NBA betting market report: Daily picks, advice for Thursday 12/30

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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 Thursday, December 30th

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

**Lines are opening numbers

Philadelphia 76ers at Brooklyn Nets (-3, 217)

For now, it seems that bettors will get as normal a game as possible between these two Eastern Conference contenders. Brooklyn has most of its players back from COVID protocol, including Kevin Durant who is expected to make his return to action tonight after missing three games. Philadelphia will not have Danny Green and Shake Milton has cleared protocol, but he is questionable as it is unknown if he’s ready from a conditioning standpoint. As far as results go, these two teams come into this contest in entirely different form. The 76ers have covered consecutive games just once since Nov. 8 and they are 8-7 SU/5-10 ATS since Joel Embiid returned from his nine-game COVID absence. The problem for Philadelphia over this stretch has been an offense averaging just 107.8 points per 100 possessions which is the sixth-worst offensive rating in the league over that stretch. As a team that has closed as a favorite in 10 of these 15 games, it is a problem when you cannot score. However, when catching points it’s a different story, as the 76ers are 4-1 ATS as an underdog in those five other games. Part of that is due to their defense, which has consistently delivered. Despite having such a poor offense Philadelphia has only been outscored by 1.2 points per 100 possessions over these 15 games because they are ninth in defensive efficiency (109.0). Philadelphia is good enough defensively to stay within a number like this, even with Durant back. When he is on the floor with James Harden the Nets have only posted a + 3.0 net rating, and the offense averages only 111.0 points per 100 possessions. Brooklyn is good with those two together, but not great. It seems the market is overvaluing that pairing in moving this number up two points from the open. Philadelphia is a team I have only wanted to back when it is catching points, and this situation seem like a solid one to get involved with.

Play: 76ers (+ 5)

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