Our free NBA picks are out for Friday, February 11th, 2022! Make sure you check our NBA picks before the action kicks off.
Look below to find our free NBA picks for the best five games on today’s schedule!
Cleveland Cavaliers @ Indiana Pacers – 7pm ET
The Cleveland Cavaliers kick off a four game road trip on Friday night when they travel to Indiana and take on the Pacers. The Cavaliers are currently on a three game winning streak, which does include a win over the Pacers, 98-85. The Pacers have lost their last four in a row, which drops their season record to 19-37.
The new look Packers are expected to have most of, if not all of their new toys at their disposal in their home game against the Cavs on Friday. These new pieces include Tyrese Haliburton, Buddy Hield, and former Cav Tristan Thompson. All in all they had to give up Justin Holiday, Jeremy Lamb and two-time All-Star Domantas Sabonis to get these deals done. The coaches are excited about the 3 point shooting that Haliburton and Hield will bring to the Pacers, both over 40% from range in their careers. It will be interesting to see how all their pieces mesh together for the rest of the season, and it will be a peek into what could be a bright future for the franchise. The Cavs are in a whole different mindset, as they are going for it all this year, sitting at 4th place in the Eastern Conference.
They are winners of three straight in large part due to the play of 6th year center Jarrett Allen. In those 3 games, he is averaging 19.7 points and 17.6 rebounds and this coincidentally aligns perfectly with him being left off the All-Star roster. The Cavs did have an All-Star this year, their PG Darius Garland, who returned to the lineup in the last game, a 105-92 victory over the Spurs at home, where he dropped a game-high 27 points. The Cavs have won the first two meetings this year, most recently a comeback win last Sunday, where they trailed by as much as 20. A lot has changed since that meeting with all the transactions, and the Pacers have gotten a lot younger and will be working out kinks and chemistry issues. The Cavs now have former Pacer Caris LeVert they’re working in but their main core is still intact and they are the better team in this one, and it should be a pretty routine victory for them, even as the road team. Give me the Cavs to cover.
Jeffery’s NBA Pick: Cleveland Cavaliers -4.5 (-110)
Just days after the Cleveland Cavaliers and Indiana Pacers made a huge trade that sent Caris LeVert to the Cavaliers, the two teams face off against each other on Friday night. In LeVert’s debut with the Cavaliers on Wednesday, he only scored 11 points, but that was all the team needed from him as they cruised past the San Antonio Spurs 105-92. They’ll look for their fourth straight win against a Pacers team that has its fair share of new faces as well.
— Cleveland Cavaliers (@cavs) February 10, 2022
The Pacers lost their All-Star player Domantas Sabonis in a trade with the Sacramento Kings, but they were able to pick up two massive talents as they brought in Tyrese Haliburton and Buddy Hield. Them getting Haliburton was a bit of a shock; many believed he was the centerpiece for the Kings going forward. He’s a natural point guard who in his second season already looks incredibly mature. He was a steal for the Pacers who are currently rebuilding but have some nice offensive pieces. While those will all be on display Friday, they’re playing a very good Cleveland Cavaliers team who right now sit in fourth in the Eastern Conference standings. They have one of the league’s best defenses, so I expect them to have no problem against this Pacers team that might need some time to mesh its new players.
Michael’s NBA Pick: Cleveland Cavaliers -4.5 (-110)
With the NBA trade deadline having passed, these are two teams that have different looks to them now. The Cleveland Cavaliers, who were already playing like one of the best teams in the East, added former Indiana Pacer Caris Levert, while the Pacers went crazy before the deadline, giving away Domantas Sabonis, but managing to pick up Tyrese Haliburton and Buddy Hield from Sacramento. We’ve already seen LeVert suit up for the Cavs, and he seemed to fit in extremely well with their system, and played well alongside Darius Garland, who has finally returned from a bit of an extended absence. The fact that they kept their core intact, and added another weapon in LeVert, to a team that was already competing in the East, should give Cleveland fans a lot of optimism as we head down the homestretch of the regular season.
