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NBA Betting News and Notes Friday, Dec. 21

NBA Betting News and Notes Friday, Dec. 21

Game of the day: Bulls at Knicks

Chicago Bulls at New York Knicks (-6.5, 188.5)

The New York Knicks have received plenty of deserved praise for their hot start while the Chicago Bulls have quietly been lurking around the top of the Central Division, staking their claim as one of the better teams in the Eastern Conference even without Derrick Rose. The Bulls will try to gain some recognition when they visit the Knicks on Friday. Chicago beat New York at home on Dec. 8 and has won six of its last eight games overall.

The Knicks trounced the Brooklyn Nets at home on Wednesday to gain a leg up on the city rivalry while maintaining their spot as the top team in the East. Carmelo Anthony returned from a two-game absence and scored 31 points in the victory. Anthony sat out the 93-85 loss at the Bulls earlier this month due to a finger injury and New York struggled to find any offense while shooting 32.1 percent. Chicago has been taking a lot of teams out of their rhythm lately and ranks second in the league in points allowed (90.3).

ABOUT THE BULLS (14-10, 9-15 ATS): Chicago is still lacking a go-to-scorer with Rose on the shelf but has gotten strong play from the likes of Joakim Noah and Carlos Boozer. Noah recorded his first career triple-double in a home win over the Boston Celtics on Tuesday and Boozer and Luol Deng each scored 21 points. The Bulls have gotten sparks on offense from Nate Robinson and Marco Belinelli as well, but still win with their defense. Chicago has allowed only one of its last 14 opponents to reach 100 points, and that was in a 108-104 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Dec. 7. Of course, they bounced back from that performance by stifling the Knicks. Deng and Belinelli scored 22 points apiece while Noah and Boozer each recorded double-doubles in that win.

ABOUT THE KNICKS (19-6, 15-10 ATS): With Anthony sidelined, Raymond Felton ended up as the focal point of the offense in Chicago and ended up taking 30 shots (connecting on nine). New York featured a more balanced attack earlier this week without Anthony but was glad to have its MVP candidate back on Wednesday. He went 12-of-22 from the field and did not appear limited in 36 minutes of a 100-86 triumph. The Knicks have gone 5-1 since that loss in Chicago, reaching the century mark in each victory. One benefit of Anthony’s recent absence was to Chris Copeland, who got the bulk of the playing time and proved he belonged. Back to the bench Wednesday, Copeland provided a spark with eight points and could be a nice complement to J.R. Smith on the second unit.


* Home team is 4-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings.
* Under is 7-3 in the last 10 meetings in New York.
* Bulls are 2-5 ATS in the last 7 meetings in New York.
* Underdog is 4-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings.


1. Anthony is averaging 26.1 points and 6.4 rebounds in 21 career games against the Bulls.

2. Robinson, who spent his first 4 1/2 seasons with the Knicks, hit a season-high five 3-pointers on Tuesday and is shooting 48 percent from beyond the arc in his last six games.

3. Smith has scored at least 15 points in each of the last seven games for New York.

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Re: NBA Betting News and Notes Friday, Dec. 21

Friday Tips
By Kevin Rogers

The ten-pack of NBA games on the Friday card provides six contests involving Eastern Conference squads, while the night concludes with a pair of games in California. The Clippers go for their 12th consecutive win against the Kings to finish the night, but the action begins in Philadelphia with the 76ers looking to get back on track.

Hawks at 76ers

Philadelphia has dropped five straight games, while playing the last four contests without point guard Jrue Holiday. The former first round pick is banged up with a foot injury, as the Sixers have failed to cover in all five defeats. The Hawks head to the City of Brotherly Love attempting to bounce back from Wednesday's home setback to the red-hot Thunder.

A majority of Atlanta's damage has been done within the Southeast Division as eight of its 15 victories are against Orlando, Charlotte, and Washington. Larry Drew's club owns a solid 7-3 SU and 6-4 ATS away from Philips Arena, including a 3-1 SU/ATS mark in the favorite role. The Hawks shot just 38% from the floor in a 100-92 loss to the Thunder as 5½-point underdogs, while allowing a combined 58 points to Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.

The Sixers' defense is falling apart at the seams recently, allowing at least 100 points in each of the last three games, including a 125-spot at Houston on Wednesday. Philadelphia has hit the 'over' in seven of the past nine contests, as well as nine consecutive 'overs' at the Wells Fargo Center. Since November 21, the Sixers have put together a dreadful 4-11 ATS record, including a 2-6 ATS mark at home.

Bulls at Knicks

New York bounced back from its first home loss of the season to drub Brooklyn on Wednesday, 100-86 as six-point favorites. The Knicks match up with the Bulls for the second time in less than two weeks after Chicago won at the United Center, 93-85 on December 8. The Bulls cashed as 2 ½-point 'dogs, but the Knicks played without leading scorer Carmelo Anthony that night.

Anthony returned from a two-game hiatus on Wednesday to burn the rival Nets for 31 points, while the Knicks held Brooklyn to just 38 second half points. New York owns an 11-1 SU and 9-3 ATS record at Madison Square Garden this season, while allowing 100 points or more in four of the last five home contests.

Chicago has not been a great ATS team this season at 9-15 ATS, but six of those covers have come away from the Windy City. The Bulls continue a tough week against solid defenses after facing Memphis and Boston, but Chicago managed an 11-point victory over the Celtics with no rest on Tuesday. This series has been owned by the Bulls, who have won five of the last six meetings with the only loss coming in overtime last season.

