Our free NBA picks are out for Saturday, December 4th, 2021! Make sure you check our NBA picks before the action kicks off.
Look below to find our free NBA picks for the five best games on today’s schedule!
Denver Nuggets @ New York Knicks – 1pm ET
The Denver Nuggets road trip continues on, and this time they are travelling to New York to take on the Knicks. The Nuggets have lost seven of their last eight games, with their only win coming at the end of November, against the Heat, 120-111. The Knicks are looking to bounce back after two losses in a row, which has dropped their season record to 11-11.
The Denver Nuggets are on a really bad run lately as they won just 1 out of their last 8 encounters in the NBA. The team from Colorado lost to the Orlando Magic in their last match which further worsened their current situation. Although they managed to defeat an injured Miami Heat’s squad, Nikola Jokic and the Nuggets are still struggling to find their rhythm. Jamal Murray and Michael Porter are much-needed for the Serbian so that he can carry his team, but as of now, they are missing and this really takes its toll on the whole squad.
The Knicks, on the other hand, are playing moderately well this season, but this is just enough for 11th place in the East with 11 wins and 11 losses. Julius Randle and Evan Fournier have been draining buckets for New York, while Derrick Rose and RJ Barrett will need to step up in such important matches. The team from the “Big Apple” have big hopes for this season and it will be yet another disappointment for their fans if they don’t manage to reach the Playoffs. I think they will pick up a great form in the days ahead of Christmas which will help them increase their chances for further success this season. The game against the Nuggets seems like a perfect opportunity for them to bounce off and start a winning streak.
Denis’ NBA Pick: New York Knicks (-120)
📍New York City pic.twitter.com/4IUdgklZLl
— Denver Nuggets (@nuggets) December 3, 2021
Roughly two weeks into the season, I think most people would’ve looked at this game as a great matchup that everyone was excited to see. Now, I’m not sure that really anyone is all that excited. Denver is struggling, as Nikola Jokic can’t lead the team himself, which is what’s currently being asked of him with Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr. out. If and when the Nuggets can get healthy again, I think they have the talent to flip the script in a hurry, but for now that still seems like a tall task.
New York isn’t in any better shape, however, as they’ve fallen to 11-11 after a really hot start to their year, including losing two straight to the Nets and the Bulls. Julius Randle is still playing good basketball, but he isn’t getting enough help from the supporting cast for this Knicks team to legitimately view itself as a contender in the East. If the supporting cast can step up and start playing better, I think the NYK are in a similar spot of being able to turn it on in a hurry, but right now that also seems a long way off. The one difference is that this Knicks team is at least mostly healthy, which proves to be the difference in this one.
Noah’s NBA Pick: New York Knicks -1.5 (-110)
Chicago Bulls @ Brooklyn Nets – 7:30pm ET
The Chicago Bulls end their road trip in Brooklyn when they take on the Nets. The Bulls are on a two game winning streak, with wins against the Hornets and Knicks, which brings their season record to 15-8. The Nets are one of the many teams that are playing on back-to-back nights, and last night they got a nice win against the Timberwolves, 110-105.
The Chicago Bulls have been more than amazing from the start of the season. They are 2nd in the Eastern Conference with 15 wins and 8 losses. They will take on the top-placed team, the Brooklyn Nets, who have 16 wins out of 22 games after their victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves last night. Kevin Durant and his teammates found their rhythm and made some magnificent runs which skyrocketed them to the top of the table. However, although they are dominating the East so far, it seems that they are taking their matches not with sheer dominance, but more with clutch shots and a bit of luck. On top of that, the Nets have mostly played against teams in the likes of Orlando, Detroit, and Oklahoma.
The Bulls, on the other hand, have to go head-to-head with some of the toughest teams in the NBA. Defeating the two teams from Los Angeles, as well as Dallas, Denver, and Utah, further cemented their strong statement they made even with their opening games for this campaign. DeMar DeRozan and Zach LaVine are playing really well as both of them seem to be on fire for the Bulls. Moreover, after Nikola Vucevic’s return, the team looks even more deadly. However, as any other team, Chicago also faced difficulties lately as they lost to the Houston Rockets and scored just 77 points against the Indiana Pacers. In my opinion, they will be able to stop Kevin Durant and James Harden and if these two players are stopped for the Nets, then they won’t have many more options from where they can get the much-needed points. My pick goes in favor of the Bulls.
