NBA Best Bets Today: Odds, predictions and picks for Monday, January 16th

By Jonathan Von Tobel  (Senior NBA Analyst) 

January 16, 2023 08:29 AM

Welcome to the daily NBA best bets page, 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 to the Hardwood Handicappers podcast!

All game lines via the VSiN NBA odds page. Stay up to date on injury news with our injury report page as well.

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

**Lines are opening numbers

Best Bets

Record: 39-44 | Units: -6.74 | ROI: -8.31%

Indiana Pacers at Milwaukee Bucks (-10.5, 231.5)

Over the last five games the Pacers have averaged just 107.1 points per 100 possessions, and in the two games since losing Tyrese Haliburton to injury their offensive rating is down to 105.7 per 100 possessions. This is a team that is overly reliant on transition offense to generate scoring opportunities. They rank 22nd in halfcourt offense, averaging 94.6 points per 100 plays, and that one dimensional offense now has to face one of the best defensive teams in the league with both of its top defenders active.

Giannis Antetokounmpo and Jrue Holiday are both listed as probable, so there is a risk in playing this early and having the rug pulled out from under me but such is life in the NBA. When those two are on the floor with Brook Lopez the Bucks limit opponents to 107.8 points per 100 possessions. They should be able to limit a shorthanded Pacers offense which is missing its best offensive creator. 

Play: UNDER Pacers TT 111.5

Best Bet Recap

Pacers TT UN 111.5

The Rest

Boston Celtics (-8, 231.5) at Charlotte Hornets

There are not many positive things to point to when it comes to the Charlotte Hornets. Since Dec. 26 the team is 2-9 SU/2-8-1 ATS with -5.9 net rating in non-garbage time. Kelly Oubre remains out and Gordon Hayward carries his usual doubtful designation into this game, so bettors can expect this offense to continue to struggle. There is also little reason to believe that this rematch plays out differently than the meeting on Saturday when Boston rolled to a 122-106 victory. The market has adjusted this number ever so slightly from the closing consensus of 7.5 in that first meeting, so bettors are not getting a discount here should they want to back the Celtics who have won six straight and covered their last three.

New Orleans Pelicans at Cleveland Cavaliers (-6.5, 223.5)

This might seem to be on the high side for Cleveland, but unless the team can get some level of consistency from its offense this number is accurate. Over the course of the six games since losing Zion Williamson the Pelicans have averaged 115.5 points per 100 possessions in non-garbage time, which would rank in the top 10 for the season. However, that rating is over the course of a small sample size and really stems from two massive performances against the Rockets, in which they averaged 1.206 points per possession, and against the Wizards in which they put up 1.319 points per possession. The rest of these contests have been much worse on offense, and Cleveland is obviously good enough on that end of the floor to stymie an inconsistent offense.

Toronto Raptors at *New York Knicks (-2, 218.5)

New York is 7-1 SU/6-2 ATS in its last eight games and it has outscored those opponents by 7.9 points per 100 possessions. One of those victories came against this Raptors team in Toronto, where the Knicks torched the twine with a 16-of-37 shooting performance from deep. It’s unlikely New York replicates that shooting performance, but they can limit what Toronto wants to do on offense if it plays its game. The Raptors are the second worst halfcourt offense in the league (91.8) and overly reliant on transition offense, which they rank second in off live rebounds at 2.2 points added per 100 possessions. The Knicks are a decent halfcourt defense which limits opponents 96.2 points per 100 plays, and they rank second in opponent points per added per 100 possessions through transition offense off live rebounds (0.5). 

*Golden State Warriors (-2.5, 236) at Washington Wizards

Golden State fell to 3-17 SU/4-16 ATS on the road when it lost yesterday to Chicago. It seems that now is the time to stop believing that the Warriors are going to be the team the market believes them to be in this away spots. Golden State has allowed 120.6 points per 100 possessions in non-garbage time away from home, the third worst defensive rating away from home in the league. This being the second leg of a back-to-back, there is certainly a chance more than just Klay Thompson, who played yesterday, rests. Until the injury report is confirmed its best not to jump on the overvalued road favorite.

Miami Heat at Atlanta Hawks (-1, 224.5)

Clint Capela was upgraded to questionable for this contest, and Trae Young is considered probable to play for Atlanta. This could be the healthiest the Hawks have been in a long time, and it comes in time for a divisional matchup with the Heat. Miami has finally found a consistent stretch of basketball, coming into this game 8-3 SU/7-3-1 ATS in its last 11 contests. Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo will be on the floor, and that has been the key for the Heat as they are +7.7 with a 110.4 defensive rating when they play together. The betting market has started to upgrade the rating on Miami as well. This is evidenced by the line flip here despite the potential of Capela playing. 

Utah Jazz at Minnesota Timberwolves (-2, 236)

Minnesota is finally starting to figure things out, but a crowded injury report threatens to put a stop to their winning streak. The Timberwolves are 6-1 SU/5-1-1 ATS in their last seven games with a +7.1 net rating in non-garbage time, but Anthony Edwards and Rudy Gobert are questionable to play here against the Jazz. The numbers with those two on the floor have been improving, and as of today Minnesota has limited opponents to 112.3 points per 100 possessions in those possessions. Obviously their status has the potential to completely alter this betting line, so make sure they are available before jumping in.

*Houston Rockets at *Los Angeles Lakers (-6.5, 234.5)

Houston fell to 0-10 SU/1-9 ATS in its last 10 games when it lost to the other Los Angeles team on Sunday. The Rockets will have Jalen Green and Jae’Sean Tate back on the floor after the duo missed the loss to the Clippers due to suspension which will help their offensive output today. Los Angeles is coming off a loss of its own to Philadelphia on Sunday, and it is unclear if there will be any missing personnel due to rest. The betting market is slowly moving in the direction of Houston here, so that itself might be an indicator that the Lakers could be missing some bodies tonight.

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