First things first: why are there so few games on Tuesday? Typically, these seasonal tournament rosters are packed. We had 11 games on Friday, for example, and no fewer than seven on any other season tournament night. However, on Tuesday we have a measly five-game slate. So what’s up?
The short answer is Thanksgiving. He NBApartly in an effort to avoid NFL The annual loaded Thanksgiving slate takes off on the fourth Thursday of each November. That means 28 of 30 teams will play on Wednesday, and since the league wants to avoid back-to-backs when it comes to tournament games, we have our lightest night of tournament games yet. Alright. On Friday we return to a 10-game schedule that will go a long way toward determining who advances to the knockout stage. Instead, let’s be thankful for the five games we have and pick some winners over the spread.
Prepare your helmets, because this game is between NBA The No. 29 half-court offense (Toronto) and the No. 27 half-court offense (Orlando), so there will be a lot of bricks. Toronto happens to be a healthier place right now, as Markelle Fultz and Wendell Carter Jr.. They are outside. Without Fultz, the Magic become totally dependent on forwards Paolo Banchero and Franz Wagner to orchestrate their offense, and that’s a dangerous place for any team to be when playing against the best group of defensive forwards in the NBA. The Magic simply won’t be able to score. The choice: Raptors +1.5
The Pacers can clinch Group A East with a win in this game, and that’s significant motivation for a Pacers team that’s probably a year or two away from true championship contention. The Pacers are on pace to win a trophy this season. Toward Falcons? This is probably just another regular season game. Having lost to Philadelphia, the Hawks would need to beat Indiana and Cleveland to have a chance to advance. The pick: Pacers -4
The Cavs will not have David Mitchell either Caris LeVert in this game, and that puts an inordinate amount of responsibility on shot creation. darius garland. Can he handle it? Sure, but once the defense focuses on him, Cleveland just has an impressive rookie. Craig Porter Jr.. available as a shot creator. Philadelphia’s defense is too tough for such a thin backcourt. The choice: 76ers -7.5
Yes, you’ve probably already seen the results of Oklahoma City’s 134-91 beating of Portland on Sunday. He Thunder aware in that game. The Blazers, with most of their limited depth depleted by injuries, are playing poorly right now. But how bad? Well, they had lost their last six games before the Thunder debacle… but “only” by an average of 10.5 points. That’s still quite a bit, but it shows how huge a 13-point differential really is in the NBA. Phoenix could dominate this game for three quarters, take their foot off the gas in the fourth, and still allow a backdoor coverage without even realizing it. The choice: Blazers +13
The Lakers can clinch Group A in the West with a win over the Jazz, and while that may not matter to some teams, it certainly matters to the Lakers. For some reason, this team has expressed a desire to win the tournament’s $500,000 prize. Lebron James, Anthony Davis and Rui Hachimura We’ve all talked about it publicly. The Lakers will not waste any time in this game. They will take care of business against Utah. The choice: Lakers -7.5