Free NBA Picks Friday 12/25/2020 and Opening Line Report
The overreaction to the first two days of NBA games has been through the roof in the sports betting industry. But with that, lines are a bit off for the December 25 five-game Christmas slate. The season has already given us a couple surprises, and that won’t stop as we continue on with a shortened and delayed season in the 2021-2022 season. Here’s a look at the entire Friday slate with early leans for the spread and totals of each game.
Pelicans vs Heat 12/25/20 (-4.5, 224.5)
Nobody expected these teams to have opposite records on Christmas Day, but the Miami Heat lost their opener to the Orlando Magic, while the Pelicans defeated the Toronto Raptors in their first game. The Pelicans are a young but talented team that can easily surprise this season. After last year’s bubble, there’s a chance that the Heat were overhyped to begin the season. Losing to the Magic isn’t a good sign. I’ll take the points with the Pelicans here.
Key trends: 4 of 4 games in this series have gone UNDER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons
Early lean: Pelicans, Under
Warriors vs Bucks 12/25/20 (-10, 232.5)
The Bucks started off slow against the Celtics, only to rally back and end up losing a heartbreaker. On the other hand, the Warriors lost to the Nets on opening night. They didn’t just lose. The Warriors got crushed, 125-99, without Draymond Green able to play. Green is day-to-day and might be able to play in this game. He’ll be needed as this team looked a bit out of sync. I expect the Bucks to pull away quarter by quarter.
Key trends: MILWAUKEE is 48-31 ATS (+13.9 Units) in home games over the last 3 seasons.
Early lean: Bucks, Under
Nets vs Celtics 12/25/20 (+3, 228.5)
There were doubts on if the Nets would be a threat in the East. Maybe Kevin Durant wouldn’t recover from injury or Kyrie Irving would struggle with a new star on the roster. All of that was put to bed in the first game of the season. Things can change. However, for now, the offense looks to be cooking. For the Celtics, they’ll want to win this game and get back at Irving, their former teammate. Getting a win against the Bucks on opening day is solid momentum, but the defense still needs to improve.
Key trends: BROOKLYN is 5-3 against the spread versus BOSTON over the last 3 seasons
Early lean: Nets, Over
Mavericks vs Lakers 12/25/20 (-6, 227.5)
On opening night, the Lakers dealt us a pretty poor first game of the season. Lakers forward LeBron James looked slow and twisted his ankle late in the game and is now questionable for this match-up. He’ll more than likely play, but his health is important. The Mavericks, on the other hand, just lost to the Suns in a very close match-up and would not want to lose two straight games either. One team has to. It looks like the Lakers are a bit out of sync on offense. I’d roll with the Mavericks against the spread and take the points.
Key trends: DALLAS is 23-11 ATS (+10.9 Units) in road games over the last 2 seasons.
Early lean: Mavericks, Under
Clippers vs Nuggets 12/25/20 (+2.5, 224)
The Clippers proved that they’ll be right back in the mix this season with their win against the Lakers on opening night. This team is way too talented. And as long as Paul George produces, this team will be fine offensively. Denver’s loss to the Kings was upsetting in overtime, but they’ll absolutely be in games throughout the season. The Nuggets should be fine offensively in this game. And as long as they keep up, they’ll cover the spread in this tight late-night match-up.
Key trends: DENVER is 9-5 against the spread versus LA CLIPPERS over the last 3 seasons
Early lean: Nuggets, Under
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