As for Indiana, they added a few offensive pieces in Hield and Haliburton, but I’m not sure why the deal was made. The biggest issue for this Pacers squad all year has been their defense, not the offense, so getting rid of Sabonis for two primarily offensive threats just seems bizarre to me. While the notion of just playing to outscore your opponents may work in the regular season, in the postseason, defense tends to stiffen up, which is why I think the old adage of “defense wins championships” still rings true, despite an offensive boom in the league over the past few years. These moves from Indiana do nothing to fix an already atrocious defense, so with the fact that they were already struggling, I think that continues against this hugely surprising Cavaliers squad.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Cleveland Cavaliers -4.5 (-110)
Oklahoma City Thunder @ Philadelphia 76ers – 7pm ET
The Oklahoma City Thunder also kick off their road trip on Friday night, and they will travel to Philadelphia to take on the 76ers. The Thunder will be looking to get back on track after losing their last three games, and this has taken their season record to 17-37. The 76ers have lost three of their last four, which includes losses to the Wizards, Mavericks and Suns.
What a day it was for the Philadelphia 76ers. After months and months of the Ben Simmons drama, they were finally able to find a trade partner to take on their disgruntled former #1 pick and it was none other than the Brooklyn Nets. In return for Ben? They get former MVP James Harden to pair up with their MVP candidate, Joel Embiid. In addition, they had to give up Seth Curry, Andre Drummond, and 2 first round picks. It is unlikely Harden will be cleared for this game against the Thunder but with Philly already sitting at 5th in the East before this move, it’s going to be an interesting second half of the season as they’ve catapulted themselves right in the thick of title contention with this move.
The Thunder are a ways away from ever being in those kinds of discussions and are just trying to avoid a fourth consecutive loss in this road game against the Sixers. Their last time out was a 98-117 loss to the Raptors that saw their record fall to 17-37. Still very much short-handed, they are just getting all their young guys more experience and seeing what they can do for the future. Even before the James Harden move, it was going to be a tough go of it for the Thunder. I don’t see him playing in this one as I mentioned though, and with the roll Joel Embiid is on, James won’t be needed to take down this Thunder team. The loss of Curry and Embiid’s backup will hurt their depth, but they still kept key pieces in Maxey, and Tobias Harris, and this team will still be very scary come playoff time. On Friday night, they will be scary enough to cover the spread against the Thunder as well.
Jeffery’s NBA Pick: Philadelphia 76er -13 (-110)
The Philadelphia 76ers made plenty of headlines yesterday—and they didn’t even step on the court. Seriously: Doc Rivers canceled the team’s practice yesterday after trade rumors around their disgruntled All-Star Ben Simmons and various other players. The Sixers were able to trade Simmons, as well as Seth Curry and Andre Drummond, and boy did they get a prize back in return. The team sent those players to Brooklyn in exchange for future Hall-of-Famer James Harden, who was upset with his current situation with the Nets. While Harden will unlikely be available for this one, the 76ers definitely have a boost in confidence that a new era is underway and that they’ll be able to make a run for the Eastern Conference crown.
While they wait for their new team to fully assemble, the Sixers get a pretty easy task to tide them over. They face an Oklahoma City Thunder team that’s without their leading scorer Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. The Thunder have lost their last three games, all by double digits. While they face an incomplete 76ers team, they still will likely have to take on MVP candidate Joel Embiid, and high-scoring supporting players Tobias Harris and Matisse Thybulle. While the Thunder have gotten some solid production from youngsters Lu Dort and Josh Giddey, they likely won’t have enough to face this very good 76ers squad. For this one, I’ll go with the Sixers to cover at home.
Michael’s NBA Pick: Philadelphia 76ers -13 (-110)
The Philadelphia 76ers are another team that made a move before the trade deadline, as they took part in the biggest trade of the year, a move that sent Ben Simmons, Seth Curry, Andre Drummond, and two future first-round picks, to Brooklyn, to pick up James Harden, giving him the chance to pair with Joel Embiid. While I like the fit with Harden and Embiid, I’m not a fan of what it took to make the move, as I think your depth took a huge hit, especially this year, so in my opinion, this is a Philly team that just took themselves out of the Finals race. Add on the fact that they’re already struggling, having dropped three of four, and Harden won’t yet be available, and I think this has the chance to be a huge upset.
