NBA Picks: Spurs vs. Clippers

Joe Freda

Thursday, February 21, 2013 1:33 PM GMT

Can the Clippers’ momentum pick up where it left off or will the team’s lengthy layoff help the Spurs collect? Let's breakdown tonight's matchup to uncover where the best value lies for our NBA picks.

The Los Angeles Clippers went into the NBA All-Star Break with four straight wins, cashing with a 3-1 spread record. Vinny Del Negro’s club returns home in Thursday’s matchup against the San Antonio Spurs, who are 4-3 in their last seven road contests.

How have the NBA Championship Future Odds changed now that the All-Star Break is behind us?

Clippers, Paul hold off Lakers

The Clippers’ latest triumph came with last Thursday’s 125-101 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers, collecting as four-point favorites. Both squads shot over 50 percent from the field, while the Clippers outrebounded the Lakers, 47-37.

Clippers guard Chris Paul notched a third straight double-double, finishing with 24 points and 13 assists. Paul’s mates Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan united for 22 boards, while veteran Chauncey Billiups logged four of his side’s nine steals.

The battle’s 226 points soared above the ‘total’ of 201, giving my followers a cashed ticket with the OVER. Paul and Billups combined to drill 8-of-15 buckets from three-point land, while sinking 7-of-7 free throws.

Spurs, Parker edge out Kings

San Antonio returned to action with Tuesday’s 108-102 win over the Sacramento Kings, while falling short of cashing as a nine-point road favorite. The Spurs held Sacramento to 37 percent field shooting, while outscoring the Kings in paint points, 44-38.

Spurs guard Tony Parker piled in 30 points en route to 11 assists for his second double-double in three games. San Antonio’s Tim Duncan notched 14 rebounds and four blocks, while held to nine points as part of a 3-for-8 night from the field.

The duel’s combined 210 points ‘pushed’ the closing ‘total,’ making the OVER 3-1-1 in the Spurs’ last five contests. San Antonio sank 28-of-35 free throws, while edging the Kings in boards, 46-44.

Back the Spurs as road dogs

NBA odds makers have opened the Clippers as three-point home favorites, while first setting the ‘total’ at 200. San Antonio is playing the front end of a back-to-back spot, heading north for Friday’s card against the Golden State Warriors. The Clippers will be off for one day, remaining at Staples Center for Saturday’s duel with the Utah Jazz.

I am adding a play on San Antonio to my NBA picks in this spot, looking to collect in a rare spot for Gregg Popovich’s club as an underdog. The Spurs have had this matchup circled after two defeats to the Clippers back in November, held to 85.5 PPG.

San Antonio has notched 106.3 PPG in its last seven road games, while going 4-1 ATS in its last five road spots against clubs with winning home records. Parker’s latest efforts have moved the veteran to sixth in the Western Conference for scoring (21 PPG), while Duncan ranks second in blocks (2.8 BPG).

The Clippers went into the All-Star Break with some steam, but are just 1-5 ATS in their last six games with their home jerseys donned. Paul and Co. were held to 98.2 PPG in the last four matchups of that span.

Look for San Antonio to tighten up in this Western Conference showdown, adding another cashed ticket to its 3-0-1 ATS mark in the last four spots that followed giving up 100 or more points.

NBA Pick:  San Antonio Spurs +3 (5Dimes.eu)