Top NBA Picks and Predictions Today (Bulls, Bucks & Raptors Have Value On The Road)

Nov 2, 2022; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Bulls forward DeMar DeRozan (11) brings the ball up
Nov 2, 2022; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Bulls forward DeMar DeRozan (11) brings the ball up / Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

The NBA season is nearly 10 games in and we're starting to get a sense of who's good and who's not. Tonight, we have some great matchups that will give us an even clearer picture.

There's 12 games on the slate today, so let's jump into our team's favorite picks for tonight's games.

Bulls vs. Celtics Prediction and Pick

These are the ninth and best teams in the league in terms of net rating. The Bulls have a net rating of 2.8 and the Celtics’ net rating is 1.9. 

Boston hasn’t been able to reach the defensive heights it did last season, checking in at 19th in defensive rating on the year. The loss of Robert Williams III in the middle of the paint has been noticed with the Celtics shallow frontcourt depth, leaning on the likes of Luke Kornet and Blake Griffin thus far. Meanwhile, the Bulls have taken a big leap on defense, ranking 7th. 

The Celtics have tried to outscore everyone this season, and I don’t think that will be a successful strategy against the Bulls. If Chicago’s defense maintains its level of intensity and can get solid offensive production from its bench, the Bulls can keep this game close. – Donnavan Smoot

Bucks vs. Timberwolves Prediction and Pick

While you might think the Bucks might have some trouble with Gobert and Karl-Anthony Towns in the middle of the paint, I don’t have any qualms about backing Giannis tonight. In his last nine meetings against Rudy Gobert, Antetokounmpo has scored 30 points seven times. He’s dominated this matchup and if Brook Lopez can keep KAT occupied on the outside, then Antetokounmpo will have all the driving lanes he needs. 

The Bucks have the best defense in the league, which I expect to show up against a struggling Timberwolves team. Minnesota is 23rd in offensive rating, ranking just above the Charlotte Hornets. 

The Timberwolves haven’t figured out how to play cohesive offense with their new team and that will hurt them tonight. 

As long as Antetokounmpo is healthy, then I like the Bucks to win this one handily. – Donnavan Smoot

Raptors vs. Mavericks Prediction and Pick

Despite Luka’s early season exploits, the Mavericks are only 4-3 and narrowly defeated the Jazz, 103-100, on Wednesday. Luka needed 33 points, 11 assists and five rebounds to down the pesky Utah squad. Toronto is honestly a more idealized version of Utah. The Jazz essentially start three power forwards with Mike Conley and Jordan Clarkson, and with Fred VanVleet out, the Raptors start four power forwards and 6-foot-5 Gary Trent Jr. 

This lineup of Scottie Barnes, Trent, OG Anunoby, Christian Koloko, and Pascal Siakam is not only massive, but incredibly switchable defensively. They are perfectly set up to defend Luka Doncic and give him problems with their length. Luka’s offensive game plan is often to pick on the weak link defensively by getting a switch in pick and roll, but there is no weak link defensively for Toronto. That will make the Mavericks offense laborious tonight, and Toronto will continue to roll. 

Two straight big wins could become three for the Raptors who currently sit atop the Atlantic division. – Josh Yourish

Pick: Raptors +135

Trail Blazers vs. Suns Prediction and Pick

The Trail Blazers have been such a pleasant surprise this season. It looked like Lillard was back to his top form after missing most of last season with a core muscle injury. Through five games he was averaging 31.0 points before a calf injury. Anfernee Simons seems to be taking another step as well, averaging 22.0 points alongside Dame. However, this team does have a glaring flaw that will show up even more if their top two isolation scorers are out. 

The Blazers are 26th in the league in assists per game. They only average 21.9 and Lillard is their leading playmaker with 4.6 assists per game. That is just not enough creation for others for this to be a sustainable model when Lillard is injured. Josh Hart is second on the team in assists, and that is a serious concern when you are relying on a 3-and-D player to be a secondary creator. This team is in desperate need of another playmaker if they want to survive Lillard’s injuries and advance in the playoffs even with a healthy Dame. 

Tonight, they are going up against the ultimate creator, Chris Paul who is averaging 11.0 assists per game this season. – Josh Yourish

Pick: Suns -10.5 (-110)

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.