NBA Picks: Raptors vs. Knicks

Jordan Sharp

Saturday, March 23, 2013 2:50 PM UTC

Saturday, Mar. 23, 2013 2:50 PM UTC

Here we are once again, folks. The Raptors and the Knicks are squaring off in the second game of a home and home. Last night the Knicks were only slight favorites, and fading them didn’t work out for bettors, me included.

NBA Picks: Raptors vs. Knicks

Tonight, the spread is a big time -6.5 in favor of the Knicks at home on Bookmakers NBA odds board, with a total creeping in around 191 points. There is reason for the big shift from just last night, and it has to do with the Raptors’ star forward who will not play this evening.

Life with no Gay

If it wasn’t enough that they have to face Carmelo Anthony on consecutive evenings, the Raptors will be without their only likely candidate to counter him…Rudy Gay. Gay did not make the trip down to New York after his back got hurt in last night’s game, killing any chance to them getting the win.

On the road tonight, it will likely be more of the same for the Raptors. While they still have multiple options at their disposal when it comes to scoring, I doubt they will be able to match the Knicks at home here tonight.

The Knicks are averaging about 102 points per game at home this season, and combine that with the Raptors giving up over 103 points per game on the road, well you see where I’m getting at.

Knicks home stretch

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, this is the only team in the East that has a chance at upsetting Miami in a seven game series. If they are healthy and hitting shots, this teams can go anywhere. However when they do go anywhere, if they don’t bring along their defense it is going to be a short trip.

The Knicks are incredible this season when holding opponents to under 90 points. In games where their opponents are held to under 90 points, the Knicks are 15-2 SU on the season. The problem is, a lot of those wins came early in the season.

The Knicks have to get back their defensive intensity in order to be as good as they can be. New York is giving up an average of 94.7 points per game at home this season, and that number will have to get better if they want to excel in the Eastern Conference, a conference with plenty of defensive minded teams in it.


The Sharp Pick

I’m not making the same mistake I did last night, so lay the six points with New York for this NBA pick if you haven’t already. Although they haven’t had much success covering against the Raptors (3-6 ATS in their last nine meetings) without Gay tonight, I doubt the Raptors score more that 90 points. The Raptors are already only 4-8-1 ATS against their division this season, and I expect Anthony and company to make that record a bit worse. New York is 9-4 SU in their last 13 home games, and I think they will be able to cover only six or seven points this evening.

My Pick: Knicks -6 @ Bodog

Check out the other side of New York, when Brooklyn goes to LA to face the Clippers~
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