This article is part of our NBA Picks series.
Heat +3.5 (-112) at Hawks – FanDuel, 1:15 PM CT
Both teams are shorthanded, and while I think the Hawks have more overall talent, these teams are trending in opposite directions in terms of expectations. The Heat are +8.6 points ATS over the past two weeks, while the Hawks are -8.0 points ATS over the past two weeks. And on the season as a whole, the Heat are positive while the Hawks are negative. I'm going to bank on those trends continuing.
I'm taking the UNDER on Hassan Whiteside grabbing 13.5 rebounds (-128) (FanDuel at 12:20 ET)
Rudy Gobert (COVID) is still out for Utah, so Whiteside will start at center. He's coming off a 14-rebound effort versus Detroit. But woeful Detroit is ranked 28th (55.9) in Opponent Total Rebounds Allowed Per Game. Cleveland, with bigs Jarrett Allen, Evan Mobley and Kevin Love, ranks 9th (51.2). In three starts this season, Whiteside averaged 9.7 boards. Whiteside has a strong chance to again double-double, but back-to-back 14 rebound games seems unlikely.
Editor's note: Ken requested to add Jarrett Allen double-double (-145)
Kyle Kuzma to record double-double (+120) vs. ORL – DraftKings Sportsbook 12:53 PM CT
No Bradley Beal should keep the game marginally close and open the scoring opportunities up for Kuzma, who has 20-plus points in each of the last eight games. The Magic are also missing just about everyone in the frontcourt which was essentially the same setting that created Kuzma's incredible 27-point, 22-rebound double-double just three nights ago. Just targeting his points + rebounds over (29.5) is probably the safest option given the solid odds at -120, but if there's positive value to be had, you know I'm going to suggest it.
Boston Celtics -2.5 (-110) @ Indiana Pacers – DraftKings Sportsbook 11:15 AM
These two teams face off again after the Celtics snuck out a 101-98 win in overtime Monday night at TD Garden. During that contest, the Pacers' bench outscored the starters 50-48 – including 19 points from Torrey Craig. No offense to Mr. Craig, or the rest of Indiana's reserves, but I am classifying that performance as an outlier. This is far from a 'lock' as the Celtics will be without their defensive stalwart Marcus Smart, and the Pacers home record (12-10) is much better than their away record (3-16). Either way, I expect Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown to will Boston to a victory as they fight feverishly to stick in playoff contention.