NBA Point Margin Preview & Syndicate

Jack Wright is turning his hand to basketball as he looks to take on this weekend’s NBA Point Margin Pick 5 pool! He’s playing for a share of the £25,000 jackpot, and you can join him here.

 

Charlotte Hornets @ Philadelphia 76ers

The Sixers will be looking to bounce back from successive losses in the early hours of Friday when they travel to Detroit to take on the Pistons, before hosting Charlotte on Saturday evening. Philly are the better team and currently sit third in the Eastern Conference while the Hornets are chasing a playoff spot down in ninth, however, eight wins from their last 10 games shows that they will be no pushover for James Harden and co. The Hornets offense is firing with nearly 75% of their baskets assisted, but I still don’t see them winning because they are dead last on defending and pace and the 76ers have the tools to take advantage – regularly dominating at both ends of the floor. We should see a high scoring and exciting game in their fourth meeting of the season – Charlotte winning the last match up here in January but Philly taking the honours in the previous two, but by only four and three points, the latter after OT – I’m taking them to edge another close one here.

Philadelphia 76ers: 1-4, 5-8

 

Cleveland Cavaliers @ New York Knicks

The Knicks are on the brink of elimination missing Kemba Walker who hasn’t played since the All-Star Break, although their form has picked up in recent games it is likely to be too little too late, while the Cavs are still in a tight race to claim a play-off spot in the Eastern Conference. Cleveland have only won one of their last five games and have struggled without Jarrett Allen as he recovers from his finger fracture – although he is set for a return, possibly even for this match up and if he does could make a big difference. The Cavs have won both head to heads this season and I’m taking them to complete the hat-trick in New York where the Knicks have lost eight of their last 11 fixtures at the Garden.

Cleveland Cavaliers: 5-8, 9-12

 

Brooklyn Nets @ Atlanta Hawks

I’m taking the Nets to edge this with a small margin win. The dynamic duo of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving can run riot at any time and in the Hawks, they face a low ranking defence. The fact Brooklyn are sitting down as the 8th seeds in the Eastern Conference is more down to their injuries than their undoubted talent, Andre Drummond seems to have had a new lease of life after coming in as part of the James Harden trade providing them with a solid inside presence who can contribute on both ends of the floor and with KD & Kyrie in the starting line-up, they can beat anyone – and I do mean anyone! Hawks star boy Trae Young hit 41 points in midweek, the 10th time this season he has passed the 40-point milestone in a campaign which has seen him amass 38 double-doubles – if he is on his game, he can orchestrate this Atlanta team to push the Nets all the way to the final buzzer.

Brooklyn Nets: 1-4, 5-8

 

Washington Wizards @ Boston Celtics

Over recent years the Celtics have been one of the most consistent outfits in the NBA and coming right up to date have won 11 of their last 15 match ups to claim the best record over that period of games in the Eastern Conference. One blow to this rock-solid D is the injury to Robert Williams III who underwent surgery on Wednesday to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee – he will be absent for up to six weeks missing the remainder of the regular season, but the estimated recovery timeline will give him a chance to play in the Eastern Conference semifinals, should the Celtics advance past their first-round playoff opponent. The Wizards meanwhile are all but eliminated from extending their season, with Spencer Dinwiddie and Montrezl Harrell gone Bradley Beal undergoing season-ending surgery and with the prolonged absence of Kyle Kuzma as he continues to deal with tendinitis in his right knee the Wiz are in bad shape – I see nothing but a double digit win for the Celtics.

Boston Celtics: 9-12, 13-16

 

Detroit Pistons @ Indiana Pacers

This looks a tough one to call – with both sides having nothing to play for seeded at the bottom of the Eastern Conference, but I am going to side with the Pistons who have at least been a lot more competitive since the turn of the year – although that is not saying much for an outfit that lost 28 of its opening 33 fixtures! Detroit can take advantage of a tanking Pacers side who have lost each of their last five games, with blow outs by 30 points to the Grizzlies and 40 points at the Raptors in that sequence and although I don’t see another wide margin defeat for Indiana here, I still expect them to come up short as they jostle for that better lottery position.

Detroit Pistons: 5-8, 9-12

Author: Lucas Carlson