Have you ever seen a more entertaining regular-season NBA game than Saturday night's epic in Oklahoma City? I truly have not. How ridiculous is Steph Curry? I'm out of adjectives for the guy. He casually lofted a 32-footer with 0.6 seconds left in overtime for the win. I mean, how can you guard someone like that? Curry tied an NBA record with 12 3-pointers and broke his own season record for 3-pointers made -- and he has 24 more games to play! I now have little doubt that, barring injury, the Warriors will break the Bulls' record of 72 regular-season wins as 17 of their final 24 are at home, where they simply don't lose. Just winning out there would get them to 70. And please, please, let the Thunder and Warriors face off in the postseason. Golden State already has clinched a playoff spot, the first team since the 1987-88 Los Angeles Lakers to clinch a playoff spot in February.
Suns at Hornets (-12.5, 206.5)
Charlotte finished a six-game road trip with an 87-76 loss in Atlanta on Sunday. The Hornets were trying to be the first Charlotte team since 1996-97 to win eight games in February, but it never once led against the Hawks. The 76 points were a season low. Phoenix ended a 13-game losing streak with a 111-106 home win over Memphis on Saturday. Alex Len had 22 points and 16 rebounds as the Suns got interim head coach Earl Watson his first victory. Charlotte lost in Phoenix 111-102 on Jan. 6. The Suns hit a season-high 19 3-pointers to end a nine-game losing streak at the time. They still had Brandon Knight then, however. He remains out with a groin injury. The Hornets didn't have Al Jefferson or Nic Batum.
Key trends: The Suns are 0-9 against the spread in their past nine after a win. Charlotte is 9-2 ATS in its past 11 following a double-digit loss. The "over/under" is 4-1 in the past five meetings in Charlotte.
Early lean: Hornets and over.
Bulls at Heat (TBA)
First game of an NBA TV doubleheader and will have live betting at sportsbooks. Chicago played a third straight game without Derrick Rose on Saturday and lost a second in a row, 103-95 at home to Portland. Pau Gasol had 22 points, 16 rebounds and a career-high 14 assists for his first triple-double as a Bull. I was surprised that former Net Joe Johnson chose to sign with Miami over Cleveland, but he did and debuted Sunday in a 98-81 win at the Knicks. He started and had 12 points. Johnson's first shot gave him 19,000 career points. He is six behind Reggie Theus for 50th place on the career list. The Heat won first meeting 89-84 in Chicago on Jan. 25, rallying from eight down in the fourth. Dwyane Wade had 28 points in his hometown. Rose didn't play.
Key trends: The road team is 4-0 ATS in the past four meetings. The under is 6-0 in the past six.
Early lean: TBA for Rose, who will be a game-time call. Bulls will lose by double digits regardless.
Trail Blazers at Knicks (+4, 207)
Portland won for the 13th time in 15 games on Sunday, 111-102 in Indiana. Damian Lillard continued his red-hot play with 33 points. He was probably the best player in the NBA not named Steph Curry in February. New York lost by 17 at home to Miami on Sunday. Starting guard Arron Afflalo sat out but a precautionary MRI on his knee came back negative. He might play here against one of his former teams. New York won in Portland 112-110 on Dec. 12, rallying from a 10-point fourth-quarter deficit. Carmelo Anthony had 37 points. Lillard had 29 but missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer.
Key trends: The Blazers are 5-0 ATS in their past five road games. New York is 1-7 ATS in its past eight at home. The over is 8-0 in the Blazers' past eight after a win.
Early lean: Blazers and over.
Magic at Mavericks (-6, 210)
Orlando ended a two-game losing streak with a 130-116 win over Philadelphia on Sunday. Nik Vucevic and Victor Oladipo scored 28 points each, and Aaron Gordon added a career-high 22 for the Magic. Forward Evan Fournier was out with a wrist injury and is day-to-day. Dallas won a second in a row Sunday, 128-101 over Minnesota. Chandler Parsons had 29 points in the Mavs' largest margin of victory this season. Orlando beat visiting Dallas 110-104 in overtime on Feb. 19. Dallas was able to turn a 21-point deficit to a 14-point lead and hit a team-record 19 3-pointers but still lost. The defeat was the Mavericks' first in Orlando since 2006.
Key trends: Orlando is 2-6 ATS in the past eight meetings. The over is 8-0 in Dallas' past eight overall.
Early lean: Mavs and over.
Hawks at Warriors (-11.5, 225)
Second of the NBA TV doubleheader. Atlanta beat visiting Charlotte 87-76 on Sunday for its second win in a row. Al Horford had 13 points and tied a season high with 16 rebounds for his 200th career double-double. Golden State finished off a supposedly tough seven-game road trip with that OT win at the Thunder on Saturday to improve to 53-5. Curry missed about six minutes of the third quarter with a left ankle injury. The Warriors really had no right winning that game, down four with 14 seconds left in regulation. Golden State won in Atlanta 102-92 on Feb. 22, blowing a 23-point lead but then pulling away again after the Hawks briefly were ahead. Curry had 36 points and Klay Thompson 27.
Key trends: The Hawks are 1-5 ATS in their past six in Oakland. The over is 8-3 in Golden State's past 11 on two days of rest.
Early lean: Hawks (cover not win) and over.
Nets at Lakers (TBA)
The only thing interesting about this terrible game is neither team might own its very high draft pick this summer. The Nets' pick is gone to Boston no matter what. The Lakers' goes to Philly if it's outside the Top 3. Brooklyn was at the Clippers on Monday night. The Lakers lost an eighth in a row Friday, 112-95 at home to Memphis. Kobe Bryant sat out with a sore shoulder. Coach Byron Scott thinks he will play here. L.A. got its first win of the season on Nov. 6 in Brooklyn, 104-98. Kobe had 18 points. The only thing interesting about that one was it featured the NBA's two highest-paid players this season in Kobe and Joe Johnson, but Johnson is now with Miami.
Key trends: The underdog has covered seven of the past 10 meetings. The under is 9-3-1 in the past 13.
Early lean: Lakers end losing streak, Kobe or not.
Want $60 worth of member's picks absolutely free? No obligation. No sales people. Click here for details. Also, for a limited time only, you can get three handicappers NBA picks for the price of one! Click Here for more details!
Read more articles by Alan Matthews
Most Recent NBA Handicapping
- Free NBA Picks Wednesday 1/20/2021 and Opening Line Report
- Free NBA Picks Friday 1/15/2021 and Opening Line Report
- Free NBA Picks Wednesday 1/13/2021 and Opening Line Report
- Free NBA Picks Friday 1/8/2021 and Opening Line Report
- Free NBA Picks Wednesday 1/6/2021 and Opening Line Report
- Free NBA Picks Friday 1/1/2021 and Opening Line Report
- Free NBA Picks Wednesday 12/30/2020 and Opening Line Report
- Free NBA Picks Friday 12/25/2020 and Opening Line Report
- Free NBA Picks Wednesday 12/23/2020 and Opening Line Report
- 2021 NBA Championship Odds and Expert Predictions