NBA Betting News and Notes Friday, April 12

NBA Betting News and Notes Friday, April 12

Celtics at Heat: What Bettors Need to Know
By Covers.com

Boston Celtics at Miami Heat (-7, 192)

It won’t be like the typical battles between the Miami Heat and the Boston Celtics, but there will still be something on the line for one team when the Celtics visit the Heat on Friday. Miami has been resting players liberally since the end of its 27-game winning streak and has even less incentive to push its starters now that the top overall record in the NBA is locked up. Boston is still fighting over seeding at the bottom of the East.

The Heat sat Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Udonis Haslem on Wednesday and still earned a 103-98 win at Washington to wrap up the best record in franchise history. The Celtics, who beat the Heat on Jan. 27 and nearly derailed their winning streak with a 105-103 loss on March 18, are one of the few teams capable of giving Miami problems at full strength. Boston owns a three-game lead over the Milwaukee Bucks for the No. 7 spot in the East with four games remaining, and is comfortable enough with that lead that both Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce are expected to sit out on Friday.

ABOUT THE CELTICS (40-38): Boston has not exactly been lighting the world on fire down the stretch but has benefited from a similar swoon by the Bucks and will likely avoid having to open the playoffs at Miami. The Celtics have dropped nine of their past 13 while Garnett has dealt with an ankle injury and Pierce has been banged up. Garnett returned from an eight-game absence to play in the last two but will be used just enough down the stretch to keep his stamina up for the start of the playoffs. Pierce, who has dealt with his own ankle issues, is being used the same way. The two were both on the floor Wednesday, when Boston tested itself against another East playoff team and came out on the wrong end of a 101-93 decision at home to the Brooklyn Nets. Pierce scored 23 points but Garnett and Jeff Green were each held to 11 in the setback.

ABOUT THE HEAT (62-16): Miami has posted the best record in franchise history, the top overall record in the NBA and long ago clinched the Eastern Conference. With nothing else left in the regular season, James and Bosh are officially listed as day-to-day. Wade, who has missed the last six games due to knee soreness, does expect to play limited minutes as he attempts to get back up to game speed. The Heat have stacked their roster with strong veterans over the last two seasons and have been able to win four straight and six of the last seven while relying on the likes of Rashard Lewis, Shane Battier, Ray Allen and Mike Miller. Allen took the lead with 23 points in Wednesday’s win at Washington and Lewis has scored in double figures in three of the last four after barely cracking the rotation for the last four months.

TRENDS:

* Celtics are 1-7 ATS in their last eight road games.
* Heat are 4-0 ATS in their last four games overall.
* Over is 4-0 in the last four meetings.
* Over is 6-1 in Heat’s last seven vs. a team with a winning record.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Wade collected 16 points, seven rebounds and six assists in Miami’s win at Boston on March 18.

2. The Heat will play three of their final four games at home, with the lone trip another return to Cleveland for James on Monday.

3. Boston is 13-25 on the road and will play three of its last four away from TD Garden.

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Re: NBA Betting News and Notes Friday, April 12

NBA Sports Odds and Preview Capsules
Atssportsline.com

The NBA regular season is nearing the end as this is the last big Friday before the playoffs begin next Saturday. There will be no NBA games next Thursday and Friday. There is a full schedule tonight with some meaningful games while other teams are either locked in their seed or completely out of it. In the West, the Lakers are trying to hold on the eighth seed with Utah one game back. Take a look at some of the betting tips below for the NBA's top games on Friday. Looking for winners for the NBA regular season, playoffs and baseball? Go to ATS Sportsline. We have all your basketball betting statistics, matchups and odds.

Memphis (53-25 SU, 43-33-2 ATS, 30-47-1 O/U) at Houston (44-34 SU, 40-37-1 ATS, 39-39 O/U)


Intangibles:
Memphis is 20-7 SU since the All-Star break
Houston will likely be without forward Chandler Parsons due to a calf injury
Houston has won 13 straight home games in this series

Last game: (3/29/13) Memphis (-4.5) over Houston, 103-94.

