Even though he legally couldn’t drink an alcoholic beverage in America until just over two weeks ago, Anthony Davis has been tearing up the NBA in his second season, and is quickly becoming one of the most highly touted stars in the league. If the NBA started over from scratch, AD might be the first or second pick off the board.
Tonight they play host to the Clippers, and the NBA Odds have the home team as a +7 underdog, with a total of 207 points. This season started with high hopes for the team in New Orleans, but injury after injury has made them a lottery team again.
Tonight they might also be without Eric Gordon, who has missed the Pels’ last two games. Nothing has been confirmed, but even if Gordon sits again, I still think New Orleans might have some value tonight as +7 underdogs.
Tyreke Evans is playing outstanding, and along with Davis they pose two big matchup problems for the Clippers. Blake Griffin is not a great defender and neither is Deandre Jordan, so AD should have a big night at home. Chris Paul is not going to defend Evans, so it will likely be left up to Matt Barnes and a combination of other guys. None of those options are outstanding against a talent like Evans, who is finally turning the jets on late in the season.
While the Clippers have been good as road favorites this season, the Pelicans are a different team when playing at home, even with all of their players missing. If Gordon plays it would be a big boost against his former team, however I don’t think it would make or break this play.
The Sharp Pick
New Orleans has been great ATS recently, winning their last three in a row, and seven of their last ten games ATS. What makes this trend even more important is that eight of those ten most recent games have come in New Orleans, which is where they play tonight.
The Clippers on the other hand have not been very good ATS in recent games. LA has lost their last three in a row ATS, and they are only 2-6 ATS in their last eight games. They have also not covered a “road” game since that March 6th game against the Lakers where they won by 48 points. Seeing as that wasn’t even a real road game for the Clippers, March 4th is actually the last time they covered a spread on the road.
Don’t discount the Pelicans here by taking a look at their records or trends as home underdogs this season. They have won and covered against some impressive teams recently, including the Heat, Grizzlies and Nets. At home they are a great team, and even though the Clippers are a solid 14-9-1 ATS as road favorites this year, New Orleans has some revenge to get from LA.
On March 1st, the Clippers beat the Pelicans by 32 at the Staples Center, and even though they have nothing left to play for other than to try and keep their draft pick this offseason, I think the Pelicans are a sneaky play for basketball picks tonight as home dogs. The Unibrow alone makes them a formidable opponent for LA.
NBA Pick: Pelicans +7