The NBA's regular season comes to a close on Sunday, which means this is the final day to bet on the teams that are missing the playoffs but have been covering machines all year, (I'm looking at you, Oklahoma City Thunder).
BetSided's Peter Dewey and Joe Summers have broken down the entire slate of games on Sunday, but here are some of their top picks for the action, with all odds via WynnBET:
Detroit Pistons vs. Philadelphia 76ers Prediction and Pick
Given how bad Philadelphia has been recently, I'm not sure it even matters if their starters play. In fact, Detroit beat the Sixers just 10 days ago even with Embiid and Harden in the game.
I'm not sure if the Pistons will manage an outright win today, but they're well-positioned to keep it close. Detroit has a top-10 assist percentage (how many baskets come from assists) over their last 15 games and their constant ball movement should be a problem for a Sixers' defense that ranks in the bottom 10 in net rating in the last two weeks.
That being said, the Pistons lost their last two games by a combined 48 points, so not all is peachy.
In my opinion though, that just means they'll be extra motivated to end their season on a high note. I expect a full effort from Detroit to ensure they don't head into the offseason coming off three embarrassing blowout losses.
I've been betting the Pistons constantly over the last two months and we've got to do it one last time. Detroit vs Everybody, baby.
Pick: Pistons +9.5 (-108) -- Joe Summers
Follow all of Joe Summers' betting picks here.
Golden State Warriors vs. New Orleans Pelicans Prediction and Pick
I love the Warriors in this spot, as there is a clear motivation advantage to avoid having to face the Suns before the Western Conference Finals.
Golden State has won four straight games to hold off the Dallas Mavericks for the No. 3 spot, and I expect Thompson’s presence to help carry Golden State to another win in this one.
The Pels are going to play the Spurs in the first round of the play-in tournament regardless of Sunday’s outcomes, so I don’t see the motivation behind taking them to cover such a short spread.
The Warriors’ defense has improved over their last 10 games, ranking No. 3 in the NBA over that stretch. I think that and Thompson gives Golden State the edge in this one.
Lean: Warriors -5 (-108) -- Peter Dewey
Find Peter Dewey’s full betting record in the NBA this season here.
Toronto Raptors vs. New York Knicks Prediction and Pick
There’s a chance the Raptors sit OG Anunoby (questionable) and Fred VanVleet in this game, but the Knicks’ offense is going to be hurting without both RJ Barrett and Julius Randle.
I can’t see a Tom Thibodeau led team just mailing it in to end the season, but I’m not a fan of the 5.5-point spread since we haven’t seen this Knicks team at all without its two leading scorers this season.
That leads me to the UNDER, as these two teams are 29th (Knicks) and 27th (Raptors) in pace this season. If so many key offensive players are out, I expect a methodical game with a lot more missed shots than we’re used to.
The Knicks are just 22nd in offensive rating this season, and both of these teams rank in the top-11 in defensive rating. This should be a low-scoring affair.
Lean: UNDER 219.5 (-108) -- Peter Dewey