The Oklahoma City Thunder aren’t a good team by any means, coming in at 17-37, and losers of three straight, but they do have a few young pieces that have shown glimpses of potential. The issue for this OKC team right now is that they’re still without their best player in Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, which absolutely plays a huge role in terms of their offensive production, and none of the other guys on the roster really have the talent or ability to drop 20+ point per game consistently. However, as for this one, while I do have the Sixers picking up the win at home, I think this one ends up being closer than many expect, so I’m taking OKC to at least cover the number, with a chance to steal a huge outright upset victory.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Oklahoma City Thunder +13 (-110)
Denver Nuggets @ Boston Celtics – 7.30pm ET
The Denver Nuggets hit the road for a short two game trip, which includes this game in Boston to take on the Celtics, and another stop in Toronto. The Nuggets have turned around their three game losing streak, and are now on a two game winning streak, after defeating the Nets and Knicks. The Celtics roll continues on, they have won six games in a row, which takes their season record to 31-25.
This young and hungry Celtics team is hitting their stride right before the break and will be looking to keep their momentum going as they welcome in the Denver Nuggets in an NBATV televised game on Friday Night. They made a little bit of noise at the trade deadline, getting guard Derrick White from San Antonio and bringing back Daniel Theis from Houston, losing backup PG Dennis Schroeder, and Josh Richardson among others along the way. Their last time out was a dominant 126-91 win over a short-handed Brooklyn team on Tuesday, and was their fifth win of 29 or more in the last nine games. They are also tied with Milwaukee for the most wire-to-wire (never trailed in the game) wins in the whole league with 8.
This recent run has them sitting at 7th in the East and climbing. The Denver Nuggets are winners of two straight, after a three game losing streak. It was a 132-115 win over the Knicks in their last time out, a game in which they had a season-high 83 points at halftime. MVP candidate Nikola Jokic now has four straight games of at least 20 points and 10 rebounds, as the offense continues to revolve around him. They are sitting comfortably at 6th in the West as the All-Star break approaches. It’s hard to go against this Celtics team with how hot they’ve been. It’s got their fans and city buzzing and in this nationally televised game, I expect the crowd to be electric. They’ve been blowing teams out left and right, led by their stellar defense and I see that trend continuing this in one against a Denver team that has been up and down lately. Give me Boston and the spread.
Jeffery’s NBA Pick: Boston Celtics -4 (-110)
The Boston Celtics are one of basketball’s hottest teams, winning six straight games, to almost instantly take them from a disappointment to a legitimate playoff threat. Still, some question the strength of their opponents during this run. They’ve beaten lowly teams like the Pistons and Magic, and when they played the Heat and Nets, both teams were missing star players. So, they’ll have a true test on Friday as they face a Nuggets team that’s been resilient all season long. The Nuggets have been led by reigning MVP Nikola Jokic, who is playing like he’s hungry to repeat that honor this season. Jokic is averaging nearly 26 points and just over 13.5 rebounds on the year, as he’s led this Nuggets team that’s played without Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr. to a six-seed.
— Boston Celtics (@celtics) February 11, 2022
The Nuggets are coming off back-to-back victories where they scored 120+ points, including a 132-115 win over the New York Knicks where they scored 83 first-half points. In that game they had four players score 20 or more points and almost had a fifth, as Aaron Gordon scored 19. It showed that as much as the Nuggets depend on Jokic’s greatness, they also have an able and willing supporting cast as well. While the Celtics are the hotter team right now, I like the way the Nuggets often step up in these situations. They continue to grow more and more cohesive and I expect them to come together and take a win from this Celtics squad.
Michael’s NBA Pick: Denver Nuggets (+168)
The Denver Nuggets come into this one as one of the most inconsistent teams in the NBA so far this season. Before a current two game winning streak, they had lost three straight, and honestly that describes a large chunk of their season. There’s a bit of talent on this roster, but with a few injuries that they’re facing, it isn’t much, which has caused them to be too heavily reliant on Nikola Jokic to lead the way. The problem with that is, as great as he is, there’s only so much he can do against some of the league’s best teams.
