NBA Picks: March 31st 2012
Atlanta Hawks vs. Philadelphia 76ers
Pick: Philadelphia 76ers -6
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The 76ers lost 76-97 at Washington last night, while the Hawks knocked off the Celtics at home 100-90. It would be easy to jump on the Hawks and take the 6-points, but I believe this game has blowout written all over it.
Philadelphia is a much better team at home, where they are 18-10 on the season. Most of those 18 wins have come by double-figures. After that embarrassing loss to the Wizards, I expect the 76ers to come out extremely motivated against Atlanta.
The Hawks have really been hit hard by the shortened schedule of late. They played a back-to-back-to-back set got a day off, played a back-to-back set, got another day off, and are now playing the second game of another back-to-back. This will be Atlanta’s seventh game in the last nine days!
The second game of a back-to-back in this situation is extremely hard. Atlanta looked good last night against the Knicks, but those tired legs are bad news against a deep Philadelphia team. I look for the 76ers to completely blow this game wide-open in the 2nd half. BET THE 76ERS!
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NBA Predictions: March 30th 2012
Memphis Grizzlies vs. Houston Rockets
Pick: Houston -2
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After losing at Dallas on Wednesday, in a game it controlled in the beginning, the Rockets are tied with Utah and Denver for the final two playoff spots in the Western Conference. Houston has alternated wins and losses over the last four games with both of those defeats coming against the Mavericks. Houston is home for two games before a four-game roadtrip that starts out with games at the Bulls and Lakers so winning both of those games on their home floor is pretty important.
Memphis has won two straight games including a win at the Lakers which snapped a three-game losing streak and kept it in the hunt for the fourth seed in the upcoming playoffs. While closing in on that position is possible, falling the other way is just as possible as the Grizzlies are only a game and a half from that three-way tie for seventh and eighth and another three-game roadtrip is not what they need now. Memphis is just 10-14 on the highway this season.
The Rockets have been a solid home team all season long as they are 19-7 overall including wins in eight of their last 11 games and that includes two overtime defeats by two points apiece. Also included in that bunch in a win over Memphis and that made it six straight victories by the home team in this series including the first three meetings this season. This is where Memphis has struggled the most as it is 3-10 ATS in its last 13 road games against teams with a home winning percentage of greater than .600.
Houston meanwhile is 9-2 ATS in its last 11 home games against teams with a losing road record and it has been solid coming off losses, going 13-9-1 ATS but most of those setbacks were on the road. When playing at home, the Rockets are 10-2 ATS coming off a loss and with a lot on the line, they will be extra geared up for this game. We are catching a very good number here as it is within only one possession which makes a stronger case for the home team. 3* (518) Houston Rockets -Matt Fargo
NBA Picks: March 29th 2012
Washington Wizards vs. Indiana Pacers
Pick: Washington +10.5
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The Wizards are showing some incredible value as a double-digit underdog. A lot of people don’t realize how much better Washington has been playing since they acquired Nene. Nene is listed as questionable tonight. He was a game-time decision on Monday, but still ended up playing 28-minutes.
Even if Nene doesn’t play, I still like Washington to cover the spread. Indiana just got blown out 84-100 at New Jersey last night. Most of the time, this would be a great spot to take the Pacers in a rebound spot. That’s not the case tonight. Not only are the Pacers playing the second of a back-to-back, but they are playing their sixth game in the last eight days!
In order to cover a large spread like this, you have to be able to play solid defense and make a lot of shots, two things that are extremely hard to do on tired legs. BET THE WIZARDS!
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Minnesota vs. Stanford
Pick: Minnesota -1 (March 29th 2012)
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Tuesday, the Golden Gophers defeated Pac-12 regular season champion Washington. Tonight, I have them taking down the team that finished 7th in the Pac-12. Keep in mind that Stanford played Washington this season and was defeated by 13 points. Also, Minnesota defeated USC (the other like opponent) by 15 points. Stanford’s best win over USC this season was a 12-point victory.
Minnesota has been on some kind of a roll since losing 6 in a row in February. It has won 6 of its last 7 SU and has covered the spread in 8 consecutive games. It should be noted that the Gophers played Wisconsin twice, Ohio State, Michigan State and Indiana during the previously mentioned losing streak. This emphasizes the superiority of the Big Ten in comparison with the Pac-12. The Golden Gophers are 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 vs. the Pac-12.
The Cardinal are 3-8 ATS in their last 11 games following an ATS win, 0-6 ATS after covering the spread in 5 or 6 of their last 7 games over the last 2 seasons and 5-14 ATS when the line is +3 to -3 over the last 3 seasons. We’ll take Minnesota.
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