Top NBA ATS Picks for the Weekend (March 11-12)

Posted by Kenny Bell on Friday,March 10, 2017 9:08, EDT in

The NBA likes to schedule as many games as possible on Friday, Saturdays or Sundays because that’s generally when people aren’t working and thus attendance is better than on a weeknight. So one thing to be aware of on weekends is to bet against teams playing the second of a back-to- back vs. one on rest. Here are three against the spread picks for this weekend (I’m projecting the NBA odds favorite).

Top NBA ATS Picks for the Weekend (March 11-12)

Washington Wizards at Portland Trail Blazers, Saturday

The Wizards are a good team and might even be slight favorites here. But I like Portland because it was off Friday and the Wizards were in Sacramento and are near the end of a long road trip. Washington defeated Portland, 120-101, at the Verizon Center on Jan. 16. Bradley Beal led the way for the Wizards with 25 points, while John Wall had 24 points and seven assists. For Portland, Damian Lillard scored a team-high 22 points (4-8 3-PT, 6-6 FT) while Evan Turner contributed 14 points (5-8 FG, 2-2 3-PT) off the bench. With a win here, the Wizards would sweep the Trail Blazers for the first time since the 2012-13 season. The Trail Blazers swept the Wizards in 2015-16. The Trail Blazers have defeated the Wizards in nine of the last 11 games played between the two teams at the Moda Center. Blazers coach Terry Stotts said new addition Jusuf Nurkic is making an impact on both sides of the court: “The way he’s been able to integrate with our team on both ends of the court has made a huge difference.” Since arriving in Portland, Nurkic is averaging 14.9 points, 8.1 rebounds, 4.0 assists, 1.3 blocks and 1.6 steals on 54.9 percent shooting.

Toronto Raptors at Miami Heat, Saturday

This could be a playoff preview. It’s another case of a team coming off a game the night before – Toronto has a tough one in Atlanta on Friday – and one with good rest, which is Miami. The Raptors won the first meeting of the season 96-87, but that was very early in the season when the Heat were struggling. They are playing as well as any team the past 22 games or so. DeMar DeRozan scored 34 points in the first meeting. Kyle Lowry had 13 and eight assists for the Raptors and Jonas Valanciunas grabbed 11 rebounds. Lowry is now out injured. Goran Dragic had 17 points and Tyler Johnson finished with 16 for the Heat. Miami kept the game close through the fourth until three straight baskets by DeRozan put the Raptors ahead by nine points with just under two minutes to play. Last season, the Raptors won the season-series, 3-1, but the Heat have won 11 of the last 13 games in Miami. The Heat 29-10 all-time vs. Toronto in games played in Miami. The Heat will only have to give a couple points here and that’s good value.

Phoenix Suns at Dallas Mavericks, Saturday

Entering the weekend, the Mavs have covered seven games in a row – this team was dead in the water a few months ago at 15 games under .500. Dallas will be a moderate favorite here and you should give the points. The Suns and Mavericks meet for the third of four meetings; they have split the first two. The Mavericks swept the series 3-0 last season and had won four straight against the Suns before Phoenix won the first meeting this season on Jan. 5. Dallas defeated Phoenix, 113-108, in Mexico City on 1/12/17. It was the second time Dallas played a regular-season contest outside the U.S. or Canada in franchise history (the Rockets defeated the Mavericks 108-106 in Mexico City on 12/6/97, in what was the first NBA regular-season game played in Latin America). The Mavericks have now won 23 of the last 32 regular-season matchups between the two teams. The Mavs have taken 26 of the last 34 regular-season meetings in Dallas.