The big NBA news on Tuesday night was star Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose going down, but we also saw some pretty intense basketball. Russell Westbrook showed us again with a sick triple double why he just might be a legit MVP candidate and Stephen Curry returned from a one-game absence to top the Wizards.
We made out okay overall, going 3-1 on the night and lifting our season record to 475-245. We aim to pick it up even more on an insanely buys Wednesday night:
Heat @ Magic
Orlando has quietly won three games in a row (their longest such streak of the season), but Goran Dragic already looks comfortable with the Heat and Miami knows every win counts right now. Orlando won’t go out without a fight, but the Heat are the safer pick in this battle of Florida.
Pick: Heat 97, Magic 95
Mavericks @ Hawks
Atlanta has stumbled a bit in relation to their ridiculous winning streak, but they’re still 6-4 in their last 10 and are a real problem at home (25-4 on the year). The Mavs have won three straight and pose a serious threat, but they have issues at point guard with Rajon Rondo losing his cool. Atlanta at home is tough to go against.
Pick: Hawks 106, Mavs 102
Knicks @ Celtics
Boston has been pretty competitive lately and the Knicks are just a trash heap. New York isn’t even trying to win right now (lost seven in a row), so pick them at your own risk.
Pick: Celtics 106, Knicks 97
Nets @ Pelicans
Brooklyn has looked great with Deron Williams back at the helm, but Jarrett Jack could return and ruin that tonight. The Pellies have done a solid job without Anthony Davis and Ryan Anderson, but eventually they’re going to trip up. Tonight could be one of those nights.
Pick: Nets 103, Pellies 101
Hornets @ Bulls
Charlotte is in a free fall with five losses in a row and even with Derrick Rose going down again, it’s hard to take them over the Bulls. Chicago could be playing with heavy hearts but they’re still the better team and on their home floor.
Pick: Bulls 105, Hornets 95
Clippers @ Rockets
Our first really explosive game of the night has Chris Paul leading his Clips into Houston to take on James Harden. Patrick Beverley’s status is huge for this one, as he could be pesky against CP3 if active. L.A. has been great even without Blake Griffin, but winning in Houston isn’t going to be easy.
Pick: Rockets 106, Clippers 104
76ers @ Bucks
Michael Carter-Williams is set to make his Bucks debut and face his former team all on the same night. I’m betting on MCW showing up big in this one, while the Bucks play good defense and are simply the vastly superior squad. The 76ers are terrible.
Pick: Bucks 99, 76ers 94
Wizards @ Timberwolves
Washington is struggling with four losses in a row, but even on the road a date with the Timberwolves has to be met with a smile. Minnesota gets Kevin Garnett back tonight and really haven’t been that bad since getting back to full health, but the Wiz have to take advantage of this one.
Pick: Wiz 103, T’Wolves 97
Suns @ Nuggets
Ty Lawson versus Eric Bledsoe will be a fun matchup, but Denver can’t stop anyone in the paint or just in general. They do host a Suns team that has dropped five in a row, but in a fast-paced toss up we like the better built Suns.
Pick: Suns 104, Nuggets 102
Lakers @ Jazz
The Jazz are fresh off taking down the defending champion Spurs so they’ll host the Lakers with confidence tonight. L.A. doesn’t have any kind of an identity and they got their token win over the Celtics recently. Take the Jazz at home.
Pick: Jazz 105, Lakers 94
Grizzlies @ Kings
DeMarcus Cousins will have to be huge for the Kings to take down the Grizzlies, while the top story-line might be Rudy Gay taking on the team that drafted him. The Kings should keep it close on their home floor, but the Grizz have won eight of 10 and aren’t about to trip up against a weaker team.
Pick: Grizz 105, Kings 99
Spurs @ Trail Blazers
San Antonio has been rather sluggish and has lost three in a row, so we should expect them to wake up and actually show up for a change in a huge clash with the Blazers. Damian Lillard has enjoyed facing the Spurs this year, but if LaMarcus Aldridge can’t go Portland could be in some trouble. That being said, the Spurs just don’t look very good and Portland is a staggering 23-6 on their home floor this year.
Pick: Blazers 107, Spurs 104