Our free NBA Picks are out for Tuesday, October 26th, 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!
Philadelphia 76ers @ New York Knicks – 7:30pm EDT
Two nights after losing to the lowly Orlando Magic, the New York Knicks have to strap them up against the Philadelphia 76ers tonight. Both sides currently sit at 2-1 in the early stages of the season, but only one can prevail, in what is likely to be a very defensive matchup.
The Joel Embiid game-time-decision show has already started, and we are just one week into the season. While he managed to play through it against the Thunder on Sunday, he has the tag again heading into this clash, which is a far more important and more difficult matchup for the Sixers. Despite playing through knee pain, Embiid managed to put up 22 points, nine rebounds, six assists and three blocks, while Seth Curry stole the show with 28 points on 7/10 shooting from deep.
Meanwhile the Knicks just lost to the Magic, two nights after beating them by 25 points. The Knicks shouldn’t be this inconsistent, however their new additions are exactly that. Kemba Walker hasn’t managed more than 11 points through his first two games while Evan Fournier has dropped 32, 18 and 8, with his performance against Orlando on Sunday being simply unacceptable. The constant for New York is clearly Julius Randle, who after winning Most Improved last season, has continued his excellent play and leadership of this side, averaging 28.7 points, 11.3 rebounds and 6.3 assists through their first two games.
But which New York side will we get tonight? Can Fournier and Walker, especially the latter, actually contribute to their team’s success? I don’t think so, and I don’t think they will be able to compete with the Sixers in this matchup. Mitch Robinson has no chance of competing against a much bigger Embiid, with limited resources to support him down low. I think it will be close, and low-scoring, but I like Philly to come out on top.
Tim’s NBA Pick: Philadelphia 76ers (-116)
The Philadelphia 76ers will be a different team this season with the troubles they need to deal with inside the team. The only positive aspect in Philly is the fact that Embiid signed a 5-year contract expansion this summer. However, Ben Simmons will probably be traded anytime soon. They have also acquired one of the best players near the rim, Andre Drummond, but he is suffering from an ankle injury at the moment. Apart from that, Seth Curry and Tobias Harris are the top contributors for the team.
The Knicks are finally on the right path to being reborn. Last year they reached the Playoffs for the first time since the 2012/13 season. Although they suffered a 4-1 loss to Trae Young and the Atlanta Hawks, they made a huge step towards their comeback to the top of the league. In addition to this, Julius Randle won the Most Improved Player for last season. With the likes of Derrick Rose, Immanuel Quickley, and RJ Barrett, the team is looking sharp and has playoff aspirations yet again. I believe this task will begin tomorrow against the 76ers as I am looking for the Knicks’ 3rd win for the season.
Denis’ NBA Pick: New York Knicks (-102)
Joel Embiid and Seth Curry combined for 50 points in Sixers win
— John Clark (@JClarkNBCS) October 25, 2021
The New York Knicks were getting the five boroughs back in the “New York Groove”. They started the season off with a thrilling 2OT win against the Boston Celtics. They followed that with a blowout win against the Orlando Magic. They then rematched the Magic on Sunday night and were victims of a blowout themselves. Now they get a potential playoff matchup against the Philadelphia 76ers.
Despite the Ben Simmons drama hanging over the 76ers all offseason, the team doesn’t look too distracted. They’ve hammered both the New Orleans Pelicans and Oklahoma City Thunder and had a very close loss to the Brooklyn Nets. The supporting cast around Joel Embiid and Tobias Harris have done a wonderful job stepping up on offense so far, but can they do that against a scrappy Knicks team at MSG? It’s a tough choice but I’ll go with the Knicks in a close one.
Michael’s NBA Pick: New York Knicks (-102)
This is one of those matchups where you simply have to pick a side and stick to it. Philadelphia has done precisely what has been expected of them this year, with two wins over lowly teams, and a tight loss to what is arguably a more talented Brooklyn roster, despite being played at home. I still have a few questions about how they deal with the Ben Simmons drama moving forward, but I think they should be fine, as much of the roster seems perfectly fine moving forward without Simmons. The problem is, they’re clearly a better, more balanced team with Simmons. While he can’t shoot, he is still an above average point guard and a great defensive piece to have.
For New York, they opened the year with a double OT win over Boston, before splitting a home and home against a bad Orlando team. Even with an ugly loss against the Magic, I like what I’ve seen from New York so far this season, and with Julius Randle playing at an MVP level early in the year, I think they sneak away with this one at home. The spread is currently sitting with the Knicks gaining a point, and since you can’t win by a half point, go ahead and take the moneyline with slightly better odds.
