NBA betting market report: Daily picks, advice for Friday 11/26


Welcome to the daily NBA betting market report, your source for analysis on the betting lines for the day in professional hoops. For updates throughout the day follow me on Twitter, or check out The Edge daily at 4 p.m. ET / 1 p.m. PT.

All game lines via VSiN NBA Odds page.

Market Report for Friday, November 26th

Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving! Now, let's handicap some hoops. We've got a massive 11-game card with plenty of opportunity.

*Indicates team is on the second leg of a back-to-back

**Lines are opening numbers

Detroit Pistons at Los Angeles Clippers (-10, 206.5)

Last time we saw Detroit they were getting thrashed by Milwaukee on the second leg of a back-to-back. It was a poor spot for the Pistons, as the night prior they blew a nine-point lead in the fourth quarter to the Heat. However, even with the loss to the Bucks this team is 6-4 ATS in its last 10 games and playing better basketball than it had been to start the season. Los Angeles has not been in great form, posting a 2-4 SU and ATS record over its last six games with a -3.9 net rating due to an offense that cannot find any consistency. Over these six games the Clippers are putting up just 99.5 points per 100 possessions, an offensive rating that is three points worse than what the Pistons have averaged. However, Los Angeles’ defensive intensity remains intact, and they have allowed opponents to score just 103.4 points per 100 possessions during this six-game slump while still ranking second in non-garbage time defensive efficiency for the season. This line is up from the opener hung yesterday to -13 almost everywhere and that is somewhat surprising. Los Angeles has shown little consistency on offense, and Detroit’ best quality is a defense that has some real potential when it rolls out certain lineups. The Clippers should be able to defend well here, but this is quite a few points to swallow for an offense that has consistently been among the least efficient in the NBA.

Play: Pistons (+ 12.5)

Minnesota Timberwolves at Charlotte Hornets (-3, 224)

Prior to the season the Timberwolves were my darkhorse team to grab the final seed in the Western Conference and over the last eight games they have finally started to look like that team. Minnesota comes into this meeting with Charlotte on a five-game winning streak and a 6-2 SU/7-1 ATS record in its last eight games. The biggest difference has been a defense that has limited its eight opponents to 99.6 points per 100 possessions, a defensive rating tied with Phoenix for best in the league over that stretch. However, the Hornets are not exactly reeling coming into tonight. Charlotte is 7-1 SU/6-1-1 ATS in the last eight games with a solid brand of defense limiting opponents to 102.5 points per 100 possessions. The matchup to watch here will be on the interior for Minnesota. Over the course of this torrid stretch their rim protection has still been a question. Opponents have only taken an average of 32.6% of their attempts within four feet against the Timberwolves, but four of their opponents have shot over 71.4% in that area of the floor. Minnesota ranks 18th in frequency of attempts allowed within four feet, and good rim shooting teams have been able to exploit that. This Hornets team will attack off the bounce with a high frequency, and that could be a problem for the visitors. One shop is showing Hornets -1.5 as of my writing this morning and if that number is available to you that is playable. Charlotte has the horses to exploit some weaknesses of Minnesota and the market seems to be somewhat low for the home team.

Phoenix Suns (-2.5, 215) at New York Knicks

Do we call this the “Monty Williams Revenge Game”? The rightful winner of last season’s Coach of the Year award meets the actual winner in Tom Thibodeau with their teams in far different form. Phoenix’s last loss came a month ago against Sacramento, as they carry a 14-0 SU/8-6 ATS winning streak into this contest. Meanwhile, New York won their last contest, but has not won or covered consecutive games since October. The Knicks’ offense has hit the skids recently, averaging 104.3 points per 100 possessions over the last eight games, but there is a chance they are able to put forward a better performance tonight. New York takes 39.8% of its attempts from the perimeter and shoots 37.5% on those attempts. If Phoenix has a weakness on defense it’s along the 3-point line where they rank 18th in opponent shooting. The Suns also continue to struggle immensely in transition defense, ranking 26th in defensive efficiency at 130.2 points allowed per 100 plays. New York does not push the pace often, but their offense averages 126.8 points per 100 plays in transition which is ninth-best in the league. If the Knicks put forth an effort to push the pace a bit more here they could get the best of the Sun. However, bettors will want to make sure the injury report is clean. Derrick Rose, Mitchell Robinson and Taj Gibson are all questionable to play tonight.

