Sunday 11/23: NBA Picks, Odds & Preview

David Lawrence

Sunday, November 23, 2014 12:12 PM UTC

Sunday, Nov. 23, 2014 12:12 PM UTC

Sunday is a quiet day in the NBA with just five games on the map. We’ve rounded up our NBA picks for three of this games, so read on for our rundown of the card.

Portland Trail Blazers vs. Boston Celtics

NBA Odds: Trail Blazers -5

The Boston Celtics started the season 3-1, and everything seemed to be looking up for second-year head coach Brad Stevens, who was making very good use of point guard Rajon Rondo, who recuperated well from injury and managed to give life to the Celtics’ offense, which had been moribund last season. Boston’s offense has been a top-10 offense in the NBA for the first few weeks of the season. However, the Celtics have had big problems defending their opponents. Boston’s offense is fourth in the league, but the defense is 28th, getting carved up all too often by offenses good and not so good. The Memphis Grizzlies, with one of the worst offenses in the NBA, scored 117 points against Boston on Friday night, underscoring the extent to which the Celtics have been struggling on defense. Boston is 3-7 in its last 10 games. Meanwhile, Portland has the sixth-best offense in the league… and the sixth-best defense as well. The Blazers are 9-3 overall and 8-2 in their last 10. This is a matchup of two great offenses… and two very different defenses. Take Portland with your NBA picks.

Free NBA Pick: Portland -5

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Golden State Warriors vs. Oklahoma City Thunder

NBA Odds: Warriors -8

Before the season, this looked like a featured game on the schedule. There are also reports that Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant are getting better, but they are not fully recovered yet. They will not be able to play in this game. As long as that’s the case, the Thunder are in big trouble. Oklahoma City is last in the Western Conference, falling to 3-11 after a loss to Brooklyn this past Friday. The Thunder have established a pattern in which they start fast, but then fade in the second half, as their lack of depth catches up with them. It’s too much of a grind for this limited a roster right now, and that’s why the Thunder are 2-8 in their last 10 games. Golden State is 9-2 on the season and has been every bit as good as management hoped it would be under new head coach Steve Kerr. You don’t need advanced stats here. As long as Durant and Westbrook are absent, this is Golden State’s game to lose.

Free NBA Pick: Golden State -8 at BetOnline

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Denver Nuggets vs. Los Angeles Lakers

NBA Odds: Nuggets -2

This is a very interesting game. You have seen both teams do good things last week. The Lakers won consecutive games at Atlanta and Houston. Denver won at Cleveland and then at home versus Oklahoma City and New Orleans. Both teams are improving, but NBA odds for this game are on the Lakers’ home floor. Denver will no longer enjoy the altitude advantage it has at home. Give a very slight edge to the Lakers here.

Free NBA Pick: Lakers +2 

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