Lakers Cover in NYC Among Trio of Tuesday NBA Picks

Troy Haliburton

Tuesday, December 12, 2017 3:57 PM UTC

Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2017 3:57 PM UTC

Another NBA week is in full swing with a slate of games on the schedule for Tuesday night. SBR capper Troy Haliburton delivers three free picks that will put some extra cash in your pocket.

Nuggets at Pistons

Following the Pistons' hot start, they are have now lost six games in a row and are in the process of trying to get back to their defensive identity that led to so much early-season success. The Pistons defense still ranks top 10 in opponents points per game, with them giving up 107. Detroit has the anchor down low in Andre Drummond, and at least one perimeter defensive stopper in Avery Bradley. What the Pistons don’t have is a defensive stopper who can check small and power forwards.

One of the weakest positions on the court is the small forward position for the Pistons. Stanley Johnson has underperformed, and do not be surprised if Stan Van Gundy elects to go to rookie Luke Kennard at the small forward position. Kennard is a much better shooter than Johnson, shooting a clip of 38% from three-point range, while Johnson only hits 28% of his shots from deep.

The Nuggets started out the season slow and then started playing better ... and then they were severely hit by the injury bug. Denver will be without Nikola Jokic and Paul Millsap in this game, but that has not stopped it from competing. The Nuggets will rely heavily on Will Barton to provide the offensive firepower and for Gary Harris to support him.

The Pistons are favored by seven points against the Nuggets, and that is simply too many points for a team that is struggling to stop people.

Free NBA Pick: Nuggets +7Best Line Offered: BetOnline

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Lakers at Knicks

The Knicks continue to surprise the NBA world as they keep winning games. Kristaps Porzingis is establishing himself as one of the dominant players in the game and certainly making a strong case for an early All-Star bid. The Latvian forward continues to display the versatile talent that the Knicks are more than comfortable with riding to victory. Porzingis is averaging 25 points per game, and even more than just scoring points he is learning the leadership qualities of an NBA superstar and is leading his team by example.

The Lakers may not have gotten off to the magical start that Magic Johnson envisioned when the season started, but their 10-15 record is clearly a marked improvement from the team that won less than 30 games last season.

Lonzo Ball has received all of the attention thus far, but Brandon Ingram and Kyle Kuzma are the young Lakers who are really excelling right now. Ingram and Kuzma are averaging 16.2 and 16.0 points per game, respectively, and are a large part of the reason why the Lakers have been able to compete with teams this season. Combine that with the fact that Brook Lopez is averaging 13.2 points per game and shooting 35% from three as a true center, and the Lakers have the recipe to at least be competitive in the majority of games.

Free NBA Pick: Lakers +3.5Best Line Offered: JustBet

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Wizards at Nets

The Wizards could possibly be getting John Wall back after he has practiced the last 2 days, but because the Wizards have a back-to-back tomorrow night, don’t be surprised it the Wizards hold Wall out one more day. Washington will more than likely have to continue to rely heavily on Bradley Beal and Otto Porter to buoy the Wizards' offensive production in Wall’s absence. Beal has stepped up his game as the lone star in D.C. and has responded to the tune of scoring his career high 51 points last week in a win against the Portland Trail Blazers.

The Nets are in the midst of a makeover, having traded away one of their best players, Trevor Booker, for Jahlil Okafor. The former Duke product will make his Nets debut against the Wizards and there will be a lot of NBA eyes on him, watching to see if he really loves the game or if the Sixers were right in their assessment of him the whole time. Look for Okafor to struggle to defend the pick and roll of Washington and for Marcin Gortat to have a big game breaking down the poor defender that Okafor truly is.

Free NBA Pick: Wizards -4.5Best Line Offered: Pinnacle

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