Noah’s NBA Pick: New York Knicks (-102)
Golden State Warriors @ Oklahoma City Thunder – 8pm EDT
The Golden State Warriors and Oklahoma City Thunder have had polar opposite starts to the season, with the Warriors firing on all cylinders to be 3-0 while the Thunder have struggled and are still searching for their first win. Will the young, inexperienced OKC side be able to match it with Steph Curry and the Warriors tonight?
This is a pretty straightforward pick as the Warriors should be able to win this one comfortably. The Thunder are coming off a 12 point loss to the Sixers, while the Warriors are coming off a 12 point win over the Kings, and Golden State are only laying 9.5 points in this clash.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is the only player of note with the Thunder and he is averaging just 20 points, 4.7 rebounds and 4 assists per game, and has shot 3/19 from deep through the first three games. Josh Giddey, the sixth pick in the 2021 NBA Draft, had an excellent game against the Sixers, putting up 19 points, eight rebounds, seven assists and four steals, but managed just 10 points combined through the first two games, highlighting his youth and inconsistency.
Meanwhile, the Warriors are headed by Steph Curry, who looks back to the form that saw him win back-to-back MVPs. Curry has had a double double in all three games, with one of those being a triple double, all while averaging 31 points and 4.7 threes per game. Sunday’s win over the Kings saw five other players score in double figures, led by Jordan Poole’s 22.
When you contrast the fact that Golden State had six players score in double figures, while the Thunder had just three, and haven’t had more than four in a game, it isn’t hard to see why the Warriors are massive favourites. However, I think the 9.5 points is too little, and I expect Golden State to win and cover.
Tim’s NBA Pick: Golden State Warriors -9.5 (-106)
Two teams finding themselves on the opposite side of the table are facing each other on Monday in Oklahoma. The Golden State Warriors are off to an impressive start to their campaign as they recorded three wins against teams who are not easily defeated in consecutive games – the Lakers, the Clippers, and the Kings. Steph Curry is once again cooking for the Warriors as he has been the top scorer for his team in each of these matches. Although Klay is still out, the team from San Francisco still knows how to get things done.
The Thunder are off to a 0-3 start to the season. Not only that, but they have lost these games by 22 points on average, with most of the deficit coming early in the match. The team will be on the bottom of the table for years to come as they have recently begun their rebuilding mission. Gilgeous-Alexander, Giddey, Bazley, and Dort will be the main players this season and they will need time to get more experience and better physicality. Hence, I will go with the obvious choice for this upcoming fixture – picking the Warriors to cover the spread.
A few years ago, the Golden State Warriors and Oklahoma City Thunder were must watch television. Now, the Oklahoma City are a team that’s in full-blown rebuild mode and the Warriors, while maybe not title contenders, are still an exhilarating team to watch, thanks to Steph Curry.
So far the Thunder have looked like the team many expected them to be: awful. They’re very young and truly invested in the plethora of draft picks they have over the next couple of seasons—with the expectations of competing in 3-5 years being low. They looked better in their first home game against the Philadelphia 76ers, but still lost by double digits. While there’s a chance they could use those positives to push forward, I just don’t have it in me to go against a Golden State team that’s off to an impressive 3-0 start.
Michael’s NBA Pick: Golden State Warriors -9.5 (-106)
Let’s just not overthink this one too much. The Oklahoma City Thunder are absolutely terrible. They’re one of, if not the, youngest team in the NBA and they’ve shown that this season. Even if they play well, there’s a good chance they could lose by double digits in virtually every game they play. That doesn’t somehow change tonight, as they welcome in the Golden State Warriors.
Golden State is sitting undefeated on the season, with a clean sweep through the other three California-based teams, and their unbeaten season won’t end tonight. They look like one of the best teams in the league through the first week, and I don’t expect that to change in this one. Look for Steph to have a big night, going for 30+, but be hesitant on the spread as it sits at Warriors -9.5. Instead, parlay a moneyline and the under, and get what you can out of this one.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Same Game Parlay – Golden State Warriors Win / Under 224 (+136)
Houston Rockets @ Dallas Mavericks – 8:30pm EDT
The Dallas Mavericks play the first of their Texas showdowns this week, hosting the Houston Rockets. While these matchups are typically star-studded, close affairs, the Mavericks have Championship aspirations, while the Rockets are still developing their identity, with #2 pick Jalen Green at the forefront of that.