Now they take on a Boston Celtics team that, after a rough, ugly start to the year, as well as for much of the year, has seemed to turn things around. They are now looking like one of the better teams in the East, and a team that if you aren’t careful, has the talent to make a deep run in the postseason. They’ve won six straight, and while one of their issues early in the year was shooting, with the likes of Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, they’re shooting the ball a bit better, and playing better defense. As for this matchup, I’m going to take Boston to pick up win number seven in their current streak, as I think they lean heavily on a home crowd to get them over the finish line.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Boston Celtics -4 (-110)
Minnesota Timberwolves @ Chicago Bulls – 8pm ET
The Minnesota Timberwolves are in game three of their four game road trip, and on Friday night they will go toe-to-toe with the Chicago Bulls. The Timberwolves had their five game winning streak snapped last time out, thanks to the Kings. The Bulls managed to snap their two game losing streak last time out, with a win against the Hornets.
DeMar DeRozan was brought in to help solidify the Bulls stance as an Eastern Conference contender and he’s done that and more. Earning MVP consideration, he’s averaging over 27 points along with 5 rebounds and 5 assists a game, and being selected to his fifth All-Star game. His contributions have the Bulls sitting a game back of the 1 seed Miami Heat, entering Thursday. The Bulls are coming off a 121-109 victory on the road in Charlotte, where DDR led the way with 36 points. The Timberwolves are coming off a mini 2 game road series against the Kings that they split, losing the last one 119-132. The loss snapped a five-game winning streak as the Wolves are hunting for a top 6 placement (they are 1.5 games back of the 6 seed Nuggets) to avoid the play-in tournament.
They’ve made the playoffs just once in the past 17 seasons but are finally putting together a solid season behind all their young talent, of Karl-Anthony Towns, Anthony Edwards, and D’Angelo Russell. The Bulls are one of the better teams in the league and the Timberwolves are up and coming trying to reach that level. These are two great offenses and it makes sense why the total is set at 240.5, and both teams thrive in the shootout environment. However, I like getting the spread here with a Wolves team that has won 9 of their past 12 meetings with the Bulls. They are coming off a bad loss to Sacramento and will be extra motivated for this and I don’t see the Bulls having an answer for KAT down low. Give me the Wolves to cover.
Jeffery’s NBA Pick: Minnesota Timberwolves +4 (-110)
After two tough losses to the Philadelphia 76ers and Phoenix Suns, the Chicago Bulls were able to cruise to a 121-109 win over the offensive juggernaut Charlotte Hornets. With DeMar DeRozan and Zach LaVine feeling healthy this team should be able to continue to stay atop of the Eastern Conference. On Friday they’ll face the up-and-coming Minnesota Timberwolves, which also happen to be LaVine’s former team. The Minnesota Timberwolves have shown they’re ready to make the jump to the next level, as this team has gone from lottery team to playoff contender in two seasons. They’re currently the seventh seed and are thrilled to have some outstanding young talent in Karl Anthony Towns, Anthony Edwards, and D’Angelo Russell.
But, after a five-game win streak, the team suffered a surprise defeat to the Sacramento Kings, losing 119-132, despite being at full strength. That’s one the Timberwolves will want to forget, and in order to do so, they would love to have a win over one of the league’s best teams in the Chicago Bulls. These two teams are neck in neck when it comes to points per game, as both sit in the league’s top ten. The Bulls are the most efficient shooting team in the league, but the Timberwolves will in no way be shy of pouring it on. Especially because Chicago’s defense has taken a hit since Alex Caruso, Derrick Jones Jr and Patrick Williams went down with injuries. Ultimately, I’ll take the Bulls to win this one, as they’re fighting to stay atop the Eastern Conference and should win a shootout against Minnesota.
Michael’s NBA Pick: Chicago Bulls (-172)
The Minnesota Timberwolves are another team that is somewhat difficult to try to predict. They have one of the best cores in basketball, with the trio of D’Angelo Russell, Anthony Edwards, and Karl-Anthony Towns, but they also struggle from lack of depth. They have multiple decent win streaks on the year so far, including a five game run that was just snapped in their last game, but the problem is that they seem to struggle between these runs. If they were more consistent I think they have the chance to be a dark house out West, but with the inconsistencies, I do have my doubts.
