Best Bets Today: Top Picks, Predictions from Thursday's Sports Slate
We've shopped the odds and lines at our best sportsbooks in search of today's best bets for Thursday, March 5. Our top picks include offerings from the NBA, NHL, World Baseball Classic, and college basketball conference tournament action.
It's a jam-packed night of sports, with a couple of marquee NBA games, a full slate of NHL action, college basketball conference tournament play, and the debut of a few more teams in the World Baseball Classic.
Read on for today's best bets for Thursday, March 5, based on the odds from our best sportsbooks.
Thursday's best bets
- College basketball: TCU ML vs. Kansas State (-130 via DraftKings) ⭐⭐⭐
- NBA: Warriors -3.5 (+120 via DraftKings) vs. Grizzlies ⭐⭐⭐⭐
- NHL: Kraken (-130 via Caesars) vs. Senators ⭐⭐⭐⭐
- WBC: Czech Republic ML (-110 via DraftKings) vs. China ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Thursday's college basketball best bet
TCU ML vs. Kansas State (-130 via DraftKings) ⭐⭐⭐
Kansas State's Jerome Tang deserves plenty of Coach of the Year votes, taking a team that was projected to finish dead-last in the Big 12 to 23 wins and an 11-7 league record. However, the worrisome thing about the Wildcats entering postseason play is their inability to consistently win away from Bramlage Coliseum, as their only road win since Jan. 14 was against an Oklahoma State team that tied for the second-fewest home wins in the conference.
TCU has won three of five games since getting leading scorer Mike Miles Jr. back healthy. We expect the Horned Frogs to feast on a Kansas State defense that allows the highest percentage of offensive rebounds in Big 12 play (31.5%) and ranks in the bottom half of the league in 2-point shooting percentage allowed (51.3%). In contrast, TCU ranks fifth and first in those categories, respectively.
College basketball best bets made by Mike Spector.
Check out all of our top college basketball picks, as well as our 2023 March Madness odds and 2023 Wooden Award odds.
Thursday's NBA best bet
Warriors -3.5 (+120) ⭐⭐⭐⭐
There's no reason to sugarcoat it: Golden State has been bad on the road in 2022. The team is 6-25 straight up as the visitor and 4-10 as the road favorite. Since Curry returned to the lineup following an extended injury layoff, the Dubs have suffered an eight-point loss and a nine-point defeat to the Thunder.
Despite those stumbles, Golden State is now squarely in the playoff picture after five straight home wins prior to the team's current road trip. The Warriors now need a victory to stay in contention and maintain their No. 5 seed.
The Grizzlies should be even more desperate for a win. Memphis has fallen behind the Sacramento Kings and into the No. 3 seed after losing three straight, and the Suns are just two games back.
The Grizz have been stellar at home, and Golden State has been struggling on the road, but we can’t rely on trends only. The Warriors are nearly at full strength, while Memphis is missing its star, a key starter, and a critical reserve.
We’re fully expecting Steph (who went off for 40 points against the Thunder) and Co. to handle their business and deliver a road triumph. The line is just 2.5 at all of our featured books, but we can sell one measly point to bring our odds from -105 or -110 to a juicy +120.
Warriors vs. Grizzlies picks made by Zachary Hanshew
Check out all of our NBA best bets, and our 2023 NBA Finals odds and 2023 NBA MVP odds.
Thursday's NHL best bet
Kraken (-130 via Caesars) ⭐⭐⭐⭐
The Senators might be a desperate team pushing for a playoff spot, but desperation alone isn't going to help them against a stout Seattle offense.
The Kraken are riding a five-game winning streak and rank fifth in the NHL with 3.49 goals per 60 minutes. They don't have a lot of star power, but the balance is impressive: Led by Jared McCann and his 31 goals, Seattle has 13 players with double-digit tallies. Ottawa has just seven.
The Senators looked formidable in putting together a five-game winning streak during which they outscored the opposition, 27-10, but came crashing back to earth in a 5-0 loss to Chicago on Monday to kick off a five-game road swing. Rookie goaltender Mads Sogaard surrendered five goals on just 21 shots in the loss.
With Cam Talbot and Anton Forsberg injured, the Sens will need Sogaard to bounce back, but this is not a favorable matchup at all.
Caesars has the best price for the Kraken on the moneyline at -130, just ahead of PointsBet (-131), FanDuel (-134) and BetMGM (-135). DraftKings is the priciest option at -140.
NHL Best Bets made by Scott Cullen
Check out all of our NHL best bets.
Thursday's WBC best bet
Czech Republic ML vs. China (-110 via DraftKings) ⭐⭐⭐⭐
China is coming off a shellacking against Japan this morning in which they lost 8-1 to the Pool B favorites. They have to dust themselves off and pick themselves back up to take on the Czech Republic.
Neither team has too many recognizable names, with second baseman Eric Sogard perhaps being the biggest on the Czech side. Nevertheless, that’s the side to bet in this one.
We’re getting great value on DraftKings at -110 as the Czech Republic is as high as -120 (BetMGM), -128 (FanDuel), and -130 (PointsBet).
WBC Best Bets made by Ryan Gilbert
Check out our best betting sites:
- FanDuel: No Sweat First Bet up to $1,000 | Read our FanDuel Review
- Caesars: Earn Up to a $1,250 Bet Credit | Read our Caesars Review
- DraftKings: Bet $5, Get $200 in Bonus Bets | Read our DraftKings Review
- PointsBet: Earn Five Second-Chance Bets Up to $50 Each | Read our PointsBet Review
- BetMGM: Get a Bonus Bet Up to $1,000 | Read our BetMGM Review
(21+. Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER)
* Bonuses not applicable in Ontario.
- Best Online Sportsbooks | Best Sportsbook Promos (U.S. only)