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, and make sure to subscribe the Hardwood Handicappers podcast!
All game lines via the VSiN NBA Odds page.
Is it time to start worrying about the Los Angeles Clippers? Los Angeles has lost four straight since a 2-0 SU start to the season and the team is on an 0-5 ATS slide. The biggest issue has been an offense which is averaging just 101.9 points per 100 possessions in non-garbage time and a league worst 84.8 points per 100 plays in the halfcourt. Paul George, Marcus Morris and Kawhi Leonard have all missed time over the course of the first six games, so there is the excuse of availability to fall back, but even then, the Leonard injury becomes more worrisome by the day. There are still 76 games left for the Clippers, which is essentially an eternity to get things right. It’s not something I will officially worry about, but I think it’s time to monitor the situation out in Los Angeles.
Speaking of Los Angeles, the other team out in SoCal got its first win of the season. The Lakers dispatched the Nuggets 121-110 for their first win and cover of the season. For the second consecutive game Russell Westbrook came off the bench, and for the second consecutive game Westbrook scored exactly 18 points. Los Angeles posted its best individual game offensive rating of the season (123.5), but that was largely due to not shooting 20% from deep (They shot 43.3%). It was a wonderful moment for all, and Laker fans cheered Russ like they had not been slandering this man for the last year.
Market Report for Monday, October 31st
* Indicates team is on the second leg of a back-to-back
**Lines are opening numbers
Record: 10-9 | Units: + 0.15 | ROI: + 0.81%
Atlanta Hawks at Toronto Raptors (-4, 225)
The Trae Young and Dejounte Murray pairing is going well so far, as Atlanta is + 11.6 per 100 possessions when they share the floor with a 119.7 offensive rating. However, they are -10.3 in the possessions with only Young on the floor and -1.5 with only Murray out there. The Young led lineup have allowed 1.3 points per possession and the Murray led lineups average only 1.05 per possession on offense. Those possessions are where the Hawks are most vulnerable, and this team has the profile of a team skating on thin ice when it comes to its offense. They take 40.8% of their attempts from mid-range, and the third-most long mid-range attempts of all the teams in the league. While the shooting percentage has held up to this point their 3-point shooting has been below average (35.4%) and if those long mid-range attempts stop falling this offense could tumble. To that point, Cleaning the Glass ranks them 29th in location effective field goal percentage (52.2%), suggesting some luck when it comes to their offense.
Toronto is a sound defensive team which has the pieces to put on both Young and Murray defensively that will help stymie their production on offense. There are weaknesses to this Raptors team’s profile, specifically their inability to, once again, score in the halfcourt – only 89.9 points per 100 plays – and there are some troubling defensive numbers in halfcourt settings as well. However, the shot quality data would suggest that the shots allowed should lead to better results, something that could play out tonight against team they can match up well with. This number opened -4 and has not really budged and there are a few 4.5 out there in the market. Today, I’ll lay it and take my shot against the Hawks here. I think Toronto has the right pieces defensively for the Atlanta backcourt, and they can take advantage of those split minutes between Young and Murray.
Play: Raptors (-4)
Sacramento Kings at Charlotte Hornets (PK, 232.5)
The betting market has a strong love for Sacramento this season, and yet again we are seeing that love on the screen this morning as the Kings are now -2 on the road against the Hornets. I cannot say that I disagree entirely tonight. Charlotte is still missing LaMelo Ball, Terry Rozier and Cody Martin and one would expect that this somewhat resilient defense that has shown up early in the season will regress. But, what if it doesn’t? The Hornets have allowed 110.5 points per 100 possessions in non-garbage time this season and shot quality data would suggest there is not a massive tumble to take for this team on that end of the floor. Having said that, we know that the Kings are a poor defensive team which has allowed 117.7 points per 100 possessions on the season. Laying this number after missing out on PK is not the worst thing in the world, but if you want to get involved just wait for an in-game opportunity. In a game projected to be a tight one such as this there will likely be a favorable number for both sides.
Philadelphia 76ers (-4.5, 220) at *Washington Wizards
Washington had absolutely nothing for Boston’s defense yesterday and was held to 0.979 points per possession in the loss. If they’re going to have more success on that end of the floor it is going to be through transition. The Wizards have the eighth highest transition frequency in the league (17.9%) and they average 1.368 points per play which is ninth best, and transition defense has been a massive problem for the 76ers which come into this game last in that category at 1.467 points per play allowed. Joel Embiid is questionable for Philadelphia, and his presence completely changes things when it comes to the number, so obviously wait to get involved here.
Indiana Pacers at Brooklyn Nets (-9.5, 239)
There is no better example of market adjustments than what we are seeing here with Brooklyn. These two teams played at Barclays Center on Oct. 29 and the Nets closed -11 at most shops. After losing the game outright and allowing 1.33 points per possession this number opened -9.5 and has since dropped to -8.5 at multiple shops. Seth Curry is questionable with an ankle injury which does not help matters for Brooklyn, and the vibe around the team is reaching nearly toxic levels. Hard to suggest anything on the Nets at this point.
*Detroit Pistons at Milwaukee Bucks (-12.5, 228.5)
Giannis Antetokounmpo has begun his season with MVP type play for beleaguered squad missing its secondary scorer and two primary backup small forwards. The Greek Freak comes into this game averaging 34.4 points and 14.0 rebounds on 60.4% shooting from the floor, and there has not been a single team with an answer for him. Safe to say the Pistons, which rank 29th in defensive efficiency (121.8) and are coming in with no rest, will not shut him down. The betting market pushed this up to -13 in a majority of shops and even 13.5 at a few.
Memphis Grizzlies (-3, 234.5) at Utah Jazz
Ja Morant is questionable with that illness that caused him to miss the team’s loss to Utah on Saturday, but the market seems to be buying into him playing and the bounce back for the Grizzlies. Memphis is creeping up -4 at most shops, and if he plays expect this number to close at about -5 or so. Having said that, the Grizzlies do have a problem on defense, as they have allowed 119.7 points per 100 possessions to opponents, and that is not getting better if Morant is on the floor.
*Houston Rockets at *Los Angeles Clippers (-10, 224)
With both teams coming in with no rest we will have to wait to see what these injury reports look like. As stated in the recap, this Clippers team has been a nightmare on offense, and while it might make sense to expect a better performance against a team allowing 118.5 points per 100 possessions in non-garbage time, it’s hard to swallow this number willingly. Los Angeles has been very consistent on defense to give it credit, so perhaps shutting down the Rockets, who turn it over on 15.5% of their offensive possessions, is how the home team covers this number.
Best Bet Recap