Chicago Bulls (-8.5, 213.5) at Orlando Magic

Don’t look now, but that defense that was playing well above what it was projected to is starting to falter for Chicago. Over the last five games the Bulls have allowed 111.8 points per 100 possessions and the result is a 2-3 SU and ATS slump that includes a loss to the Rockets last time out. The injury report is finally clean, with the only member being Patrick Williams, but this could be a sign of things to come for Chicago. Their rim defense has been non-existent, allowing opponents to shoot 63.7% on 27 attempts within four feet per game, and they’ve run into some hot shooting as opponents have hit 38.3% of their 3-pointers over these five contests. Luckily, the Magic are one of the worst offenses at attacking the rim and their reliance on shooting has equated to an offense that is averaging just 101.9 points per 100 possessions in non-garbage time minutes. Chicago is on my list of teams to start to play against, but I am not willing to test that theory with Orlando. 

Atlanta Hawks at Memphis Grizzlies (-1, 224.5)

The inconsistent defensive play of Memphis showed up yet again on Wednesday when they allowed Toronto to cook them for 1.309 points per possession in a 126-113 loss. The gap between them and the 29th-ranked Orlando Magic in defensive efficiency continues to grow, as the Grizzlies are now giving up 116.6 points per 100 possessions in non-garbage time minutes on defense for the season. That is going to be a problem against Atlanta which is finding its stride offense and is now fourth in non-garage time offensive efficiency at 113.1 points per 100 possessions. In fact, in this 6-0 SU/5-1 ATS run the Hawks have been on their offensive rating is 121.5 leads the league by 2.9 points! It seems like a matchup nightmare for the Grizzlies, but the Hawks are still a flawed team on defense. They are 25th in defensive efficiency on the season and their interior defense has been poor, allowing opponents to shoot 67.2% at the rim and 41.0% on short mid-range shots. That is going to be a problem against Memphis which lives in those areas of the floor on offense. This total is up to 226.5 at a couple of shops and if you’ve read this preview you can see why.

Toronto Raptors at Indiana Pacers (-4, 210.5)

Indiana is a team worth betting on consistently as it gets healthier, but the market was overzealous in pushing them to as high as -6.5 against Los Angeles on Wednesday. This number against Toronto is much more reasonable tonight, especially if OG Anunoby is going to miss his fifth straight game. The Raptors’ defense has fallen off a cliff, allowing 111.7 points per 100 possessions in non-garbage time, 68.0% at the rim and 37.5% from the perimeter. The key here for each team is going to be rebounding. Indiana ranks 10th in offensive rebounding rate at 27.9% and opponents are grabbing 27.1% of their misses against the Raptors. As a result, Toronto is allowing 14.2 second chance points per game, and they rank 30th in points allowed per 100 putback plays. Indiana has the ability to exploit the short-comings of the Raptors on defense and their defense continues to improve, now ranking eighth in November at 105.1 points allowed per 100 possessions. Should Anunoby play this number will drop maybe a point, but I am willing to lay this number which is now under four.

Play: Pacers (-3.5)

Washington Wizards (-7.5, 208.5) at Oklahoma City Thunder

The slide down the standings for Washington that we predicted has come to fruition. The Wizards are 1-4 SU and ATS in their last five games with a -10.8 net rating. It seems the shoe has dropped on both ends of the floor. Their offense has only managed 100.6 points per 100 possessions while shooting an abysmal 28.4% from deep, and the defense is giving up 111.5 per 100 possessions while allowing opponents to shoot 65.8% at the rim. The problem for Washington is that those weaknesses you could see early are starting to get exploited and that is a problem going forward. Now, they meet Oklahoma City which has been extremely undervalued by the market, and that is represented by the team’s 10-2 ATS record in November. Ten days ago the Thunder were catching 6.5 at home against Miami, but tonight they are catching 7.5 against Washington. Are the Wizards a point better than the Heat? Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is out yet again, but given the issues Washington has this seems to be a very inflated number.

