Back in business,
Three big plays for me tonight.
Orlando -1 vs Oklahoma
Oklahoma has owned Orlando recently, winning four straight while covering the spread in three straight. That including a 102-94 win for Oklahoma at home on November 5th. My concern for Oklahoma is their injuries in the paint. If Adams and Noel are both out (not sure for now, but most likely), it really will be hard for them to stop Vucevic. He would be able to dictate a lot of the game. Orlando is back home after a long road trip, so that should help give them a boost for a push backing to becoming a winning team. I think Oklahoma is the better team overall, but I don’t like the match-up on paper tonight given Oklahoma's injuries, I will take Orlando minus the points at home.
Phoenix vs Indiana (0)
These are two very different teams facing off against each other in this game. Indiana struggle on offense, falling in the bottom ten teams in points per game, while Phoenix have a terrific offense, and are able to spread the floor and pass well, which is why they're so good at getting assists every game. However, Indiana are much better on defense, relying on the likes of Turner and Sabonis to maintain Phoenix offense, while also creating offense for themselves. I think Indiana contain Phoenix just enough to get a close win on the road tonight.
New Orleans vs San Antonio +4
New Orleans are playing really well right now and they seem to have found their stride. Some consider Zion being mixed in as a big plus tonight, which I think it can be in the future.. However, I think it will be disruptive in the first few games. New Orleans seems to be clicking right now and Zion coming into the lineup could disrupt that chemistry. He will also be on a time restriction, so it may be hard for him to fit into that flow the team has right now. As a rookie, he’s also going to go through some growing pains in the early stages of his first season and that could also disrupt New Orleans. I think people need to tame their expectations for him, especially for tonight. I would be surprised to see him take over a game and for New Orleans to look in complete harmony. I think the Spurs rain on the parade tonight, I will take them with those nice extra points.