I doubt we see a ton of big names traded by the Feb. 23 deadline in the NBA, although it appears Kyle Korver is on his way to Cleveland, but I think it's all but a sure thing that the Dallas Mavericks will deal center Andrew Bogut. The Mavs signed Bogut to a one-year, $11 million free-agent deal this past offseason, but they have gone totally in the tank and there's no reason to keep him around. Bogut is injury-prone but still an excellent defender, rebounder and passer. This week, he basically told the world that he's on the market, saying: "Thankfully, I'm a free agent here, so I only have a couple of months more here and then will most likely move on," Bogut said of Dallas. "I've got a valuable contract ... having four months left on my contract, I'm a valuable commodity to be moved." Bogut is such a good teammate that he volunteered to come off the bench because the Mavericks struggled so much when he and Dirk Nowitzki are on the floor at the same time. The Boston Celtics have been rumored as a potential trade candidate. With that expiring contract, the Mavs wouldn't get much for him, maybe a second-round pick, some salary filler and a young, developmental player. Better than nothing.
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Knicks at Pacers (-6.5, 216)
New York was in Milwaukee on Friday with it looking good for Kristaps Porzingis to return from a three-game injury absence. Whether he is good enough to play both ends of a back-to-back is another question. Indiana won a fourth straight Thursday, 121-109 over Brooklyn. Jeff Teague had 21 points, 15 assists and seven rebounds, and Myles Turner finished with 25 points and 15 boards. The Pacers' 38 points in the third were a season high for one quarter. New York beat visiting Indiana 118-111 on Dec. 20 but hasn't won at the Pacers since March 17, 2012.
Key trends: New York is 1-8 against the spread in its past nine at Indiana. The "over/under" has gone under in seven of the past nine meetings.
Early lean: Pacers and over.
Pelicans at Celtics (-8.5, 211.5)
Boston hosted Philadelphia on Friday. New Orleans lost a second straight Thursday, 99-94 vs. Atlanta. Anthony Davis had 20 points and 19 rebounds for New Orleans, which shot just 36.6 percent. This one starts a five-game road trip for the Pels, who are just 4-12 away from home. New Orleans beat Boston 106-105 on Nov. 14 behind 25 points and 16 rebounds from Davis. The Celtics had won four straight in the series.
Key trends: The Pelicans are 2-5 ATS in the past seven meetings. The under is 11-0 in New Orleans' past 11 vs. teams with a winning record.
Early lean: Pelicans and under.
Raptors at Bulls (+3, 207)
Toronto beat Utah 101-93 on Thursday. Kyle Lowry had 16 of his 33 points in the fourth quarter. DeMar DeRozan had 23 points and seven rebounds, while Jonas Valanciunas added 18 points and 13 rebounds. The Raptors scored 27 points off Utah turnovers but didn't lead until less than four minutes remained. Chicago won at short-handed Cleveland 106-94 on Wednesday behind 20 points from Jimmy Butler. The NBA's worst 3-point shooting team hit a season-high 13 of them. First meeting of the season between Toronto and Chicago. The Bulls have won nine in a row in the series, four of those at home.
Key trends: The Raptors are 0-9 ATS in the past nine meetings. The over is 7-0 in the past seven.
Early lean: Raptors end the skid, and go over.
Nuggets at Thunder (-7, 218)
Denver lost a fourth in a row Thursday, 127-99 vs. San Antonio. Nikola Jokic had 19 points and 11 rebounds for Denver, which started 10-for-10 from the field. Forward Kenneth Faried missed his third straight game with back troubles. Oklahoma City lost his third consecutive game Thursday, 118-116 in Houston despite 49 points, eight rebounds and five assists from Russell Westbrook. It was the third-most points in his career. OKC beat Denver 132-129 in overtime on Nov. 25 and has won seven straight in the series.
Key trends: The Nuggets are 1-4 ATS in their past five in OKC. The over is 4-0 in the past four meetings.
Early lean: Thunder and over.
Jazz at Timberwolves ( +3, 196)
Minnesota was in Washington on Friday. Utah dropped its second straight Thursday, 101-93 in Toronto. The Jazz led for more than 44 minutes. Rudy Gay had 15 points and 16 rebounds, but the Jazz turned it over 19 times. George Hill missed his third straight game due to a lip laceration and concussion-like symptoms. Shame that guy can't stay healthy because the Jazz might be the West's third-best team when he plays. The visiting team has won eight of the past 12 games between the Jazz and Wolves. Utah won in Minnesota 112-103 on Nov. 28.
Key trends: The favorite is 6-0 ATS in the past six meetings. The under is 5-1 in Utah's past six on the road.
Early lean: Jazz and under.
Hawks at Mavericks (+2, 201)
Atlanta won its fifth straight Thursday, 99-94 in New Orleans. Korver sat out because he's about to be traded to Cleveland and it's probably finalized later Friday. Dennis Schroder scored 23 points, and Paul Millsap added 17 points and 10 rebounds. Millsap will be next to go as he's also a pending free agent. Dallas lost 102-95 at home to Phoenix on Thursday. Deron Williams led the Mavericks with 20 points. Bogut had no rebounds or points and five fouls in 20 minutes, so maybe he already has mentally checked out of Dallas. First meeting of season between Atlanta and Dallas. The Hawks have won the past five.
Key trends: The Hawks are 5-0 ATS in the past five meetings. The under is 4-1 in those.
Early lean: Mavericks and under.
Hornets at Spurs (-11, 206)
Charlotte lost 115-114 in Detroit on Thursday and lost Nic Batum for up to two weeks to a knee injury. But an MRI did come back clean. The Hornets' Marco Belinelli hit a banked-in 3-pointer at the buzzer vs. the Pistons but video confirmed it came just after. Kemba Walker had 32 points as the Hornets nearly rallied from a 19-point fourth-quarter hole. Center Cody Zeller sat out again as he remains the concussion protocol. San Antonio won its second in a row Thursday, 127-99 in Denver. LaMarcus Aldridge had 28 points, and Tony Parker 21 and a season-high nine assists. San Antonio won in Charlotte 119-114 on Nov. 23 and also has taken the past nine at home in the series.
Key trends: The Hornets are 1-6 ATS in their past seven on Saturday. The Spurs are 7-0 ATS in their past seven at home. The under is 4-1 in the past five meetings in San Antonio.
Early lean: Spurs and under.
Pistons at Trail Blazers (-3.5, 210)
Detroit beat Charlotte 115-114 on Thursday despite nearly blowing a huge fourth-quarter lead. Reggie Jackson, who had 22 points, put Detroit up 115-113 when he made two free throws with 1.9 seconds remaining. Boban Marjanovic had 15 points and a career-high 19 rebounds. He had barely played all season, but Andre Drummond was in foul trouble and backup center Aron Baynes remains out with a sprained ankle. Portland welcomed Damian Lillard back from a five-game absence and beat the Lakers 118-109 on Thursday. He had 21 points and 10 assists. Detroit's 2-0 regular-season series sweep last year was the Pistons' first sweep of Portland since 2005-06. Jackson averaged 35.0 points for Detroit.
Key trends: The Pistons are 0-6 ATS in their past six after a win. The over is 9-1 in the past 10 meetings.
Early lean: Blazers and over.
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