We have betting picks and predictions for three of the best NBA games played this Friday, January 22, 2021.
Punters get a full card of NBA action on Friday, and we preview the Nets vs. Cavaliers, Celtics vs. 76ers, and Thunder vs. Clippers.
All three games present punters with excellent betting opportunities.
NBA Betting Picks
Brooklyn Nets vs. Cleveland Cavaliers @ Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse
The Brooklyn Nets were going along nicely with James Harden and Kevin Durant, but as soon as Kyrie Irving comes back, it turned sour.
Irving has been a talking point of the season so far, after missing games due to personal reasons. We don’t think he belongs on a team that already has two ball-dominant players, and the problems started early on Thursday.
The Nets were beaten by the 7-7 Cleveland Cavaliers, despite being double-figure favourites with bookmakers. Irving was trusted to make the final play of regulation, but he coughing up a costly turnover.
We prefer the Nets with just Harden and Durant, but they will need to make it work. Cleveland is a chance of winning again, but it should be harder this time around.
Teams that pull off an upset typically struggle in the second game. Brooklyn should make the changes needed to get back into a winning groove.
Bookmakers have the line at 10 once again, which should see interest in both teams. If Cleveland starts well, it could strike fear into the superstar combination of the Nets.
However, given the talent it has, Brooklyn should be firing back with everything left in the tank.
Bet: Brooklyn Nets –10
Boston Celtics vs. Philadelphia 76ers @ Wells Fargo Center
Boston has struggled without Jayson Tatum, losing its last two games. One of those losses came to Philadelphia on Thursday, but the Celtics had every chance to win.
The Celtics held a lead in the fourth quarter, but they were unable to stop a rampaging Joel Embiid. The big man had 42 points, and he was making shots from in the paint, at the free throw line, and from behind the arc.
It was another impressive performance at home for the 76ers, who are now 8-1 at home and 10-5 overall. Ben Simmons wasn’t at his best, but even with the Australian having a mixed performance, the 76ers won by eight points.
Boston relied heavily on Marcus Smart, who looked terrific. Kemba Walker also looked impressive before sitting on the bench for an extended period of time.
Walker is nursing an injury, and when he came back on the court, he didn’t show much. If Walker, Smart and Jaylen Brown can combine for 80 points on Saturday, Boston has a chance.
However, we’re picking Philadelphia to score consecutive wins over Boston. They are tough to beat at home, and Embiid is making an early case for regular season MVP.
Bet: Philadelphia 76ers to win
Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Los Angeles Clippers @ STAPLES Center
The Clippers are firming with bookmakers to win the NBA title this season after starting 11-4.
They are currently riding a significant winning streak and recent wins over Indiana and Sacramento holds them in good stead to face the Thunder.
They won their last two games by a combined margin of 52 points, and that has sent a signal to the rest of the Western Conference.
Looking to end the run of the Clippers are the Thunder, who enters this game with a 6-7 record. The Thunder looked good beating Chicago last week, but they subsequently suffered an 18-point loss to Denver.
It comes as no surprise to see bookmaker install the Clippers as $1.10 favourites. They should be winning this game and keeping their winning streak alive. However, the points spread line is where we are interested.
13 points is a lot to cover, and the Oklahoma City Thunder aren’t that bad. If they can keep this game close until halftime, that will give them confidence late in the game.
We expect Los Angeles to come out ahead on Saturday afternoon, but don’t be surprised to see the Thunder make a game out of it.
Bet: Oklahoma City Thunder +13
After graduating from the University of Auckland (BA – English), Daryl was thrown into the world of sports and horse racing journalism.
Having worked as a racing journalist for two years, he decided to move into the online world of horse racing and sports writing. Coupled with his love of US sport, Daryl’s picks have been featured on various websites around the world and viewed by millions of readers. After years of honing his craft, Daryl became a professional punter in 2009 – with a focus on horse racing, NBA, NFL, and college sports. When he’s not working, Daryl tries to avoid making bogeys on the golf course.