Suns vs Nets – NBA Pick for October 31st

by Kevin Roberts
on October 31, 2017

Our early season NBA picks success continued on Monday night, as the Minnesota Timberwolves pulled out a tense road win in South Beach. The Wolves trailed for much of the game and needed overtime to get us the win, but we emerged with a 10-game winning streak intact.

Tuesday produces a small four-game slate, which obviously limits our NBA betting options and could also make extending that run rather difficult. That may be true, but there are still a couple of solid spots to target here.

Our favorite matchup figures to be a fun showdown in Brooklyn, as the Nets prepare to host the Phoenix Suns.

The Nets have been surprisingly decent to start the 2017-18 NBA regular season, as they knocked off the Cleveland Cavaliers in one contest and enter tonight’s action at a respectable (for them) 3-4. The Nets will also play host, which bodes well for them after finding much of their success last season at Barclays Center (3-1 at home this year).

Phoenix is hardly a team we should trust blindly, but the Suns have been noticeably better ever since firing head coach Earl Watson. After a dispiriting start with multiple ugly blowouts, the Suns snapped back into shape and won two straight contests before losing a tough one (114-107) against the Portland Trail Blazers.

On paper, the Suns and Nets match up extremely well. But where do we lay our cash down ahead of tonight’s showdown? Let’s break this game down a little further to find out:

Phoenix Suns (+160)
Brooklyn Nets (-180)
Total: 231

We need to provide reasoning for it, but I’m really only looking at two bets here; the Suns as fun underdogs or a solid -4.5 spread.

This Total is insanely gaudy and Brooklyn offers no value as a home favorite at -180 at Bovada. Betting on the Total just feels like an unnecessary risk. It’s true that these are the two fastest teams in the league in terms of pace, but that doesn’t always lead to efficient offense.

The Suns rank 28th in offensive efficiency, after all. Brooklyn has been a top-10 unit in that department, but collectively (even though this should be a shootout), I’m not excited about chasing this many points at -110.

There are still going to be a ton of points in this game, though. Neither of these teams can defend, with the Suns ranking 25th and the Nets coming in as the 29th best defensive squad in the NBA.

This all equates to a fast game with a lot of offense. Phoenix has the slight defensive edge with Tyson Chandler anchoring the paint, as he should be able to clean the glass and alter/block some shots. Both of these teams will score the ball, however, as they know how to push the pace, get easy buckets and are free to let it fly from long range.

Recent history aids the Nets, who swept last season’s series (2-0) last year and have ripped off four straight wins over the Suns. I think we can bet against a fifth straight win, however.

Brooklyn has looked better this year, but they’re already banged up and are never going to be a team that is trustworthy. Jeremy Lin was lost for the year (knee) early on and they could be down another key guy tonight if small forward DeMarre Carroll (ankle) sits this one out:

Carroll is questionable to play and his absence would take away strong perimeter defense, as well as floor spacing. Quincy Acy is also banged up and has already been ruled out, which could cut into Brooklyn’s depth a bit.

The Nets have actually gotten stellar play out of backup point guard Spencer Dinwiddie in the wake of Lin’s season-ending injury, but they are severely banged up right now. Star guard D’Angelo Russell has even been having issues with his knee, too, which has limited him in his last two starts.

Brooklyn head coach Kenny Atkinson has claimed that Russell’s knee is 100% healthy, but the team limiting their best player recently may suggest otherwise.

This game is about as wide open as it gets. Both teams can score in bunches, neither team defends and Vegas projects a tight contest with a ton of points. When that happens, bettors need to lean on health and talent.

Phoenix is the more talented team on paper, as Devin Booker just went off for 34 points in his last game and is joined by a slew of young players just waiting to bust out. The Nets might be deeper and more balanced, but considering they’re banged up, they’re also harder to trust.

Ultimately, this game is a borderline wash, but the Suns are just as explosive, a little healthier and also provide way more value. This isn’t a great slate for elite betting upside, but if you can get someone at +160 against the Nets and it makes sense, we need to consider it.

Now is the time to pounce here, as Carroll being officially ruled out or D’Lo randomly sitting would drastically shift these odds. The Suns provide stellar value in this spot and we’re down for the chase.

Pick: Phoenix Suns to Win (+160)
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