Keys to Success: The Grizzlies have four games left and are fifth in the conference because they are four games behind San Antonio in the Southwest Division. They are one game behind Denver, who also has four games left. The Grizzlies are playing very well, having won six of their last seven and are 22-17 SU on the road. Houston is 28-11 SU at home this year and has won five of their last six. They've played their last four without Chandler Parsons (calf), but Greg Smith (6-10, 250) has stepped up, while they've gone with a three-guard lineup. Memphis will try and use Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol inside to bully the Rockets. Houston is currently in seventh place in the West, just a 1/2 game behind Golden State.

Memphis is coming off a 94-75 win over Charlotte at home on Tuesday, giving 13.5. Houston beat Phoenix at home on Tuesday, 101-98, but didn't cover the 14.5. Houston is 6-1 ATS last 7 at home in series. NBA Odds: Houston is a 2.5-point betting odds favorite. Total: 193.


Golden State (45-34 SU, 39-39-1 ATS, 45-33-1 O/U) at Los Angeles (42-37 SU, 32-45-2 ATS, 41-37-1 O/U)


Intangibles:
The Lakers are one game up on the Jazz for the final playoff spot in the West
Golden State center Andrew Bogut (ankle) was injured on Thursday and is listed as doubtful
Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard are complaining about their lack of inside touches

Last game: (3/25/13) Golden State (-1) over Los Angeles Lakers, 109-103.

Keys to Success: Kobe Bryant poured in 47 points against Portland on Wednesday but his teammates aren't thrilled. What else is new? Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol were probably not great fits with Bryant and not having Steve Nash (hip) the last five games hasn't helped. Nash is questionable tonight in a must-win game for the Lakers. Golden State is coming off a blowout loss to Oklahoma City last night and they risk slipping to seventh place in the West if they lose and Houston wins. The Warriors will have to play small ball tonight with Bogut likely out again due to an ankle injury. Stephen Curry will need a big game to lift the Warriors.

Golden State is coming off a 116-97 loss on Thursday to Oklahoma City, getting 4 at home. The Lakers has won two straight and five of six. On Wednesday, they beat Portland on the road, 113-106, giving 6.5.  Golden State is 0-4 ATS last 4 on Friday games. Pro Hoops Odds: The Lakers are a 6.5-point betting odds favorite. Total: 206.0.

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Re: NBA Betting News and Notes Friday, April 12

Friday's NBA Betting Notes
By Covers.com

Chicago Bulls at Toronto Raptors (-3, 188.5)

The Bulls have shown they can play with - and beat - the league's elite teams, but it's been a different story when matching up with the lower-echelon squads. Chicago has lost to Washington, Detroit and Toronto this month while beating Orlando by only one point. This will be the second matchup in four days between the teams, with Toronto squeezing out a three-point win at Chicago on Tuesday. The Bulls are 1-6 ATS in the last seven meetings.

Philadelphia 76ers at Washington Wizards (-5.5, 192)

The 76ers have dropped three straight by an average of 21 points. Neither team had a player score more than 16 points in their previous meeting, a 90-87 Washington win on March 3 at the Verizon Center. The under is 4-0 in the last four meetings.

Brooklyn Nets at Indiana Pacers (-5.5, 186.5)

The Indiana Pacers attempt to clinch the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference when they host the fourth-place Brooklyn Nets on Friday. Brooklyn is the only team still chasing the Pacers for the third seed in the East and the Pacers have a three-game cushion. Indiana is two games behind second-place New York and visits the Knicks on Sunday. The Nets have won three straight as they play the second contest of a three-game trip. Brooklyn has emerged victorious in each of the last three meetings after Indiana won the previous 10 matchups. The Nets are 5-0 ATS in the last five meetings.

