Tracking the Wizards: NBA Picks and Handicapping for Washington Basketball
by Dave Schwab - 10/31/2014
I just spent the entire MLB regular season handicapping the Washington Nationals as part of a betting strategy that relies on specialization through in-depth knowledge of a particular team. I also put this knowledge to the test by releasing weekly free picks with the use of Doc's Sports Unit Betting System. While I produced a modest return of $486 on the year for $100 bettors, I am now turning my full attention to the Washington Wizards in the NBA with the goal of doubling that return, at the very least.
Doc's will be posting my weekly free picks for the Wizards starting with this Saturday's home opener, so be sure to check their homepage to follow along with my progress. The immediate future looks bright in our Nation's Capital, so hopefully I will be picking Wizards' games deep into this season's NBA Playoffs.
Washington Wizards Free Picks, Odds and Predictions
Saturday, Nov. 1, 7 p.m. EST (Verizon Center)
Washington continues a busy first week of action in the new NBA season with its third game in four days this Saturday against the Milwaukee Bucks. Tip-off for the Wizards' home opener at the Verizon Center is set for 7 p.m., and the game will be available on NBA League Pass.
Milwaukee started its new season with a hard-fought 108-106 road loss in overtime to Charlotte, but they easily covered against the spread as an eight-point underdog. The total went "over" the 193.5-point closing line. This Friday night the Bucks will host Philadelphia in their home opener as 8.5-point favorites, with the total set at 203.
The Wizards ran out of steam in their season opener against Miami in a 107-95 setback as five-point road underdogs, but they bounced back on Thursday night with a 105-98 road victory against Orlando as 4.5-point favorites to earn the split SU and ATS in their Florida road trip. The total went over in both games.
Milwaukee at Washington Betting Storylines
The Bucks have nowhere to go but up this season after positing just 15 SU wins in 2013. They were somewhat better ATS at 36-45-1, but they closed out the year with a 3-6-1 record ATS in their last 10 games. Since that point, Milwaukee continued to build for the future by adding Jabari Parker with the second overall pick in the draft. It should also receive a major boost from the return of Larry Sanders, who only played 23 games last season due to various injuries.
Both players combined for 18 points and nine rebounds in Wednesday's loss, while Brandon Knight pumped in a team high 22 points while dishing out 13 assists. Khris Middleton also had a big night for the Bucks with 17 points and six rebounds. Milwaukee actually built a 15-point lead in this game heading into the fourth quarter, but it was outscored 32-17 from that point on to force overtime.
Washington made a major climb in the Eastern Conference last season; going from 29 wins in the 2012-13 season to a record of 44-38 last season and a trip to the conference semifinals after eliminating Chicago in five games in the opening round of the playoffs. The bar has been set even higher this season as a+125 favorite to win the Southwest Division and a 12/1 third-favorite after Cleveland and Chicago to win the East.
This is another franchise that has been adding talent over the past few seasons with fourth-year point guard John Wall at the top of the list. This past offseason the Wizards added a major veteran influence both on the court and in the locker room by signing Paul Pierce as a free agent. Wall has tallied a team-high 46 points in his first two games, while Pierce has made his presence felt with 33 points and 10 rebounds.
Milwaukee at Washington NBA Betting Odds and Key Trends
BetOnline has opened Washington as a 8.5-point home favorite for Saturday's game against Milwaukee, with the total line in this Eastern Conference clash set at 198.5.
The Bucks are 5-2 ATS in their last seven games on no day's rest but 1-3-1 ATS in their last five road games. The total has gone over in seven of their last eight games.
The Wizards have covered ATS in 12 of their last 17 games, and they are 10-3 ATS in their last 13 games on one day's rest. The total has stayed under in 11 of their last 16 home games.
Head-to-head in this matchup, Milwaukee is 15-7 ATS in its last 22 road games against Washington, and the total has gone over in four of the last six meetings at the Verizon Center.
Milwaukee at Washington Free NBA Picks and Betting Predictions
The atmosphere should be electric at the Verizon Center this Saturday night given the optimism surrounding the home-town team. It is extremely hard to see Washington losing this game SU, but every team in the NBA has fresh legs this time of the year, and so should the Bucks even coming off a Friday night game. Look for both teams to put on a show to take the total "over" the 198.5-point line.
3-Unit Play- Take Milwaukee at Washington OVER 198.5
NBA Regular Season Betting Record: 0-0
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Read more articles by Dave Schwab
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