A brand new week but SportsTips still has the same, red hot NBA picks for our followers, made by our experts who have studied all of the form!
The Wizards (eight straight) and Knicks (nine straight) put their winning streaks on the line, but both go into their contests as underdogs tonight! Whose streak is coming to an end, or can both keep their winning ways going?
We have all of the answers you need plus the best in-depth analysis for tonight’s five best games. You don’t want to miss our NBA picks for tonight.
San Antonio Spurs @ Washington Wizards – 7PM ET
The Washington Wizards are one of the hottest teams in the league, winners of eight straight games and well and truly in play-in contention. They now host the San Antonio Spurs who are in some good form as well, winning two straight and four of their last five.
Their most recent victory was by just two points in New Orleans, getting the better of a young and inexperienced Pelicans outfit. DeMar DeRozan continues to give his all and lead this team across the board, putting up 32 points, eight assists and seven boards. His play all season has been the main reason that San Antonio are ninth in the West and 4.5 games clear of the 11th seed and missing the play-in all together.
That play-in spot is what the Wizards are chasing and a big reason why they have turned things around lately. Behind spectacular play from Bradley Beal and Russell Westbrook, Washington have come from 14th in the East near the middle of the season to 10th, currently in the play-in spot and two games clear of 11th.
The Wizards get their eighth straight win.
They are now 11-0 in the last 11 games Bradley Beal has played in 🔥 pic.twitter.com/iBhqbcIMuc
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) April 26, 2021
In last night’s 119-110 win over the Cavs, Beal got anything he wanted on offense and ended up with 33 points on 54.2% shooting while Daniel Gafford had an exceptional game off the bench with 12 points, six rebounds, four steals and four blocks. There is some worry that the Wizards played last night given they are just 6-8 when playing with no rest, but will their form be able to carry them over the line.
When these sides met in January, the Spurs won by 20 points and controlled the entire game. Things are different now and this Washington team is hungry for wins. Washington is in a much tighter race and has less room for error than the Spurs and that is why they will come out and win this one.
Phoenix Suns @ New York Knicks – 7:30PM ET
The Phoenix Suns conclude their five game East coast trip against the scorching hot New York Knicks tonight. The Suns have faltered of late, losing their last two and things are even tougher tonight against the Knicks, who are aiming for their tenth straight win.
Sunday saw New York beat Toronto 120-103, never losing a quarter and running over the top in the fourth. Heading into the final frame up by just five points, Julius Randle and Derrick Rose led the team to a 32-20 quarter to solidify the win. Randle ended up with 31 points and 10 rebounds while Rose had 19 points and seven assists off the bench.
Phoenix are a much better team than any of the ones that New York have beaten over their streak, but the Suns played yesterday and have struggled on the second legs of back to backs lately. Just last week, the Suns followed up a win over the Sixers by losing to Boston by 13 the next night. Earlier in the month, Phoenix followed up an overtime win over the Jazz by losing to LA by 10 points the following evening.
That is obviously a bit of a worry for the Suns, especially after their performance last night. Following a loss in Boston, you’d expect Phoenix to come out hard against a Brooklyn side that is still without James Harden and just getting Kevin Durant back from a week-long absence. However, the Suns lost 119-128, being outscored by 11 in the second half. Devin Booker poured in 36 points while both Deandre Ayton and Torrey Craig had 20 point double doubles, but their defensive effort was obviously not up to scratch.
While New York ranks just 19th for offensive rating for the season, for the month of April they have been a top five offense and should be looking to exploit this shaky Phoenix defense that is clearly keen to get back home. Phoenix are definitely a class outfit and have the second best record in the league for a reason, but New York are as hot as they come and we like them to get their 10th straight.
Los Angeles Clippers @ New Orleans Pelicans – 8PM ET
Two teams trending in opposite directions collide in New Orleans as the Pelicans host the Los Angeles Clippers in what will be the third and final meeting between the two sides. The teams have split the previous two matchups with New Orleans winning the most recent by 20 points but their more recent form leaves a lot to be desired.
The Pelicans have lost five of their last six games, only beating Orlando over that stretch. Saturday night saw them head into a home clash with San Antonio as favorites but lose 108-110. Zion Williamson had his usual efficient game with 33 points and 14 boards while Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball had 24 each but no other New Orleans player managed more than six points.
