Tracking the Wizards: NBA Picks and Handicapping for Washington Basketball
by Dave Schwab - 4/2/2015
The NBA regular season continues to wind down with the start of the playoffs right around the corner. All year long I have been handicapping the Washington Wizards in an effort to demonstrate the value of specialization when it comes to betting on the NBA. I have also been releasing free picks with the use of Doc's Sports Unit Betting System for select games to help prove the point. It has been a roller-coaster ride so far that has added up to an 11-10-1 record on the year.
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Doc's has been posting my weekly free picks for these Washington games on its homepage, so be sure to check the site to follow along with my progress. The Wizards continue to try build some momentum heading into the postseason, and I will continue to try and turn a profit with my picks.
Washington Wizards Free Picks, Odds and Predictions
Friday, April 3, 7 p.m. EST (Verizon Center)
The Wizards will wrap up their current five-game homestand by playing host to the New York Knicks at the Verizon Center this Friday night with a scheduled tip of 7 p.m. (ET). The game will be available on NBA League Pass.
The Knicks continued their pursuit of posting the worst record in the NBA this season with a 100-98 loss to Brooklyn this past Wednesday, but they did cover as 9.5-point home underdogs. They have now lost their last eight games straight up while going 2-6 against the spread. The total went "over" the closing 195-point line against the Nets, and in has gone over in four of their last six games.
Washington is coming off Wednesday's 106-93 rout of Philadelphia as a 10-point favorite at home. It was its second SU win in its last three games following a four-game losing streak. It was the first time the Wizards covered ATS in their last seven outings, and the total has now gone over in three of their last four games.
New York at WashingtonBetting Storylines
There has been much discussion lately as to whether or not the Kentucky Wildcats could actually beat New York if these two teams met. While I could never see any pro team lose to even the best college team in the nation, I would have to think that given the way the Knicks are playing right now a matchup against the Wildcats would remain close. They are clearly tanking the season in hopes of landing the top pick in the draft to truly define the term "riding out the string".
The numbers speak for themselves. New York is ranked 29th in the NBA in scoring with 91.8 points per game and it is 23rd in the league in points allowed (101.4). The Knicks are also 29th in rebounds (40.2), and they are shooting 42.8 percent from the field and 34.5 percent from 3-point range. They did get a strong effort from their bench in Wednesday's loss with three different players scoring in double figures, but with this team it really does not matter which five players actually get the start.
Washington has to be one of the most inconsistent teams in the NBA over the second half of the season, but it is still holding down the fifth spot in the Eastern Conference with a SU record of 42-33. Going back to late January, the Wizards have endured three separate SU losing streaks of four games or more while posting just one SU winning streak of three or more games. Betting on the Wizards has been a losing proposition with a 6-15 record ATS in their last 20 games. That being said, Washington is still 3-0 ATS in its last three games when favored by eight or more points
In Wednesday's win against the lowly 76ers, center Marcin Gortat led the way with 23 points and 14 rebounds, but point guard John Wall continues to be the driving force behind this team. He leads the Wizards in both points (17.6) and assists (9.9), and over his past four games he has posted 26 PPG. Bradley Beal has added an average of 17 PPG in his last three starts as compared to a season average of 14.8 PPG.
New York at Washington NBA Betting Odds and Key Trends
BetOnline has listed the Wizards as 15-point home favorites for Friday night's tilt against New York. The betting odds on the total have been set at 191.
The Knicks are 7-18-1 ATS in their last 26 games against the Southeast Division, and they have failed to cover in their last five road games. The total has gone over in five of their last seven games against this division.
The Wizards are 5-2 ATS in their last seven games against the Atlantic Division, and they are 5-0 ATS in their last five games following a SU win of 10 points or more. The total has gone over in seven of their last eight home games.
Washington has a six-game SU winning streak against New York with a 5-1 edge ATS. The total has stayed under in three of the last four games between the two.
New York at Washington Free NBA Picks and Betting Predictions
The Wizards need to keep building momentum for the playoffs, and they have a golden opportunity to blow out another bottom-feeder in the league. Washington remains an extremely hard team to bet on this season, but it has covered in four of its last six home games as a favorite. I am laying the 15 points and going with a 3-Unit play that the Wizards cover on Friday night against the dismal Knicks.
3-Unit Play-Take Washington (-15) OVER New York
NBA Regular Season Betting Record: 11-10-1 (-$230)
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