Given the Warriors are laying 9.5 points to the Thunder, I’m actually surprised to see that the Mavericks are 11-point favourites for this clash. Both sides have just one win so far this season, albeit Dallas have played just two games, compared to Houston’s three.
The Mavericks were outplayed by Atlanta in their opener but managed to bounce back against the Raptors last time out, winning 103-95. However, that isn’t an incredible feat, considering Toronto are without their best player and seem to be in a re-build. Luka Doncic led the way, of course, in that clash, finishing with 27 points, 12 assists and 9 rebounds, but is shooting just 41.5% from the floor and has already coughed up 10 turnovers through the first two games.
Meanwhile, Houston have shown that they are a while away from contending, however they will still be an exciting team this season. Jalen Green broke multiple different records against the Celtics on Sunday, finishing with 30 points and eight triples, despite still being a teenager. That is an incredible achievement, but the fact that they still lost by 10 to an underperforming Boston side says a lot about where they are at right now.
Ultimately, Dallas just wins this game. They are better, more experienced and have higher aspirations. But, I don’t feel comfortable with them giving 11 points to the Rockets. Their moneyline odds aren’t really worth diving into, so instead I’m going to take a punt on Luka Doncic coming to the party and finishing with his first triple double of the season.
Tim’s NBA Pick: To Record A Triple Double – Luka Doncic (+290)
The Houston Rockets is a team that enters the rebuilding stage. After trading James Harden, Chris Paul, PJ Tucker, Russell Westbrook, and Clint Capela, they will need to patiently wait a before they can be title contenders once again. The 19-year-old Jalen Green scored 30 points in their last game against the Boston Celtics which they eventually lost 97-107. Kevin Porter Jr and Christian Wood are other players who will get more time this year. Eric Gordon is probably the most experienced player in the Rockets’ roster as he will be playing his 6th season for the Rockets this year.
The Dallas Mavericks are 1-1 to start off this season after suffering a 26-point defeat to the Hawks and getting the 12-point win against the Raptors. Luka Doncic was 1 rebound away from securing his 1st triple-double for the season. However, with players like Doncic himself, Hardaway Jr., Porzingis, Finney-Smith, a match like the upcoming one shouldn’t be a problem for the Mavs. In addition to that, John Wall is still out indefinitely for the Houston Rockets. Having this in mind, I will definitely try my luck and pick the Dallas Mavericks covering their double-digit spread. I would also recommend looking at the option for a triple-double for Luka Doncic as the matchup against the Rockets seems like a good opportunity.
Denis’ NBA Pick: Dallas Mavericks -11.0 (-110)
Denis’ Bonus NBA Pick: To Record A Triple Double – Luke Doncic (+290)
Luka Dončić finished tonight’s game with a game-high 27 points to go along with 9 rebounds and a game-high 12 assists. It marked his 15th career game finishing either 1 rebound or 1 assist shy of a triple-double. pic.twitter.com/wVd4BKnvd3
— Mavs PR (@MavsPR) October 24, 2021
It’s a battle in the “Lone Star State”, between two of Texas’s three NBA teams. The Dallas Mavericks started out flat in their first game against the Atlanta Hawks. However, they made some nice adjustments and downed the Toronto Raptors thanks to a near triple-double from Luka Doncic and some solid defense, narrowing the Raptors to 90 points at home.
While Houston was one of the league’s worst teams last year, they’ve already provided some early excitement in 2021-22. Sure, they’re 1-2 and both losses have been by double-digits, but they’ve constructed a young core of talent that should provide H-Town some hope for the future. Christian Wood is averaging 22/10 so far and they got a 30-point performance from second overall pick Jalen Green in a loss against the Celtics. That being said, I fully expect Dallas to win their home opener. They’re a team that depends on the three a lot and I’m not sure Houston has enough personnel to prevent them.
Michael’s NBA Pick: Dallas Mavericks -11 (-110)
In this Texas-sized matchup between in-state rivals, Dallas is clearly the better team. They have arguably the best all-around player in the league in Luka Doncic, plus with Kristaps Porzingis and Tim Hardaway Jr. around to pick up some of the slack, despite the ugly opening night loss to Atlanta, I think Dallas is a certain playoff team, and a dark horse to potentially make a deep run.
