Free Picks: Service Plays for Sunday, January 12

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SPORTS WAGERSFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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CAROLINA +105 over San FranciscoFREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Line opened with the 49ers being favored by 2½ points and it’s come down since, although the public is still leaning to the Niners. This is a replay of week 10 when the Panthers won 10-9 in San Francisco. But even the Vegas line doesn't believe that week 10 means that much coming into this one with the 49ers sporting an improved team and the Panthers showing up as a newbie to the post season. San Fran doesn’t need much of an introduction. We all know who they are and it’s worth noting that Michael Crabtree didn’t play in the first game and his importance can’t be overstated enough. Crabtree is a game changer.
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Carolina hasn’t really won over the public yet but that and that’s because they don’t get the exposure of these other big name teams that seem to show up on prime time games every week. Teams like Seattle, San Fran, New Orleans, New England, Denver, Dallas and Philadelphia are constantly in the limelight while not many are watching Panthers games. In fact, when the Panthers did show in prime time back on Sunday night in Week 14, they were buried by the Saints, 31-14. That was the Panthers only loss in their past 12 games. Carolina also went 7-1 at home with only loss occurring on opening day when the Seahawks defeated them, 12-7. Furthermore, teams with a bye in the first round of the playoffs went 2-0 yesterday. The 49ers traveled to Green Bay last week and played a physical game in frigid temperatures. Those games in extreme cold temperatures take a much bigger toll than playing in normal conditions and these aren’t the Packers on defense. Carolina's defense ranks sixth against the pass and second overall. That's a significant difference than facing Green Bay. The 49ers' Colin Kaepernick was sacked four times by Carolina's four-man pass rush, and six times total in the first game between these teams. Most importantly, when the public is leaning one way and the line is moving the other way, it’s a big warning flag that should not be ignored.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Sunday, January 12

SPORTS WAGERSFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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New Jersey +121 over TORONTOFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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OT included. There is no reason whatsoever to stop fading the Maple Leafs. Toronto has dropped four straight and has been outscored over that stretch by a count of 21-7. In their last two home games, the Leafs have been outscored by a count of 12-4. Over their past 24 games, the Maple Leafs have two regulation wins and that is the worst mark over that span in the NHL. There is no turnaround coming either. From poor defense to forwards not back-checking, to being badly outshot almost every game, to Randy Carlyle being on the hot seat, the Maple Leafs have turned into a tentative team that is playing scared and being at home right now is not beneficial. To make matters worse, Toronto will face a Devils team that has allowed the least amount of scoring chances and shots on net in the NHL.
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The Devils figure to be sky high for this game for a couple of reasons. First, they are tied with the Leafs with 47 points and could move further up the standings into eighth place with a win here. More importantly, New Jersey has lost five in a row to the Maple Leafs and this is an outstanding opportunity to get that proverbial monkey off its back. The Devils have outshot the Maple Leafs 125-78 over their past four meetings and lost them all. This time around, however, Cory Schneider will make his third straight start after winning his last two and allowing just one goal against combined. Schneider played last night against Florida and he played in Thursday’s 1-0 win over Dallas. The Devils are so determined to win here that they are sticking with Schneider despite him playing three games in four days. In the second game of back-to-back games this season, the Devils are 9-3. In the second game of back-to-backs after winning the first one the Devils are 3-0. These two are going in opposite directions right now and it isn’t likely to stop here.

