2016-17 NBA Betting Tips – Thursday, March 16th
The 2016-17 NBA season is nearing the playoffs and on this final stretch of games they increase in importance. ESPN will be televising the Spurs vs Blazers and Clippers vs Bucks games and we take a look at that match and two others for our NBA Thursday March 16 Preview and Betting Tips.
Portland Trail Blazers at San Antonio Spurs (Thursday 11am AEDT)
The Trail Blazers will enter this match as their second of a back-to-back set after they were blown off the court by the Pelicans in their last start. Jusuf Nurkic had previously been impressive since he joined from the Nuggets but he was shut down in this match. The Spurs defence will be looking to do the same to the big man. CJ McCollum’s form has also dipped and this has forced a bigger load onto point guard Damien Lillard.
The Spurs will be close to full strength for this one but Tony Parker may remain on the sidelines. However, his replacement Aussie Patty Mills has been a great back up for a lot of years. He had a great performance in the Spurs last victory. This match is predicted to be a blow out and we are sticking with the bookmakers for this one as the Spurs will pull away on the back of Khawai Leonard.
Milwaukee Bucks at Los Angeles Clippers (Thursday 1.30pm AEDT)
The Clippers and Bucks faced just over a week ago and it was the Milwaukee side who got the advantage. They travel to the Clippers home court for this meeting and we believe it will end in a different result. The injury to Jabari Parker has stuttered Giannis Antetokounmpo but prior to the injury he was plain balling. The man was putting up monster numbers and while he continues to excel he doesn’t have enough threats alongside him to draw attention away from him.
Chris Paul has put up season highs in the last two games in points and it is always a great sign when he is in attack mode. Everyone knows how good he is as a floor general and at playmaking but when he is out to score as well he becomes a whole new threat. The Clippers are out to make a statement after their disappointing loss to the Jazz and we believe this could be a big victory for the home side with Blake Griffin due for a big performance.
Dallas Mavericks vs Washington Wizards (Thursday 10am AEDT)
Dirk Nowitzki is still out there showcasing his talents, but unfortunately he is destined to miss the playoffs for the first time in four seasons. He has been dropping strong numbers on the offence but can be caught out defensively in his old age. Harrison Barnes and Seth Curry are two other players carrying the offensive load with Deron Williams leaving.
The Wizards have been dominant in the second half of the season and especially on their home court. John Wall and Bradley Beal are beginning to become one of the best back courts in the league while Morris has lifted his game after being sluggish for the majority of the season. They have moved into third position in the East and as their bench has gotten stronger they have become real contenders. We believe they will run away with this one.
Minnesota Timberwolves at Boston Celtics (Thursday 10.30am AEDT)
The Timberwolves are pushing for the eighth spot in the Western conference and while they still have a few games to make up on Denver it is a positive sign moving forward for the Wolves. Since the trade deadline passed and the rumours surrounding Ricky Rubio were over, he has been playing at an incredibly high level. He dished out a franchise high 19 assists in his last start and has recorded multiple triple doubles and arguably outplayed Stephen Curry in his side’s victory over the Warriors earlier this week. Karl Anthony-Towns is on a historic run himself as he has scored over 20 points in 21 consecutive games for a franchise record. Things are definitely improving in Minnesota.
It will be a good match up for Isaiah Thomas in this one and the depth of the Timberwolves will be tested. We are predicting a tight match but the real advantage could come with Anthony-Towns at the centre position. The Celtics leak a lot of points and struggle on the boards and Andrew Wiggins will be looking to dominate from the small forward position but Jae Crowder is a strong defender. The Celtics have been inconsistent lately and are 5-5 over their last ten matches. We are smelling an upset in this one.
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