Saturday’s NBA main slate features five games. The action starts at 7 p.m. ET with the final game kicking off at 8:30 p.m. ET. Let’s take a look at the slate and choose the best bets for Saturday night.
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For a brief moment, there was life in the Portland locker room. Against all odds, the Trail Blazers comedic roster was winning games. This brief moment is over. Jusuf Nurkic has been on set for at least a month. When he landed on the injury report, the air was sucked out of the room. Portland haven’t won a game since Nurkic went down, but it’s worse than that. These three losses were 37, 32 and 30 points. The DraftKings Sportsbook doesn’t have the guts to slap a 30-point spread on this play, but it deserves it.
The gap is high, very high, but the Timberwolves have a fast offense and the Trail Blazers have – well, nobody knows what this team has. The best answer is nothing. The latest iteration — the Trail Blazers who have been eliminated in three straight games — have a defensive efficiency rating of 122.9. Although their ranking has not changed from their season ranking (29th), the three-game rating is 8.7 points below their season average. Portland is out of ropes at this point. They don’t even see what they have. It’s another story on the other bench. The Timberwolves are gelling offensively and turning into a pesky team no one wants to play, especially when the playoffs roll around. This top-10 offense ranks No. 1 over the last three games (126.7 Offensive Efficiency Rating). Minnesota may be missing the one piece needed to make a deep playoff run, but they have enough pieces to break the heart of a first-round favorite. They certainly have enough parts to stomp the Trail Blazers on Saturday night.
Grizzlies -15.5 (-110)
Orlando has won three of four, but their victories are unimpressive. They beat the Pacers, Rockets and Raptors. On the surface, the Raptors win should be a quality win, but the Raptors were on the second leg of a back-to-back on the road and were without Fred VanVleet and OG Anunoby.
The Grizzlies stumbled in and out of the break. They’re 2-3 in five games, but there’s no need to worry. Their offense is good, but their defense struggled in tough matchups. Minnesota has a solid fast offense, Chicago is great at home, and Boston is the hottest team in the NBA. The little slip will be quickly forgotten because the Grizzlies are about to go on the run. Here is their upcoming schedule: Magic, Rockets, Pelicans, Knicks, Thunder, Pacers, Hawks, Rockets, Nets and Pacers. That’s a 10-game winning streak and for the best ATS team in the NBA, it’s probably a 10-game ATS streak unless the DraftKings Sportsbook gets aggressive with the spreads.
Warriors -6 (-110)
The Lakers are done. It’s a little late for LeBron James to make speeches about not giving up. One look at the roster, and James should have known to quit in October. The Lakers are 6-16 in their last 22 games (9-13 ATS). It’s exactly what one expects from a team with an aging LeBron James, a fragile Anthony Davis and an erratic – those are the kindest words – Russell Westbrook. Even the Bubble wouldn’t save this team. Over the past 15 games, the Lakers rank 20th in offensive efficiency and 17th in defensive efficiency. It’s not a playoff team and the Warriors are potential champions.
During that same game streak, the Warriors have the No. 1 defense and are a respectable 11th on offense — Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala have been out since January. Although the stats are there, Golden State comes to Los Angeles on a three-game losing streak. The Warriors lost on the road to the surging Timberwolves and lost two games to the scorching Mavs (winners of nine of their last 11). It’s a great opportunity to get back to their winning ways and beat a bad team. Steph Curry is playing well, he just needs to do more. With the three-game skid and a big game in Hollywood, it’s very likely that Curry will increase his workload tonight.
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