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NORTHWESTERN +5½ over IllinoisSERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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The Illini are ranked for the 1st time this year at #23 and one of our favorite angles over the years is to fade overpriced teams when they make the polls for the first time. Spotting points with ranked teams on the road against unranked opposition has been a bankroll killer for years. Illinois’ 13-3 record is all smoke and mirrors when you consider these rankings on the Illini:
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-184th in points per gameFREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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-101st in reboundingFREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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-316th in assistsFREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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-252 in FG %FOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Illinois is 1-3 in road games with only win occurring against UNLV by 2 points. Outside of a 1-point win over Mizzou, Illinois has defeated a bunch of marshmallows. Illinois’ frontcourt duo of Jon Ekey and Nnanna Egwu are soft on the boards and they are not producing offensively either.
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Northwestern has played a tough schedule recently with three consecutive games against Michigan, Wisconsin and Iowa. They’ve also played Mizzou, UCLA and NC State in successive games back in late November. The Wildcats have issues but they play a strong defensive game and taking back points in a low scoring game has value. It’s also worth noting that the Illini are 2-8 ATS in their last 10 vs. Big Ten and they were badly exposed by Wisconsin in their last game with a 25-point loss.
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Mark FrancoFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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49ers PkFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Two of the league's hottest teams will square off when the second-seeded Carolina Panthers host the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday with a berth in the NFC Championship Game at stake. It's a rematch of a Week 10 battle in San Francisco, a defensive duel in which the Panthers prevailed 10-9 as part of an eight-game winning streak and an 11-1 finish to close the regular season. The 49ers have ripped off seven consecutive victories and are seeking their third straight trip to the NFC title game. Wide receiver Michael Crabtree missed the first matchup against Carolina while recovering from surgery on his Achilles' tendon, but he offered a reminded of what an impact player he can be with eight catches for 125 yards in last week's 23-20 win at frigid Green Bay. Tight end Vernon Davis also was a non-factor in the earlier meeting after suffering a second-quarter concussion, but he reeled in a 28-yard scoring pass last week for his sixth TD reception in six postseason games. Having the duo on the field should make life easier for running back Frank Gore and Kaepernick. I like the 49ers to get it done here on the road.
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Broncos -9FOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos get a chance to avenge their only home loss when they host the sixth-seeded San Diego Chargers in the AFC divisional round on Sunday. Manning guided Denver to the top seed behind a record-setting offense that surpassed 600 points for the first time in league history. The Broncos were held under 30 points only three times and two of them came against the Chargers, who lost a 28-20 decision in San Diego before pulling out a 27-20 win in Denver on Dec. 12. Wide receiver Wes Welker returns to the lineup after missing the past two games with a concussion, giving Manning his full array of weapons - Denver is the only team in history to have five players score at least 10 touchdowns. Last week was more of a case that the Bengals gave away the game that the Chargers had won it. I see the Broncos being fully focused and get the win and cover here.

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Carlos Salazar

Chargers vs Broncos
Play: Over 54

These two teams face off for the third time this season and Carlos sees both teams putting the ball in the end zone early and often. Look for San Diego exploit the Denver defense and for Peyton to strike quickly too.


Carlos Salazar's Featured Package

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Sunday, January 12

Will RogersFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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New Jersey vs. TorontoFFREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
Pick: TorontoFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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The New Jersey Devils defeated Florida in overtime at the Meadowlands last night, and they are right back on the ice tonight in Toronto. The Devils have their work cut out for them, facing a desperate and hungry Leafs team that has dropped four straight. Expect Corey Schneider to see a lot of rubber here in Toronto.
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Here are my keys to the game:FOR  FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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1: Previous History - Toronto won all four meetings with New Jersey in 2013, and three of those games were played at the Air Canada Center. The Leafs have a winning record at home (14-10), while the Devils are 9-12 away from home.
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2: Power-Play - The Leafs own one of the most potent power-plays in the NHL, converting on better than 21% of their man-advantage opportunities. They have netted 31 power-play goals this season, eight more than the Devils.
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3: X-Factor - This is what you call a "must win game" for Toronto. We saw a glimpse of that desperation in Washington: "(That) might be one of the better games we've played in a month. We showed desperation. We showed that we care," coach Randy Carlyle said. "We've been begging, pleading, kicking, kissing, whatever we can do to try and find a way to play with some confidence. It seems like we've squeezed our sticks here. It's mind boggling."

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Cleveland Cavaliers +3½FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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The Kings took care of Orlando 103-83 last game to cover the 7.5-point spread, but that was their first cover as a favorite all season. Sacramento is just 1-10 ATS when laying points, including 0-8 ATS when laying less than 6 points. Furthermore, the Kings are just 1-8 ATS in their last 9 games following a win of more than 10 points. The Cavs, are off a 113-102 win in Utah, are 7-2 ATS in their last 9 games following a win of more than 10 points. The Cavs are also 5-0 ATS in their last five games versus the West, earning these covers against the Nuggets, Clippers, Trail Blazers, Warriors and Jazz. Kyrie Irving is a handful. Plus, Luol Deng gives the Cavs another scorer and defensive stopper. Take the points.

