Our free NBA picks are out for Thursday, April 7th, 2022! Make sure you check our expert NBA picks before the action kicks off.
Look below to find our free NBA picks for the best five games on today’s schedule!
Philadelphia 76ers @ Toronto Raptors – 7:30pm ET
The Philadelphia 76ers and Toronto Raptors are set to square off in this Atlantic division matchup. The Philadelphia 76ers come into this me with a record of 49-30 while Toronto is 46-33. This could end up being a potential playoff rematch.
The Philadelphia 76ers have responded to their three-game losing streak that ended the month of March with a three-game winning streak to begin April. Their last game out was a 131-122 win over the Pacers in Indy on Tuesday, in a game dominated by MVP hopeful Joel Embiid. Embiid scored 45 points and grabbed 13 rebounds to pull even with the Boston Celtics atop the Atlantic Division. Philly made a franchise-record 17 three-pointers in the first half and never gave up the lead to cruise to the victory. They’ll now have to shift their focus to the Toronto Raptors when they travel north for Thursday’s battle. The Raptors have been hot themselves, winning six of their last seven after a 118-108 win over the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday. Pascal Siakam scored 3- points as Toronto clinched a playoff spot, and ensured they will finish no lower than 6th in the East, avoiding the play-in tournament.
Seeing the Raptors open up as favorites for this game is a bit surprising, given how much higher the ceiling is for Philadelphia when they’re clicking on all cylinders. It was a tough patch for a second there and James Harden isn’t putting up the crazy numbers he was when he first arrived, but with the mission, Joel Embiid is on and how unstoppable he is, I think he can carry this team to a cover on his own. Give me Philly and the points.
Jeffery’s NBA Pick: Philadelphia 76ers +1.5 (-110)
This is a massive matchup between two teams that are locked into the playoffs, and unless something changes over the last three days, this is going to be a preview of one of the first round matchups in the Eastern Conference first round. The Philadelphia 76ers have straightened things back out after a rough end to the month of March, as they’ve now won three straight, and are getting absurd play from Joel Embiid along the way, as he tries to make his final argument for why he should win the MVP award.
Toronto has been even better over the last few weeks though, as they’ve won six of straight, and they do it by committee, as they don’t have a single legitimate superstar on the roster. They’re led by Fred VanVleet and Paskal Siakam, but neither are superstars, which shows just how balanced this Raptors roster is. Toronto has been tremendous for much of the year, apart from a stretch in the middle, where they were dealing with injury issues, and I think this proves to be a bad matchup for Philadelphia. Give me Toronto at home in this one, as I think they pull out a close one.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Toronto Raptors (-120)
Boston Celtics @ Milwaukee Bucks – 7:30pm ET
The Boston Celtics will meet the Milwaukee Bucks in what could be a potential preview of an Eastern Conference playoff matchup. As the Celtics would currently be the 2 seed and the Milwaukee Bucks would be the 3 seed in the playoffs.
The Milwaukee Bucks were anle to snap their two-game losing streak with a win over the Bulls on the road on Tuesday. In the 127-106 win, Giannis was in foul trouble throughout and needed his teammates to step up in order to get the win and clinch the Central Division title. Brook Lopez was up to the task, scoring a season-high 28 points and giving the Bucks a clean sweep on the season series with Chicago. Now a stiff test awaits them on Thursday when the Boston Celtics come to town for a powerhouse Eastern Conference matchup.
Any team getting 4.5 points against the Boston Celtics in any situation is just too much. I don’t care if it’s a back-to-back or even if it was a 3rd game in three nights, there’s no way I can pick against Boston right now. This has been the best team in the East since January and we’ve seen enough inconsistencies with the Bucks that they aren’t totally trustable. Give me the Celtics and the points on the road.
Jeffery’s NBA Pick: Boston Celtics +6 (-110)
This is another fun matchup on a Thursday night in the NBA, as we get the two and three seeds in the East going up against each other. Milwaukee has righted the somewhat unbalanced ship from early in the season lately, as they’re finally playing much better basketball, but they do still have concerns. Giannis is clearly the leader of this Bucks squad, and while he got help in their last game, as Brook Lopez came through in a big way, the help he gets has been extremely inconsistent so far this year, and that’s the biggest worry for this Milwaukee team heading into the postseason.
