We took a tough loss on the banker last night, but we are back with more NBA action. It’s a three-game slate and we’re going to find three winners. Which team will be the banker and which bets will make up our two-team parlay?
Toronto Raptors vs. Philadelphia 76ers
Both teams coming into this game off of tough losses last night. The Boston Celtics defeated the Toronto Raptors 104-88. The Philadelphia 76ers fell 118-109 to the Milwaukee Bucks. The loss dropped the Raptors to 6-6 and was their first loss on the road this season. After nice stretch where it felt like the Raptors were coming together, they lost three in a row.
The 76ers have also lost three in a row, but the losses are much more understandable. The Sixers are playing without team leaders Joel Embiid and Tobias Harris. Harris is on the injury report as questionable for this evening, so he may make his return in this game. One has to wonder his effectiveness however, as 76ers coach Doc Rivers that he was dealing with strong symptoms during his bout with Covid. So, while Harris will help alleviate some of the minutes on his tired teammates legs, we will also have to question how effective he will be in his return.
I think the Toronto Raptors pull together and take advantage of a tired team after a tough loss last evening. Toronto has a strong advantage at forward and their length and athleticism should rule the day. The 76ers have been hanging tough through adversity but this could be the spot where the fatigue of finally kicks in.
I’m taking the Toronto Raptors to be the team that break their losing streak tonight. Today’s Banker Toronto Raptors +2.5
Banker: Toronto Raptors +2.5 at -112 (1.89)
Miami Heat vs Los Angeles Clippers
The Miami Heat were the banker last night and that played took a tough turn when Jimmy Butler sprained his ankle. The result was too much “Herro ball” and not enough team play. Without Jimmy Butler setting the tone, the Heat lacked their usual killer instinct. The Heat fell short and now have to turn around and play shorthanded against one of the few teams that had Wednesday night off.
The Clippers are coming into this game on a five-game winning streak. Many NBA observers wrote this Clippers team off as a Western Conference Contender after losing Kawhi Leonard.
Paul George and company have something to say about that! The Clippers have continued to win. The Clippers are getting elite play from Paul George. Ty Lue has doing an excellent job coaching this team. In a year where they are not saddled with the ” championship or bust” expectations that they had the last two seasons, the Clippers are playing loose, free, and are dangerous to any opponent.
I expect the Clippers to continue their win streak tonight and also cover the NBA odds of three points. The first part of the two-team parlay will be the Los Angeles Clippers -4.
Indiana Pacers vs Utah Jazz
The Pacers had a disheartening performance last night, losing to the short-handed Nuggets 101-98. Maybe the Pacers overestimated their opponent, maybe it was the altitude, but whatever the reason this result has to be a wake-up call for a team that is quickly slipping out of playoff position. With the addition of new Head Coach Rick Carlisle, and the hopes of finally being healthy, the Pacers had high expectations for the season. Unfortunately, it has been an utter disappointment so far.
All these factors lead the Pacers to be a tad bit undervalued last night. Bettors who watched the Pacers fall to a short-handed team full of players that they had not seen play before will discourage anyone from going back to the well with this team in turmoil. Tonight, will be a test for the leadership of head coach Rick Carlisle and Domantas Sabonis. The need a strong showing to get back on track and I do believe they will keep it close against the Utah team that is very tough to beat at home.
Sometimes the toughest best to make are the best bets and I’m hoping that this is the case tonight. While it’s so hard to take the Pacers off a stinker of a performance, the numbers dictate that the NBA odds on this line are much too high. Hold your nose and add the Indiana Pacers +10.5 to finish off our 2-team parlay.
2-Team Parlay: Los Angeles Clippers-4/Indiana Pacers +10.5 at +261 (3.61)