NBA Picks 3/7/12

Posted Record 7-7-0 (+0.8 units)

Well, we went 1-1 on the 5th. The Bulls took the Pacers to the woodshed in the 2nd half and blew them out of the United Center. The Wolves blew a late lead after winning all game to only win by 1 point. Rubio missed two free throws to end the game, which would have given us a push. Oh well, there is a large card today and some good matchups for bettors.

Boston Celtics +7 (20-17 SU, 16-21 ATS) at Philadelphia 76ers (22-17 SU, 10-18-1 ATS) 7:00 EDT

The Celtics have been dominant in the Atlantic Division ever since they acquired Kevin Garnett before the 2007-2008 season. The Sixers and Cs will duke it out for Atlantic Division supremacy in Philadelphia Wednesday night.

The Celtics have been rolling on all cylinders for the past week, they are seeking a season high six game win streak rolling into Philadelphia. Pierce and Rondo have led the charge for the Celtics. Pierce followed a 34 point performance against the Knicks on Sunday with 30 point game against the Rockets last night. Boston won the game in overtime thanks to Pierce and double-double from Kevin Garnett. The Celtics have taken 13 out of 16 games against Philadelphia since Garnett joined the team. Even their losses over that span, have been decided by less than 4 points per game.

The 76ers come into tonight’s game losing 3 out of their last 4 games. They seem to be a team in crisis right now, as they have really fallen off in the 2nd half of the season. If we go back further, they have lost 8 of their last 10 games and have made changes to the starting lineup. Evan Turner and Nikola Vucevic have been added to the starting lineup by Doug Collins, he is hoping to jumpstart a sporadic offense. The Sixers are still lacking depth in their frontcourt. Center Spencer Hawes has been sidelined for nearly all season and has no return date.

I love the Celtics in this matchup. I almost feel like the line is too good which makes me suspicious. The Celtics have been playing extremely well and all the games these teams have played have been close, with the Celtics usually winning in the end. Garnett and Bass will patrol the paint, against an undersized 76ers frontcourt. Garnett has had a double-double in four straight games and I doubt that changes tonight. Allen, Rondo, and Pierce have all been in a groove as well. The Celtics are coming off a back 2 back and three games in four nights, but I don’t think it affects them as much as this line would indicate.

The Play: Celtics +7 -110 for 2 Units at Bovada.lv, Bovada has been around for more than a decade offering US bettors some of the best odds online.

Houston (21-18 SU, 20-19 ATS) at Toronto +2 (12-26 SU, 23-14-1 ATS) 7:00 EDT

The Rockets have struggled mightily over their past few games. They hope to right the ship tonight at the Air Canada Center against the Toronto Raptors. The Raptors have not played their best basketball of late either, but they are out to avenge their 88-85 loss to Houston on the 28th of February.

Houston is looking to break out of a four game slide that has hurt their playoffs chances. They are battling for the 8th playoff slot along with Minnesota and Portland, as each game becomes more critical the Rockets have been crippling under the pressure. The Rockets lost a tough game in Boston last night, losing 97-92 in overtime. Luis Scola and Kyle Lowry led the Rockets with 18 points each in the loss. In Houston’s defeat of the Raptors a week and a half ago, the team shot under 40 percent from the field.

The Raptors have not been rewarded with wins lately but they have been playing some tough defensive minded basketball. The Magic handed the Raptors a loss at home on Monday, the Raptors fell 92-88 but the game was within grasp until the final seconds. DeMar DeRozan has been the spark for the Raps of late, he’s averaging just over 20 points per game on 49 percent shooting. The Raptors defense has kept them in games, they’ve held their last five opponents to just over 88 points per game and just under 40% shooting.

I like the Raptors in this match up. The Rockets have been miserable lately and are coming off a tough overtime loss last night. Thee Raptors are well rested and want to take revenge against Houston for their loss on the 28th. They have played increasingly well inside and I think they are underrated. Ed Davis, James Johnson, and Aaron Gray continue to provide valuable frontcourt minutes. The Rockets are mired in a slump and are generally terrible in the paint on defense. I actually see the Raptors dominating the glass in this one, leading to a Toronto victory in front of their home fans.

The Play: Toronto Raptors +2 -110 for 1 unit at BetOnline.com, offering some of the best odds and props for NBA Basketball Bettors.

Good Luck!

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