We’ve got 13 games on Wednesday’s slate. Some of these teams will be better NBA picks than others. Let’s grab the three juiciest teams we can find, starting with the Indiana Pacers.
Jason’s record as of Mar. 3: 41-37-4 ATS, 3-6 Totals
It’s always nice to have options. This past Saturday, we had the luxury of scouring the NBA odds board and picking three underdogs. And like the song says, two out of three is highly profitable. Or something like that. We’ve got even more options for Wednesday’s 3-pack; there are 13 games from which to choose, and we’re not limited to underdogs this time. Surely we can make it a clean sweep. What’s 53 percent cubed? 159 percent, right?
New York Knicks vs. Indiana Pacers (7:00 p.m. ET, MSG)
Forgive us for sounding like a broken record, but the Pacers (25-34 SU, 32-24-3 ATS) are now 10-5 SU and 11-4 ATS since George Hill (20.4) returned to the lineup. Hill wove his magic again Sunday night against the Philadelphia 76ers (+11 away), scoring 17 points with four assists, nine rebounds (!) and a pair of steals in a 94-74 victory. We’re lovin’ it.
The Knicks (12-47 SU, 23-34-2 ATS) wrapped up February with a pair of upset wins over the Detroit Pistons (–13 at home) and the Toronto Raptors (–11 away). Then they got hammered 124-86 by the Sacramento Kings (–4.5 away) on Tuesday. As if losing Carmelo Anthony (21.7 PER) and Amar’e Stoudemire (19.7 PER) weren’t bad enough, Jose Calderon (11.4 PER) hurt his left Achilles last week and is out for at least the next two weeks. Tanks for the memories.
Free NBA Pick: Take the Pacers at BookMaker
Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Toronto Raptors (7:30 p.m. ET)
Speaking of injuries, the Cavaliers (38-24 SU, 30-32 ATS) were back at close to full strength Tuesday, and they got right back in the win column with an impressive 110—79 evisceration of the Boston Celtics (+11 away). LeBron James (25.8 PER) is working his way back into MVP consideration; he torched the C’s for 27 points, while Kyrie Irving (21.0 PER) added another 18. Not including the two games Irving missed with a sore shoulder, Cleveland is 5-0 SU and ATS since the All-Star break.
We’re not sure if the Raptors (38-22 SU, 28-31-1 ATS) are going to give Kyle Lowry (19.4 PER) another day off against the Cavs. He’s missed two games already, ostensibly to heal up assorted injuries after slumping badly the past couple of months, but now we’re hearing he might also have an infection in his right hand. Greivis Vasquez (13.3 PER) is not an improvement over Lowry, slump or no slump. We can’t just add the UNDER as our NBA pick if Lowry isn’t involved, so let’s go with the hot hand.
Free NBA Pick: Take the Cavaliers
Philadelphia 76ers vs. Oklahoma City Thunder (8:00 p.m. ET)
We had a lot of praise for the 76ers (13-47 SU, 29-29-2 ATS) and their masterful tank job going into that Pacers matchup, but we had to go with Indiana. Now the Sixers are 1-6 SU and 2-4-1 ATS since the All-Star break; whatever flaws Michael Carter-Williams (12.9 PER) had as a point guard in Philly, he was a step above Isaiah Canaan (8.4 PER), especially on defense. The other healthy option is Ish Smith (11.8 PER). Great horny toads.
We’re not sure who’s going to be available to play for the Thunder (33-27 SU, 30-28-2 ATS) on Wednesday, but even if Kevin Durant (27.8 PER) and/or Russell Westbrook (29.3 PER) don’t suit up, this team is so much better than it was before the trade deadline. Thanks in large part to Enes Kanter (22.6 PER in five games) and the rise of Mitch McGary (19.5 PER), Oklahoma City is 5-2 SU and 6-1 ATS since the break. More, please.
Free NBA Pick: Take the Thunder