Meanwhile, Houston is having to rely on a lot of young talent to lead the way, and while they’ve been better than expected so far this season, I’m not sure how sustainable that is in the long term. Expect this one to be a tight, low-scoring affair, as I like both defenses to come out and play well in a game that will look extremely different than most NBA games we see these days. With that in mind, take a risk in this one, and put Luka to dish 10+ assists with the under 220 hitting in a FanDuel Same Game Parlay.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Same Game Parlay – Luka Doncic 10+ Assists / Under 220 (+259)
Los Angeles Lakers @ San Antonio Spurs – 8:30pm EDT
The Los Angeles Lakers finally got their first win of the season but now have to get on the road for the first time, taking on the San Antonio Spurs. Both sides sit at 1-2 through their first three games, but the Spurs have struggled in their last two, both sides that played in the playoffs last season.
I’m expecting the Lakers to continue on with their winning ways here, as the Spurs honestly don’t look like an even matchup here. While they are 1-2 on the season, San Antonio’s win came over Orlando in their opening game, losing to Denver and Milwaukee since then. They have no clear first option on offense, with the roster filled with young players looking to establish themselves in the league.
Meanwhile, the roller-coaster ride that is the Lakers finally managed to win, beating the Grizzlies 121-118 on Sunday. Carmelo Anthony was the big story in that one, catching fire in the fourth quarter to help LA get back in it, and eventually steal the lead. Anthony finished with a team-high 28 points, thanks to six threes and 10/15 shooting from the field.
Where LA will have the edge in this game is the fact that, on top of Anthony’s performance off the bench, the Lakers had 22 points, eight rebounds and four blocks from Anthony Davis, 19 points, six rebounds and six assists from LeBron James and a 13 point, 13 assist night from Russell Westbrook. They have the top-end talent that should blow the Spurs out of the water here, and I am expecting that to happen.
Tim’s NBA Pick: Los Angeles Lakers -4.5 (-110)
The LA Lakers are coming into this game after getting their first win for the 2021/22 NBA season, defeating the Grizzlies at home 121-118. Carmelo Anthony came in clutch for his team, shooting 75% from behind the 3-point line (6/8). Anthony Davis and LeBron James also put up big numbers – 22 points and 19 points respectively, while Russell Westbrook was 3 rebounds away from a triple-double. However, Ja Morant was a monster on the other end, scoring 40 points and adding 10 assists. This only shows the immense effort that the Lakers had to put in winning this game.
The Spurs are still building their team and will most probably miss out on the Playoffs once again this year. Doug McDermott, Keldon Johnson, Lonnie Walker, Derrick White, and Dejounte Murray are all under 30-years of age and a bright future awaits them, but they will need to put in some hard work up until that moment. A team full of superstars against a young team in its early stages. I won’t surprise anybody with my final decision and it is the LA Lakers winning the game.
On Sunday night, the L.A. Lakers finally got their first win of the year against a spry Memphis Grizzlies squad. Now they face a San Antonio Spurs team that also has plenty of young talent, but no true star. Guys like Keldon Johnson and Dejounte Murray feel so close to breaking out into all-star seasons, but neither is considered at that level quite yet. Still this San Antonio team does have plenty of shooters with guys like Doug McDermott and Derrick White and this Lakers team can struggle to defend quick 3-point shooters.
The Lakers have had no issues with LeBron James and Anthony Davis, but Russell Westbrook wasn’t exactly meshing in the first two games. Against Memphis he still couldn’t shoot to save his life, but he distributed 13 assists and was pesky on defense with four steals. Much like last season with the Wizards, I expect Russ to find his place as the year continues. Even though the Spurs have a team that can hit the threes, I expect the Lakers’ pure talent to guide them to victory.
Michael’s NBA Pick: Los Angeles Lakers (-190)
With LA finally getting its first win of the season on Sunday night, in a tightly contested matchup with Memphis, I like them to keep the momentum going in this one. At some point, talent is going to play out and end up leading the way for the Lakers, and I think that’s what we end up seeing in this one. LeBron is still LeBron and AD, as long as he’s healthy, is still a menace. Those two guys could lead the way in this matchup, and not even need Russ, Carmelo, or Dwight, as those guys are just an added bonus.
San Antonio has slowly been making their way back, as they have players that show the potential of being future stars, but aren’t quite there yet (Keldon Johnson, Dejounte Murray, and potentially Lonnie Walker IV). With that youth, I think comes a loss against a more experienced, veteran-led Lakers squad. I think this one remains close, but with the spread sitting relatively low at -4.5, I’m comfortable enough with this one to take the odds on that.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Los Angeles Lakers -4.5 (-110)
Denver Nuggets @ Utah Jazz – 10pm EDT
We round out the night with two teams that got eliminated in last season’s Western Conference Semifinals, the Denver Nuggets and the Utah Jazz. While the Jazz are a perfect 2-0, winning both games by a combined 20 points, the Nuggets, who are 2-1, are coming off an embarrassing 12 point loss to the Cavs, at home, last night.
