The exciting NBA season continues this Saturday, the 4th of January with six games on the slate. There are plenty of great matchups among them, which should make for another fantastic day of viewing.
We have a full preview and betting tips for some of the key games of the day below.
The game of the day looms as this matchup between the 76ers and the Rockets in Houston. The Sixers come into this off a dismal performance away to the Pacers which they lost by 18 points. That was their third loss in a row, which is already the third time they’ve gone on such a streak this season. Despite their form slum, the Sixers are currently fifth in the East at 23-13.
The Rockets bounced back from a big loss away to the Pelicans with a dominant 26 point win at home against the Nuggets. As usual, James Harden led the way with 35 points and six assists, taking the Rockets to 23-11 on the season, which is good enough for fourth place in the West standings.
The Sixers have been very poor on the road this campaign, winning just seven of their 18 away fixtures. On the other hand, the Rockets are 12-4 at home and are coming off a big win against a fellow contender. The Rockets won comfortably the last time these teams met and we expect something similar again this time around.
The Knicks have found some fantastic form all of the sudden and find themselves on a rare three game winning streak. They were dominant 24 point winners last time out against the Blazers on the back of Julius Randle’s 22 points and 13 rebounds. Randle has now scored 20+ points in eight of his last 10 games, leading the Knicks to a 6-4 record during that span.
The Suns found themselves down HUGE early against the Lakers last time out. They did rally hard and kind of make a game out of it, which is a credit to their mental toughness and togetherness under coach Monty Williams. The Suns have now lost nine of their past 11 games and are in danger of seeing their playoff hopes evaporate.
The Knicks are the form team in this matchup and will bring a lot of confidence into this game. We’re surprised to see the Suns start as the red-hot favourites, especially after the way they started last time out. It’s hard to oppose the current form of Randle and the Knicks, so we’re happy to be on them to cover the spread and potentially cause an upset.
The Pelicans have finally found some form this season and look to have put that disgraceful 13 game losing streak behind them. They’ve gone on to win five of their last six including each of their last four and look to be playing a lot better on the defensive side. The Pelicans still have a long way to go to resurrect their season and come into this 14th spot in the West at 11-23.
The Lakers were easy winners last time out against the Suns, making it three good wins on the spin for LeBron and co. This run came after a surprising four game losing streak that had a lot of people jumping to conclusions. The Lakers remain in first place in the West standings with an impressive 27-7 record on the season.
The Lakers may be the best in the West, but the Pelicans are playing genuinely great basketball at the current time. They’ve won four in a row coming in and have a bunch of guys shooting the lights out at the moment. The Lakers may get the jump early, but the big line here makes it seem a lot more likely that the Pelicans will cover.
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