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Harry BondiFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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San Francisco / Carolina Over 41FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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In the first meeting between these teams back on Nov. 11 it was a dead-nuts under affair as Carolina upset the Niners, 10-9. But much has changed since that game. First off, San Fran QB Colin Kaepernick has started to be more aggressive and is now running more like he did last year when he led his team to the NFC Championship. He was also without key weapons Vernon Davis and Michael Crabtree in that first meeting, but both will be in uniform today. Since that loss, the Niners have scored 23 points or more in six out of their last seven games and despite that low-scoring game this season, this series has gone under in 10 out of the last 13, including five of six when played in Carolina.

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Tony GeorgeFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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San Francisco -1FOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Some teams build their franchise for 1 reason, and that is to win championships, and the 49ers are such a team. Do not overthink this one, look at San Fran, red hot, 7 in a trow, good QB, big time run game, killer WRs, top 3 tight end in the NFL and a mean and nasty defense that can rush the passer, and well coached. EXPERIENCE COUNTS and San Fran has it and Carolina does not. First Playoff game for Newton. Kappernick is 3-1 in the post season, losing only the Superbowl, and San Fran playing with revenge in a pick em ball game basically.

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John RyanFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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San Francisco at CarolinaFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
Prediction: OverFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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The simulator shows a high probability that 44 or more points will be scored in this game. Supporting this graded play is a proven system posting a 27-6 ATS mark for 82% winners since 1983. Play 'over' with home teams where the total is between 35.5 and 42 points (CAROLINA) after 3 or more consecutive wins and is now facing an opponent after 4 or more consecutive wins. This system has gone 9-1 'over' for 90% winners over thee last 10 seasons. Cam and Kap both have very similar stats and are two of three QB this season to rush for 500+ yards. Last week Kap made the Packers pay dearly with his runs leading to first downs and extending drives that ended in scores. Newtown for the season made a first down on 40% of his runs, which is an amazing stat. These teams have excellent defense, BUT they are going to be stretched by the mobility of each QB and why I believe this game will play 'over' the posted togtal of 41 points. SF definitely has the playoff experience bring back the large majority of players from last years Super Bowl team. Carolina has very few left from their last playoff appearance. On defense, the 49ers have veterans Brooks and Willis, who have combined 17 seasons of experience. I do believe that the 49ers have the edge in defending Cam and limiting his impact in this game. 49ers have more play makers on offense and have an tremendous matchup advantage with TE Vernon Davis down the seems and Crabtree on the perimeter. So, although I do think the 49ers will win this game based on the matchups, the key and dominant play to make is the 'OVER'

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Miguel DaSilvaFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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49ers vs. PanthersFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
Play: Under 41½FOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Cant really begin to understand how the 49ers can be favored in this spot. They beat the Packers at Lambeau field last week, but lets face it, it wasn't because of Colin. It was defence, and defence is the main play in Carolina. These two met up earlier this year and the game was a total bore with Carolina winning a snooze fest of field goals. Both Teams are letting up just over 10 ppg on average. Today will be much of the same. Dont waste your time watching this game, just lay some cash on the Panthers and the under in this one

