• Knicks vs. Heat: Knicks -3 (-110) at
• Jazz vs. Thunder: Over 234 (-110) at
• Timberwolves vs. Lakers: Lakers +1 (-110) at
There’s plenty of action on Friday night in the NBA. Here are three NBA picks to consider for tonight’s slate of games!
New York Knicks vs. Miami Heat
Friday, March 3, 2023 – 08:00 PM EST at Miami-Dade Arena
The New York Knicks will be looking for their eighth straight win, but they’ll be on the road facing a quality team in the Miami Heat.
The Heat haven’t played nearly as well as they expected, but they are still a hard out, playing good enough defense to stick around in most games.
New York Knicks
The Knicks are scoring 118 points per 100 possessions this season. They’re only shooting an effective field goal percentage of 54.6% but have limited turnovers to 13% while adding 31.2% offensive rebounds. The Knicks are also a top-ten team at getting to the foul line this season.
New York has scored at least 109 in each of their last five games and hasn’t allowed any more than 109 in four of five games. Everything is clicking.
But the Heat have earned 16.6% of turnovers and have limited teams to 25% offensive rebounds. The Knicks won’t be able to limit turnovers, rebound, or get to the foul line as much.
The Knicks, instead, will have to try and make open looks, which hasn’t been the easiest thing for the club.
The Heat are still much worse offensively, scoring just 111.5 points per 100 possessions. Miami has a 51.9% effective field goal percentage, adding only 26.2% of offensive rebounds.
The Knicks should be able to defend the Heat well and win on the defensive glass more times than not off misses. The Heat do well limiting turnovers and getting to the foul line. They should expect to win the turnover battle, but I don’t see them winning every other battle.
Don’t fix what’s not broken. Back the Knicks to cover the -2.5 spread.
NBA Pick: Knicks -2.5 (-108) at FanDuel
Utah Jazz vs. Oklahoma City Thunder
Friday, March 3, 2023 – 08:00 PM EST at Paycom Center
On February 23, the Jazz and Thunder finished a game that went into overtime. The Jazz ended up winning 120-119 in a classic finish. Since that game, Utah has gone 1-1 in a two-game series against the Spurs, while the Thunder continue to lose without Shai Gilgeous-Alexander available.
The Jazz are a quality offense that should dominate the offensive glass and earn second chances at a high rate. Utah has earned nearly 30% of offensive rebounds, while the Thunder have allowed 29.9%.
On top of that, the Jazz are getting to the line at an above-average rate. Compare that to the Thunder’s rate of 23, and you’d like to think that the Jazz will also get to the foul line at a high rate.
Oklahoma City Thunder
The Thunder scored at least 115 points in their last five games, but they’ve still lost each game. The offense isn’t as good without Shai around, but the Thunder do a good job at limiting turnovers and earning a solid portion of offensive rebounds.
The Jazz have allowed 116.7 points per 100 possessions; that’s 25th in the NBA. The Thunder will still add plenty of points in this game.
I’d like to think that the Jazz will defeat the Thunder on the road. But after the first game between these two teams, I will ride with the Over. The Thunder have given up at least 120 points in their last five games and still scored at least 115 in each.
We’ll get plenty of second chances, fewer turnovers, and plenty of shots.
NBA Pick: Over 232 (-110) at Caesars Sportsbook
Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Los Angeles Lakers
Friday, March 3, 2023 – 10:30 PM EST at Crypto.com Arena
The Lakers will still be without D’Angelo Russell tonight. He won’t be able to go up against his old team. But Anthony Davis should be back in the lineup for the Lakers.
Los Angeles has won four of their last five games and found a way to beat the Thunder on Wednesday without LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and D’Angelo Russell.
The team has a supporting cast now.
Minnesota ended a three-game losing streak with a win over the Clippers, but the Clippers aren’t much of anything right now.
Karl-Anthony Towns isn’t back yet for Minnesota and Rudy Gobert hasn’t made the impact for the Timberwolves that was expected. Even Mike Conley hasn’t been an x-factor for the ball club.
The Lakers limit foul shots well and hold teams to a 54% effective field goal percentage. Los Angeles should also win the rebounding battle.
Los Angeles Lakers
I’m not going to say that Anthony Davis can’t lead a team to victory by himself. He can. But the Lakers looked a whole lot better without him on the floor.
Still, when he tried to lead the Lakers to victory, it was against the Grizzlies. When he was out, it was against the Thunder. So I’ll cut him some slack.
The Lakers are built much better than they were at the trade deadline. Los Angeles will still do a good job limiting turnovers and getting to the foul line. With the Timberwolves giving up 29.1% of offensive rebounds, the Lakers could also have their way on the offensive glass.
At home, I like the Lakers’ chances of winning, especially with Anthony Davis putting together a quality performance.
NBA Pick: Lakers -1 (-105) at Bet365