Southeast Division Preview (Feb. 22)By Alex H.
The fanfare that accompanied Thursday’s NBA trade deadline couldn’t find a move to match it. The highest profile move came as Orlando relinquished J.J. Reddick while Atlanta’s non-movement of Josh Smith made the biggest noise of all.
As the dust settled, Miami – having shipped out backup center Dexter Pittman to Memphis – handed Chicago an embarrassing defeat on Thursday night, continuing to pace the Southeast Division and the Eastern Conference to boot.
BettingSports.com now brings you a rundown of Friday night’s four Southeast Division games, starting with the team that surprised everyone by not making a trade.
Sacramento Kings at Atlanta Hawks
The biggest news coming out of Thursday’s trade deadline was undoubtedly the fact that Josh Smith remains in Atlanta. Either the Hawks wanted too much for the forward of GMs think they can ink a deal when he becomes a free agent in July. How Smith, and the team, reacts to the non-move could play a huge impact on the team going forward.
Currently occupying the No. 6 seed in the Eastern Conference, two games ahead of Boston, Atlanta (29-23, 17-10 home) will look to hold tight, starting tonight with a trip from the lowly Kings, who made some interesting (to say the least) moves on Thursday.
Sacramento (19-36, 5-23 road) enters this game with the second worst road record in the NBA. Recently the Kings have dropped 11 of 14 games, and six straight on the road. Atlanta will like its chances of repeating a 112-96 victory over the Kings back on Nov. 16.
Perhaps the only statistic of note for those wondering whether the Kings have a chance is the team’s record against the East. Sacramento has gone 11-12 in interconference games. That’s about as close to .500 as the team has seen all year.
Atlanta meanwhile has stumbled of late, losing four of seven and three of four at home. Maybe the Kings have a shot after all.
The Hawks open as the favorite (-9). Atlanta (22-28-2 ATS) has fared better against the spread than Sacramento (23-31-1 ATS) but neither side has been outstanding.
The total opened at 200.5. Both Atlanta (26-25-1) and Sacramento (31-23-1) have favored the over this season.
Denver Nuggets at Washington Wizards
The Wizards sent Jordan Crawford to Boston for Jason Collins and the injured Leandro Barbosa at Thursday’s deadline. With both Collins’ and Barbosa’s contracts up at the end of the year, it looks like the Wizards are shedding salary cap.
Washington (15-37, 11-15 home) will take to the court on Friday night, welcoming a Denver (34-21, 11-18 road) side that snapped a three-game losing streak on Tuesday with a win over Collins and the Celtics.
Prior to that three-game losing skid, the Nuggets had been soaring high, but the Wizards will come into this one with confident, despite entering the game with the fifth worst home record in the NBA. Washington handed the Nuggets a 112-108 defeat in the Mile High City back on Jan. 18. Surprising to many, the Wizards have also won eight of the last 10 at home.
The line hasn’t been released on this one, so keep visiting the BettingSports.com NBA Odds page for the last developments.
Washington has compiled a 32-19-1 ATS record this season, going 16-10-0 ATS at home.
Denver is 32-23-0 ATS all told this season and 16-10-0 ATS on the road.
Denver (32-22-0) has favored the over while Washington (20-31-0) trends towards the under.
The last time the two sides met, Washington (+11.5) covered the spread with an upset win, while the total (210) went over.
Chicago Bulls at Charlotte Bobcats
Having put on a poor performance in a 86-67 loss to Southeast Division leaders Miami on Thursday night, Chicago (31-23, 16-10 road) will look to make a better showing against the Bobcats on Friday.
Charlotte (13-41, 7-20 home) picked up a win over Orlando in its first game back after the All-Star break, moving the side to within two games of passing the Magic in the Southeast cellar. That win was a rare beacon of hope in an otherwise horrible season.
The Bobcats have lost 17 of the last 21 and boast the league’s worst home record. The side has gone 2-18 in the last 20 games played at Time Warner Cable Arena.
The Bulls meanwhile enter this one with the second best road record in the league. Only San Antonio has fared better away from home this season. However, this is somewhat deceptive. After starting with a 13-5 road record, the Bulls have gone 3-5 in their last eight road games. The side has also lost six of the last nine all told, which should give the Bobcats some degree of hope.
The sides have split a pair of games this season, both of which were played at the United Center.
The Bulls opened as the favorite (-6). Both sides have struggled against the spread this season. Chicago is 23-31-0 ATS with a 10-20-0 ATS record when starting the game as favorite. The side has fared better on the road, compiling a 16-10-0 ATS record.
Charlotte has gone 20-34-0 ATS this season, with a 9-18-0 ATS record at home and a 19-29-0 ATS record as underdog.
The total opened at 187. Both teams have favored the under this season.
Orlando Magic at Memphis Grizzlies
Whilst Charlotte resides at the bottom of the NBA barrel, Orlando (15-39, 6-20 road) seems intent of relieving the Bobcats of that status. The Magic traded away guard J.J. Reddick to Milwaukee (in a six-player deal) on Thursday as the team continues to rebuild.
The readjusted Magic side will head to Memphis (35-18, 21-8 home) looking to find some way of winning against a side renowned for its ability to win at home.
Orlando has lost 27 of its last 30 games. The side hasn’t won on the road since Jan. 12, dropping nine straight away from Central Florida. The Magic’s most recent loss came on Wednesday in Dallas.
Memphis meanwhile has won five straight, including three in a row and four of five at home. However, the Grizzlies have surprisingly dropped home games to Phoenix, New Orleans, Portland and Philadelphia season, which may buoy Orlando somewhat. The Magic is also 9-11 against Western Conference opponents, about the only (almost) respectable record it holds.
Memphis opened at the favorite (-11.5). The Grizzlies have compiled a 31-21-1 ATS record this season, including a 17-11-1 ATS tally at home and a 26-16-1 ATS record as the favorite.
Orlando is 23-31-0 ATS this season but has gone 14-12-0 ATS on the road and 21-21-0 ATS as the underdog, again offering a glimmer of hope.
The total opened at 190.5. Orlando (29-24-1) has favored the over while Memphis (23-29-1) has trended towards the under.