This a game that should hold a lot of attention for fans of the Eastern Conference, as these may be the two best teams in the East. The Brooklyn Nets have been rolling along pretty smoothly for much of the year, after a bit of a slow start, behind the phenomenal play of Kevin Durant, while Chicago has arguably been a more consistent, balanced team so far on the season. It also helps that the Nets are beginning to see a bit more production from James Harden, which has taken a bit of the pressure off of KD’s shoulders to have to be incredible night in and night out.
For Chicago, they’ve looked as good as they have more by a committee approach, as they aren’t relying on only one or two guys to lead the way for them completely. They’re getting solid play from Zach LaVine, Lonzo Ball, and DeMar Derozan, while also getting better production from their bench than Brooklyn often has this year. While I think Chicago has probably played slighter better ball this year, their schedule has also been much tougher, which I think eventually has to wear out the Bulls. The schedule up to this point, and the fatigue factor is why I’m going to lean Brooklyn by just a bit in this matchup.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Brooklyn Nets -3 (-110)
Miami Heat @ Milwaukee Bucks – 8pm ET
The Miami Heat hit the road for two quick games, and first stop is Milwaukee when they take on the Bucks, which promises to be one of the most interesting games of the night. The Heat played last night, where they won against the Pacers, 113-104, and this takes their season record to 13-9. The Bucks were on an eight game winning streak before they lost last time out, 93-97, to the Raptors, and this puts them one game behind the Bulls for top spot in the Central Division.
The Miami Heat and the Milwaukee Bucks will take on each other in a tight battle for the top places in the Eastern Conference. The Bucks can once again rely on most of their players including Jrue Holiday and Khris Middleton. Giannis struggled without them early on in the season, but after their return, the Bucks seemed to have been reborn. The team was on an 8-game winning streak before traveling to Toronto who managed to somehow beat them by 4 points. However, the Bucks will look to get back to winning and to cut the losing streak in its tracks.
Kyle Lowry and Duncan Robinson led the way for Miami in their Saturday win over the Indiana Pacers. The team managed to outclass their opponent at a home disadvantage. Even without Bam Adebayo and Jimmy Butler, the Heat fought well and left Indianapolis with a well-deserved win. However, their task will be twice harder against the Milwaukee Bucks who also have a lot to prove to Miami after the tough 137-95 loss to them in late October. I don’t think they will come near such a result, but covering their spread shouldn’t be a difficult thing to do. So, I will go with Milwaukee’s spread in this game.
Denis’ NBA Pick: Milwaukee Bucks -5 (-110)
Welcome back home, Wesley!! pic.twitter.com/1yS1W77Vdp
— Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) December 3, 2021
This is a matchup that just one week ago could’ve held a lot of attention at the top of the Eastern Conference standings. After a slow start due to Covid issues and injuries, the Bucks have turned their season around and are showing why they won the title last year and are a favorite for a lot of people this season, as well. Giannis is finally able to rely on some help from Jrue Holiday and Khris Middleton, which has allowed him to be a bit more loose and free flowing, as he no longer has quite the same pressure on him.
Miami has also been playing really good basketball and has looked like one of the better teams in the Eastern Conference, but now they may be in a bit of trouble, as they’re without Bam Adebayo for 4-6 weeks due to injury. Against some teams in the league, I think Tyler Herro, Kyle Lowry, and Duncan Robinson could be able to lead the way, but against a team in Milwaukee that has Giannis down low, I look for the Bucks to be relentless in the paint, and just take the game over in a slow, physical fashion, resulting in reasonably comfortable win, especially at home.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Milwaukee Bucks -5 (-110)
Memphis Grizzlies @ Dallas Mavericks – 8:30pm ET
The Memphis Grizzlies hit the road for two games, and first stop is Dallas when they take on the Mavericks. The Grizzlies absolutely demolished the Thunder in their last game, winning 152-79, which has brought their season record to 12-10. The Mavericks are playing on back-to-back nights, and last time out they suffered a disappointing loss to the Pelicans, 91-107.
The Memphis Grizzlies and the Dallas Mavericks will put on a show in the West on Sunday night in the NBA. Both teams are performing well in the beginning of this season. However, it seems that the Grizzlies can’t be happier with what they have achieved so far, while a 5th place is at least what’s expected from the Mavs. Memphis will have to find a way to adapt to a playing style that doesn’t include their superstar, Ja Morant, for a while, since he suffered an unpleasant knee injury. It seems that things are working out so far as the Grizzlies simply demolished and swept the floor with the Oklahoma City Thunder, defeating them 152-79. This was the largest win margin in NBA history.
