Handicapping the NBA: Thursday Picks

Handicapping the NBA: Thursday Picks

This article is part of our Handicapping the NBA series.

Alex Barutha

Nuggets to win (-125) at LAC – BetMGM (2:16 PM CT)

I'm surprised the Nuggets are such short favorites with the Clippers missing Paul George, Serge Ibaka and Patrick Beverley, while Marcus Morris is questionable. Kawhi Leonard is surrounded by subpar players in Reggie Jackson, Luke Kennard and Ivica Zubac. Meanwhile, the Nuggets have plenty of firepower, with Monte Morris the only player on the injury report. This a matchup of two MVP candidates going up against each other, but Nikola Jokic clearly has an advantage from a supporting-cast perspective.

Nick Whalen

76ers -9.5 (-113) at CLE – DraftKings (11:27 AM CT)

The Cavs haven't cracked 100 points in three straight games, and they just put up 75 points – seventy-five – against Utah earlier in the week. With Jarrett Allen and Larry Nance set to miss this game, I like the Sixers' chances – even without Joel Embiid – to dismantle the league's worst offense since the break.

Nikola Jokic to post a double-double AND the Nuggets defeat LAC (+145) – DraftKings (11:27 AM CT)

It's been impossible to get an accurate read on the Clippers, but with three starters absent again Thursday, I like the Nuggets to take advantage and win outright. Nikola Jokic has a double-double in 14 of his last 16 games, so tacking that prop on here makes this a more appealing number at +145

Jeff Edgerton

Magic (+8.5) at NOPFanDuel (1:18 PM CT)

Zion Williamson and Lonzo Ball may be out tonight, and Brandon Ingram can't do all the heavy lifting on his own.  Orlando may have lost three of their big playmakers, but this star-free rag-tag group still has some firepower. They may not win, but they're a good candidate to cover.

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ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Alex Barutha
Alex is RotoWire's NBA Assistant Editor. He writes articles about daily fantasy, year-long fantasy and sports betting. You can hear him on the RotoWire NBA Podcast, Sirius XM, DraftKings Live and other platforms. Vince Carter and Alex both first dunked during their respective sophomore years of high school.
Jeff Edgerton
Jeff has provided sports content for numerous sports outlets and has played fantasy sports since scores had to be tabulated via newspaper. He started working with RotoWire in 2017. Originally from South Carolina, he's a lifelong Clemson fan now enjoying the sun in Los Angeles.
Nick Whalen
RotoWire's NBA Editor and host of the RotoWire NBA Podcast. Nick was awarded the FSWA Best Podcast -- All Sports award in 2017 and 2018. Many years ago, Stromile Swift gave Nick his unbelievably sweaty headband after a preseason game. Despite its failure to match his school colors, Nick went on to wear that headband for the entirety of his sixth grade basketball season. Catch Nick on Twitter @wha1en.
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