NBA Picks: Kings vs. Suns

Joe Freda

Thursday, March 28, 2013 2:42 PM GMT

The Sacramento Kings have seen the UNDER cash at 4-0 in their last four road matchups, held to 96.2 PPG. Will the octane pick up for the Kings in Phoenix, or will the Suns tighten up for UNDER backers?

Keith Smart’s squad heads south for Thursday’s matchup with the Phoenix Suns, who have given up 49.7 percent field shooting in their last pair of home dates.

Kings, Thomas hold off Golden State

Sacramento drained 11-of-28 buckets from three-point land in Wednesday’s 105-98 win over the Golden State Warriors, logging an upset as a nine-point road dog. The Kings prevailed despite being sizably outscored in paint points, 68-38, leading by as many as 13 points.

Kings guard Isaiah Thomas piled in 31 points, while notching seven of his squad’s 21 assists. Sacramento’s Jason Thompson and Patrick Patterson grabbed nine boards each, while big man DeMarcus Cousins registered two steals.

The contest’s combined 203 points dipped beneath the NBA odds ‘total’ of 203 ½, with the Kings hitting a sparse 12-of-21 free throws. Sacramento’s Marcus Thornton hit 6-of-13 floor shots off the bench, finishing with 13 points.

Suns, Scola slide in Salt Lake

Phoenix logged its eighth loss in nine games with Wednesday’s 103-88 setback as a 13 ½-point road dog against the Utah Jazz. The Suns allowed 51.8 percent field shooting, while being outrebounded by Utah, 46-36.

Suns forward Luis Scola came away with 20 points and seven boards, while mate Kendall Marshall notched a season-high 13 assists. Phoenix’ Wesley Johnson and Markieff Morris united for five steals, with Morris adding two of his squad’s four blocks.

The matchup’s combined 191 points dipped below the ‘total’ of 194 ½, with the Suns outscored in paint points, 56-32. Johnson went on to finish with 22 points in 40 minutes of action, connecting 8-of-16 shots from the floor.

Check out our Preview of Thursday's NBA betting lines and odds right here!

[gameodds]5/222997/139-1593-19-999996/us[/gameodds]

Back the OVER in Phoenix

Bookmaker.eu opened Sacramento as a 1 ½-point road favorite, with initially mixed betting leaving the number unchanged. The ‘total’ was first posted at 204, quickly rising to 206 ½ after early OVER wagers.

I am tailing the early ‘steam’ here, adding a ticket on the OVER as part of Thursday’s sports picks.

The OVER is 7-3 in the Kings’ last 10 spots away from home against rivals with losing home records, with the trend looking to stay intact here. Phoenix has allowed its foes to drain a sizable 39.5 percent of their shots from three-point land, while Sacramento has given up 47.5 percent field shooting on the road.

The foes played a high-octane affair in Sacramento, earlier this month, with the Kings coming out on top, 121-112, in an easy cashed ticket for OVER backers. Thomas and Evans came away with a combined 52 points for the Kings, while Johnson and Morris united to hit 12-of-24 floor buckets. 

Thursday’s rematch should again have these rivals running and gunning, particularly with both coming in on no rest. Sacramento’s last five spots on the second night of a back-to-back saw the OVER collect at a 4-1 clip, while Phoenix has seen the OVER cash at 4-0 in its last four battles with the same situation.

NBA Pick: OVER 206 ½ (Bookmaker.eu)