Free NBA Picks Thursday 8/13/2020 and Opening Line Report
The NBA is approaching postseason action, but there’s still a mess at the bottom of the West when it comes to playoff seeding. All the Trail Blazers and Grizzlies need to do is win their games on Thursday. If they don’t, and the Phoenix Suns or San Antonio Spurs are able to get wins, things can change in the bubble quickly for the play-in game between the 8th and 9th seed in the West. Here’s are my thoughts on August 13’s slate in the NBA.
Wizards vs Celtics 8/13/20 (-10.5, 230.5)
The Wizards have yet to win a game against the spread in the bubble, losing game after game by double digits or close to it. The Wizards are out of playoff contention and have nothing to play for anymore. Meanwhile, the Celtics have won four straight games and have looked really good, winning three of those four games by double-digits. The Wizards will leave the bubble with no wins. You can book that.
Key trends: Wizards are 1-6 ATS in their last 7 games overall.
Early lean: Celtics, Over
Kings vs Lakers 8/13/20 (TBD, TBD)
With De’Aaron Fox questionable, along with Richaun Holmes and Kent Bazemore, this has a tune-up game written all over it for the Lakers. The Lakers finally got back in the win column after defeating the Nuggets 124-121 on a three-point field goal from Kyle Kuzma. The Lakers lost three straight before that game. Time is ticking, and they’ll need to prove they belong at the top in the West. Like I said, this is a tune-up game. It’s not a must-win, but the Lakers must win, if you get what I’m saying.
Key trends: Lakers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games playing on 2 days rest.
Early lean: Lakers, Under
Bucks vs Grizzlies 8/13/20 (TBD, TBD)
If the Memphis Grizzlies want to play in the postseason, they’ll need to defeat the Bucks in this match-up. The Grizzlies are 33-39 on the year and in 9th place, slotted to play in the play-in game with a win. Meanwhile, the Phoenix Suns and San Antonio Spurs also have a chance to sneak in with a couple losses from Portland, Memphis and Phoenix. The Bucks are absolutely in first place with a win or a loss in this game. On top of that, Giannis Antetokounmpo might get suspended for this game due to his headbutt and ejection in the previous game against the Wizards. Memphis does not look good. However, can they beat a Bucks team without Giannis if it came down to it? Certainly.
Key trends: Grizzlies are 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games following a straight up loss of more than 10 points.
Early lean: Grizzlies, Over
Mavericks vs Suns 8/13/20 (TBD, TBD)
The Suns are 9-1 dating back to March. They’ve won seven straight games and are undefeated in the bubble. The young talent is starting to show, and the Suns are now fighting for a chance to make the playoffs. Currently, the Mavericks aren’t playing solid defense and are allowing opponents to score at will for most of the season in Orlando. The Suns have been fantastic offensively and have done a solid job defensively against teams like the Pacers and Thunder. You have to ride the wave with the Suns as they haven’t lost a game against the spread in the bubble and are playing for a chance at the playoffs.
Key trends: Suns are 7-0 ATS in their last 7 games overall.
Early lean: Suns, Over
Spurs vs Jazz 8/13/20 (TBD, TBD)
The Spurs have kept their playoff hopes alive with three wins against the Jazz, Pelicans and Rockets. Now they’ll take on the Jazz again after defeating them 119-111 earlier last week. The Jazz have started to fall apart and have lost four of their last five games with little defense and not enough offense. The Spurs are going to come out with plenty of fire, while the Jazz will likely take this game softly.
Key trends: Spurs are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games overall.
Early lean: Spurs, Under
Trail Blazers vs Nets 8/13/20 (-9, 236.5)
This game already feels like a playoff game. Damian Lillard has been ridiculous in the bubble. The Clippers poked the bear, and now he’s loose. Lillard is coming off another 60-point performance and a devastating win over the Mavericks. Lillard and the Blazers control their own destiny. And if the Blazers beat the Nets, they’ll be slotted in the play-in game. However, the Nets have played really well in the bubble this season. There’s just no way Lillard lets a team of G-League players take away a shot at the playoffs.
Key trends: Trail Blazers are 6-1-1 ATS in their last 8 games overall.
Early lean: Trail Blazers, Over
Pelicans vs Magic 8/13/20 (TBD, TBD)
The Pelicans are out of the playoffs, and the Magic have the 8th seed locked up in the East. I’ll tell you one thing, the Magic don’t look like a playoff team and will likely be shut out in the first round by the Bucks. The Magic have lost five straight games and have literally no offense in the bubble after a promising start to the season offensively. It’s all gone downhill for the Magic, but the Pelicans will have to exit the bubble after this game. Will the Pelicans give it up and exit without trying or will they not want to leave and run away with this game? I’ll go with that the Pelicans won’t want to leave.
Key trends: Pelicans are 13-6 ATS in their last 19 games following a straight up loss.
Early lean: Pelicans, Over
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