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NBA Betting Picks: Team Win Totals For Second Half

Paolo Banchero - NBA DFS Lineup Picks, Daily Fantasy Basketball

In just a few days, the NBA regular season will resume and for the next six weeks, we should see some pretty compelling playoff races as the league's best teams vie for the top seeds in each conference. All but six teams still have a realistic shot at qualifying for the playoffs with the new play-in game format.

Before the season started, I put out some of my favorite win total bets and I am happy to report that most of those bets are tracking well. I took the under on Detroit (27.5) and they have just eight wins, the over on my Cavs (49.5) who would need to win just 14 of 29 remaining games to hit, and the over on the Pacers (37.5) who have been a nice surprise this season and would need to win just eight games to eclipse that total. However, my bets on the Bulls (under 37.5) and Bucks (over 52.5) both look a little dicey based on their current records.

In this article, I'm going to use each team's remaining strength of schedule to make some additional in-season wagers on final win totals. All odds listed are courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.

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NBA Betting Picks: Data and Matchups

The only three teams without current win totals posted on DraftKings are the Grizzlies, Sixers, and Raptors, but I included them on my chart here anyway. We can see that teams have anywhere from 26 to 29 games remaining on their schedules and I calculated just how many of those games they would need to win to exceed their DraftKings win totals.

The strength of schedule data comes courtesy of @FiddlesPicks who (shout out to Michael) posted this chart last week and got me thinking about win totals and the idea for this article.

Here's a copy of the chart that is posted in the tweet for easy reference. This chart is not alphabetical, rather it's sorted from the toughest remaining schedule (Phoenix) to the easiest (Orlando) instead.

The great thing about this chart is that we can see the specific opponents and how many games each team still has to face some of their stronger and weaker opponents as well. Now it's time to make some predictions and wagers based on the data we have available here.


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NBA Betting Picks: Rest of Season Win Totals

Orlando Magic OVER 45.5 wins (-115 DK)

Let's start with the softest remaining schedule, shall we? The Magic are a team on the rise this season with 30 wins at the break. The emergence of Paolo Banchero as a legit superstar and Franz Wagner as a legitimate 25-point scorer have elevated Orlando to dark horse contenders in the Eastern Conference where they are tied with the Miami Heat for first place in the Southeast Division.

The Magic are winners of seven of their last 10 coming into the break and ranked ninth in net rating during that stretch. They're playing some excellent defense and are finally healthy after battling some injuries to Markelle Fultz, Wendell Carter Jr., and Wagner earlier this year.

They need to finish 16-11 to hit 46 wins which feels very doable. They'll face Charlotte three times, Detroit twice, Washington once, and Memphis once. I'm counting all of those games as wins (eight) and they'd need just eight more wins in their remaining 19 games. Orlando won't be resting players as they're going to be battling with Miami, Indiana, and Philadelphia to try to secure the No. 6 seed in the East and avoid the play-in series.

Miami Heat OVER 45.5 wins (-130 DK)

Speaking of Miami, the Heat have the exact same win total as Orlando and the fourth-easiest remaining schedule. While Miami has largely underachieved this year, we saw last season what they can do when the games start mattering. They reeled off some impressive wins coming into the break, including a blowout of Milwaukee (without Jimmy Butler) and wins over Orlando and Philadelphia.

When Butler, Tyler Herro, and Bam Adebayo are all in the lineup, this team is a problem. Terry Rozier was a solid deadline addition, while Caleb Martin and Jaime Jaquez are quietly having solid seasons on the wing. 16-11 or better down the stretch seems like a foregone conclusion, which perhaps might be why we are getting worse odds here on Miami than Orlando.

Golden State Warriors OVER 44.5 wins (-105 DK)

The Warriors are right there with both Miami and Orlando in terms of being a "middle of the pack" team this year, but actually have a better season-to-date net rating than both teams. They should probably have more than 27 wins right now with the talent on their roster, but it was a rocky first half in the Bay Area, to say the least. Draymond Green got himself suspended for a large chunk of games, Chris Paul has been out for over a month, and Klay Thompson forgot how to shoot for the first few months. The Warriors have had to play more young guys than we've seen them do in recent years and it's been the strong play of those youngsters such as Brandin Podziemski and Jonathan Kuminga in addition to Steph Curry putting the team on his back at times that has the GSW in a position to make a second-half run.

18 wins certainly seem like a lot, but the Warriors have 29 games remaining so we are talking about an 18-11 finish for a team that won eight of their last 10 coming into the break. Chris Paul is set to return soon, Andrew Wiggins has shown some flashes that he might be coming back to life, and Klay Thompson might be better off the bench as he moved there in the Warriors' final game before the break, promptly going off for 35 points. With the sixth-easiest remaining SOS, I think the Warriors get there.

Los Angeles Clippers UNDER 55.5 wins (+100 DK)

Let's take a shot here on an under just in case I ever get accused of taking too many overs. I am also hunting for some bets at plus odds in this market and we have one here at even money on the Clippers under.

To lose this bet, L.A. would have to win 20 of their remaining 29 games. That's pretty much keeping up the exact same winning pace that they had for the first 53 games. I am certainly not wishing any ill will on Clipper Nation here, but can we expect the big four of James Harden-Kawhi Leonard-George-Westbrook to stay healthy down the stretch? Kawhi and PG13 have played more games than anyone expected up to this point, but at some point do we see L.A. start to rest these players more often, especially with a top-4 seed well within their reach in the Western Conference?

The remaining schedule is in our favor here, too, with the Clippers having the seventh-hardest SOS. It's been a great year for the Clips, but I think it's quite possible they finish with something like 52 or 53 wins rather than 56.

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