There’s another big slate of NBA action on Friday with eight games scheduled to play. We bring you our best free spread picks and player props for the key games here!
NBA Betting Picks: Friday, January 15th
Chicago Bulls at OKC Thunder
Chesapeake Energy Arena, 8pm ET
Chicago Bulls went through their first eight games of the season playing .500 basketball, but have since regressed with three losses on the spin. The main cause for concern continues to be on the defensive end as they’re yet to hold a team to less than 100 points. On a positive note, Zach LaVine has been firing at a great clip of late.
OKC Thunder were predicted by many to finish on the bottom of the West this season, but they’ve been known to prove doubters wrong in the past. The Thunder have started the season at 5-6 and were momentarily above .500 before losing their past two games. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander has shown he has the capabilities to lead this team and remain efficient, which has been a big boost thus far.
Neither team will be making the playoffs this season but both have had decent starts to their campaign all things considered. With that said, we do believe the Thunder are the better of the two, simply because they’ve been stronger on the defensive end. We have them winning this game at near even odds.
Atlanta Hawks at Utah Jazz
Vivint Smart Home Arena, 9pm ET
Atlanta Hawks were tipped to be big improvers this season and they certainly got off to a hot start with wins in four of their first five games; however, their last five games have gone the other way, with just one win against a depleted 76ers outfit. At 5-5 and sitting seventh in the East, Atlanta would be content with their season to date.
Utah Jazz were slow starters this season but have come on strong with wins in each of their past three games. They’ve been as solid as ever on the defensive end during this mini stretch, particularly in their last two games where they’ve held their opponents to 86 and 87 points. The Jazz are now 7-4 on the season and are building nicely.
The Hawks have shown signs of improvement this season, but they’re still yet to beat a team that is both talented and healthy. On the other hand, the Jazz are flying at the moment and will be full of confidence. We have them proving too strong on the defensive end of the floor and winning this at home fairly comfortably.
New Orleans Pelicans at Los Angeles Lakers
Staples Center, 10pm ET
New Orleans Pelicans got their season underway with four wins from their first six games, but then injuries and safety protocols happened and they’re now 4-6 after four losses on the spin. On a positive note, Nickiel Alexander-Walker was superb for the Pelicans with a career-high 37 points last time out, which should earn him a bigger role going forward.
Los Angeles Lakers have hit their straps already this season and come into this game with the best record in the league at 10-3. They’ve won four in a row and eight of their last nine and still have some room for improvement. Barring injury, the Lakers will certainly be in it to win it again this season.
The Lakers dominated this matchup last season, sweeping the Pelicans 4-0 in the regular season. If healthy, then maybe the Pelicans could give them a run for their money if they played at their best, but that isn’t the case, so we’re expecting another comfortable win for the Lakers here.
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