Jordan’s NBA picks record: 30-16
Wednesday, 10:30 p.m. ET (ESPN)
Free NBA Pick: Pelicans ATS
Best Line Offered: BetOnline
The Warriors are only 2-4 ATS this season when coming off a game the night before. After a tough game in Denver, will Golden State have the legs to bounce back and get a cover against this surging Pelicans team?
Pelicans Healthy And Playing Well
The stumbling of the Pelicans over the last month or so is seemingly behind them. New Orleans has won five of its last seven games SU and they have some big wins as well against the Clippers, Grizzlies, and Timberwolves.
This, however, is by far their toughest test in a long while, but since Elfrid Payton has come back for this team, they are looking much more dangerous. Payton may be an afterthought on a team with so much talent, but even though he is the fifth- or sixth-best player on the team, his defense and passing have made this offense start to go again.
Over their last seven games, which is the same amount Payton has played since coming back, New Orleans is averaging 122.6 points. With Payton on the court this season, the Pelicans are averaging 125.2 points per 100 possessions. Without him, their offensive efficiency drops to 116.5.
With Nikola Mirotic back as well, this bench has more depth and potency. The twin towers look of Julius Randle and Anthony Davis is going to be extremely tough for the Warriors to guard, especially coming off a game the night before.
Combined with how well they are playing on offense, this game could become a shootout. The total is rightfully sky high, but the spread is too and I think it’s just high enough for the Pelicans to be a great betting value.
The Sharp Pick
Golden State has not played well ATS this season and they are 10-13 ATS when playing at home and just 8-19 ATS versus the rest of the Western Conference (pending Tuesday’s game against Denver). The Dubs have also gone 0-5 ATS in their last five home games against Western Conference opponents. Considering they are also playing their third game in four nights on Wednesday, the nearly 10 points the Pelicans are taking on the NBA odds board are way too much for this game.
If Payton can slow Stephen Curry, and Davis can offset anything Kevin Durant does, I see this one being a two- or three-possession game at the end. New Orleans did lose by 10 points in their last game against the Warriors in October, but a lot has happened since then. For instance, Payton did not play in that one.
The Warriors have zero rim protection since they lost Damian Jones and they also have no one to guard Davis outside of Draymond Green. That also leaves no one to guard Randle, who is averaging 22.4 points and 8.6 rebounds over the Pelicans’ last seven games.
I expect big games from the Pelicans starters, who if they can play any semblance of defense against this winded team, I could see them hanging around long enough to cover this lofty spread.
Final score prediction: Warriors 121, Pelicans 116