Milwaukee Bucks at Atlanta Hawks (-7, 201)

Milwaukee has lost two straight and nine of 12, and the Hawks have played a role by handing Milwaukee two defeats in the past four weeks. The Bucks are likely to be shorthanded with starters Brandon Jennings (Achilles), Larry Sanders (back) and Ersan Ilyasova (illness) all listed as questionable.  Milwaukee is Bucks 0-7 ATS in its last seven road games.

Boston Celtics at Miami Heat (-12.5, 194)

Click here for a comprehensive betting preview for this game.

Charlotte Bobcats at Detroit Pistons (-7.5, 197.5)

The Detroit Pistons have notched back-to-back victories for the first time in two months as they host the road-challenged Charlotte Bobcats on Friday. Detroit defeated the Chicago Bulls and Cleveland Cavaliers in its last two outings to win consecutive games for the first time since Feb. 8-9. Charlotte has lost 13 consecutive road games and is 6-34 away from home. The Bobcats have dropped eight of their last 10 overall contests. Detroit has won seven of the past eight meetings and is 5-0-1 ATS in its last six overall.

New York Knicks at Cleveland Cavaliers (+4.5, 206)

The New York Knicks had their 13-game winning streak snapped in Chicago on Thursday. The Knicks have won four of the last five meetings with Cleveland, including both this season by a total of six points. The Cavaliers have played poorly over the past month, dropping 12 of 14, and are coming off a home loss to the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday. New York is 7-1 ATS in its last 8 road games.

Los Angeles Clippers at New Orleans Hornets (+9, 192)

The Clippers play three of their final four on the road, beginning with a Hornets team that may be without standout rookie Anthony Davis, who left Wednesday's loss to Sacramento with a sprained knee. The Hornets won the first meeting but Los Angeles has taken the next two by an average of 15 points. The Clippers are 7-1 ATS in their last eight games vs. a team with a winning percentage below .400.

Memphis Grizzlies at Houston Rockets (-2.5, 194)

Houston has won 13 straight home games against the Grizzlies, including a 121-96 victory on Dec. 22. The Grizzlies answered with a nine-point win in Memphis on March 29. However, Memphis is 20-7 since the All-Star break, and they moved a franchise-best 28 games above .500 with a 94-75 win over Charlotte on Tuesday. The under is 6-0 in the Grizzlies’ last six overall.

Denver Nuggets at Dallas Mavericks (+3, 206)

The Denver Nuggets will try to set a franchise record with their 55th win when they travel to Dallas to face the Mavericks on Friday. Denver already is headed to the Western Conference playoffs but is trying to lock down the No. 3 seed. The Nuggets are one game ahead of fifth-place Memphis with four to play. The Nuggets are 7-3 at Dallas over the past five seasons after going 1-18 the previous 11 campaigns. The road team is 9-1 ATS in the last 10 meetings.

Sacramento Kings at San Antonio Spurs (-12.5, 207)

Tony Parker (neck) could be back in the lineup when the Spurs host the Sacramento Kings on Friday. While Parker is planning on a return, Manu Ginobili is still out until the playoffs and San Antonio has never been afraid to rest players. The Spurs have taken five straight in the series by an average of 14.6 points, including a 130-102 triumph in San Antonio on March 1.

Minnesota Timberwolves at Utah Jazz (-8.5, 196.5)

The Jazz have fallen a game behind the Los Angeles Lakers for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference as they enter their final three games of the campaign. Utah is 2-0 against Minnesota this season, including a 106-84 home win on Jan. 2. The T-Wolves have dropped six straight visits to Utah and 12 of their last 14. Minnesota is 0-6 ATS in the last six meetings.

Oklahoma City Thunder at Portland Trail Blazers (+10, 204.5)

The Thunder have won six in a row against Portland, including all three meetings this season. The Trail Blazers started four rookies for the first time in franchise history on Wednesday, when they lost 113-106 to the Lakers. Portland has dropped six consecutive home games, tying the franchise record. Five of the last six games played at the Rose Garden between the two teams have been decided by single digits.

