double. Guards Jamal Murray and Gary Harris have emerged as one of the association’s premier young backcourts, both putting up 23 points in this one. Wily Power Forward Paul Millsap complements this lineup well and has started the season strongly after last year’s injuries. I expect the Denver offense to go bonkers on this injury-riddled Bulls side. 

Prediction: Over 226.5 Points 

After profiting significantly off the under trend in the past weeks, I believe Vegas is starting to over adjust. The Bulls porous defense has nobody that can match up with Nikola Jokic are the Nuggets young dynamic guards. I expect this to be a free-flowing and high-scoring game with little defense played. This total is 5-10 points too low for me. 

Nuggets, Pacers, Lakers All to Win
Combined Odds of $2.49

This is another multi that I believe represents excellent value. I expect this high-flying Nuggets team to dispose of an injury-riddled Bulls side with ease, whilst the Indiana “flat-track bully” Pacers are usually money as a road favourite. Similarly, I expect LeBron to lead the Lakers to a home win over Dallas as the biggest favourite they’ve been all year. Add the Golden State Warriors to this for extra value if Anthony Davis is out.