Home | News | Top NBA Betting Picks of the Week – April 8th, 2024

Top NBA Betting Picks of the Week – April 8th, 2024

By Hank Blaine

The final week of the NBA regular season is upon us, and the 10 teams to play extra basketball in each conference have been set — but we still don’t know the exact order in the East and West. Here’s a look at two intriguing early-week matchups that involve playoff seeding.

Top NBA Betting Picks of the Week (April 8th, 2024)

New York Knicks vs. Chicago Bulls

  • When: Tuesday, April 9th, 2024, 8:00 PM ET
  • Where: United Center, Chicago, IL
  • Radio: 98.7FM ESPN New York (Knicks) // 670 The Score AM (Bulls)
  • Stream: NBA League Pass
  • NBA Odds: Knicks (-2.5) // Bulls (+2.5)

Both are in the Eastern Conference playoffs with the Knicks having a chance to finish as high as second in the East but also as low as sixth. Chicago is going to be in the play-in tournament against Atlanta, but it’s not clear which will be the No. 9 team or which the No. 10.

The Knicks got an impressive win Sunday, 122-109 in Milwaukee. Jalen Brunson dropped 43 points, reinforcing his All-NBA candidacy while out-dueling Giannis Antetokounmpo. Brunson added eight rebounds and six assists in 39 minutes. It was his ninth 40-point game of the season, good for third in Knicks history. Brunson kept the Knicks afloat during a rough first half, then got offensive help from Donte DiVincenzo (26 points) as the Knicks won the final two quarters, 72-48.

The Knicks (46-32) leapfrogged the Cavaliers and are now tied with the Magic for third in the conference but lose the tiebreaker. They’re also just one game behind the Bucks (47-31) for second. New York also got OG Anunoby back from a nine-game injury absence last Friday but announced last week that All-Star forward Julius Randle would not make it back this season. Thus, the Knicks aren’t winning the East.

This is the home finale for Chicago, which lost 113-98 in Orlando on Sunday. The Magic (46-32) moved into a tie for third place in the East by completing a four-game sweep of the Bulls. DeMar DeRozan had 30 points for the Bulls and Javonte Green, starting for the first time this season in place of injured forward Alex Caruso, added 15 points and eight rebounds.

The Bulls, locked into the bottom half of the Eastern Conference play-in bracket, shot 50.7% from the field but made only six 3-pointers and had 21 turnovers. With four games remaining, the Bulls (37-41) cannot move up but can drop down to 10th place. Caruso had ankle and toe issues after playing 32 minutes Friday night.

The Bulls rank third in least turnovers per game (12.2), eighth in total deflections (1,170), ninth in total points off turnovers (1,310), tied for ninth in points off turnovers per game (17.0) and ninth in FT% (79.5) in the NBA this season. The Bulls are 4-6 in their last 10 games vs. the Knicks, winning two of the last three matchups. Chicago is looking to win back-to-back home games against New York for the first time since a pair of home wins between the 2019-20 and 2020-21 seasons.

DeRozan has scored 20 or more points in nine of his last 10 games versus New York, averaging 26.8 ppg during this span. Caruso has tallied at least one steal in six consecutive games against the Knicks, averaging 2.5 spg across this stretch. Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau was the head coach for the Bulls for five seasons (2010-15). Thibodeau is the third-winningest coach in Bulls franchise history (255).

NBA Betting Pick: Knicks

Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Denver Nuggets

  • When: Tuesday, March 26th, 2024, 10:00 PM ET
  • Where: Ball Arena, Denver, CO
  • TV: ESPN
  • Radio: KFAN FM 100.3 (Timberwolves) // 92.5 FM Altitude Sports Radio (Nuggets)
  • Stream: NBA League Pass
  • NBA Odds: TBA

ESPN national TV game and could be for the West’s best record as the Timberwolves and Nuggets are tied atop the West entering this week at 54-24 and Oklahoma City is a game back at 53-25 with each having four games remaining this week. They all happen to reside in the same Northwest Division.

Could Minnesota have All-Star forward Karl-Anthony Towns back Wednesday? The former No. 1 overall pick continues to rehab his surgically repaired left meniscus, and the Timberwolves have “optimism” that he could be back before the end of the regular season. KAT is set to be re-evaluated on Tuesday, which marks four weeks since he had surgery on his knee. Naz Reid has been great starting in KAT’s place.

The Timberwolves have shot 50% or better from the field while holding opponents to 40% or worse from the field in 13 games this season. The Wolves are 13-0 when doing so. Minnesota’s 10 games shooting 50.0%+ and holding opponents to 40.0% or worse from the field and 30.0% or worse from three are the most such games in NBA history, passing the 1986-87 Atlanta Hawks and the 2003-04 San Antonio Spurs.

Minnesota is 24-3 this season when holding teams under 100 points. It also has 18 games on the season allowing 100 points or fewer on 40.0% shooting or worse, the most such games in the NBA this season; Boston (10 games) is the only other team to have 10+ such games.

Denver center Nikola Jokic is going to join some exclusive company this season when he wins a third career regular-season MVP Award. Jokic has four games this season with 35+ points and 15+ rebounds, only trailing Giannis Antetokounmpo by one. Jokic has recorded 31 double-doubles at home this season (25-6) which is his fifth season with 30+ double-doubles at Ball Arena. The Joker now has 10 career 30+ point triple doubles with one or fewer turnovers (including four this season). Nobody else in NBA history has more than two in their career.

The Nuggets are 23-12 in games within five points in the final five minutes this season with Jokic on the floor. They have the No. 2 clutch offense and the No. 2 clutch defense. Joker has the fourth-most clutch-time total points this season and the best FG% in the clutch with a minimum of 50 attempts.

Minnesota leads the season series 2-1 and thus would earn a massive tiebreaker with a victory on Wednesday. The teams just played in the Twin Cities on March 20 and the Timberwolves prevailed 111-98. Anthony Edwards scored 25 points and Mike Conley added 23. The Nuggets were without star point guard Jamal Murray (ankle, knee). Jokic missed 11 of his first 17 shots against Minnesota’s pestering double teams before rallying to finish with 32 points despite playing with a sore shooting wrist.

NBA Betting Pick: Nuggets

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*All odds stated are subject to change without prior notice.