Play: Thunder (+ 7.5)

Boston Celtics (-3, 214.5) at San Antonio Spurs

Boston’s inconsistent defense got cooked by Brooklyn on Wednesday to the tune of 1.274 points per possession, but their opponent tonight likely does not have the capabilities of doing the same. San Antonio has dropped six straight and is just 2-9 SU/4-7 ATS in November with a -6.1 net rating. The Spurs’ once reliable defense has been torched over the last six games for 116.0 points per 100 possessions. To make matters worse, Doug McDermott and Devin Vassell are both questionable to play with injury. The Celtics are not in perfect health either. Jaylen Brown is going to carry a questionable tag almost every day until his hamstring is 100% healthy, Josh Richardson is doubtful tonight Robert Williams will not play as he recovers from illness. Bettors have seen this number dip to -2.5 this morning, and the injury situation is likely why that is, but there is a small amount of value here. Boston still can take advantage of poor teams, as seen in their three-game winning streak over the Rockets, Thunder and Lakers in which they posted a + 14.3 net rating despite dealing with numerous absences. I would expect Brown to play and thus see the market react accordingly. Let’s play a potential buy-low spot here for the Celtics off a loss.

Play: Celtics (-2.5)

New Orleans Pelicans at Utah Jazz (-12.5, 213.5)

New Orleans grabbed a rare victory and cover on Wednesday over Washington, but it is a different animal in Utah. Having said that, the Jazz have been somewhat overvalued by the betting market recently which is apparent in their 5-7 ATS record in November. The matchup is there for the Jazz to exploit though. The Pelicans are 26th in non-garbage time offensive efficiency (102.6), shoot only 59.2% within four feet and 34.0% from deep. They will likely struggle to score against a defense that is eighth in efficiency (106.1) and giving up 63.2% at the rim and 33.6% along the perimeter. Bettors are getting no value in these big numbers for Utah at home and Royce O’Neale is questionable to play as well. There better games to wager on today.

Milwaukee Bucks (-3.5, 213.5) at Denver Nuggets

The injuries continue to mount for Denver which lost P.J. Dozier to a torn ACL on Wednesday. Bones Hyland is doubtful to play tonight as well, Michael Porter Jr. is not close to a return and Nikola Jokic is questionable to play with a wrist injury. Meanwhile, Milwaukee is finally getting healthy and will have their entire trio of Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton and Jrue Holiday together yet again tonight. If Jokic cannot play this number should balloon even higher and there is no reason to consider the underdog. The Nuggets are 0-3 SU and ATS without Jokic and have been outscored by 19.0 points per 100 possessions. That is part of extended 0-5 SU and ATS slump over which they have averaged just 103.8 points per 100 possessions.

Portland Trail Blazers at Golden State Warriors (-7.5, 223.5)

Portland suffered an inexcusable loss in Sacramento on Wednesday night in which they faced a Kings team that did not have either De’Aaron Fox or Harrison Barnes in the waning minutes. The loss dropped Portland to 1-8 SU and ATS on the road this season with a -10.7 net rating and there has been zero evidence this team can break out of this slump. Golden State carries a 5-0 SU and ATS winning streak into tonight and they are 10-1 SU/9-2 ATS at home this season with a league-best + 16.0 net rating. This line might be somewhat inflated by Portland’s failings on the road this season, but do you want to go to bat with a team that has been this poor away from home? The market says it will as this is down to -6.5 at mot shops.

Sacramento Kings at Los Angeles Lakers (-7, 222)

Harrison Barnes and Richaun Holmes are questionable to play tonight, but so too is LeBron James with that abdomen injury he’s been dealing with this season. Anthony Davis is expected to play tonight, but this number seems high for a team that is 7-13 ATS this season, 4-8 ATS at home and 4-10 ATS as a favorite. In other words, the Lakers have been wildly overvalued by the market and that seems to be the case yet again tonight. There is a lot of injury noise here so it will not make the card for me, but do not expect to me to lay 7.5 with a team the market thought was a 6.5-point underdog in Indiana two night ago.

Best Bets Summary

Piston (+ 12.5)

Pacers (-3.5)

Thunder (+ 7.5)

Celtics (-2.5)

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