Free NBA Picks Friday 8/21/2020 and Opening Line Report
We’ve got more NBA playoff action on Friday with four more games. The Raptors and Celtics are looking to continue their quest for a sweep in the first round, while the Nuggets and Jazz, along with the Clippers and Mavericks, look to gain a two to one advantage after Game 3. Here are the leans for Friday’s NBA games.
Raptors vs Nets 8/21/20 (+10.5, 221)
The Nets gave the Raptors a scare in game 2, but the Raptors prevailed and went up two games to none. Now the Nets will be without an integral part of their team in Joe Harris and have all but lost any hope of winning this series or better yet a game in this series. The Nets have surprised before, but they just don’t have enough bodies to stick with the depth of the Raptors. Game 2 was the Nets chance to stay in this series. They couldn’t win that. Things are about to unravel. The Raptors will win in blowout fashion here.
Key trends: Raptors are 11-5 ATS in their last 16 Conference Quarterfinals games.
Early lean: Raptors, Over
Nuggets vs Jazz 8/21/20 (+1.5, 219)
I’m not sure anyone would be surprised if this series went the full seven games. The Jazz destroyed the Nuggets in the second game of the season as Donovan Mitchell stayed hot while the role players also contributed with some timely shooting. The Jazz got the win even without Mike Conley, who is questionable for this game after leaving the bubble for the birth of his child. Mitchell has shown he’s more than capable of leading this team and looks confident as ever. He’s also making his teammates better around him. Right now, the Jazz have more fight in them, and they’re playing very confidently. They were a couple shots away in Game 1 from leading this series 2-0. I’ll take the Jazz here to keep the momentum going.
Key trends: Jazz are 19-9-1 ATS in their last 29 games following a straight up win.
Early lean: Jazz, Over
Celtics vs 76ers 8/21/20 (+4.5, 216)
If there’s one series that seems like it could finish 4-0, it’s this one. The Celtics took down the 76ers with solid defense and plenty of offense in the second game of the series. The 76ers have scored just 101 points in each game in this series. That just won’t be enough to win any game against the Celtics, who have really shot the ball well and continue to defend at a solid rate. The 76ers didn’t give Joel Embiid the ball enough in Game 1 and then in Game 2, Embiid scored 34 but it wasn’t even close to enough. The Celtics should have this series in the bag. The 76ers are about to check out.
Key trends: Celtics are 14-2-1 ATS in their last 17 Conference Quarterfinals games.
Early lean: Celtics, Under
Clippers vs Mavericks 8/21/20 (+5, 233)
The Dallas Mavericks surprised the LA Clippers with a 127-114 win in the second game of the series. The series is now tied at one. Luka Doncic was stellar in both games this season but was in foul trouble all night in the second game. The Mavs role players stepped up in a big way. With Doncic on the bench in the fourth quarter, the Mavs were able to stretch the lead out against the Clippers. The Clippers got a little bit closer towards the end of the fourth, but the Mavs wouldn’t let the Clippers come all the way back. Paul George struggled from the field and with foul trouble. But there’s no excuse. The Clippers didn’t look in sync in this game without Patrick Beverely. If the Clippers return Beverely, things might change defensively.
Key trends: Clippers are 19-7 ATS in their last 26 games following a ATS loss.
Early lean: Clippers, Under
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