There were some close NBA games on Wednesday, but the majority of the games were blowouts in points spread markets.
Five of the eight games were decided by double digits or more, so it was mostly a comfortable watch for bettors on the right side of the coin.
Tipping off NBA Wednesday were the Charlotte Hornets vs Cleveland Cavaliers. It was an important 119-98 win over the Hornets, who had slipped down the Eastern Conference rankings after some serious struggles. However, they covered the +4½ spread with ease and handed the Cavaliers yet another post-All Star break loss. The sportsbook is starting to tread carefully with the Cavaliers and rightfully so.
The Indiana Pacers vs Orlando Magic continued the Eastern Conference action. Indiana produced a second-half comeback to win 122-114 as the -2 betting online favorite. Malcolm Brogdon had 31 points for the Pacers, who won just their seventh road game. The over 232½ hit narrowly thanks to an overtime period featuring 16 points.
The addition of James Harden has revitalized the Philadelphia 76ers, who got the better of the New York Knicks 123-108. They covered the -10½ spread narrowly in what was one of the closest games of the day. Harden had 26 points and nine rebounds, which overshadowed the 30 points from RJ Barrett for the Knicks. It was Harden’s first game at home, so he delivered for the always temperamental Philadelphia crowd.
Despite being 15-point underdogs, the Houston Rockets showed why they are a value bet in spread markets. They pushed the Utah Jazz close in the 132-127 loss, which went to overtime. They outscored the Jazz 34-24 in the fourth quarter to extend the game, so credit goes to the 15-47 team for making the Jazz work for it. NBA betting odds don’t give the Rockets much credit, but they can provide bettors with value in the coming weeks.
The best game of the night was the Milwaukee Bucks vs Miami Heat. It came down to the final seconds as Jrue Holiday made the winning layup to hand the Bucks their 38th victory. They still trail the Heat in the Eastern Conference, but it was a vital home win for last season’s NBA champions. The Bucks, however, didn’t cover the -4½ spread, so Miami continued its fine against the spread statistics.
The New Orleans Pelicans continued their winning run with a dominant 125-95 win over the struggling Sacramento Kings. They pulled away in the second half to cover the spread by 23½ points, which was an easy watch for favorite bettors. Brandon Ingram had 33 points and it gives the Pelicans a glimmer of hope for making the playoffs.
“Not only did he get it going, but the guys were all looking for him,” Willie Green said of Ingram. “Every time they got the ball, they were looking to run plays just to feed him. And it’s beautiful to watch the connectivity of our guys.”
Another team capable of scoring upset wins is the Oklahoma City Thunder, who not only covered a +15½-point spread against the Denver Nuggets, but they won outright. It was a huge upset for the visitors and it continued the progression for the young team. It was a close-run thing for totals’ bettors, with the over 225½ hitting by a half-point.
Closing the action on NBA Wednesday was the Phoenix Suns, who scored a 120-90 win over the Portland Trail Blazers. We were surprised that the Suns were only -11 favorites to beat 25-37 Blazers, so bettors got a generous line for one of our NBA best bets. The Suns outscored the Blazers 34-20 in the second quarter, which was enough to establish a break and never look back.