NBA Picks Pacers vs. Hawks +5

Jeff Grant

Wednesday, January 8, 2014 2:31 PM GMT

The Indiana Pacers haven’t had much success during the regular season at Philips Arena, as they prepare to take on the Atlanta Hawks Wednesday night. Let’s take a closer look at the NBA betting odds for this Eastern Conference matchup.

Down and out in Atlanta

Indiana looks to snap an 11-game regular-season skid in Atlanta, but it has won its last three games overall, including an 86-79 victory over the Toronto Raptors as nine-point home favorites Tuesday.

The Pacers have allowed an average of 105.6 points during their losing streak at this venue, while forward Paul George has scored just 12.4 points a contest in his seven career trips.

It’s still important to point out that the favorite in the NBA odds has covered the number in 21 of the last 27 meetings in this series.

Missing the big man

The Hawks are averaging just 90.0 points on 40.7 percent shooting during their current three-game losing streak, which is a far cry from their season marks of 102.1 and 45.9 in those respective categories.Atlanta has dropped four of six games since losing starting center Al Horford for the rest of the 2013-14 NBA campaign, as it looks to bounce back from a 91-86 setback to the Brooklyn Nets as 1.5-point road underdogs Monday.

Over the last two-plus seasons, the franchise is 4-7 SUATS as home underdogs of 3.5 to 6 points, with the UNDER going 9-2 in that situation.

Covering on the road

NBA handicappers will definitely be interested in laying the points in this affair, considering the Pacers are 11-5 SUATS on the road this season, with no clear edge in terms of the betting total (8-8 Over/Under).

Indiana will need a big performance out of point guard George Hill, who is averaging 16.3 points on 51.1 percent shooting in his last four-regular season games in this rivalry.

Moving the ball around

The Hawks are certainly capable of pulling off an upset, as they pace the league in averaging 25.3 assists per game.

In watching the Pacers over the last week—they’ve really struggled with ball movement and have relied heavily on their defense.

Prediction

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Hawks in their NBA picks, as the Pacers have failed to cover their last two games as a road favorite when playing on zero days rest.

NBA Pick: Atlanta Hawks +5

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