Saturday features a solid eight-game NBA slate, but the action gets underway a little later than usual. The slate kicks off with four contests starting at 8 p.m. ET and wraps up with a matchup between the Golden State Warriors and Detroit Pistons, which tips off at 10 p.m. ET.
Let’s dive into some of my favorite wagers on DraftKings Sportsbook for Saturday’s NBA slate.
Phoenix Suns @ Dallas Mavericks (-2.5):
The Suns are still playing without Devin Booker – who has missed the past two games with a hamstring injury – but this line feels like an overreaction to his injury. Booker is an excellent offensive player, but his absence has been pretty negligible this season. In fact, the Suns have actually increased their Net Rating by +3.1 points per 100 possessions with Booker off the court.
Their offense hasn’t been nearly as efficient without Booker, but they’ve been able to make up for it with stifling defense. They’ve limited opponents to just 99.3 points per 100 possessions over 336 minutes without Booker this season. That’s an elite mark.
The Mavericks also seem a bit overrated at the moment. They haven’t been nearly as productive offensively this season, and their defense remains poor. They rank just 18th in net rating this season, and they’ve been outscored by 1.57 points per 100 possessions through their first 19 games.
Milwaukee Bucks (-7.5) @ Charlotte Hornets:
The Bucks have not been the same dominant force this year that they’ve been over the past two seasons, but they’re still one of the best teams in the league. They currently sit in third place in the Eastern Conference standings, but they own the best net rating in the conference. They rank third overall in that department – trailing only the Jazz and Lakers – and they’ve outscored their opponents by an average of +7.94 points per 100 possessions.
That means they’ve been one of the unluckiest teams in basketball to start the year. They’ve won 11 of their first 18 games, but their net rating suggests that number should be closer to 13. They look like a team that could go on a run.
It has also been very profitable to target this team following a loss over the past three seasons. They’ve posted a record of 32-11 against the spread after losing their previous game over that stretch, which is good for a ridiculous 74.4% cover rate. That includes a mark of 5-1 against the spread to start the 2020-21 season.
Detroit Pistons @ Golden State Warriors (-5):
The Warriors have turned things around after a dreadful start to the season. They currently sit at 10-9, but that record is probably a bit flattering considering how they’ve actually played. They rank just 21st in net rating this season, which gives them an expected record of just 8-11.
Detroit ranks 23rd in net rating, so there’s not much separating these two squads. The Warriors have the best player in this matchup, but neither of these teams is very good.
With that in mind, it’s not surprising that the sharps are grabbing the five points with the Pistons. Detroit has received just 45% of the early spread bets, but those bets have accounted for 61% of the spread dollars. That kind of discrepancy means that the high-dollar amounts – which tend to come from professionals – are landing on Detroit. Any time the pros are taking a stand on a team, it’s wise to consider joining them.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is mlamarca) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.
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