Golden State Warriors at Los Angeles Lakers (-7.5, 206)

The Warriors are playing the second night of a back-to-back after falling at home to the Oklahoma City Thunder on Thursday. Golden State has already clinched its playoff spot but is still trying to lock up the No. 6 seed. The Lakers took the first two meetings this season but fell at Golden State 109-103 on March 25. The Warriors are 5-0 ATS in their last five games following a loss.

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Re: NBA Betting News and Notes Friday, April 12

Inside the Paint - Friday
By Chris David
VegasInsider.com

Brooklyn at Indiana: VI handicapper Jimmy Boyd gets us started with his betting thoughts. “In the last game between these teams the Pacers shot 34.4% from the field and 22.7% on three point attempts. That anomaly is very unlikely to take place again since the Pacers have averaged 43.6% shooting at home and the Brooklyn defense is not overly talented. You should always play on home favorites of 3.5 to 9.5 points like the Pacers when they are playing in a double revenge situation following two straight losses to their opponent when that same opponent is coming off an upset win over a division rival. This system is 44-17 (72%) ATS. The Pacers have are solid from their home court sitting on a 30-9 straight up record. They are playing with an extra day of rest over the Nets in today’s game and this late in the season that is a big advantage,” said Boyd.

Philadelphia at Washington: The Wizards are laying 5½-points to the 76ers and our friends at Doc’s Sports are leaning to the home team. They explained. “We took the Wizards with our pick last time out against Miami and lost to a Heat club without The Big Three. Washington had an off game but this team had won five straight at the Verizon Center before that game and they are one of the best home team ATS clubs in the NBA at 25-14-1. This team seems to want to play hard to end the season and finish it off on a high note.” The home team has won and covered the first two meetings this season and the ‘under’ cashed in each contest.

Chicago at Toronto: Possible letdown spot for the Bulls, who just snapped the Knicks’ 13-game winning streak last night at home. Toronto is favored, which tells you something, but I might lean with the visitors. The Bulls have gone 10-7 SU and 9-8 ATS on zero days rest this season. However, they are 6-1 SU and 5-2 ATS in the last seven back-to-back spots. Also, Toronto just beat Chicago 101-98 at the United Center on Tuesday and they haven’t played since. Plus, if you follow my ITP columns, then you’ll know that I like to fade teams in their first home game after a road trip of three or more games and that angle applies here.

Milwaukee at Atlanta: It’s hard to back the Hawks (1-3) or Bucks (1-4) when you look at their current form but VegasInsider.com handicapper Marc Lawrence has some solid trends on the road underdog. “When the Bucks battle the Hawks in Atlanta on Friday evening, Milwaukee will take the floor with same season triple-revenge on their minds from three losses laid on them this season by the Hawks. That sets the table for tonight's fray, as the Bucks are 3-0 ATS with same season triple-revenge off a pair of losses versus a foe off a win.  In fact, Milwaukee is 10-1 ATS in this series when playing off a pair of losses, the last by 11 or more points, in games in which Atlanta owns a win percentage of .560 or less on the season,” said Lawrence. 

Boston at Miami: The Celtics’ Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett will both miss tonight’s game with ankle injuries. Meanwhile, Chris Bosh (knee) and LeBron James (hamstring) have been upgraded to ‘probable’ for the Heat and Dwyane Wade is expected to return as well. Miami opened as a two-touchdown (-14) favorite and the number quickly dropped to 12. Despite the sharp money, I don’t believe this game should warrant any of your attention. I'd look 'under' 194 if anything.

New York at Cleveland: Possible letdown for the Knicks after losing at Chicago last night and fatigue could be a factor as well. Keep in mind that Knicks have gone 11-6 both SU and ATS on no rest this season and they’ve won and covered their last four back-to-back battles. You should get a good effort from Cleveland as it closes the season at home with the Knicks and Heat. If you do decide to grab the points with the Cavaliers, then you better hope they make shots because their defense is horrendous.

