NBA Picks of the Day: Top Total Plays from Sunday's Odds

Matthew Jordan

Sunday, March 15, 2015 11:43 AM GMT

How about a little NBA betting action on Sunday before and after one of the biggest days of college basketball season: Selection Sunday. Here's a look at three game totals from NBA odds that I feel confident in.

Cavaliers vs. Magic (201.5 at sportsbooks)
The best NBA pick here isn't about the spread, which opened as Cleveland -10.5, but I wouldn't be surprised whatsoever if the Cavs not only don't cover but perhaps lose outright. There is no possible way that they aren't a tad flat after Thursday's incredible 128-125 overtime victory in San Antonio in a possible NBA Finals preview -- plus the Cavs have to play in Miami on Monday in LeBron James' second trip back there this season. That Cavs-Spurs game was easily the best game of this NBA season. Regular-season games generally don't matter but that had a Finals feel to it. It will be interesting to see what Kyrie Irving has left in the tank after scoring a career, franchise and NBA season-high 57 points on Thursday, including hitting the game-tying 3-pointer at the end of regulation. He scored the most points in a game by a LeBron teammate ever and the most in a game against a Gregg Popovich-coached team. It was awesome, and I don't even like the Cavs. Irving also became the first player with multiple 55-point games in a season since Kobe Bryant had three for the 2006-07 Lakers. Orlando is not a good offensive team and comes off a 95-88 loss in Boston on Friday. The Magic are 0-2 vs. Cleveland this year and haven't topped 89 points. So while the Cavs are a dynamic offensive team, clearly the sportsbooks don't trust Orlando to score much here.

NBA Free Pick: 'Under' 201.5 points. I think the Cavs go through the motions in this one. The 'under' is 10-2 in Cleveland's past 12 on the road vs. teams with a losing home record. The 'under' is 7-2 in Orlando's past nine after a loss.

 

Trail Blazers vs, Raptors (203 on NBA odds)
Portland seems to have gotten over the season-ending injury to Wesley Matthews. The Blazers lost their first game post-injury but have since beaten Houston and Detroit, although those were both in the Pacific Northwest. This starts a five-game road trip. Friday's 118-99 blowout of the Pistons improved the Blazers to 20-6 against the Eastern Conference this season. Arron Afflalo has been starting for Matthews and has been so-so. Toronto ended a four-game skid with Friday's 102-92 home win over Miami. That ended a 16-game losing streak in the series. Toronto came in having lost nine of 10. It's thought that starting Raptors center Jonas Valanciunas will return for this game after missing the Miami matchup one day after his wife gave birth to the couple's first child. The Trail Blazers have defeated the Raptors in 11 of the past 12 meetings. Portland won 102-97 in OT at home on Dec. 30.

NBA Free Pick: 'Over' 203 points. It has hit in six of the Blazers' past eight against teams with a winning record. It is 10-4 in Toronto's past 14 against teams with a winning record.

 

Hawks vs. Lakers (197.5 in NBA betting)
It's the Eastern Conference's best team against the second-worst in the West. Rather surprised the spread on this is only 8.5 points -- Hawks still don't get much respect. But they also have little to play for the rest of the season with the top seed in the East all but wrapped up. Atlanta has started a six-game road trip through the West at 1-1, following a 115-102 upset loss in Denver on Wednesday with a 96-87 victory in Phoenix on Friday. Atlanta was down eight points entering the fourth. The Lakers lost in the Toilet Bowl at home against the Knicks, 101-94 on Thursday in a rare game in which L.A. was favored by NBA odds. It might not be again this season. Atlanta actually lost 114-109 at home to the Lakers on Nov. 18, but that was back before the Hawks took off. Kobe Bryant was still around then and had 28 points.

NBA Free Pick: 'Under' 199 at the Greek. It has hit in five of Atlanta's past six on the road. It is 4-1 in L.A.'s past five games.