Thunder vs. Jazz Pick
According to oddsmakers at Bovada.lv, the Thunder are a 1.5-point favorite on the spread line. The over-under is set at 197 points.
Oklahoma City is 17-15 overall and 11-21 ATS after a 120-117 home win over the Hawks for its third consecutive victory. Utah comes in at 15-18 overall and 18-15 ATS following a 100-89 home win over the Spurs which ended a three-game losing skid. The Thunder are 2-1 straight up and 1-2 ATS in three meetings already this season, rolling to a 107-79 win in OKC on Dec. 20. Oklahoma City is 5-2 straight up and 4-3 ATS in seven meetings since the start of last season.
Russell Westbrook drained a tie-breaking 3-pointer in the closing seconds Friday night to lift the Thunder to the win against the Hawks. He finished with 30 points, 15 assists, seven rebounds and two steals. Carmelo Anthony put in 24 points. Paul George added 17 points, five rebounds, three steals and two assists. Oklahoma City led 64-50 at halftime and overcame an Atlanta surge in the third quarter.
Rodney Hood accounted for 29 points and three rebounds in the victory over San Antonio. Derrick Favors tallied 14 points and nine rebounds. Alec Burks added 12 points and three boards off the bench. The Jazz outscored the Spurs 28-19 in the fourth quarter to put it away.
Utah is a much different team with Rudy Gobert out, playing at a faster pace and allowing its guards to create offense. The Jazz are also a lot stronger at home as evidenced by their 12-5 mark in their arena. With an extra day of rest and staying at home, expect Utah to get the job done here as a small underdog.
NBA DAILY PREDICTION: UTAH JAZZ +1.5