The Jazz have continued to show just how dominant they can be in the regular season, and what is even better is that they have done it despite a relatively mediocre start from Donovan Mitchell. While he had 27 points against the Kings on Friday, he is yet to shoot better than 36% from the field and has six turnovers compared to just eight assists. Jordan Clarkson has been a big boost off the bench, as per usual, putting up 18 and 15 points through their first two games.
However, they have been good without being great, and I am expecting the Nuggets to bounce back from a poor showing last night. Why I think that they will be able to is the fact that Rudy Gobert always struggles against Nikola Jokic, who has the shooting and passing ability to draw Gobert away from the ring, where he does most of his damage on the defensive end.
Through three games, Jokic has averaged 27.7 points, 16 rebounds, 4 assists, 2.7 steals and 1.33 triples per game, highlighting the versatility that saw him win MVP last season. He does have more turnovers than assists through three games though, which is a worrying sign, but I expect him to get the better of Gobert, which will go a long way to helping Denver keep this close, and potentially win. I’m taking the safe option of Denver with the points, but will be kicking myself when they win straight up.
Tim’s NBA Pick: Denver Nuggets +7.5 (-110)
One of the most intriguing and exciting games is once again upon us as the Jazz hosts the Nuggets in Salt Lake City. Their 2020 opening round Playoff series has been one of the greatest ones in recent years. It all came down the wire in Game 7, when Mike Conley missed a buzzer beater from the 3-point line. Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray were victorious on this day, as Donovan Mitchell had to accept the defeat and wait for the next year to shine once again. However, both teams have been suffering from injuries recently and weren’t 100% ready in the Playoffs last year.
Jamal Murray is still out with a knee injury and will miss the game. Although the Nuggets suffered an upset against the Cavaliers yesterday, I truly believe that they can make up for it with a good performance in Utah. Nikola Jokic will be able to get some help from Will Barton and Michael Porter Jr. Aaron Gordon will be as explosive as he can be and Facundo Campazzo might come up clutch from the 3-point line. My prediction will be mainly based on the fact that this matchup has almost never disappointed the fans in recent years and I will choose the Nuggets to cover the spread.
Denis’ NBA Pick: Denver Nuggets +7.5 (-110)
— utahjazz (@utahjazz) October 24, 2021
In the 2020 bubble, the Denver Nuggets and the Utah Jazz had some unforgettable matchups that ended after an intense first round. Denver ultimately prevailed, coming back from being down 3-1 to win the series. The star of that series wasn’t Nikola Jokic (who’d go on to win the MVP in 2021), but Jamal Murray, who went absolutely berzerk averaging over 31 points per game.
Even though the Nuggets are 2-1, they’re seriously missing Murray, who is recovering from ACL surgery. While Jokic has been brilliant per usual (he almost had a 20/20 game in their loss against Clevleand on Monday), the supporting cast has been less than impressive, particularly Michael Porter Jr., who many expected to step up big in Murray’s absence.
On the other side of the ball, the Utah Jazz are looking to prove that last year’s one-seed wasn’t a fluke. They do want to prove that their second round playoff loss to a Kawhi Leonard-less Clippers team was. So far, the Jazz have continued to look like the complete team they were last year. In their first game they had six players score in double digits. Then against a hungry Sacramento Kings team they got 27 points from Donovan Mitchell and a near 20/20 game from Rudy Gobert (17/20). However, while I expect Utah to continue to excel, I think the Nuggets keep it close.
Michael’s NBA Pick: Denver Nuggets +7.5 (-110)
How do you decide what to make of this Denver team? We’ve seen a lot left to be desired from this Nuggets squad. MVP Nikola Jokic has played well, albeit with some questionable decisions, but the rest of their roster has been lacking, especially in last night’s double-digit loss to Cleveland.
As for Utah, they’ve only played twice so far this year, but looked par for the course in both of those matchups. They were the best team in the regular season last year, and I have no reason to believe that they won’t continue in a similar manner for this regular season, if not into the playoffs. While I think Utah wins, I do think Jazz -7.5 is a touch steep, so I like Denver to cover the spread. I also think in a game that features Rudy Gobert going up against Nikola Jokic, we could see a defense battle down low, so give me the under as well, and get a little bit of extra cash in this one.
Noah’s NBA Pick: Same Game Parlay – Denver Nuggets +7.5/ Under 219.5 (+258)
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*Odds and spreads correct at time of publication, courtesy of FanDuel.