There are just four NBA games schedule for Sunday, but here is still plenty of betting value out there. Our NBA analysts Andrew O’Connor-Watts and Chris Baker have a pair of bets bets ready for the Cavaliers–Lakers and Wizards–Grizzlies matchups. Check out their picks and analysis below.
NBA Odds & Picks
|Click on a game to skip ahead|
|Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Los Angeles Lakers||3:30 p.m. ET|
|Washington Wizards vs. Memphis Grizzlies||6:10 p.m. ET|
Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Los Angeles Lakers
|Tipoff||3:30 p.m. ET|
|TV||NBA League Pass|
Andrew O’Connor-Watts: I’ve been all aboard the Lakers fade train this season and have been pretty heavy on the Cavs, but I’m going with the Lakers today.
Cavaliers guards Donovan Mitchell and Darius Garland are still questionable after sitting out Friday night’s win against the Pistons. But even if the two guards play, I like LeBron James, Anthony Davis and the Lake Show to cover the +4.5.
Despite the Lakers’ historically bad shooting to start the season, they have the seventh-ranked Offensive Rating in the last three games (114.8). And while their defense has dropped in that span, they still have a positive Net Rating (+0.4).
They’ve also kept their Turnover Rate low (12.2%), something they’ve been successful at all season, but in the last two games, only the Toronto Raptors (11.9%) have a lower Turnover Rate.
The Cavs have been one of the best ATS teams so far this season at 7-1, but the Lakers have dominated the historical matchup between the two teams since James has joined the Lakers.
The Lakers have won/covered seven of the last 10 meetings and are 5-1 ATS in their last six meetings in Los Angeles.
Washington Wizards vs. Memphis Grizzlies
|Pick||Wizards +9.5 (-107)|
|Tipoff||6:10 p.m. ET|
|TV||NBA League Pass|
Chris Baker: I’m not a big believer in this Wizards team this season, but I think this number is a bit too high. The Wizards currently rank 23rd in Adjusted Net Rating, and the Grizzlies are 11th and have been particularly explosive on offense, where they rank fifth in Adjusted Offensive Rating, per dunksandthrees.com.
Bradley Beal will be out for this one, but that should help the Wizards defense that ranks 17th in Defensive Rating despite playing the second-most difficult schedule of opposing offenses this year. This defense is a solid unit, and they match up very well with the Grizzlies.
The two keys for beating the Grizzlies over the past few seasons have been defensive rebounding and transition defense. Memphis has an Offensive Rebound Rate of 34.2%, which leads the NBA. The Wizards defense has done a great job of blocking out and limiting second chances as they rank second in Defensive Rebound Rate. I expect the Wizards to limit Steven Adams on the glass.
The Wizards’ transition defense has also been solid as they rank fifth in preventing transition opportunities. Forcing Memphis to play in the halfcourt will be imperative.
Finally, one of the biggest keys for stopping the Grizzlies is defending Ja Morant. The Wizards don’t have particularly elite guard defenders, but they have done a great job of protecting the rim as they lead the NBA in allowing just 28.2% of opponent shots to be taken at the rim.
If the defense is clicking for the Wizards, they have enough offensive firepower to keep it close against a Grizzlies team that ranks 21st in points per 100 possessions allowed (114.8). Trust the Wizards to compete on Sunday night.