Bucks at Celtics

Milwaukee and Boston are already hooking up for the fourth time in two months, as the Bucks have taken two of the first three matchups. All three meetings finished 'under' the total, as Friday's total of 191 ½ is the lowest in the four contests this season. Boston has struggled recently against the number, but grabbed a home victory over Cleveland on Wednesday.

The Celtics managed a cover as nine-point favorites, 102-91, snapping a four-game ATS skid. Doc Rivers' club is riding a five-game winning streak at TD Garden, while covering four times in this span, including four double-digit victories. In the first home matchup against the Bucks this season, Boston fell to Milwaukee, 99-88, as the Bucks easily cashed as 7 ½-point road 'dogs.

The Bucks couldn't solve the Memphis' defense in a 90-80 loss at FedEx Forum on Wednesday, as Monta Ellis and Brandon Jennings combined to shoot 10-of-40 from the floor. Milwaukee has been a profitable team as a road underdog this season by cashing five of eight times, but the Bucks are just 1-3 ATS the last four times in this role.

Kings at Clippers

Following Oklahoma City's loss at Minnesota on Thursday, the Clippers are now the hottest team in basketball with 11 straight victories. Los Angeles is coming off a 93-77 rout of New Orleans to cash the 'under' for the fifth time in six games. The Kings head to Staples Center seeking just their second road win in 12 tries.

Sacramento picked up one of its most solid victories on the season by outlasting Golden State on Wednesday, 131-127 to cash outright as three-point home 'dogs. The win snapped a five-game skid for Keith Smart's team, while the Kings broke the 100-point mark for only the second time in the last eight contests.

In the previous meeting between these Pacific Divison rivals in early December, the Clips ran out the Kings from start to finish, 116-81 to easily cover as 12 ½-point favorites. Sacramento played without shooting guard Tyreke Evans in that loss, as the former lottery pick has missed each of the last two games with knee soreness. Seven of the last eight matchups have gone to Los Angeles, including four straight victories by the Clips at Staples Center.

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Re: NBA Betting News and Notes Friday, Dec. 21

NBA Point Spreads and Trends
By: The Linemakers

There are 10 games on Friday night’s NBA schedule, the Bulls at the Knicks among the highlights. Here’s a look at trends and odds for the entire card. The lines below are from the LVH SuperBook as of about 8:30 a.m. PT Friday morning.

NBA trends:

* While the Magic have covered their last four road games, the Raptors have covered their last seven games at home. The UNDER has occurred in 11 of the past 13 Raptors’ home games against teams with a losing road record. Toronto is the 3.5-point home favorite tonight, and the total is 187.5.

* The Hawks have covered 12 of their past 15 road games against teams with a winning home record. The 76ers have covered the number in six of their last seven Friday games. The Hawks and 76ers have gone OVER the total in six of their last seven meetings. Atlanta is laying 2 in Philly, with a total of 189.

* The Bulls have covered four of their past five road games. The Knicks have covered seven of their last nine home games against teams with a winning road record. The Bulls have gone UNDER the total in their last seven games when playing with two-days’ rest. New York is -6.5, and the total is 188.

* The Bucks have covered the spread in their past five games against Eastern Conference teams. The Celtics are 4-1 ATS in their last five home games. The Bucks and Celtics have gone UNDER the total in their last five meetings. Boston is a 5-point favorite at home tonight, the total is 191.5.

* The Pacers have covered seven of their last eight games against teams with a losing record. The home team has covered the last four meetings between the Pacers and Cavs. Indiana is laying 3 in Cleveland tonight.

* The Wizards have covered their past four road games against teams with a losing home record. They have also gone UNDER the total in their past four road games overall. Washington is a 6-point dog in Detroit tonight, with a total of 185.

* The Grizzlies have covered nine of their past 11 games when playing with one-day’s rest. The Grizzlies have gone UNDER the total in seven of their last eight games following a game in which they covered. Memphis is laying 10.5 at home vs. the Mavs, and the total is 188.5.

* The Hornets have covered 12 of their past 15 games coming off a loss of 10-points or more. The Spurs have covered their past seven Friday games. The Spurs and Hornets have gone UNDER the total in four of their past five meetings in San Antonio. New Orleans is a 14-point dog in San Antonio, the total is 195.

* The Warriors have gone 6-1 ATS in their last seven games following a game in which they failed to cover the number. The Bobcats and Warriors have gone OVER the total in their last six meetings at Golden State. The Warrior are a 10.5-point favorite at home, and the total is 204.5.

* The Kings have covered four of their past five games against teams with a winning record. The Clippers have covered 11 of their last 12 games following a win of 10 points or more. The favorite has covered the last four meetings between the Kings and Clippers. L.A. is tonight’s 14-point favorite.

NBA injuries:

* Magic forward Glen Davis (shoulder) is OUT for 4-6 weeks.

* Raptors forward Andrea Bargnani (elbow) has missed five straight games and is OUT again tonight.

* Raptors guard Kyle Lowry (tricep) has missed five straight games and is OUT again tonight.

* 76ers guard Jrue Holiday (foot) is probable.

* Cavs forward Anderson Varejao (knee) missed Cleveland’s last game and is questionable.

* Mavericks forward Elton Brand (groin) missed Dallas’ last game and is questionable.

* Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard (knee), after being out since mid November, is probable tonight.

* Kings guard Tyreke Evans (knee) missed Sacramento’s last game and is questionable.

* Kings guard Francisco Garcia (back) is questionable tonight.

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