The Detroit Pistons try to extend their three-game winning streak when they visit the Atlanta Hawks tonight. NBA odds makers have opened the Hawks as large favorites, but can the Pistons pull off the upset?
The NBA lines speak for themselves. The Hawks are favored by
8.5 points and by as many as nine at some NBA betting shops and are 4-0-1 ATS in
their last five games as favorites.
A total of 186 can be found at sportsbooks, with the UNDER
going 6-2 in the last 8 head-to-head meetings between the teams.
The Pistons are playing some of their best basketball of the
season, having won three in a row and five of their last six. Last night they
hosted Washington and won 99-94, failing to cover as eight-point favorites in
the NBA odds.
Because they were holding a sizable lead in the fourth,
Detroit was able to rest some key guys for tonight. Greg Monroe only played 20
minutes and finished with 18 points and seven rebounds.
Pistons heating up?
The Hawks are even more rested after blowing out the Bobcats
two days ago. In the 120-93 win, Josh Smith collected 24 points, nine rebounds
and four assists, while five other Atlanta players also reached double digits
As a team the Hawks shot 56.6 percent overall and had an
amazing 32 assists, while turning it over just six times.
This will be the third meeting of the season between Atlanta
and Detroit, with both teams each picking up a victory. In late January the
Hawks won 107-101 in overtime, with Joe Johnson netting 30 points, and then
just under a month ago Detroit got some payback with a close 86-85 win.
Tonight I'd expect the Pistons to be the popular spread
betting NBA pick considering they're on a roll right now and are getting a ton of
points from oddsmakers.
However, I'm taking the opposite stance and thinking the
Hawks come out fired up for this one and take it to Detroit from the opening
Josh Smith, despite wanting out earlier, continues to play
exceptionally well. He's averaging 26.0 PPG and 10.8 RPG over his last nine
appearances and has chipped in with four assists per game during that span as
well. The man can do it all.
Backing Hawks to be up at interval
Together with Joe Johnson and Jeff Teague, who's averaging
13.7 PPG and 6.8 APG over his last six, the Hawks are making a charge for a
higher seed in the East. They've already caught up the floundering Magic and
are just 1.5 games back of the Pacers for the third spot.
The Pistons' winning streak also may be a little exaggerated
because of the competition they've played. Those five victories over their last
six have come against Washington (2x), Charlotte, Cleveland and an Orlando
squad that was missing Dwight Howard.
When it comes to placing my sports picks tonight, I'm taking a
first half play and backing the Hawks to build up a nice lead by
PICK: Atlanta Hawks 1H -4.5
Pistons are 3-5 ATS in their last 8 games overall
Hawks are 5-2-1 ATS in their last 8 games overall
Hawks are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 home games
UNDER is 4-0 in Detroit's last 4 road games
OVER is 5-1 in Atlanta's last 6 games overall
Pistons are 5-2-1 ATS in the last 8 head-to-head meetings