Nets against birds of prey, bulls against bucks

Earlier this week we finally beat the spread with our NBA picks, taking advantage of easy wins from the Cavaliers and Pelicans while falling short with the Jazz as short-road underdogs against the unpredictable Clippers.

Will the favorite be as successful again on Wednesday? Eight of the 11 hosts are favorites at BetMGM and we have our eye on a trio of home favorites in enviable locations for bettors.

Here’s a look at which teams we’re betting on on Wednesday night:

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NBA Wednesday Odds, Tips (via BetMGM)

  • Celtics -4.5 vs. Mavericks
  • Raptors -1.5 vs Webs
  • Bucks -7.5 vs Bucks
Boston Celtics' Jayson Tatum #0 is fouled by Dallas Mavericks' Luka Doncic #77
Boston Celtics’ Jayson Tatum #0 is fouled by Dallas Mavericks’ Luka Doncic #77
MediaNews Group via Getty Images

Celtics vs Mavericks Prediction and Analysis

This is an ideal buy-low spot for the Celtics, who surprised many in the league with Monday’s 14-point loss to the Bulls to end a three-game road trip. Even with that result, that line is a little detracting from how dominant this team was.

Prior to Monday’s loss, Boston had racked up nine straight wins and outscored opponents at that stretch by 11.4 points per game. It’s no coincidence: The C’s rank third in net ratings (+6.5) all season and have won 10 of 17 games by five points or more this season.

The Mavericks have shown a long-term upswing with Luka Doncic rounding up in MVP form, but they also lost to the Rockets and Nuggets without Nikola Jokic last week — dragging their record to an NBA-worst 4-11 . 1 shilling. This isn’t the place to expect that to change against one of the best in the league.

Choice between Celtics and Mavericks

Celtics -4.5 (BetMGM)

Raptors vs. Nets Prediction and Analysis

This isn’t so much about Brooklyn’s embarrassing Tuesday loss to a Sixers team missing their top three scorers, although that alone is enough to cause concern here. Rather, this is simply a brutal place for the Nets in a season that has rarely gone their way.

It’s tough enough to win in Toronto, where the Raptors are holding an excellent 5-2 ATS home record this year — tied with the third-best grade in the NBA — and beating teams at 6.4 points per game in those games to have. It’s even harder to do it on the second night of a consecutive, one-day international trip, which the NBA limits to about 10 times a year on average.

As you can imagine, things often don’t go well. Teams at this pitch have achieved 14-21-1 ATS (40%) for the past five seasons, and the Nets are the first such team to face that situation this year. Good luck with it.

Raptors vs. Nets selection

Birds of Prey -1.5 (Caesars)

Betting on the NBA?

Giannis Antetokounmpo
Giannis Antetokounmpo
Getty Images

Bucks vs. Bulls Prediction and Analysis

Few teams have dominated a series like the Bucks versus the Bulls, who struggled to keep up when those teams went head-to-head.

Since Giannis Antetokounmpo’s first All-Star campaign in 2016-17, Milwaukee has been 18-10 ATS against its division rival with an excellent 23-5 straight record. It’s not like those games were particularly close: The Bucks have averaged Chicago by 11.5 points, with over half of those 28 games decided in their favor by 13 or more points.

That includes three straight wins with 16+ points in a streak that stretches back to last season when the Bulls were actually among the best teams in the NBA for much of the year. That hasn’t been the case this season, nor do I see her net worth changing in this matchup.

Bucks vs. Bulls choice

Dollar -7.5 (FanDuel)

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