My stellar NBA picks continued through the weekend, as I notched two more wins with the Knicks and Rockets scoring easy wins. That has me on a nice three-game winning streak, which helps thrust me into the new week with a strong 18-5-1 record on the young 2017-18 NBA season.
Things have gone great so far, and bettors get ample opportunity to keep their own streaks rolling with a fat Monday slate. Nine games grace the NBA docket tonight, with a few looking like easy picks, and others potentially allowing for staggering value.
It’s up to you which direction you go, but my daily stance is still chasing a mixture of value and safety. I think you can find that Milwaukee when the Memphis Grizzlies come into town to battle the Bucks.
Neither of these teams love to push the pace (23rd and 29th, respectively), so you’re looking at a low-scoring, grind-it-out defensive battle. That’s certainly been the case when you look back at the series history (which has been split 3-3 over the last six games), as none of these recent meetings saw both teams top 100+ points.
That’s something that has happened three times in the last nine matchups, too. Needless to say, when you look at the pace of this game, the history, and the defensive mind-set the Grizzlies bring to the table, the Under looks like a solid bet.
Is that the bet to chase in this matchup, though? Let’s break this game down a little further to find out:
The Total is fairly low, but far from the lowest you’ll see. Part of that is because the Bucks and Grizzlies oddly enough both average over 101 points per game. That, and despite their efforts, Milwaukee isn’t a great defensive team (19th in defensive efficiency).
It’s important to account for two things for both sides. For one, Tyreke Evans has really stepped it up off the bench and is providing a huge scoring spark for Memphis. He’s played so well, in fact, that there is an argument brewing for him to win 6th Man of the Year.
Milwaukee has their own helper, too, as they just traded for explosive point guard Eric Bledsoe, who in due time will add an interesting dynamic to an already efficient offense.
Bledsoe will be making just his third start as a member of the Bucks, however, and he’s tasked with covering and beating Mike Conley. That’s a bad matchup by the numbers and one you have to give Conley all day.
While both teams have an added offensive spark, these are still two offenses that can struggle. Milwaukee has really been a one-man show with Giannis Antetokounmpo leading the way this year, too, and it’s fair to wonder if that will fly against a tough defense.
Both teams are going to want to get a win here. The Bucks could make it two in a row and push their home record to 4-3, but at 6-6, it’s clear they’ve had some issues with consistency.
Defending and providing reliable scoring outside of The Greek Freak has been an issue as well, which could obviously become more of a problem against the NBA’s 5th best defense.
Memphis is in danger of dropping two in a row, and though they’re in a solid spot at 7-5, they can’t risk losing more ground in the ultra-competitive Southwest Division. The Grizzlies have been mediocre (3-3) to this point on the road, but could be in a favorable spot with a very good matchup in terms of pace.
Conventional wisdom backs the Bucks at home and so does Vegas, with Bovada and other NBA betting sites starting the bidding at -165. That line moved since this morning, however, as the oddsmakers clearly aren’t completely confident in this one.
Memphis can defend at a high level, and with both teams preferring to slow things down, the style of play favors them in a big way. They hold the value here, as well, with Bovada handing them a nice +145 line.
Picking the Grizz straight-up is certainly an option, but Bovada also gives us a solid +4 spread to consider. I like Memphis here, but it’s understandably tough to get road underdogs to always complete the task at hand. Given their defensive aptitude and the pace of this game, I fully expect a low-scoring affair that goes down to the wire.
Memphis should be able to get the win, but at -110, we’re getting plenty of value to just hope they beat this spread.