Wizards vs. Nets Preview: Can Seth Curry Power Brooklyn?

Action Network NBA analyst Austin Wang previews how to bet Thursday's matchup between the Washington Wizards and Brooklyn Nets.

Wizards vs. Nets Odds

Wizards Odds +4.5
Nets Odds -4.5
Over/Under 214.5
Time 7:30 p.m. ET
TV NBA League Pass
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

On Thursday, the Washington Wizards visit Brooklyn to take on the Nets in each team’s final game before All Star Weekend.

Both teams are sporting new rosters after making some blockbuster trades last week. The deal that stole the show is obviously the James Harden and Ben Simmons trade, but the Wizards took a gamble and traded for the talented but oft-injured star, Kristaps Porzingis. He will not be making his debut on Thursday as he is still recovering from a knee injury.

These two teams are both on the second night of a back-to-back right before the All-Star Break. This is the type of game that is tough to handicap because you are not sure what type of effort you will get out of both teams, but let’s see if we can extract some value from this matchup.

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Wizards Fall From the Top Continues

The Wizards were early-season darlings, roaring off to a 10-3 record to start the season. They had some people fooled at first, but they ended up being who we thought they were. A season-ending wrist injury to Bradley Beal did not help and they quickly moved on from short experiments with Spencer Dinwiddie and Montrez Harrell with an eye toward re-tooling for the future.

They will likely be rolling out a starting lineup of Raul Neto, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Corey Kispert, Kyle Kuzma and Thomas Bryant. There is not much star power to see here. Kuzma has been a pleasant surprise this season, as he has seen his role increase in Washington compared to his days with the Lakers. He has played well on both ends of the floor. He will get plenty of usage as he and Caldwell-Pope may be their best options at scoring.

They are the league’s worst team against the spread at 20-36-1 (35.7%). They rank in the bottom 10 in both Offensive and Defensive Rating, per NBA Advanced Stats. Even against a poor defensive team such as the Nets, I am not very optimistic about their output.

Nets Reinforcements Stepping Up

The Nets have covered in four straight games. They have won two straight games since Seth Curry and Andre Drummond made their debut for their new team. Both have played well in those two games — Curry has hit a total of nine 3-pointers in the two games and Drummond had a double-double with 19 rebounds in the comeback win against the Knicks on Wednesday evening.

Since it is a home game, they will be without the services of Kyrie Irving due to his vaccination status. I’m expecting Curry to have another strong game. His shot has seemed to resurface after going through a shooting slump in his last days with the 76ers.

The Nets have not had much of a homecourt advantage at the Barclays Center this season. They are only 7-20 ATS (25.9%) at home.

This will be the fourth and final time these two teams meet in the regular season. The Nets are 2-1 SU and 3-0 ATS in the first three matchups; however, these teams have looked completely different each time they have met. The Wizards won 113-112 exactly a week ago, but that was with Irving in the line-up and Curry and Drummond had not made their debut yet.

Wizards-Nets Pick

I don’t have much interest in betting a side or total on this game. The under could be a good look here as both teams will have tired legs and fatigue from being on the second night of a back-to-back. My main fear is that both teams treat this as a glorified exhibition game before the all-star break.

Instead, I would attack a player prop. It is a small sample size of two games, but Curry has thrived in his new role and team.  In the two games he has played for the Nets, his points total was set at 16.5 and he blew through that each time.

He went 10-for-18 from the field and scored 23 points against the Kings. Then, he followed that up with six 3-pointers and 20 points against the Knicks. He is getting the shots and usage rate and he will continue to do so without Irving. The Wizards do not defend against the 3-pointer very well. I would target the over on his point prop total in Thursday’s game. And I like the over even at 17.5.

Pick: Seth Curry Over 16.5 Points