NBA

NBA Betting Guide for 4/7/21: What Kevin Durant's Return Means for the Nets/Pelicans Game

Betting on the NBA can get a little overwhelming throughout the season because there are games every day, and there's just a lot to track throughout the season and entering every night -- spreads, over/unders, injuries, and so on.

But you can rely on numberFire to help. We have a detailed betting algorithm that projects out games to see how often certain betting lines hit, and our oddsFire section of the site allows you to track movement in those lines and see where the action is coming from on particular games.

Where do our algorithm, our power rankings, and the betting trends identify value in tonight's games? (All odds from FanDuel Sportsbook.)

Minnesota Timberwolves at Indiana Pacers

The Indiana Pacers are on a back-to-back after a 113-97 loss to the Chicago Bulls last night. The Pacers wound up playing that game without Malcolm Brogdon and Domantas Sabonis, and they also lost Myles Turner to a sprained ankle in the third quarter.

Brogdon, though, did practice on Monday, so that should be a good sign for his chances to play tonight. The sample for the Pacers with Brogdon but without Sabonis and Turner is tiny (30.0 minutes), so it's hard to dig in there, but we're seeing some really savvy betting trends on the Pacers so far.

oddsFire is indicating that 54% of the betting tickets are on the Pacers' moneyline (-134) -- and 64% of the money is. There is also roughly 60% of the tickets and money on the Pacers' spread (-2.0), as well.

Our algorithm is on both of those. It rates Indiana's spread as a three-star recommendation out of five and their moneyline as a full five-star recommendation.

Memphis Grizzlies at Atlanta Hawks

Tracking the betting trends should point us to the Atlanta Hawks in this game. We're seeing 56% of the tickets and 61% of the money on the Hawks' moneyline (-144) and also 69% of the tickets and 79% of the money on their spread (-2.5).

The Hawks boast a net rating of -0.9 when John Collins -- who is listed as out -- is off the floor overall, but the Memphis Grizzlies are not at full strength either.

Ja Morant left last night's game with a back injury, and they had some other inactives, as well. Without Morant on the floor, their net rating is +1.1, but if you also remove Brandon Clarke and De'Anthony Melton, their net rating falls to -1.5.

That puts this one tight before accounting for any home-court advantage (which has been 1.1 points thus far on the season on average, and home teams have won 53.9% of games this season).

Our algorithm gives Atlanta a 57.7% chance to win.

New Orleans Pelicans at Brooklyn Nets

If this game was played a few days ago, it could've been a lot bleaker, but the New Orleans Pelicans have gotten Zion Williamson and Lonzo Ball back within their past two games. Brandon Ingram has missed four straight.

The Brooklyn Nets will be without James Harden but will have Kyrie Irving. And Kevin Durant is back.

The Pelicans have just one game with both Ball and Williamson but without Ingram (their most recent game against the Hawks). Their offensive rating was an average 110.4, and they let up 126.9 points per 100 possessions defensively. With at least one of Ball or Williamson on the floor but without Ingram, their offensive rating is 115.7, and their defensive rating is 116.3.

For the Nets, they have seven games with both Irving and Durant without Harden. Their offensive rating is 117.1, and their defensive rating is 112.5 in that split. Similarly, with at least one of Durant or Irving on but Harden off, the Nets' offensive rating is 122.9, and their defensive rating is 111.5.

Using those more advanced splits as inputs, the expected total in my model is 234.1 points, and numberFire's algorithm is projecting a median score of 239.0. For that reason, it rates the over as a three-star recommendation out of five.