Boston, on the other hand, seems to have figured out many of their issues, as they’ve arguably been the best team in basketball since February. The one concern with this Celtics team is one that they can’t control, and that is the injury to Robert Williams, and when he may return. They’ve fallen just a touch since he went down, but I do think they’re slowly figuring things out, and assuming they get out of the first round, it looks as if he may be able to return for the second round. That doesn’t do them any good for this matchup, but with how they’ve been playing over the last few months, I think they’re able to at least keep this one close, even on the road, so I like Boston to at least cover the spread here.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Boston Celtics +6 (-110)
San Antonio Spurs @ Minnesota Timberwolves – 8pm ET
With both teams looking towards the NBA playoffs next week this one could be a good one. Both teams are playing good basketball at the moment as well. As the San Antonio Spurs meet the Minnesota Timberwolves in this one.
The San Antonio Spurs picked the perfect time of year to play their best basketball and now have clinched a spot in the play-in tournament with a record of 34-45. San Antonio has won seven of eight and is coming off a very impressive 116-97 win over the Denver Nuggets without their star Dejounte Murray. Murray was out with an illness and will once again miss this game against Minnesota on Thursday. That could be a big loss against a Timberwolves team that will come in knowing they have no margin for error and will surely be totally focused after their unacceptable 132-114 loss to the Washington Wizards. The loss kept them 2 games back of the 6 seed and now with only two games left, it’s looking like they will be hosting a play-in game next week.
Minnesota being back at home for this game is exactly what they need and I think the crowd will help them get out to an all important fast start. They’re a young team that runs on emotion and confidence and a quick start usually carries them through the entire game and when this offense gets rolling it’s tough to stop. The Spurs will definitely put up a fight, but with their postseason fate already locked up the motivation just won’t be as high as it was against Denver. Give me the home Wolves to cover on Thursday.
Jeffery’s NBA Pick: Minnesota Timberwolves -8.5 (-110)
What a run by San Antonio to extend their season through at least the play-in tournament. They’ve managed to use a streak that has seen them win seven of eight (and the Lakers collapsing) to lock up a spot in the play-in next week, though they are going to have to win twice to advance to the first round of the postseason, as they’re going to find themselves in the 9-10 matchup. Their opponent in this game is one that they could see in the second play-in game, if they were to win the opener.
Minnesota comes into this one on a roller coaster ride of a season. They’re assured of a play-in berth, but they’ve watched a few struggles towards the end of the year, including an ugly loss at the hands of the Washington Wizards, look as if they’ve crushed any hope of advancing to the sixth seed to avoid the play-in. They’ve certainly got the core to easily advance out of the West’s play-in, seeing as they’re only going to need one win to get out and advance to the first round, but the core featuring Karl-Anthony Towns, Anthony Edwards, and D’Angelo Russell are going to have to do a bit of a better job of leading the way for that to happen. With the fact that San Antonio is again without Dejounte Murray in this one, I’m taking the Wolves at home, but I do think it’s a close one.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Minnesota Timberwolves (-375)
Memphis Grizzlies @ Denver Nuggets – 9pm ET
This game could end up being a preview of a Western Conference playoff series. As Ja Morant and the Memphis Grizzlies will face off with Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets in this one, as Denver still searches for a division title.
The Memphis Grizzlies actually lost a game?? I know it’s crazy but after seven wins in a row , Memphis finally fell on Tuesday in overtime to the Utah Jazz. In the Grizzlies’ defense, they were without their top two scorers (Ja Morant and Dillon Brooks), but they hasn’t seemed to stop them much this season as they are 20-3 without Morant on the year. The Jazz out rebounded Memphis 61-51, led by Rudy Gobert’s 20 boards, and was ultimately the key to the win. The Grizz will now travel to Denver for another matchup with one of the best teams in the West, the Denver Nuggets. The Nuggets will be upset after their loss to the shorthanded Spurs on Tuesday, despite Nikola Jokic dropping 41 points, over 42% of Denver’s 97 as a team. It was Denver’s chance to finally clinch a playoff spot but now they will have to win one of their final two games or Minnesota lose one of theirs to do so.
