Situational or spot betting is one the time-tested handicapping methods out there when it comes to sizing up nightly sports, like the NBA. Bettors can make a mint isolating certain situations and how teams react in those spots, edging the oddsmakers when those opportunities roll around.
If you’re a fan of spot bets or just looking for a new way to wager on the NBA, here are some of the top free sports betting picks in the Association as we close in on the annual All-Star break.
Utah Jazz as home underdogs
The Jazz have the misfortune of playing in the Western Conference – a star-studded group of teams – without the benefits of having a real star on the roster. Utah isn’t the most talent-enticing market, but the team continues to overachieve against the spread, boasting a 30-25 ATS mark this season.
The Jazz are never more profitable then when getting the points on their home court. Utah is 7-2 ATS as a home pup this season and 17-10 ATS as home dogs since 2015-16. Not only are the Jazz one of the tougher defensive clubs in the NBA, allowing only 98.2 points per home game (second lowest in league), but Salt Lake City presents its own challenges with teams traveling into the thin air at 4,226 feet above sea level.
Memphis Grizzlies on second of back-to-back
There are few positives in Memphis this season. The Grizzlies have settled to the bottom of the Southwest Division, going 18-36 SU and 24-28-2 ATS. Point guard Mike Conley is out for the season and big man Marc Gasol seems to be slowing down, leading to a lost season. The team failed to make any significant moves during the deadline – more specifically deal Tyreke Evans – and could be a play-against bet in the home stretch of the season.
But before you blindly bet against the Grizzlies, make sure you circle when the team is playing on no rest in the second game of back-to-back outings. Memphis is an impressive 7-4 ATS in this situation this season and has gone 30-18 ATS – covering 62.5 percent of the time – without a day between games since 2015-16. The Grizzlies remain a defensive-focused team and have been able to stave off fatigue for bettors in those back-to-back spots.
Philadelphia 76ers in non-conference games
The Sixers were the laughing stock of the NBA for a long time and faced lofty spreads most nights, with those lines exploding when up against Western competition. Philadelphia was one of the best bets in the NBA because of those big underdog spreads and while those profits have slimmed with the team’s improvements, the Sixers are still a great bet in non-conference games.
This season the 76ers have gone 16-8-1 ATS versus the West, with a 13-12 SU mark in those outings. They recently knocked off New Orleans as 5.5-point home favorites. This success against the spread in non-conference games isn’t just confined to this season. Philadelphia is a crazy 57-26-2 ATS against the West since 2015-16. That’s a near 69 percent winner over three seasons.
Denver Nuggets off a loss
The Nuggets were a popular sharp pick when it came to season win totals this season, and Denver has yet to meet those expectations. It enters the weekend with a 29-26 SU count and is 25-27-3 against the spread, with a solid 16-12-1 ATS mark inside the Pepsi Center.
But if you’re looking to cash in on the Nuggets, bet them at their lowest point: coming off a loss. Denver is 13-10-2 ATS when coming off a defeat and has gone 67-45-3 ATS off a loss since 2015-16. The Nuggets do have a home-court edge due to the energy-draining thin mountain air and will get much stronger up front when forwards Paul Millsap and Mason Plumlee return to action in March. Buy low when it comes to the Mile High Nuggets.