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Sunday, January 12

Jack Jones
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San Diego Chargers +8½
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The Chargers have a ton of momentum right now. They had to win their final four games of the regular season just to get into the playoffs as the sixth and final Wild Card team. They needed a field goal in overtime against Kansas City in the finale, so they have risen to the occasion in the biggest of circumstances. That momentum carried over into a 27-10 win at Cincinnati in the Wild Card Round last week behind a solid rushing attack that posted 196 yards on the ground, proving that this team can win in a number of ways.
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That win against the Bengals cemented one of the three biggest road wins that one team has compiled all season. Indeed, the Chargers have beaten the Bengals, Broncos and Chiefs on the road this season. Those teams are a combined 20-5 at home this year, suffering three of their five losses to the Chargers. Their 27-20 win in Denver on December 12 was impressive. They out-gained the Broncos 337-295 for the game behind 177 rushing yards.
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This San Diego defense has saved its best football for last. The Chargers have allowed 24 or fewer points in six straight games, including 17 or less in five of them. The offense is capable of putting up big numbers as the Chargers are averaging 388.6 yards per game. Philip Rivers is having a career year, completing 69.5 percent of his passes for 4,478 yards with 32 touchdowns against 11 interceptions during the regular season. These players are really starting to believe in him.
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All of the pressure is on Denver and Peyton Manning, who time and time again fails to get it done in the postseason despite his incredible regular season numbers. The road team is 6-0-1 against the spread in the last seven meetings in this series. The Chargers are 10-4-2 against the number in their last 16 meetings with the Broncos. San Diego is 5-0 against the spread in its last five road games vs. a team with a winning home record. The Broncos are 1-5-1 against the number in their last seven games in January. Bet the Chargers Sunday.

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Steve Janus
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Memphis Grizzlies -4½
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The Grizzlies are 41-28 ATS in their last 69 games vs teams with a winning record. Atlanta is being overvalued off a couple of road wins. The Hawks are just 6-12 on the road this season are just 4-15 ATS in their last 19 game after allowing 90 points or less in two straight games.
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Memphis is 11-2 ATS in their last 13 home games when they come in having covered the spread in three straight games and 11-1 ATS in their last 12 after scoring 100 points or more in two straight games.

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Jeff Scott SportsFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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San Francisco/ Carolina Over 41: Before I get chastised for the play let me just say I have done well in the playoff going against conventional wisdom. Let's just hope that holds true here. Obviously the easiest way to go in this one is the Under, especially since the teams put up just 19 to points in the first game this year, but i see some major changes from the offenses this time around. The Panthers like to run the ball but for them to move the ball in this game they will have to throw it. The Niner run defense is tough to penetrate. The Panthers have played well at home on offense, putting up 25.9 ppg, so they can score on their home field. The Niners offense has been pretty solid for much of the year and after scoring just 29 total points in BB losses to the Panthers and Saints earlier they have opened up the offense, scoring 26 ppg in their last 7, hitting the 23 point or better mark in 6 of those games, plus we note that the Niners have averaged a solid 24 ppg on the road this year. Yes I know how tough both defenses are but so do the opposing coaches and you can bet that these teams will have worked on trick plays and the such in order to put some points on the board here. There is no tomorrow, so no reason to hold back. I have this game scoring at least 45 points.     
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San Diego/ Denver Under 55: In two games vs the Broncos, Mike McCoy has worked his ball control offense to perfection and i expect nothing less than that in this one. The Chargers lead the league in both TOP and 3rd downs so they know how to keep this offense on the field and an offense like Denver's off the field. The Broncs would like to throw the ball all over  the field, but they also like to run it as they have had 12 100 yard rushing games this year. I expect to see some scoring but there will be allot of time consuming drives in this game. No more than 48 points scored here.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Sunday, January 12

Chris Jordan

I'm pretty sure Monmouth is a decent enough team to join the MAAC, but it's going to take some time to know the nuances of certain teams that are perennial favorites in the league.

Take Canisius, which is 10-6 overall and 4-1 in MAAC play.

The Golden Griffins have always been a tough nut to crack in league play, and tonight they roll in after a 94-91 double-overtime victory against Rider on Friday night. Senior guard Billy Baron scored a career-high 38 points, including the game-winning 3-pointer at the end of the second overtime.

The Griffins are 5-0 at home this season, and rolls in on an elongated 17-4 record in its last 21 home dates.

The Hawks are one of two new teams in the MAAC this season, and as I've seen Quinnipiac play admirably, I'm not so sure Monmouth is having as comfy a welcome. Monmouth is averaging 71.9 points per game, ranking seventh in the MAAC in scoring, while shooting 41.9 percent from the field, which also ranks seventh in the league.

Canisius is the right side of this game, as I see a double-digit win coming.

2♦ CANISIUS

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Jeff Benton

Your Sunday freebie is the UCLA Bruins to bounce-back after their tough loss to #1 Arizona on Thursday night, as they play host to an Arizona State team that was busy routing USC on that same Thursday night.