One loss in overtime to a desperate Jazz team at home won’t be enough for me to get off of this Grizzlies train. These guys fight hard no matter who is out there and I’m sure they are itching to get back out there and avenge that loss. The Nuggets are all Nikola Jokic right now and he just can’t do it all with no help, especially against a team the caliber of the Grizzlies. I like a lot of dogs on Thursday and Memphis is another one.
Jeffery’s NBA Pick: Memphis Grizzlies +3 (-110)
We haven’t had to ask this question very often lately, but how do the Memphis Grizzlies respond to a loss, that’s the biggest question that I’m looking to find an answer for in this matchup. They finally slipped up and lost a game in their last outing, a defeat at the hands of the Utah Jazz, in a game that they were without Ja Morant and Dillon Brooks, though they did push it to OT. They’re 20-3 on the year now without Ja, but with both of those guys out, they couldn’t get quite enough offense going to take down Utah, especially with the phenomenal performance that Rudy Gobert put forth. Ja will still be out for this one, but there’s optimism that Brooks is able to give it a go.
Denver comes into this one looking like they’ve basically got the sixth seed in the West locked up, which is good news, though there’s some reason for concern from this Nuggets team right now. They’ve dealt with injuries all year, mainly to Jamaal Murray and Michael Porter Jr., but they’ve managed to fight despite those, but right now it looks as if they’ve fallen into the trap of trying to let Nikola Jokic’s greatness lead the way, with little to no help, which is a losing equation. Until he gets more help, I’m not sure how much of a run this Denver team can make, including in this one, as the Grizz have a ridiculous balance, especially on the offensive side of the floor. Even on the road, I like Memphis here in a tight one.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Memphis Grizzlies -3 (-110)
Los Angeles Lakers @ Golden State Warriors – 10pm ET
This one is pretty meaningless in the long run as the Los Angeles Lakers are already officially eliminated from the playoffs. Before the season started some people had this one earmarked as a potential WCF series.
The Los Angeles Lakers came into the NBA season as the number 2 favorite to win the NBA championship. On Tuesday their loss to the Phoenix Suns ensured that they will not even be apart of the postseason. It was their seventh straight loss in what will go down as one of the most disappointing seasons in recent NBA history. This Lakers team has five future Hall of Famers and even if they are past their prime, still should have been competitive enough to make the playoffs. Now With nothing to play for, it’ll be interesting to see if they salvage a bit of roofs or just fully give up in this road game against the Warriors. The Warriors have won two straight after losing four in a row to end the month of March and will hope to keep the wins coming end the regular season with some positive momentum.
There is no way I can back the Lakers especially now that they have been eliminated from the postseason. These guys already looked like they do not care at times and now I’m imagining it being even worse. They waved the white flag on the season way before they were officially eliminated and now they can truly just look forward to their summer plans and vacations. LeBron isn’t going to save the day against the Warriors with another 50 point bomb, so give me Golden State in a blowout.
Jeffery’s NBA Pick: Golden State Warriors -12.5 (-110)
Golden State by a million, that’s enough to be the whole preview.
The Warriors have plenty to play for at this point, as they are currently fighting with the Dallas Mavericks for the third seed out West. They’re still without Steph Curry, which complicates things a bit, but they look as if they’ve figured at least a few things out with him out, as they’ve now won two straight. They still have Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and Andrew Wiggins to carry the load, and that should be more than enough against the Los Angeles Lakers, a team that quit on the year a long time ago.
Despite having a roster that is loaded with future Hall of Famers, LA fell flat in a major way this year, including having lost seven straight to take them out of play-in contention. Even with them being past their prime, there’s no excuse for the season they had, and seeing as it looks like they’ve already quit, there’s no reason to think they magically get off the mat in this one. This one’s in the Bay Area, and Golden State rolls in a big way. Take the Dubs with ease.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Golden State Warriors -12.5 (-110)
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*Odds and spreads correct at time of publication, courtesy of FanDuel.