NBA Picks: Hawks vs. Spurs

Monday, December 2, 2013 1:26 PM UTC

Monday, Dec. 2, 2013 1:26 PM UTC

Are the good times over for the San Antonio Spurs? They’ve dropped two of three against the NBA lines as they prepare to host the Atlanta Hawks on Monday.
<p><i>Jason’s record on his final NBA picks for 2013, up to November 30 inclusive:</i></p> <p><i>13-15 ATS</i></p> <p><i>4-1 Totals</i></p> <p><img id="ctl00_head_ArticleAdministrator_picturePreview_imgSelectedPicture" alt="Image preview" class="imgSelectedPicture article-image" src="/picks-pictures/USATSI_7591373_164908624_lowres.jpg" style="font-size:1em" /><span style="font-size:1em">Three games is a very small sample size. Having said that, the San Antonio Spurs (14-3 SU, 9-8 ATS) have lost two of their last three, and they’re not getting to the pay window consistently this year despite winning all those basketball games. Could the Spurs be… overvalued? Surely not our beloved, boring, sleepy small-market Spurs.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size:1em">Well, how about a 100-game sample? San Antonio went 58-24 SU and 39-41-2 ATS during the 2012-13 regular season, before coming within 5.2 seconds of winning the NBA championship. If the Spurs can <a href="/betting-odds/nba-basketball/" title="Check out our live NBA odds available for all games." target="_blank">beat the NBA odds</a> on Monday against the Atlanta Hawks (9-9 SU, 10-8 ATS), that payday will leave them dead even against the NBA lines over their past 100 games. San Antonio is an 11-point home chalk on the very early lines from Vegas.</span></p> <p><b style="font-size:1em">Hayride to Hell</b></p> <p><span style="font-size:1em">Veterans of the NBA betting game know what I’m talking about. In recent years, San Antonio has been racking up big profits for anyone who prefers cash over flash:</span></p> <p><b style="font-size:1em">2011-12:</b><span style="font-size:1em"> 42-20-4 ATS</span></p> <p><b>2010-11:</b> 44-36-2 ATS</p> <p><b>2009-10:</b> 44-37-1 ATS</p> <p><span style="font-size:1em">That all came to a grinding halt last year. Perhaps in this age of blanket information, people are no longer surprised at how the Spurs keep defying Father Time. Market expectations are no longer being exceeded. If that’s indeed that case, then there’s only one direction for this hayride to go.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size:1em">Tim Duncan certainly isn’t getting any younger. As I </span><a href="/nba-basketball/free-picks/nba-picks-san-antonio-spurs-vs-orlando-magic-a-35358/" style="font-size:1em" title="Check out our preview from this game." target="_blank">pointed out</a><span style="font-size:1em"> last week when San Antonio faced the Orlando Magic, Duncan (17.4 PER) is putting up the worst numbers of his stellar 17-year career. They’re still very good numbers, and they were enough against the possibly-tanking Magic; Duncan had 19 points and nine rebounds in 23 minutes as San Antonio (–9 away) prevailed 109-91. But will it be enough against a non-tanking opponent?</span></p> <p style="text-align:center"><i><a href="/nba-basketball/" title="Free NBA Picks" target="_blank">Free NBA Picks courtesy of SBR</a></i></p> <p style="text-align:center"><i><a href="" title="Free sportsbook reviews, find the best sportsbook for you." target="_blank">Check out our sportsbook reviews</a></i></p> <p><b style="font-size:1em">Dikembe Was Here</b></p> <p><span style="font-size:1em">Speaking of small-market teams that nobody likes to watch, <a href="/nba-basketball/free-picks/nba-picks-magic-vs-hawks-a-35281/" title="See our coverage of one of their most recent games." target="_blank">the Atlanta Hawks</a>. They’ve made the playoffs the last six years, so we’re a long way from those awful post-Dikembe Mutombo clubs that drew approximately zero people to Philips Arena (okay, 15,000). But the fans are starting to come dressed as empty seats again, now that Josh “J-Smoove” Smith is playing for the Detroit Pistons.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size:1em">That’s a shame, because the Hawks have quietly put together a very nice team. Getting Paul Millsap (19.6 PER) for pennies on the dollar was a masterful move by GM Danny Ferry – who cut his front-office teeth with the Spurs before building up the Cleveland Cavaliers around LeBron James. Then Ferry had another brief tour of duty in San Antonio, only to take the top job with Atlanta in 2012. Front-office stability in Atlanta? Things sure have changed.</span></p> <p><b style="font-size:1em">Hawks and Doves</b></p> <p><span style="font-size:1em">Millsap is exactly the kind of player the Spurs would like: the strong, silent and inexpensive type. He gives up a few inches in height to Duncan, but pair Millsap with two-time All-Star center Al Horford (20.7 PER), and you’ve got a formidable frontcourt. On the perimeter, PG Jeff Teague (18.6 PER) is developing quite nicely, and when healthy, Louis Williams (17.5 career PER) is one of the most undervalued guards in the NBA.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size:1em">Williams sat out the second of back-to-back games on Saturday against the Washington Wizards, but he’s expected back in the lineup on Monday, and the Hawks are 3-2 SU and ATS in his five games off the bench this year. SF Kyle Korver (50 percent from downtown) could also play Monday after missing the Wizards game with bruised ribs. Mmmm… ribs. Where do I sign?</span></p> <p><b style="font-size:1em">NBA Pick:</b><span style="font-size:1em"> Take the Hawks +11 at BetOnline</span></p> <p><span style="font-size:1em">[gameodds]5/248817/?r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]<br /></span></p>
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