NBA Picks: Thunder vs. Jazz

Jeff Grant

Tuesday, February 12, 2013 2:02 PM GMT

Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013 2:02 PM GMT

The Oklahoma City Thunder may get caught looking ahead to their final game before the All-Star break Tuesday night, as they prepare to take on the Utah Jazz at Energy Solutions Arena.


Let’s take a closer look at the NBA odds for this non-conference matchup that tips off at 9:00 p.m. ET in Salt Lake City.

Thunder roll

Oklahoma City has won four games in a row, including a 97-69 blowout victory over the Phoenix Suns as 8.5-point road favorites, while going UNDER the posted total of 205. The Thunder have gotten after it on the defensive end during their current win streak, as they’ve allowed just 88.5 points per game.

The franchise is 5-0 straight up and against the spread (ATS) after allowing 85 points or less this season.

In a funk

Utah has dropped back-to-back decisions for the first time since a three-game win streak from Dec. 26-30, as it looks to bounce back from a 120-109 setback to the Sacramento Kings as one-point road underdogs last Saturday. 

The Jazz are 12-20-1 ATS in the month of February the last two-plus seasons, with the UNDER going 19-13-1 in that particular situation.

Looking ahead

NBA handicappers may have an interest in fading the Thunder as a road favorite in this spot, as last year’s Western Conference champions may get caught looking ahead to their second meeting of the season with the Miami Heat. 

Oklahoma City suffered a 103-97 setback to the defending NBA champions as 2.5-point road underdogs on Christmas Day, which also provided the franchise its only losing streak of the 2012-13 campaign.

Home-court advantage 

Utah has covered the NBA betting lines in all four of its tries as home underdogs this year, while the OVER is 3-1 in that situation. The Jazz have also compiled a solid 10-4 ATS record at home when facing a foe with a winning road record, which is certainly the case with the Thunder being 16-9 away from Chesapeake Energy Arena.

[gameodds]5/218269/43/us[/gameodds]

Prediction

I’m going to recommend that readers play the total as one of their NBA picks Tuesday night, as the UNDER is 10-4 in the Thunder’s last 14 road games versus a team with a winning home record, while the last five games in this series have fallen short of the number.

NBA Pick: Under 200.5 at Pinnacle
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