Thursday, June 30, 2022

NBA picks, best bets: Karl-Anthony Towns should have another big showing in Grizzlies-Wolves Game 5

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With the 2021-22 NBA regular season now in the books, the basketball betting market is hotter than ever. CBS Sports will be providing daily picks for the duration of the postseason. Sam Quinn will make at least one pick for every game between now and the NBA Finals. All lines courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook.

Atlanta Hawks at Miami Heat

Featured Game | Miami Heat vs. Atlanta Hawks

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The average point total in this series is 210.75 per game. Game 4 only reached 196, the lowest of the series, and Miami’s stellar defense is the biggest reason why. The Hawks scored 37 points in the first 16:53 of the game… and just 49 the rest of the way. Some of that came down to cold shooting, but Atlanta made over 35 percent of its 3’s for the game. It’s not as though they were missing everything. The greater cause was Miami’s stellar transition defense and ball-control. The Hawks didn’t score a single fast-break point because the Heat didn’t let them. That strategy, as a whole, has worked. The Heat have made this a half-court series, and that’s a style that won’t lend itself to scoring. The pick: Under 217.5

Minnesota Timberwolves at Memphis Grizzlies

Featured Game | Memphis Grizzlies vs. Minnesota Timberwolves

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This is more of a principle pick. The line on Karl-Anthony Towns points in Game 4 was 24.5 points. He went way over. As you’ll recall, I made that pick. Yet for reasons I can’t quite understand, the line for Towns in Game 5 is lower at 23.5 points. He’s not gonna repeat his 17 free-throw attempts, but he seems to have found a rhythm from 3 and he’s at least attacking the basket more consistently. The pick: Towns over 23.5 points

New Orleans Pelicans at Phoenix Suns

The Suns have shot 11-of-56 from 3 in the past two games. That’s 19.6 percent. There is plenty of reason to believe that the Pelicans are the more talented team right now. You might think New Orleans is going to win this series (though I’d disagree). What you can’t deny is that the Suns are in the middle of an unsustainable cold streak. No NBA team should be expected to make 19.6 percent of its 3s over an extended period. Here’s why that matters: both the Game 3 and Game 4 totals have gone over this line. There were 225 points in Game 3 and 221 in Game 4. It’s not as though the Pelicans were playing pop-a-shot here either. They made 11 of their 32 Game 3 attempts and six of their 24 looks in Game 4. I can’t tell you who’s going to win this game, but I can tell you that whoever does is probably going to score a lot of points in the process. The pick: Over 215.5

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