NBA Sundays are just a great global pastime. The Association is bringing it this week with a card including the Memphis Grizzliesfighting to hold onto the 8-seed in the West playing the Toronto Raptors and the Philadelphia 76ers versus the Portland Trail Blazers. However, we’re handicapping the San Antonio Spurs-New Orleans Pelicans game.
San Antonio Spurs +3.5 (-110) vs. New Orleans Pelicans
The San Antonio Spurs are getting value in this spot because the New Orleans Pelicans are a sexier team. The Spurs have been around for years, SG DeMar DeRozan has been around for years, they aren’t actual Finals contenders and no one had them as a sleeper to sneak into the playoffs.
New Orleans is a public team. They are popular and people like betting and rooting for them. Everyone is excited anytime F Zion Williamson takes the court and PG Lonzo Ball isn’t getting the hype he once was, but his alley-oop passes to Zion make Sports Center highlights.
F Brandon Ingram is having a heck of a breakout season, G Jrue Holiday is NBA nerds’ “most underappreciated” player and G JJ Redick has been a household name since Duke.
But the Pelicans are bad. They are worse than the Spurs. San Antonio is having its worst season in the Gregg Popovich era and they are still 2-0 this season against New Orleans.
And, elephant in the room, Popovich is going to the Basketball Hall of Fame as a coach and Alvin Gentry is not. He’s had the Spurs playing well in the bubble and their 3-2 overall record (3-2 against the spread record) is a pleasant surprise.
Another reason to like San Antonio in this spot is that both teams have a good offense and bad defense but the Spurs have DeRozan who can close out games better than any Pelicans player. Case in point, San Antonio is 10-7 in games decided by three or fewer points and New Orleans is 2-6.
New Orleans’ motivation is a major question mark as well. The Pelicans are three games back of the Grizzlies for the 8-seed in the win column, with three teams in between them and Memphis, and only three games remaining.
Maybe the Pelicans have the moment of their bubble by winning on a last-second shot but THE SPURS +3.5 (-110) is still good money. New to sports betting? A $110 bet on the Spurs +3.5 (-110) returns a $100 profit if San Antonio wins or loses by three or fewer points.
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