The Dallas Mavericks will rely much on Luka Doncic this year as well. Kristaps Porzingis also proved that he has put in some extra work in the gym and he looks more physical this season. Jalen Brunson and Tim Hardaway Jr. are players who can certainly help in certain matches with their performance from beyond the arc. The Mavs have been quite inconsistent recently, but I would say that should have been anticipated keeping in mind Doncic’s overuse early on this season. I think that the Slovenian is even a better player from the previous campaign and he has the chance to bring back some forgotten glory for the Mavs’ fans. Until then, he will need to take some more rest so that he can be on 100% when he is needed the most. We all saw what happened in their most recent game against the Pelicans – Doncic was simply out of stamina in the 3rd quarter. I will trust the Grizzlies’ brilliant current form and suggest picking them as a final winner of this matchup with Dallas.
The Memphis Grizzlies have surprised a lot of people over the last week, as they’ve managed to play really good basketball in the absence of Ja Morant, who is still expected to be out for multiple more weeks with a knee sprain. They’ve relied on solid play from Jaren Jackson Jr. and Desmond Bane to lead the way, and that paid off in a major way on Thursday night, as they beat the Oklahoma City Thunder by 73, the largest margin of victory in NBA history. Even with the Thunder being an atrocious team for much of the year, this margin of victory is absolutely silly and one that absolutely no one was expecting.
Now Memphis goes on the road to take on a more talented Dallas Mavericks team, but one that has struggled off and on this season, and can’t seem to find much consistency. With this one coming on the second night of a back-to-back, I think Dallas may struggle in this one, seeing as Luka Doncic looked gassed by the second half of last night’s game against New Orleans. Doncic has virtually been a one man show for the Mavs this season, as he’s getting limited production from his supporting cast, and I don’t know how much he has left in the tank, especially in a crowded week or so for his Mavs. I think this one stays close, and in the end I think Memphis gets the win, but just to be safe, be safe and take Memphis with the spread.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Memphis Grizzlies +5.5 (-110)
Boston Celtics @ Portland Trail Blazers – 10pm ET
The Boston Celtics play the second of their five game road trip when they take on the Portland Trail Blazers. The Celtics are playing two nights in a row, and in their game last night, they lost to the Jazz, 130-137. The Trail Blazers have only won one of their previous five games, with losses to the Kings, Warriors, Jazz and Spurs.
The Boston Celtics and the Portland Trail Blazers are among the teams in the NBA with the worst field goal percentage so far. The Blazers suffered a surprising 31-point loss to the San Antonio Spurs on Thursday. With Damian Lillard being sidelined for the game, CJ McCollum took the responsibility, but he didn’t deliver as he only dropped 16 points on a 7-18 shooting. Normal Powell also took matters in his hands, but his 3-13 performance would better be forgotten soon. Jusuf Nurkic doesn’t have the same influence in the paint as he has had in previous years. Something is really not working for the Blazers and their fans can just hope that it’s the fact that they have just not reached their peak form yet.
On the other hand, the Boston Celtics are looking to chop yet another western head for their collection. They are 7th in the East and with a win over the Blazers they have a chance to close the gap to the top places in the Conference. Jaylen Brown is the only Celtics player who is questionable for the meeting in Portland. Jayson Tatum, Dennis Schroder, and Al Horford should be just enough for them to overcome the Blazers without Damian Lillard. I will go with Boston this time as I see more value in that option than in anything else for this match.
Denis’ NBA Pick: Boston Celtics (-116)
— Boston Celtics (@celtics) December 4, 2021
These two are among the most disappointing teams in the NBA so far this season. Both teams had high hopes coming into the season, with lots of talent and first year head coaches, but neither have performed well at all, relative to expectations at least. Neither team shoots the ball well, in fact they both shoot the ball horribly much of the time, and the defense for both has been hit or miss all year long. One comparison I would give is by saying these are virtually the same team, just on different coasts.
They both have one legitimate star and one player who is what would almost be considered a supporting star, and outside of these two both teams have been virtually no production whatsoever. In this one, since we’re dealing with basically the same team, give me the team with the home-court advantage, which happens to be the Portland Trail Blazers, to get a tight win.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Portland Trail Blazers (-102)
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*Odds and spreads correct at time of publication, courtesy of FanDuel.