Charlotte at Detroit: This matchup has “Roll the ball out” feel to it, which should create a shootout tempo from The Palace. The Pistons have gone ‘over’ in their last three games against non-playoff teams and tonight’s total was already pushed from 196½ to 198. Detroit is listed as a 7½-point favorite, which is the highest number they’ve given all season. Hard to back either team here but I would lean ‘over’ and hope the ‘Cats can hit their outside shots.

Memphis at Houston: The two teams are already in the playoffs and both can still improve their position. The Rockets are listed as short favorites (2.5) over the Grizzlies and be aware that the home team has won 10 straight (9-1 ATS) in this series.

L.A. Clippers at New Orleans: Los Angeles is one game behind the Grizzlies for home-court advantage in the first round and it will play at Memphis tomorrow night. With that being said, this is a must-win spot for the Clippers and the line reflects that (Los Angeles -9) . Point guard Greivis Vasquez (ankle) will miss tonight’s game for the Hornets and rookie Anthony Davis (knee) has been ruled ‘out’ for the remainder of the regular season. The Clippers-Over parlay has cashed in three straight games.

Denver at Dallas: The Mavericks have been eliminated from the playoffs and the Nuggets are two wins away from locking up the No. 3 seed. Looking at the schedule, Denver finishes with home games against Portland and Phoenix with a road trip to Milwaukee between those games. I wouldn’t lay the three points here with a banged-up Nuggets squad, especially against a Dallas team that should play hard after its embarrassing loss to Phoenix (91-102) at home on Wednesday.

Sacramento at San Antonio:
Would you rather play the Lakers in the first round or have an opportunity to meet the Warriors or Rockets? That’s what the Spurs are asking themselves and the answer is obvious to me. It looks like San Antonio already conceded the No. 1 spot to Oklahoma City and will more than likely play one of the aforementioned clubs. With that being said, do you lay more than a dozen points tonight at home against an erratic Kings squad?

Minnesota at Utah: The Jazz have won and covered both meetings against the Timberwolves this season and they’re expected to sweep the head-to-head series tonight. Utah is listed as an 8½-point favorite, which is inflated due to the playoff implications. The Jazz have notched six straight wins (6-0 ATS) against the Wolves at Salt Lake City and four of the victories were by double digits. These two teams will meet again on Monday from Minnesota.

Oklahoma City at Portland: I would never suggest laying double-digits on the road but Oklahoma City (-10) has been a serious bully lately. The Thunder are 8-2 SU and 7-3 ATS in their last 10 and all but one of the wins came by 10 points or more, the other by eight. OKC needs to win out to earn the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference and a loss here seems very unlikely. Portland has lost nine straight (1-8 ATS), which includes six straight losses at the Rose Garden. Plus, the Trail Blazers just left it all on the floor Wednesday in their setback to the Lakers (106-113). You could be hesitant to back OKC since it played last night at Golden State and you should be. The Thunder are 8-5 SU and 7-6 ATS in back-to-back spots this season, and their just 3-5 SU and 4-4 ATS in the last eight situations.

Golden State at L.A. Lakers: The betting public is backing the “Purple and Gold” tonight and veteran handicapper Stephen Nover believes the Lakers have turned the corner. He said, “Los Angeles has won five of its last six and it knows that it can't let up here. The Lakers have a one-game lead on the Jazz with three games left in the regular season. The Warriors have failed to cover in 11 of their last 14 road games. They are 7-19 ATS the past 26 times facing an opponent with a winning record and now are playing without rest. Los Angeles has beaten the Warriors 18 of the past 20 times, including winning the last nine times at Staples Center.” The number on this game opened at six and has jumped to 7½ at most books. The Warriors haven’t been a great bet when playing on no rest lately, going 2-5 SU and 3-4 ATS in the last seven spots and the two wins came against the listless Hornets and Suns.

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