NBA Betting Guide for 12/28/20: A Pair of Over/Unders Are Too High
Betting on the NBA can get a little overwhelming throughout the season because there are games virtually every day, and there’s just a lot to track throughout the season and entering every night — spreads, over/unders, injuries, and so on.
But you can rely on numberFire to help. We have a detailed betting algorithm that projects out games to see how often certain betting lines hit, and our oddsFire section of the site allows you to track movement in those lines and see where the action is coming from on particular games.
Memphis Grizzlies at Brooklyn Nets
That puts the expected point differentials here at +5.9 for the Nets and -1.8 for the Grizzlies, a split of around 7.7 points. The line is 6.5 points in favor of the Nets, and our algorithm does see the Grizzlies covering the spread 61.5% of the time. It’s rated as a one-star bet.
This goes against the betting trends, which heavily favor the Nets to cover the spread (85% of the bets and 82% of the money).
There’s more harmony on the under at 233.5. Our projections saw the under (at 232.0, actually) hit 64.2% of the time. The game was under 233.5 points in 58.6% of simulations in my model. And lastly, 66% of the bets and 77% of the money is on the under, via oddsFire.
Utah Jazz at Oklahoma City Thunder
The over/under in this game opened at 221.0 points but is now down to 218.0, and it’s because of a big gap in the money (66%) and the tickets (40%) on the under. So the line isn’t quite as good as it was, but shop around (which is easy to do with oddsFire).
Our projected point total here is just 210.9 points, giving us breathing room on the under. Both teams are bottom-eight in adjusted pace since the start of last season. The Utah Jazz are 10th in expected offensive rating early on this season, but the Oklahoma City Thunder are just 24th (and 4th in expected defensive rating). The Jazz are 12th in expected defensive rating, so with the slow paces, the good defenses, and at least one questionable offense, it makes sense why the under is getting love.
Houston Rockets at Denver Nuggets
This game is interesting because the Houston Rockets are really depleted with John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins, and Eric Gordon out due to COVID-19 protocols. Further, both teams are winless (the Rockets are 0-1, and the Denver Nuggets are 0-2).
And they weirdly have drastically different splits in terms of expected net rating. The Nuggets have an expected net rating of -8.2 through two games. That ranks them 22nd in the NBA. They are 29th in rebounding rate and just 16th in effective field goal percentage. That’s a far cry from what this team can be at their best. Of course, their first loss was by just two points to the Sacramento Kings, but they were drubbed by 13 by the Los Angeles Clippers on Christmas Day.
The Rockets, meanwhile, lost by two points to the Portland Trail Blazers in their only game to date. This is despite a positive net rating (+0.3) and an estimated net rating of +6.5 points, good for ninth in the NBA. The point here is that they were good even when depleted in their opener, and the Nuggets haven’t been flawless by any means.
The betting trends like the Rockets to cover the spread — barely (55% of the tickets and 52% of the money). Our algorithm puts that at a 64.1% probability. There’s heavy action on the Nuggets to win outright, but there are reasons to like the Rockets plus the points.