Happy Tuesday. Yesterday was a tough day in the office. I picked four outright dogs in CBB, and they all lost by one or two possessions. Then the NBA record was 2-6. It was a swing-and-miss day. We’ll recover tonight. But first, a look at yesterday’s action…
- The Bucks dropped 150 on the Pistons in a game that was all but over twelve minutes in. Giannis dropped 29 and 12 in his return from a relatively brief absence, and Khris Middleton is finally back. He scored 8 points in fifteen minutes. Milwaukee is 30-17 and will hold on to the East 3 seed with half a game separating them from the Sixers above and the Nets below.
- The Celtics saw their lead at the top of the East fall to four games after their nine-game winning streak was snapped in Orlando. Boston went 1-3 against the Magic this year. Orlando is still technically alive for the 10 seed and the play-in, but the 4.5 game gap there doesn’t seem to be one that they can make up based on their almost 50-game body of work. They just haven’t been consistent enough. The Celtics will likely avoid their kryptonite in the first round.
- The Timberwolves have suffered some really bad losses this year, and dropping one to a Rockets team that had lost thirteen in a row certainly qualifies. Anthony Edwards and D’Angelo Russell combined for 61, but Jalen Green’s 42-point night stole the show and the game. Minnesota falls back under .500, and they’re in a three-way tie for the 9 seed.
- The Bulls picked up a really nice win, getting past the hot Hawks in Chicago. The win puts the Bulls in a tie for the 9 seed, one game back of the Hawks and two games ahead of the Raptors and the 11 seed. Chicago is 11-6 over their last seventeen.
- The Jazz took care of business in Utah, blowing out the Hornets. The middle of the West is a logjam, but the Jazz are the 8 seed for now. Charlotte will maintain a bit of a gap from the Spurs with the loss; San Antonio sits a game and a half above them in fourth-last.
- The Trail Blazers smashed the Spurs. Damian Lillard, Anfernee Simons, and Jusuf Nurkic combined for 88 in the win, and it’ll put Portland back within a game of the play-in.
- The Grizzlies lost their third in a row, and it’ll see them slip back from the Nuggets at the top of the West. What was a neck-and-neck race for a bit has turned into a two-game lead for Denver. The Kings, meanwhile, continue to play some really good basketball. They’re a game and a half up on the Pelicans and the 4 seed, and only three and a half games stand between them and the Grizzlies. There was a lot of criticism for Sacramento after last year’s moves, but they have paid off without question. This is a dang good Kings team.
- Kansas has now dropped three in a row after falling in Waco. This was a really nice win for a Baylor team that has responded strongly after a shaky Big 12 start. For Kansas, it’s a third Big 12 loss just eight games in. There’s a lot of competition at the top this year, and they’re behind the eight ball right now.
- Nevada beat New Mexico 97-94 in 2OT. I really like both of these teams, and I think they both should be in the tourney. They’re both on track to be in good position to get there.
- Northwestern pulled out a close one over the visiting Badgers. Neither team is really in dire straits in terms of needing wins at this point, so this qualifies as a good home win for Northwestern and not a whole lot else. Wisconsin falls to 12-3 in games with Tyler Wahl playing.
- Colgate is 15-7 (9-0) after getting past Boston U. They’re looking good for a fourth tourney trip in five years.
- Virginia Tech held off Duke for a big ACC win. It’s been a real struggle for the Hokies, especially on the road, but they’re still 12-8. If they can finish (really) strong in conference play, the door’s not shut quite yet. This is a start.
NBA record: 108-95-3 ATS, 22-32 ML, 39-38-1 O/U, 1-6 parlay, 0-1 props, -15.09 units
- Bulls -1.5
The Bulls are playing pretty well, and the Pacers have yet to win without Haliburton. Give me Chicago, even on the second night of a back-to-back.
- Celtics ML (+158)
I like Boston to bounce back here. It’s good value.
- Cavs Knicks U221
I like the under here. Both teams score in relatively low numbers.
- Nuggets -1
The Nuggets are as hot as anyone in the league. I’ll take them to win in New Orleans here.
CBB record: 107-95-2 ATS, 16-29 ML, 4-3 O/U, 7-7 parlay, -0.60 units
- Miami -3
I like Miami a lot. They bounce back here against a bad FSU team.
- NC State -9
NC State is playing pretty well, especially at home, and Notre Dame has been awful lately.
- Illinois -3.5
Give me Illinois here. I don’t trust OSU.
- Missouri -2
Ole Miss is really bad.
- Kentucky -6
Kentucky has been turning a corner; that continues here.
- Kansas State +5.5
The points with the underdog are generally the move in Big 12 play. These games are usually close. The Wildcats won’t give up their conference lead easily.
- ML PARLAY: Rutgers, NC State, Miami, Kent State, Boise State, Clemson, Kentucky (+470)