NBA Betting Guide: Sunday 2/21/21
numberFire has built comprehensive algorithms to pinpoint the bets with the highest probability of returning money, whether you are betting on the total, game line, or moneyline. For those new to numberFire, we use a five-star system to show which bets you should be targeting on any given night. Stars represent how much you should risk on a wager relative to what you would normally bet.
For example, if you would usually bet $110 to win $100 on a -110 spread wager, if we give a 3-star ranking, we suggest risking three times that amount: $330 to win $300.
Using our model as a guide, let's take a look at the best bets for tonight.Please note that lines are subject to change throughout the day after this article is published. Please check here to make sure you're seeing the most updated information.
Bucks -10.5: 3-Star Rating out of 5
The Milwaukee Bucks have struggled on the road this season. A year after finishing 26-12 on the road -- the third-best away record in the league in the 2019-20 season -- the Bucks have gone just 7-9 away from Fiserv Forum. So, fortunately for them, they'll be in Milwaukee tonight when they host the Sacramento Kings.
The Bucks are 10.5-point favorites against the Kings, the sixth time they've been favored by more than 10 points at home this year. They've won all five of those contests, going 4-1 against the spread (ATS) and covering by an average of 8.8 points. They aren't the only double-digit-favored home team to have success this year; all of the others have gone a combined 16-0 and 9-7 ATS.
The Bucks are 3-1 straight up (SU) and ATS since last year when coming off a game in which they've scored fewer than 100 points, which they did in Friday night's home win over the Oklahoma City Thunder. They've won eight in a row against Sacramento, winning by an average of 17.8 points. The Bucks have covered in six of those eight.
Given the high spread, bettors are split right down the middle on who will cover, per oddsFire, with 50% taking each side to cover (51% of the money is being laid on Milwaukee). numberFire's model projects the Bucks to win by 15.5 points, easily covering the 10.5-point spread. We give them a 65.2% chance of covering and mark the bet as a three-star play.
Knicks Moneyline (-148): 3-Star Rating out of 5
One of the most surprising teams in the NBA this year, the New York Knicks come into tonight's home game against the Minnesota Timberwolves at 14-16, good for the eighth-best record in the Eastern Conference. It's a dramatic step up for a team that has won just 38 games combined in the past two years.
If you look at their results -- especially at home -- their improvement looks even more impressive. The Knicks are 7-6 at home this campaign. All six of their home losses have come against teams who made the playoffs last year. Madison Square Garden was also home to one of the red-hot Utah Jazz's six losses this year.
Tonight the Knicks will look to add to their home win tally against a Wolves team that has amassed just seven wins on the year, just three of which have been away from home. Minnesota has had Karl-Anthony Towns back for their past six games, but his presence hasn't helped in the win column. The Wolves have lost five of those six contests, though they were able to pull off an away win over the Toronto Raptors last Sunday.
Much of the Knicks' success this year has come via the defensive end. They head into tonight with the third-best defensive rating in the league (behind only Utah and the Los Angeles Lakers), a huge improvement from last year, when they were ranked 23rd. They've giving up 8.6 fewer points per game than they did a year ago, and they lead the league by surrendering just 43.1% shooting from the floor and 32.0% from beyond the arc.
numberFire's model projects the Knicks to win by 5.3 points tonight. We give them a 69.2% chance of winning and mark the moneyline bet as a three-star play.