NBA Best Bets Today: Predictions for Knicks, Celtics-Clippers and DeMar DeRozan

New York Knicks guard Kemba Walker.
New York Knicks guard Kemba Walker. / Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

I almost made a New Year’s resolution to stop betting on the New York Knicks, but then they covered for us in the NBA Best Bets column, and I’m going back to the well tonight. 

There’s been some tough luck with the prop picks as of late, but we’ve still gone 7-5 since Sunday, so there’s a breakthrough coming. 

Tonight, I’m looking at one underdog, one favorite and a prop bet in the Chicago Bulls-Atlanta Hawks matchup. 

Let’s get into Wednesday’s picks!

All odds courtesy of WynnBET Sportsbook.

NBA Best Bets Record to Date

  • NBA Best Bets Record: 69-78-2

NBA Best Bets Today

  • New York Knicks -6 vs. Detroit Pistons (-110)
  • Los Angeles Clippers +5.5 vs. Boston Celtics (-110)
  • DeMar DeRozan OVER 5 Rebounds (-105)

New York Knicks vs. Detroit Pistons: Knicks -6 (-110)

The New York Knicks are eyeing a third straight win on Wednesday night when they face the Detroit Pistons in Detroit

The 5-27 Pistons are dealing with a major COVID-19 outbreak and were blown out 144-109 against the San Antonio Spurs their last time out. These two teams also met on Dec. 21 with the Knicks coming away with a 105-91 victory. 

New York improved to 9-7 against the spread on the road this season with last night’s win over the Minnesota Timberwolves, and now it gets to face a short-handed Pistons team that will likely be without Cade Cunningham and is already down Jerami Grant on Wednesday. 

The Knicks have been maddening this year, as last night was the first time they won two straight games since October, but they are clearly the better team in this matchup. 

First off, New York has gotten much healthier, getting Immanuel Quickley, Quentin Grimes, RJ Barrett, Obi Toppin and Miles McBride back from the health and safety protocols. Secondly, this team was able to easily beat Detroit earlier this month with much less firepower available. 

The Pistons come into this game 30th in offensive rating, 23rd in defensive rating and 30th in effective field goal percentage. With their two top offensive players out, I can’t see how Detroit keeps this game remotely close, even against a Knicks team that has underwhelmed this season. 

Los Angeles Clippers vs. Boston Celtics: Clippers +5.5 (-110)

Boston lost on Monday to the Minnesota Timberwolves without Karl-Anthony Towns, Anthony Edwards or D’Angelo Russell in the lineup. Granted, the Celtics didn’t have Jayson Tatum, but the Wolves were running out several players on hardship deals, including Greg Monroe (!), and still came away with the upset win. 

Now, Boston hosts the Los Angeles Clippers, who are down Paul George on Wednesday with a chance to get back in the win column. 

The Celtics are just 7-13 all-time with Tatum out of the lineup and they are just 2-7 over the past two seasons with him sidelined. 

The Clippers have covered in one of their past two games without George, and I think 5.5 points may be a bit too many on Wednesday. 

The Clippers may lack firepower offense with George out, but they are also No. 4 in the NBA in defensive rating and No. 6 in opponent effective field goal percentage. The Celtics aren’t an offensive juggernaut even with Tatum in the lineup this season, ranking 21st in offensive rating and 24th in effective field goal percentage. 

A low-scoring affair will favor Los Angeles, and I’ll back the Clips with the points tonight. 

DeMar DeRozan OVER 5 Rebounds (-105)

The Hawks and Bulls played a high-scoring game in their matchup on Monday, and with John Collins still out, I think DeRozan can build on his five-rebound performance last time out. 

DeRozan is averaging 5.1 rebounds per game this season, but I like that we’re getting this number at five because of a recent cold stretch on the glass.

Prior to landing in the NBA’s health and safety protocols, DeRozan had five or more boards in seven of eight games, but he has failed to hit the over in his last four games since returning. 

I’m going to buy low on DeRozan here and bet on an up-and-down game tonight that allows for plenty of rebounding opportunities.