Suns vs. Hawks Odds
|Time||7:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.|
Can Devin Booker and the Suns keep it rolling as a road favorite? Let’s break it down.
Elite Suns Look to Stay Hot
The Suns will continue to miss Landry Shamet (ankle), but both Jae Crowder (wrist) and Deandre Ayton (ankle) are listed as probable after playing against the Nets on Tuesday night.
The Suns have been incredible on the season with the second-best Adjusted Net Rating (+7.6), then the third-best Adjusted Offensive Rating (113.5) and Adjusted Defensive Rating (105.9). By getting it done on both sides of the floor, Phoenix keeps the pressure on opponents and consistently takes care of business night in and night out.
One of the Suns’ biggest strengths is their versatility on offense. Not only do they score the third-most points per 100 plays in the half-court (98.5), but they score the third-most points per 100 plays in transition (131.3), per Cleaning the Glass.
Chris Paul is an offensive maestro, always finding the open man and knowing exactly how to attack a defense. Considering Atlanta is poor defensively — particularly in transition, a spot where they allow 135.3 points per 100 plays (29th) — I expect the Suns to push the Pace.
Moreover, Devin Booker has been on an absolute tear. During this winning streak, he is averaging 30.5 points, 5.6 rebounds, and 4.0 assists, but over his last five, he’s scoring even more with 33.6 points per game.
This Atlanta defense has played a bit better of late, but at the end of the day it’s still swiss cheese. Booker takes the bulk of his shots from midrange, a spot that the Hawks struggle to defend. Atlanta allows opponents to shoot 42.7% from midrange, so expect Booker to keep it rolling on offense.
Is Atlanta’s Defense For Real?
The Hawks have dealt with a variety of injuries this year and far underperformed their offseason expectations.
However, they’ve played better of late and have now won seven of their last 10 games, despite sitting two games below .500. For this matchup, De’Andre Hunter (ankle) is listed as probable while Trae Young is day-to-day with a shoulder injury. Young missing this game would dramatically impact the spread.
An issue for the Hawks has been their defense, which has been much improved over the last two weeks. On the season, the Hawks have the fourth-worst Adjusted Defensive Rating while allowing 114.0 points per 100 possessions. However, over the last two weeks, Atlanta has dropped this number to just 108.2, fifth-best during that stretch. However, I’m not sold that this is sustainable.
On the season, Atlanta’s expected allowed eFG% is 53.5%, and it’s no different over the last two weeks, per Cleaning the Glass. However, Atlanta has gotten favorable shooting variance. In the past two weeks, they have an allowed eFG% of 51.7% (seventh) — prior to that, 54.4% (fifth worst).
With the exception of a healthy Heat team (and even then), Phoenix is in a totally different class.
The Suns have lost just one game this calendar year and I don’t expect them to pick up their second against the Atlanta Hawks. Atlanta is just 17th in Adjusted Net Rating on the season (+0.2) while the Suns are a top team and a legitimate title contender.
While the Suns do not necessarily blow teams out, they have the second-best road against-the-spread (ATS) record at 15-8, including 12-6 as a road favorite, in which they’ve covered the spread by an average of 6.2 points while winning the game by an average margin of 11 points.
Atlanta’s defense is susceptible to this elite and efficient offensive attack of the Suns. I expect Phoenix to have no trouble scoring, and I generally lean towards the over, which Matt Moore, Raheem Palmer and I discussed on the latest Bucket$ pod. Here, though, I think Phoenix has a significant edge overall, so I’ll lay the points.
Pick: Suns -5 (play to -5.5)