The Washington Wizards head to the Gainbridge Fieldhouse looking to pick up another win against the Indiana Pacers, a team they have beaten five straight times. Despite this success, Washington (14-10) is a 5½-point underdog per the NBA betting odds on Monday.
Washington has lost four of its last six road games and is just 4-9 against the spread (ATS) overall. But Indiana (9-16) has struggled all season and has also lost four of its last six home games. Between these fringe playoff teams, we believe there is a bit more magic with the Wizards.
NBA Odds Preview
Washington Wizards at Indiana Pacers (7 p.m. ET)
- Point Spread: Washington +5½
- Moneyline: Washington +180, Indiana -220
- Total: Over/Under 211
Wizards: Regressing to Mediocrity?
Remember that time Washington was first in the Eastern Conference? But like an alarm clock crumbling a teenager’s dream in exchange for another day at the factory-like education system, the Wizards have played .500 basketball since. In fact, the team has dropped three of its last four.
Washington’s offense has been subpar and its defense hasn’t been as dominant since shutting down the Milwaukee Bucks. A -10.1 net rating in its last four games is 26th in the NBA and is even worse than the Pacers’ -8.8, despite Indiana not having won a game in this stretch.
The Wizards are just 4-7 in double-digit decisions but 5-0 in single-possession games. With an expected win-loss record of 11-13, the Wizards are getting by and making backers a pretty penny. Fading this team in the future may be the best bet online. But if the team can keep pulling off close wins, why doubt them?
Pacers: Slow Decline
Bringing in coach Rick Carlisle was supposed to make Indiana a sleeper team in the East. Instead, the franchise appears to have taken another step toward an inevitable rebuild. The Pacers have regressed in each of the past four seasons.
But while advanced metrics point to Indiana being a better team than its record indicates (the opposite of Washington), losing seven of eight games by a single possession points to a disconnect between Carlisle and the players.
Despite the recent struggles, Myles Turner and Rick Carlisle are looking forward into what’s seemingly the next best move: To ‘play with force’ 💪 pic.twitter.com/GJ9UMQbwcb
— Pacers Nation (@PacersNationCP) December 3, 2021
The team is still adjusting to each other. We’re seeing most newly coached teams like Portland and Boston display similar struggles. So patient bettors can eye a better team in the future. But as it stands, trusting Indiana at 2-1 chalk is a risky proposition for online sports betting.
The analytics favor the Pacers here, hence why they are spotting 5½ points on the spread. But if we went by the odds and stats every time, why write an NBA betting preview? The Pacers may look good on the computer but this team has a mental block that makes them find ways to lose games.
On the flip side, Washington has been adept at winning games they shouldn’t be. This team may only be 1-6 ATS in its last seven games, but it will go into Indiana and edge the Pacers — likely in another late comeback.
Pick: Washington Wizards +5½
While we’re siding with Washington here, betting on the Pacers to outscore the Wizards quickly is a nice prop. Indiana is a fast starter and its 30.7 points in the first quarter is the third-most for a home team. Meanwhile, Washington can start slow as it did against Toronto. Bank on the Pacers to hit the 20-point mark first.