Knicks +12 Is Our NBA Pick As Cavaliers Won't Cover Large Spread

Jordan Sharp

Wednesday, December 23, 2015 4:43 PM GMT

It’s right before Christmas, and all across the NBA odds boards, the offerings are plentiful! The Knicks and Cavaliers hook up tonight and we are ready to choose our best NBA picks.

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Free NBA Pick: Knicks +12
Best Line Offered: at Bookmaker

 

Trap Game
In popular culture, “trap,” has a whole different meaning than what it means tonight for the Cavaliers, but two days before their marquee Christmas Day battle with the Golden State Warriors, the Cavs have to take care of the Knicks at home. The sportsbooks seem to think this is going to be a blowout game, but are we sure the Cavaliers will be fully engaged against the Knicks tonight, a team that is playing much better as of late?

In their two meetings with one another already this season, the Knicks have covered in both of them, and the spreads were lower in both instances than the +12 you’re getting with the Knicks this evening. Only one of those games was in New York, and if the Cavs take the Knicks lightly again, New York will be able to keep this one a game until the very end.

New York has already been solid this season ATS, and they are still being undervalued, which is a shock to me because a New York team playing even average is usually a big draw to the sportsbooks. New York is 17-12 ATS this season and 10-4 ATS on the road. They are also 6-3 ATS on the road versus the Eastern Conference, and tonight they can once again make a statement and make sure the Cavs starters get no extra rest before Christmas and have to play all four quarters tonight.

 

The Sharp Pick
The spread is simply a point or two too high tonight, and while the Knicks don’t exude much confidence, they are playing better over their last few games, especially ATS. The Knicks are 5-1 ATS in their last six games, and 14-8 ATS in their last 22 overall. Their 14-15 SU record is somewhat misleading to the average bettor, but if you watch them play, now that they have their full complement of players, they are a credible Eastern Conference foe. Carmelo Anthony is at the very least going to make Lebron James’ work on the defensive end, which could limit his offense some, and even though the Cavs do have Kyrie Irving back for this game, he is yet to play more than 17 minutes after making his debut against the Sixers on Sunday.

The Cavs have had a ton of rest since then heading into this game, which is concerning, but the Knicks have only had one day less to rest up before tonight’s game, and either way it all comes back to this spread being too large in the NBA odds board. If the three pointers are falling for the Knicks in this one, they are going to keep it close enough to cover and force James to play the whole game. I don’t expect Irving to play more than 20 minutes, so with that in mind, take the points with the Knickerbockers tonight for your NBA picks.