The Pelicans travel to Sacramento for a matchup against the Kings. Follow our expert handicapper in this betting preview before you place your NBA picks for tonight's game.
New Orleans Pelicans vs. Sacramento Kings 10:00 ET
At 10:05 ET, the New Orleans Pelicans travel to Sacramento to face the Kings. This is a Western Conference matchup featuring a Sacramento Kings team, who is mired in the 13th spot in the West with a 26-48 SU record, and are currently listed as underdogs on the NBA odds. Their Sleep Train Arena home has again this season made the Kings rather drowsy. Entering tonight, Sacramento is just 16-21 SU, 13-23 ATS on this floor. The motivation for New Orleans is clearly greater. The Pelicans currently hold down the 9th spot in the playoff queue, trailing final qualifier, OKC, by 1 ½ games. In previous meetings this season, New Orleans is 2-1 SU ATS, including a 106-100 victory on this court.
The Kings have been going through an experimental phase, since new HC George Karl took over the team. As a result, they are just 8-14 ATS since the All-Star break. Combined with their dismal performance in the first half of the season, the Kings enter tonight on a negative slide of 16-44 ATS, the biggest money burner in the NBA in that timeframe. They return home from a 3-game road trip that saw them lose to this New Orleans team (102-88), followed by losses at Memphis and Houston. With Karl experimenting with different player combinations, it would appear winning is of low priority. Of greater importance is that tonight the Kings will be without 2 key starters, Rudy Gay (expected to miss yet another game due to concussion symptoms) and Collison (out indefinitely with a hip injury). The Achilles Heel for Sacramento is a defense that allows 104 PPG.
Favoring the Pelicans is that key contributor, Ryan Anderson, has now returned to the hardwood, following a long injury absence. Only Jrue Holiday remains on the injured list. Tyreke Evans has filled in admirably in his absence. The Pels enter with great momentum on a 3-0 SU ATS run with victories over outmanned foes LAL (113-92), Minnesota (110-88) and this Sac team (102-88).
It’s worth the price of admission to watch NBA emerging big men, Davis (for New Orleans) and Cousins (for Sacramento) face off against each other! But, the supporting cast for New Orleans, along with their greater motivation, makes this an easy NBA pick. Knowing that they close the regular season with 5 of 6 games against quality opponents, Portland, Golden St., Phoenix, Houston and San Antonio, makes this contest even more a priority for New Orleans.
NBA Pick: Take New Orleans Pelicans