Now they travel southeast to take on the Chicago Bulls, who are currently sitting as the two seed in the Eastern Conference, and have looked like one of the better teams all year long. They are dealing with a few injury problems, as they’ll be without Alex Caruso and Lonzo Ball, but they do still have DeMar Derozan and Zach LaVine to lead the way. As for the result of this one, I like Chicago in a tight one, as I think the duo of Derozan and LaVine simply manages to barely outscore their opponents.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Chicago Bulls (-172)
Orlando Magic @ Utah Jazz – 9pm ET
The final game for your Friday night viewing in the NBA will see the Orlando Magic and the Utah Jazz face off against each other. The Magic have won two of their last four, but they did get the all important win last time out, 113-95, against the Trail Blazers. The Jazz’s winning streak has lifted to four games in a row, which includes wins over the Nuggets, Nets, Knicks and Warriors.
The Jazz will enter this home game against the second-worst team in the league record wise, off a statement victory over the Warriors. It was a 111-85 victory that pushed their February record to 4-0 as they try to keep their play at a high level while they await the return of their defensive stopper Rudy Gobert. The Magic began a four-game road trip in Portland, beating the Blazers who had just traded CJ McCollum 113-95.
Cole Anthony led the way with 23 points and 9 dimes, as it was a much needed confidence boost after two ugly home losses prior to that game. The Jazz will be licking their chops getting a cake matchup here against the Magic after beating down on the Warriors. Donovan Mitchell only had 14 points in the Golden State game so look for him to try and get going in this one as I expect him to exceed his points prop. I also expect the Jazz to ride their great home crowd to a blowout victory over this hapless Magic team.
Jeffery’s NBA Pick: Utah Jazz -12 (-110)
After a turbulent last month that’s been plagued by injuries, the Utah Jazz were able to score a big win on Wednesday night as they ran over the Golden State Warriors 111-85. Sure, the Warriors didn’t have Klay Thompson or Draymond Green, but they still are a very good team without those two, so the Jazz will have to feel good about picking up that victory after a couple of weeks of injuries and disappointing losses. They’ll look to carry that play over to their Friday night game, against a poor Orlando Magic squad.
For 8 years in a Jazz uniform, for breaking franchise records, for shaping a community and everything else you couldn’t possibly fit on a stat sheet: Thank you, @joeingles7.
Always a Jazzman. Always part of the family ❤️☕️ pic.twitter.com/VS2JV2WlzB
— Utah Jazz (@utahjazz) February 10, 2022
But, you can’t count the Magic out: they beat the Jazz back in November when they were in full strength. The Jazz may have Rudy Gobert out on Friday, so the Magic might have a slight chance at stealing another one from the Jazz. Especially because Orlando has looked a lot better on offense in recent weeks. They’ve got outstanding performances from young players including Cole Anthony and Franz Wagner, and even though they still have a long way to go, they’re happy to see some early success from these young prospects. But don’t think the Jazz won’t remember that November defeat, and with this one in Salt Lake City and the Jazz coming off a big win, I expect them to hand the Magic a hefty loss this time around.
Michael’s NBA Pick: Utah Jazz -12 (-110)
This one shouldn’t be close. The Orlando Magic are one of the worst teams in the NBA, coming in at 13-43, and the only reason I don’t think they’re the worst is because of Detroit and Houston. They don’t have a real playmaker or legitimate star that can lead the offense and just take over when needed, as I think Cole Anthony is still too young and inexperienced to be that guy, and all the way around there’s just a serious problem with the roster, as they also lack significant depth on this roster.
And now they take on a Utah team that should be ready to get back in action, after completely obliterating the Golden State Warriors in their last outing. That game was somewhat surprising, seeing as they were without Rudy Gobert, who will still be sitting in this one next. This win managed to end an embarrassing stretch for Utah, where they simply couldn’t get anything going, largely due to being without Gobert, Donovan Mitchell, and Joe Ingles, who has since been traded. Even with Gobert still missing, and them trading Ingles away, despite him being out with a torn ACL, I think this is a Utah team that can still roll right over the Orlando Magic, especially with Donovan Mitchell in the lineup, as he’s been one of the leaders of this team for years.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Utah Jazz -12 (-110)
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*Odds and spreads correct at time of publication, courtesy of FanDuel.