Paul George last 8 games:
MVPG form. pic.twitter.com/yTzo6JdFLl
— StatMuse (@statmuse) April 24, 2021
That sort of lacklustre performance won’t cut it against the Clippers, who have won four straight and 11 of their last 12. Add in the fact that they have had an extra night to rest and prepare for this clash, not playing since their 109-104 win in Houston on Friday. Paul George continues to turn it on for LA in the absence of Kawhi Leonard, putting up 33 points and 14 boards in that win.
Even without Leonard, the Clippers are the better team in this matchup but it all depends on which New Orleans rocks up. They have been one of the more inconsistent teams all season and they seem to not be in-sync with Stan Van Gundy’s method of coaching. LA on the other hand have really taken to Tyronn Lue as their new coach and with George playing like an MVP candidate, the Clippers should be too good in this one.
Memphis Grizzlies @ Denver Nuggets – 9PM ET
One week after their double overtime thriller, the Memphis Grizzlies and Denver Nuggets will get stuck into it yet again. Since that clash, which Denver ended up winning 139-137, both sides have gone 2-1 and will want to consolidate their positions in the tight jostle that is the West standings.
Memphis comes into this one off the back of two wins in Portland over the weekend. THose wins helped the Grizzlies close the gap between the two sides, who are seventh and eighth in the West, to just half a game. In last night’s 120-113 win, Ja Morant led the team in scoring with 28 points while Jonas Valanciunas made a successful return to the court, after a three game absence due to concussion, with 21 points and 10 boards.
Memphis are an impressive 6-5 when playing with no rest and even more impressive 18-12 on the road this season, the sixth best road record in the league. On the other side of the court, Denver are in their element as well, being 21-10 at home, the sixth best home record in the league, whilst also being 11-3 when playing with a rest advantage, the second best record under such a situation in the league.
What also works in their favour is coming into the game with good form, getting the better of Houston on Saturday night. Michael Porter Jr erupted for 39 points on 62% shooting in the 129-116 win, while Nikola Jokic had his usual all around game with 24 points, 12 assists and eight rebounds.
The issue for Denver is that Will Barton and Monte Morris have both joined Jamal Murray on the sidelines with hamstring injuries and the backcourt is getting seriously thin in the rotation. Given Morant is firing on all cylinders for Memphis at the moment, that is not a good area to be depleted in at the moment. The Grizzlies should have come away with the win in Denver last week but fell away late, we are predicting a different outcome this time. We like the Grizzlies to get the job done in this one and enact their revenge.
Dallas Mavericks @ Sacramento Kings – 10PM ET
We have another rematch of some action that took place a week ago, this time with the Dallas Mavericks looking for revenge against the Sacramento Kings. Despite being on a nine game losing streak at the time, Sacramento picked up the 14 point win in Dallas eight days ago but have gone just 1-2 since and have lost De’Aaron Fox since that clash.
In their first game without their breakout star, the Kings almost stole one on the road, losing 113-117 to the Warriors last night. Tyrese Halliburton stepped into the starting lineup and thrived against one of the best point guards the league has ever seen, putting up 24 points and eight assists. He had plenty of help with Buddy Hield leading the team in scoring with 25 points and Harrison Barnes chipping in with 23 points and seven boards.
Given that the Kings are just 4-9 when playing with no rest, there are questions over how this team will back up tonight, without their leader and after a tough loss last night. Especially against a Dallas side that has won three straight, is 8-4 when playing with a rest advantage and is 17-12 on the road this season.
— NBA (@NBA) April 25, 2021
Back to back games over the Lakers allowed the Mavericks to play themselves into some form, winning by five on Thursday followed by a 15 point, come from behind win on Saturday night. With Kristaps Porzingis sitting out due to rest, the Mavs found themselves down by as many as 17 in the first half but used a 33-21 third quarter and 29-14 fourth quarter to turn things around. Dwight Powell took advantage of more minutes in the frontcourt rotation, scoring a team high 25 points while Luka Doncic had 18 points, 13 assists and eight boards.
It was a massive shock when Sacramento beat the Mavs last week and it would be a massive shock if they were able to do it again tonight. While it was a massive effort to almost beat the Warriors last night, the loss of Fox will be too much for this team to overcome. Dallas are just 1.5 games ahead of Portland, which would see them fall into the play-in zone, meaning they need to keep winning to guarantee their playoff berth and games like this must simply be a win.
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*Odds and spreads correct at time of publication, courtesy of FanDuel.
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