NBA Three at 3: Best Bets for Wednesday, January 26
- Playoffs Game 001/26 7:40 PM ETSpreadMLScore539NY202.518096540MIA-5.5-220110
On Wednesday, the NBA rolls out a big slate that will be headlined by the New York Knicks taking on the Miami Heat and the Phoenix Suns facing the Utah Jazz in an ESPN doubleheader. After going 2-1 with our best bets last night, we're looking to steer you in the right direction again!
1. Los Angeles Clippers at Orlando Magic - 7:00 p.m. ET
The Clippers have played better basketball than the Magic this season, but they are not the more talented team. Los Angeles also had to make the trip from D.C. to Florida after a 35-point comeback win against the Wizards last night. The Clippers are going to be exhausted after turning in that type of effort on Tuesday and this is a prime let-down spot for them. With that in mind, look for any irregularities in the tenacity Los Angeles plays with to turn into opportunities for Orlando to pounce. This Magic team is coming off a 19-point win over the Chicago Bulls, and the team has been energized by the return of rookie Jalen Suggs. Suggs' ability to impact the game on both ends with his athleticism is crucial, and Franz Wagner is capable of doing the same. Also, in Ty Lue's career as a head coach, his teams are 7-20 against the spread when playing against teams with winning percentages of 25.0% or worse.
THE PICK: Magic -1
2. New York Knicks at Miami Heat - 7:30 p.m. ET
The Knicks are 19-8 against the spread in road games when playing teams with winning records since the start of last season. The Heat are also 3-5 against the spread in home games with totals between 200 and 209.5. Miami will be without Kyle Lowry in this game, which is especially important in a meeting with New York. Lowry's absence hasn't quite crushed the Heat this season, but they need a player with his two-way ability in a match-up against a Knicks team that plays tough defense. New York is 13th in the NBA in defensive rating this season, but the team is ninth in that category over the last 10 games. Meanwhile, Miami has slipped a bit in that regard, as the team is eighth in the league in defensive rating but 13th over the last 10 games. That could help an inconsistent Knicks offense get it going in this game, and it's not out of the realm of possibility that RJ Barrett and Julius Randle will produce enough to keep New York in this one. Also, this seems like a game in which Evan Fournier could get it going from deep. This is just a lot of points for the Knicks to be getting.
THE PICK: Knicks +6
3. Dallas Mavericks at Portland Trail Blazers - 10:00 p.m. ET
The Mavericks are coming off of a lousy effort against the Golden State Warriors, and they now have to fly to Portland and take on a Blazers team that is 8-4 against the spread in its last 12 contests. Dallas also has to do that after having lost Tim Hardaway Jr., one of the team's only consistent offensive performers, to a serious foot injury last night. That could mean that the Mavericks players will be a bit down heading into this one, and it certainly means that the team will struggle to space the floor for Luka Doncic now. Outside of Reggie Bullock and Dorian Finney-Smith, Dallas no longer has many floor spacers that consistently hit shots from deep. And realistically, Bullock hasn't been reliable since having a good year with the Knicks last year. Meanwhile, the Blazers still have a dynamic backcourt with Anfernee Simons and CJ McCollum both capable of lighting it up on any given night. And Jusuf Nurkic should be able to make an impact on this game.
THE PICK: Blazers +4.5