NBA Southwest Division Tips & Betting Update

We continue our NBA division betting updates with one of the most competitive races in the Association; the Southwest. Pre-season favourites Houston currently sport a narrow lead, sitting at a mediocre 18-15. Each of the remaining four teams is within 4 games of that, highlighting just how competitive things are. Both New Orleans and Dallas have had dips in form lately that have seen them go below .500. Conversely, the Spurs have been in excellent recent form and find themselves just behind Houston. In one of the NBA’s premier divisions, let’s take a look at our 2 best futures bets.

Houston Rockets $1.50

Despite a relatively poor start to the season, the Rockets find themselves atop the Southwest with an 18-15 record. Shooting Guard James Harden has been outstanding all season, averaging an insane 32.3 points, 8.4 assists, and 5.7 rebounds. Center Clint Capela has also been very solid, averaging 17 points, 12.5 boards, and 2 blocks per night. Having already dealt with a ton of injuries this season, the fact that the Rockets find themselves in pole position is definitely impressive. If they can reach 48 or more wins, I’d say they’ll be able to take this division crown home.

New Orleans Pelicans $6

Despite finding themselves in the Southwest basement with a 15-20 record, New Orleans are the 2nd favourite at $6. They’ve got great production from Anthony Davis all year, including averages of 28 points, 13 rebounds, and 4.5 assists per night. Point Guard Jrue Holiday has supported him very capably, averaging 21 points and 8.7 assists of his own. At 15-20, I’m not sure the Pelicans have what it takes to climb the rest of the teams in the division over the remainder of the season. Especially as the 2nd favourite, I believe there is much better value to be had elsewhere.

San Antonio Spurs $9

The Spurs currently find themselves 2nd in the Southwest, with an improving 19-16 record. Shooting Guard DeMar DeRozan is having a strong first season out West, averaging 23 points, 6.2 assists, and 5.7 boards per night. LaMarcus Aldridge is having another solid campaign inside, averaging 19 points and 9 boards of his own. Rudy Gay is starting to become part of a nice offensive trio, averaging 14 points and 6.8 rebounds. If the Rockets injuries do continue to pile on in the second half of the season, San Antonio could be a dark horse to take this division crown. That said, I think there is slightly better value elsewhere.

Memphis Grizzlies $9

The Grizzlies currently sport an 18-16 record, putting them half a game behind San Antonio. Point Guard Mike Conley is having yet another excellent campaign, averaging 20.3 points and 6.5 assists per night. Center Marc Gasol is the perfect complement on the interior, averaging 16.2 points and 8.6 boards of his own. Rookie Jaren Jackson Junior is looking like one to watch, averaging 13 points and 1.8 blocks per night. As long as Conley and Gasol stay healthy, I think this Grizzlies team has every chance of taking the Southwest. At $9, they appear to be excellent value here.

Dallas Mavericks $9

Despite losing 6 of their past 7 contests, the Mavericks find themselves well within striking distance at 16-17. Rookie Luka Doncic has been a revelation, averaging 19 points, 6.7 boards, and 5.1 assists. Veteran wings Harrison Barnes and Wes Matthews are both having solid scoring seasons, combining to average 32.6 points per night. DeAndre Jordan is providing a consistent presence on the interior, averaging 11 points and 11 boards a night. If Dennis Smith Junior can raise his game and Dirk Nowitzki can stay healthy, the Mavs have an outside shot at taking this. At $9, they’re well worth a few bucks.

Best Bet: Rockets at $1.50

For me, the best bet comes down to who I think has the best shot at this division crown. With that in mind, it’s undoubtedly the Houston Rockets. They’ve had what many would consider to be a disastrous start, yet they still find themselves atop the division. James Harden is playing out of his mind right now and has arguably been better than his MVP season last year. Whilst Clint Capela has continued to take a step forward, the big questions surround Point Guard Chris Paul. If he can get through the second half of the season healthy and at the level he’s shown in the past, Houston is strong value, even at $1.50.

Value Bet: Grizzlies at $9

Right in the mix at just a game behind Houston, I definitely won’t be sleeping on the Grizzlies either. With Conley and Gasol, they have two All-Star talents that are more than capable of carrying this team to the playoffs. Jaren Jackson Junior has also emerged as a very exciting and versatile two-way prospect. On a roster filled with solid veterans, the Grizzlies play hard every night. Players like Garrett Temple, Kyle Anderson, and Shelvin Mack all have a clearly defined role that they perfectly adhere to. If Houston’s injury problems do persist, I think that Memphis can take full advantage and pull this division out.