LA Lakers @ Charlotte Hornets
Asking certain teams to cover big spreads can be problematic, but the LA Lakers do look like one of the worst teams in the NBA. The Charlotte Hornets are amongst some of the better teams in the Eastern Conference and Al Jefferson’s return only bolsters their line up.
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The Hornets haven’t been in great form of late, but they did beat the Memphis Grizzlies last time out although that is only the second win in seven games for Charlotte.
Charlotte have also been much better at home when it comes to the Defensive side of the court and that can help them find a way to cruise past the Lakers. A bigger problem for the road team is they might have to do without Kobe Bryant for this game, or at least have him in limited minutes, and many of their games have ended in one sided losses as the talent level is just not up to par.
The Lakers are 0-3 against the spread in games where they are set as the road underdog of between 12.5 and 18 points this season. They are also 2-8 against the spread when facing a team with a winning record on the road and I think Charlotte can cover a big number.
HANDICAP BETTING PICK: Charlotte Hornets -12.5 Points @ 1.92 with Matchbook
Philadelphia 76ers @ Utah Jazz
The Philadelphia 76ers finally won a road game last time out against the Phoenix Suns but they are still considered a big road underdog in their visit to the Utah Jazz.
However, I think the 76ers can be backed again especially if Derrick Favors is sitting for the Jazz and I am not sure Utah deserve to be asked to cover this many points.
The Jazz did blow out Philadelphia earlier this season and two of their last three home games against the 76ers would have seen them cover this spread. However, Utah have just two wins in their last eight which will have sapped some confidence from their play and they have just been struggling with their scoring of late.
Double digits look tough to cover for Utah and I will back the 76ers with the points.
HANDICAP BETTING PICK: Philadelphia 76ers +10.5 Points @ 1.96 with Eastbridge Sports Betting Brokerage
Sacramento Kings @ Golden State Warriors
It is rare that the Sacramento Kings are being given as many points as this on the road, but the situation suggests it might not be enough. The Kings are 2-0 against the spread in the last three seasons when given between 12.5 and 15 points on the road, but they are facing a team that has dominated them.
The Golden State Warriors will play for the first time since Christmas Day and they are a team that are used to these big spreads. They are 11-7 against the spread as the home favourite of between 12.5 and 15 points over the last couple of seasons including going 2-0 this season.
The Warriors have also beaten the Sacramento Kings by at least nineteen points per game in their last four home games against them. With the scoring power they have and Sacramento on a back to back, I have to think Golden State can get unplugged in this one and win going away.
I do think the Kings are a solid line up that will give Golden State some problems, but I fully expect the Warriors to come through and win this by a wide, wide margin.
HANDICAP BETTING PICK: Golden State Warriors -13.5 Points @ 2.00 with Eastbridge Sports Betting Brokerage
Prices correct at time of writing