Free NBA Picks New York Knicks: Season-Long Handicapping and Specialization 11/8/2023
The New York faithful will get their first look at Victor Wembanyama as the Spurs roll into Madison Square Garden for their matchup against the Knicks tonight. This season, Doc Sports is the place to get a breakdown on every single New York Knicks matchup. Last year, I broke down every Milwaukee Bucks game and finished with 23.1 Units of profit. A similar chuck of profit is expected by the season’s end this year, and by using in-depth knowledge of the Knicks, and the league as a whole, we will be able to stay ahead of the sportsbooks on a nightly basis.
On Monday night, the Knicks took down the Clippers 111-97 in James Harden’s debut for his new team. RJ Barrett returned to the lineup and put down 26 points on 56% shooting from the floor, and Julius Randle had his best game of the season with a 27 point double-double.
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From a betting perspective, we had a poor night. The Clippers were the biggest bet of the evening as I expected their star-studded lineup to come out firing in one of the world’s most historic arenas, but they fell short with no one scoring more than 17 points. Harden finished above his 14.5-point total which saved the night, but Mitchell Robinson failed to pick up an assist, staying Under his 0.5 Assist line.
Tonight, the Knicks (3-4) will look to win back-to-back games for the first time this season, and are coming in as healthy 10 point favorites over the Spurs (3-4). The Spurs have their superstar in Victor Wembanyama, and a roster filled with high draft picks will look to start coming out of their rebuild this season. Wembanyama has been living up to the hype, averaging 19.4 PPG with 8.4 Rebounds to start the season. His offensive play has been solid, but his workrate on defense has been catching the attention of the league. His 2.6 Blocks per game is good for second in the league, as he uses every inch of his 7 foot 4 height and 8 foot wingspan.
The Spurs rely on ball movement to consistently generate offense. Despite possessing the 22nd ranked offense, the Spurs are 3rd in the league with 29.1 Assists per game. Their ball movement often ends up with an easy layup for Wembanyama, or an open look for Devin Vassell or Keldon Johnson. The Spurs have capable shooters who can often knock down easy shots, and they will have to continue to be unselfish with the ball if they are to maintain their spot out of the basement in the Western Conference.
For the Knicks, if Julius Randle can replicate his performance from Monday night, there is no doubt they will emerge with a victory. Jalen Brunson has become the face of the franchise, but their playoff hopes rely on Randle turning back the clock, and consistently producing on the offensive end. He had a good night from the floor against the Clippers, but he’s still shooting just 29.9% in the young season. RJ Barrett is threatening to pass him as the number 2 option behind Brunson, and as long as the young Canadian can stay healthy, he has a very good chance at doing so.
The sample size is small, but Barrett is on pace for the best season of his career. His 22 PPG on 47.5% from the floor and 44% from deep are all career highs, and the plethora of rebound grabbers on New York has allowed him to spread the floor more consistently. His 3.6 Rebounds per game is well below his career average, but considering the Knicks are second in the league with 50.4 rebounds per game, it is very clear Tom Thibodeau has adjusted Barrett’s responsibilities for the team.
In this matchup, while both teams are 3-4 they are headed in very different directions. The Spurs have begun the season with some quality shooting and ball movement, but their inability to clean up the glass will cost them over the span of an 82-game season. Robinson is an absolute unit inside, and while he may be giving up some height on Wembanyama, his 240-pound frame is not an easy one to box out in the paint. His 6.4 offensive rebounds per game are a big reason the Knicks lead the league in that category, and Wembanayama will need to exert maximum effort on both ends of the court to keep this one close.
The Knicks have been shooting the ball poorly and are currently dead last in the league with a 40.8% conversion rate from the floor. While it would be easy to pin it all on Randle, Brunson, Josh Hart, Quentin Grimes, and Donte DiVincenzo are all shooting below that mark too. Once the buckets start to fall for New York, their dominance on the glass will become even more apparent, and we will see them shoot up the standings.
Tonight, despite the 10-point spread, the Knicks are still a great choice to blow the Spurs out tonight. If the Knicks shooting can regress towards the mean even slightly, the Spurs will quickly realize they are outmatched, and with Vassell doubtful to suit up, the Spurs will be without their best shooter to retaliate. It’s a healthy spread, but the gap in quality between these two teams warrants this wide margin of victory. Knicks -10 will be the first bet of the night.
For the next bet of the evening, we have no choice but to target Mitchell Robinson on the glass. The big man has averaged 12.4 Rebounds per game so far this season, yet his line is only at 10.5, evenly juiced to both sides. I expected this line to be inflated considering the Spurs struggle on the glass, and they have consistently given up double digit rebounds to the opposition’s center.
Pick: New York Knicks (-10) 2 Units
Pick: Mitchell Robinson Over 10.5 Rebounds 3 Units
2023-24 Season record:
ML Record: 2-0
Spread Record: 2-2
Total Record: 1-2
Player Props Record: 2-5
Down 5.6 Units
2022-23 Season Record with the Milwaukee Bucks:
ML Record: 15-10
Spread Record: 19-14
Total Record: 8-13
Player Props Record: 31-23
Up 23.1 Units ($2310)
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