Spurs & Raptors to Get ‘Over’ Modest Total is the NBA Pick

LT Profits Sports Group

Wednesday, December 9, 2015 6:12 PM GMT

Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2015 6:12 PM GMT

With the unbeaten Warriors in the national limelight, the San Antonio Spurs have managed to go 18-4 with very little fanfare, and with a clicking offense expect an ‘over’ in Toronto.

 

The team with the second best record in the NBA is scoring in bunches as of late, so look for an ‘over’ north of the border Wednesday night when those San Antonio Spurs (18-4, 14-8 ATS) pay a visit to the Toronto Raptors (13-9, 14-8 ATS) at Air Canada Centre in Toronto, ON Canada at 7:35 ET.

The posted total at Pinnacle is 190 for this contest with the NBA odds on the ‘over’ set at -105.

 

Not Much Fanfare
The entire nation is currently focused on the undefeated start of the Golden State Warriors, and rightfully so, but that has allowed the Spurs to go 18-4 while posting the second best record in the league with hardly any fanfare. San Antonio was the third choice on the NBA Futures to win the championship this year prior to the season behind the Warriors and Cavaliers, and the Spurs have done absolutely nothing to squelch that optimism.

Meanwhile the Raptors are trying to three-peat as Atlantic Division Champions, and while they do lead the division again, they only hold a precarious one-half game lead over the second place Boston Celtics after being the winning NBA picks 102-93 over the Los Angeles Lakers on Monday, as Toronto managed to avoid a letdown after battling those Warriors to just a 112-109 defeat on Saturday.

 

Duncan and Ginobili Expected Back
The Spurs lost their November finale to the Bulls in Chicago, but they are perfect so far this calendar month going 4-0 in December, most recently taking care of business vs. the worst team in the NBA by 51 points in a 119-68 annihilation of the Philadelphia 76ers Monday. While that win was obviously unexpected, the margin of victory might not have been on the road with the Spurs playing without Kawhi Leonard, Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili.

Duncan and Ginobili were simply given routine nights of rest and thus are both good to go for tonight, but Leonard missed that contest due an illness that very well could have been food poisoning. The latest word is positive though as Leonard has been upgraded to probable, so San Antonio should be at full strength here.

While the Spurs rank 19th in the league with their 100.2 points per game, they are second in overall field goal percentage at 47.6 percent and seventh in three-point shooting at 36.6 percent. Additionally, they have improved their scoring to 106.3 points per game during December while shooting a blistering 51.1 percent from the field, which ranks second this calendar month behind only those Warriors at 51.8 percent, and their three-point percentage this month is up to 38.8!

 

Toronto Best Defender Carroll Out
The Raptors may have won the Atlantic the last two years, but they also lost in the first round of the NBA Playoffs each season including getting swept by Washington last year. Scoring has not been a problem for the Raps, but they made a concerted effort to improve their defense during the off-season by signing a premier defender in DeMarre Carroll away from the Atlanta Hawks in free agency.

That move has paid off with the Toronto defense now ranked fourth in the league in points against at 96.9 per game and seventh in field goal percentage allowed at 42.8 percent. However, Carroll injured his knee vs. the Warriors Saturday and is now out indefinitely, so expect the Raptors to revert back to the style of the team that won the last two division titles by running a bit more in this contest.

The Raptors are 18th in the league in scoring just ahead of the Spurs with their 100.7 points per game, but remember that they have slowed their tempo this season to the point where they are only 25th in the league in pace rating grading out at 96.5 possession per contest. Toronto is actually fifth in offensive efficiency, so a faster pace while Carroll is out should result in an uptick in scoring.

 

An ‘over’ Series
Finally, the offenses have usually won out in recent meetings between these clubs with the ‘over’ going 6-2 in the last eight head-to-head matchups overall and 4-1 in the last five meetings in Toronto. The ‘over’ is also 4-1 in the Raptors’ last five home games, as well as 5-1 in the Spurs’ last six games after allowing less than 75 points in their previous game.

With Carroll’s absence weakening the Raptors defense and probably forcing them to run more, expect those patterns to continue with San Antonio and Toronto going ‘over’ this fairly modest posted total up in Canada on Wednesday.

NBA Pick: Over 189 at Heritage

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