The Sun Devils tote in a 13-3 mark, but I don't see it improving against the Bruins who will be in a prickly mood after their comeback bid fell just shy at home on Thursday.

Steve Alford's team is still 10-1 straight up at home, and they have covered 6 of their 10 lined home games. The Uclans took both meetings last season off the Devils, and they have won 6 of the last 7 series meetings straight up overall.

The host in this series is on an 8-1-1 against the spread the last 10 series meetings, and I am siding with the home team in this one to make it a 9-1-1 spread run.
Bruins in a runaway.

4♦ UCLA

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Craig Davis

Free play of the day on the Kings and Cavs to go OVER the posted total in Sunday NBA action.

Twice this season I've given you the Kings over the posted total and I'm 2-for-2... hoping to go 3-for-3 tonight. I realize there's some hesitation with the Cavs on the road as they are clearly a better home team and score more than 10 PPG more at home than on the road.

But I watched the Cavs in their most recent road game (at Utah) and saw them play a game as if they were back home in Cleveland. It resulted in a Cleveland 113-102 win over the Jazz in their best road performance of the year.

I'm not basing this pick on just one road game... but it sure helps. As long as they continue to move the basketball like they have lately, it will make it a lot easier to score.

The Kings, on the other hand, don't know how to NOT score. They've gone over 104 points in their last 11 games overall and last 12 home games dating back to November. With the trade to acquire Rudy Gay and move Isaiah Thomas to starting point guard, it's made this offense much more fluid.

I expect a finish around 110-102... which will be easily over the posted total.

2♦ CLEVELAND-SACRAMENTO OVER

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Scott Delaney

My free play for Sunday is on UCLA minus the points against Arizona State. After suffering a tough loss to Arizona on Thursday night, the Bruins will be out for a big bounce-back here, looking to redeem themselves against a very good - but beatable - Arizona State team. Besides, the Bruins have covered four straight after an ATS loss.

Jahii Carson is a tough customer for any team to defend, but the Bruins have the personnel to slow him down, and create things at the other end. UCLA's talent runs deep, and as good as Arizona State's supporting cast for Carson can be, I don't believe we're going to see the Sun Devils be able to match wits against UCLA's lengthy and athletic lineup.

This is a perfect spot, as UCLA has enjoyed playing on Sundays, covering four straight on the Sabbath. The home team has covered nine of the last 10 meetings, including four of the last five at Pauley Pavilion.

1♦ UCLA

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Brad Wilton

Going to back the Atlanta Hawks to continue their hot play on Sunday in Memphis against the disappointing Grizzlies.

Atlanta looks like they have made some nice adjustments in the absence of Al Horford, as the Hawks have put together confidence-building back-to-back wins over some decent talent in Indiana and Houston. Look for them to extend on the road versus a Memphis team that is just 8-12 straight up at home and only 7-13 against the spread in those home games.

The Hawks do tend to struggle away from Philips Arena, but that has not been the case when it comes to visiting Elvis Presley land, as Atlanta has covered 5 of their last 6 at Memphis. Atlanta has also covered 10 of the last 13 overall meetings with the Grizzlies, so going against the grooving Hawks would be unwise at this time.

Atlanta to continue their winning ways on Sunday in Memphis.

4♦ ATLANTA

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Brett Atkins

Now on an 18-1 run with my complimentary winners, after Reno took care of Utah State on Saturday. Today I look to improve on that record with the San Antonio Spurs against the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Not sure why this line is so low, but the Spurs should be able to take advantage of the struggling Timberwolves today. San Antonio has won three straight, and already knows how dangerous Minnesota can be from an earlier-season clash, in which the Spurs outscored the Wolves, 37-21, down the stretch to pull out a 117-110 win.

But Minnesota was playing much better then. Now it's struggling with consistency  and can't seem to keep it together long enough for a winning run. The Timberwolves haven't won two-straight games since Dec. 28th.

Minnesota is a team that generates offense and can wreak havoc in the paint, problem is the Spurs are on a winning run, they're playing at home and it's one of those cozy Sunday nights at AT&T Center with the home crowd.

Lay the points with the Spurs.

1♦ SAN ANTONIO

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