Wednesday tip-off: 4 midweek NBA bankers to boost your balance
The free-scoring Wizards head our top choices for this week's boosted basketball four-fold...
Washington Wizards to beat Atlanta Hawks –
These Eastern Conference playoff hopefuls are heading in opposite directions.
The Wizards have steadily improved throughout the season and are third in the standings, while the Hawks are in freefall having lost seven of their last 10.
Atlanta are struggling, despite having played away just three times during that 10-game stretch, and that bodes well for Washington.
Scott Brooks’ team have an excellent home record of 27 wins and just 10 defeats this season.
The Wizards’ strength is their scoring ability – ranking fifth in points per game – and, considering the Hawks have conceded an average of 107 over their last four fixtures, this result should only go one way.
Cleveland Cavaliers to beat Denver Nuggets –
The Eastern Conference-leading Cavaliers have stuttered since the All-Star break, losing five of their last 10 games.
They should, however, get back on track on Wednesday night.
Cleveland are the NBA’s third-best team in terms of offensive rating, and that firepower should be enough to beat the Nuggets, who rank second-last in defensively.
Denver should put up more of a fight than many would expect, given that they had won four consecutive games before suffering back-to-back defeats to the Rockets in their last two.
Ultimately, though, Cleveland are the superior team, and are worth backing at this price.
Milwaukee Bucks to beat Sacramento Kings –
The Bucks are the hottest team in the Eastern Conference.
They have won nine of their last 11 games, with the only defeats in that run coming in tough away trips to Memphis and Golden State.
On the road again here, they should continue to climb the standings against the struggling Kings.
Sacramento have only beaten fellow bottom-dwellers Phoenix and Orlando in their last 12 games, and have won just three times since trading star player Boogie Cousins.
Ranking 20th in offensive rating and 23rd defensively, it is hard to see how they see off a hungry young Bucks team that are just finding form now.
Chicago Bulls to beat Detroit Pistons –
This looks to be the most evenly-matched game of the night.
The Bulls and Pistons are both in poor form and are in danger of falling out of playoff contention in the East.
Detroit have lost four of their last five, while Chicago have won just two in 10.
The Bulls, however, will benefit from their home-court advantage.
They have won 20 and lost 15 in Chicago this season, while Detroit have lost 23 of 34 on the road.
For that reason, there is real value in backing the slight underdogs.