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Free NBA Betting Picks - Today's Best Bets, Expert Predictions, Odds (11/17/23)

Trae Young - Atlanta Hawks

We are back with another edition of in-season tournament NBA picks. There are 11 games to choose from and, hopefully, some winners to find.

I went 2-1 on my picks Tuesday night, and the teaser at +120 hit as a bonus. It was a much-needed bounce back after two recent poor showings. I haven't been great with totals recently, so I'm just sticking to spreads and money-line picks in this one. I will include a ML parlay at the end. There are no games I have an interest in teasing tonight. Single-game pick record: 12-10.

In this article, I'll be providing my favorite picks against the spread, game totals, parlays, and teasers for games that tip off at 7:00 PM EST on Friday, November 17th. Follow me on Twitter/X, @Jwiesel13!

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NBA Betting Picks: Spreads & ML

Philadelphia 76ers (-1) @ Atlanta Hawks (235.5 total)

Both of these teams come into tonight's game off of losses. The Hawks lost a nail-biter at home to the Knicks. Philly lost at home to the Celtics and has lost two straight.

Joel Embiid was a game-time decision Wednesday night before lacing them up against the Celtics. He is once again questionable tonight with a hip injury. I would not be shocked if he sat, considering the pace the Hawks play at.

Even if he plays, I still like the Hawks at home tonight. They have a better field goal and three-point percentage at home compared to the road. Atlanta is averaging 120 points in five home games this season on 50.4 percent field goal shooting. Trae Young has also been playing well recently, averaging 26.3 points and 11.8 assists in his last five games. Philadelphia has been a little worse than average defending point guards this season, according to FantasyPros. If Trae is slowed down from a scoring standpoint, he will facilitate, as always, finding other options. A player to watch is Bogdan Bogdanovic, who scored 28 against the Knicks and has scored 15+ in five straight.

The Hawks have been one of the best defenses against point guards this season. They could make life tough for explosive Sixers guard Tyrese Maxey. If Maxey is off, it will throw the whole team off.

Their offensive and defensive ratings are not far off from each other. Embiid is murky, Atlanta can score, and it's an in-season tournament night.

I like the Hawks here.

The pick: Atlanta Hawks +1 (-115 DraftKings)


Orlando Magic (+1) @ Chicago Bulls (216.5 total)

Every part of me wants to take this under, but I'll refrain.

These two teams played Wednesday night in Chicago. Paolo Banchero hit a wild shot with 1.4 seconds left to win 96-94.

I like the Bulls in this rematch. After being tied at 21 after the first quarter, Orlando used a big 29-12 second quarter to take a 50-33 lead going into halftime. Chicago battled all the way back in the final minutes but fell short.

Despite Orlando winning, I like the hungry momentum the Bulls should bring into this game. DeMar DeRozan missed Wednesday's game for personal reasons and is questionable for tonight. The obvious hope is that he plays. DeMar is averaging 21.2 points and leading the team with 4.5 assists this season. He's averaging 9.9 potential assists per game, with Zach LaVine in second at 7.5. Needless to say, DeRozan is their offensive conductor, and it's favorable that he's back tonight.

The Magic also had 30 free throw attempts Wednesday night. They are second in the NBA in free throw attempts per game (27.5), so they clearly can get to the line. Chicago has been giving up around 23 free throw attempts per game, and I could see the Magic's total being lower in this game. These teams shot nearly identically from the field; foul shots made all the difference. Orlando was 24/30, while Chicago was 19/22.

A few other things I'd look out for: Magic center Goga Bitadze had 15 points and 11 rebounds. Chicago is not super stingy against centers, but I'm banking on this performance to not repeat itself. For the Bulls, Coby White only had two points on 2/10 shooting and had scored double digits in his last seven games. If it is another low-scoring rock fight, White scoring 12 in this game instead of two on Wednesday could make a huge difference.

Chicago also uncharacteristically turned the ball over 19 times last game, leading to 17 Magic points off of turnovers. The Bulls are first in the NBA with the lowest turnovers per game.

With DeRozan hopefully back, evening out numbers at the line and holding onto the ball will be key for the Bulls to win this rematch.

Even if DeRozan is out, I'll still take the Bulls here. You will very likely be able to get them at plus money if he's out.

The pick: Chicago Bulls ML (-115 DraftKings)


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NBA Betting Picks: ML and Spreads

Denver Nuggets (-5.5) @ New Orleans Pelicans (224.5 total)

I absolutely love this New Orleans Pelicans team at semi-full strength. CJ McCollum, Trey Murphy III, and Jose Alvarado are all unfortunately still out. If this roster can get fully healthy, watch out.

The Pelicans crushed the Mavericks in New Orleans on Tuesday night, winning outright without needing 4.5 points.

They started a lineup of:

Dyson Daniels (6'7), Herb Jones (6'7), Brandon Ingram (6'8), Zion Williamson (6'6), and Jonas Valanciunas (6'11). Off the bench, they have impressive rookie Jordan Hawkins (6'5), Matt Ryan (6'5), Naji Marshall (6'6), Jeremiah Robinson-Earl (6'9), and Cody Zeller (6'11) if needed. They just have size and length all over this roster.

This will be important against a Nuggets team that plays Nikola Jokic (6'11), Michael Porter Jr. (6'10), Aaron Gordon (6'8), Christian Braun (6'6), and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (6'5). What makes Denver so hard to play is that they are big and physically imposing. I believe New Orleans can counter that.

CJ McCollum was leading the team in assists at 5.7 per game before getting hurt. Brandon Ingram is not too shabby as a floor general, averaging 5.6 assists in the five games since CJ's injury. Ingram has also averaged a team-high 24.4 points in the last five games. Herb Jones also returned to the court Tuesday night after missing three games. In his return, he scored 19 points, along with four rebounds, four assists, five steals, and two blocks.

These teams played on November 6th in Denver, with the Nuggets winning 134-116. The Pelicans were up 61-41 with 4:43 left in the second quarter. They got outscored 75-45 in the second half, and Nikola Jokic put up a 35-point triple-double. New Orleans still showed the ability to build a lead against Denver; they just couldn't hold onto it.

The Pels scored 130 Tuesday night and had a 102.8 defensive rating. For the season, they are just outside the top 20 with a 113.4 defensive rating. As I said at the top, I really liked what I saw from this Pelicans team on Tuesday night and the size they can provide.

Nikola Jokic is never fun to go against, but I'll take the points with the home team tonight.

The pick: Pelicans +5.5 (-110 Caesars)

NBA Betting Picks: Teaser

Favorite ML parlay: Hawks + Clippers (+175 DK)

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