Tracking the Wizards: NBA Picks and Handicapping for Washington Basketball
by Dave Schwab - 2/26/2015
I have spent the entire NBA regular season concentrating my handicapping efforts on the Washington Wizards. Specialization can be a viable betting strategy when it comes to wagering on the NBA, and to help prove this point, I have been releasing free weekly picks for the Wizards with the use of Doc's Sports Unit Betting System. The results have been mixed at best with a year-to-date record of 7-9-1, but I still feel confident that I can rally to build a positive return by the end of the season.
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Doc's has been posting these weekly free picks on its homepage, so be sure to check the site for the Wizards' games to follow along with my progress. Washington continues to jockey for position in the Eastern Conference playoff picture while I continue to work on bringing you winning picks for the games.
Washington Wizards Free Picks, Odds and Predictions
Friday, Feb. 27, 8 p.m. EST (Wells Fargo Center)
The Wizards will stay on the road for one more game this Friday night when they travel to Philadelphia to square off against the 76ers. Tipoff from the Wells Fargo Center is set for 7 p.m. (ET), and the game will be available on NBA League Pass.
Washington limps into Friday's matchup with just two straight up wins in its last 12 games while going a dismal 3-13 against the spread in its last 16 outings. The low point in this slide may have came this past Wednesday night in an embarrassing 97-77 loss to Minnesota as a 2.5-point road underdog. The total has stayed "under" in five of their last eight games.
The 76ers continue to lose the majority of their games in a quest for another high lottery pick, but they have been a rather good bet lately ATS at 8-3-1 in their last 11 contests. They did fail to cover in Wednesday's 104-88 loss to Milwaukee as 10.5-point road underdogs, and the total has now gone "over" in their last four games.
Washington at Philadelphia Betting Storylines
The prospect for ending Washington's current SU five-game skid may have taken a hit with injuries to both Paul Pierce and Kris Humphries that have them questionable for Friday night. Bradley Beal has been out of the lineup for the past six games, and he remains doubtful for this game. In their absence, the pressure has really been dialed up on John Wall, who already leads the team in points (17.0) and assists (10.1). Marcin Gortat is chipping in another 11.8 points and pulling down a team-high 8.3 rebounds a game.
Overall, the Wizards' scoring average has dropped to 91 points per game during their current losing streak as opposed to a season average of 99 points that was already ranked 19th in the NBA. Defense had been this team's strong point all year long, but Washington's points-allowed average has ballooned to 107.8 during this losing streak as opposed to a season average of 98.3 PPG.
Philadelphia's never-ending rebuilding process took an interesting twist at the NBA's trade deadline last week when it jettisoned Michael Carter-Williams for even more picks in this year's draft. Losing right now appears to be a priority for the 76ers, and they have done an excellent job meeting that goal with a SU record of 12-45 heading into Friday's matchup. They are basically a .500 team ATS (28-27-2). However, they have covered in 17 of 27 home games this season.
In Williams' absence, Hollis Thompson had the hot hand in Monday's loss to Miami with 22 points off the bench, and Jason Richardson led the way in the loss to the Bucks with 16 points while going 6-for-11 from the field. The 76ers are averaging just 90.4 points per game, and they are ranked 23rd in the league in points allowed (101.1). They are also pretty far down the list in rebounds with 42 a game.
Washington at Philadelphia NBA Betting Odds and Key Trends
The Wizards 5-15-1 ATS in their last 21 games following a SU loss, and they have failed to cover in eight of their last nine road games. The total has stayed "under" in three of their last four games on the road.
The 76ers are 6-1 ATS in their last seven home games, and they are 5-2-1 ATS in their last eight games following a SU loss. The total has stayed under in 10 of their last 13 games played at home.
The road team in this matchup has covered in six of the last seven meetings, and the total has gone over in five of the last seven games played in Philadelphia.
Washington at Philadelphia Free NBA Picks and Betting Predictions
Washington has been a train wreck to bet on lately, especially when it is playing on the road, while Philly has actually covered ATS pretty well at home this year. The Wizards are in desperate need of a convincing win, but given just how banged up this team is, I am going with a 4-Unit play on Philadelphia to cover with the 10 points.
4-Unit Play-Take Philadelphia (+10) over Washington
NBA Regular Season Betting Record: 7-9-1 (-$1100)
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