NBA Betting Guide for Thursday 5/6/21: An Underdog and a Pair of Unders

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.)

Chicago Bulls at Charlotte Hornets

The Charlotte Hornets have a tiny one-game sample this season with LaMelo Ball and without Miles Bridges and Gordon Hayward (both listed as out), but that was last game, a 102-99 win for Charlotte over the Detroit Pistons.

Speaking of roster health, the Chicago Bulls are listing Zach LaVine and Nikola Vucevic as probable. In games with both of them, however, Chicago is just 3-7 with a plus/minus of -40.

The Hornets, despite their injuries and Chicago's improvements in the health department, are getting more than 60% of the betting tickets and money on the spread (Charlotte +4.0).

Our algorithm is also rating the Hornets +4.0 as a four-star recommendation out of five. They are 70.2% likely to cover that spread, which is tied to an expected return of 34.0% on investment.

Charlotte's moneyline (+152) is a full five-star recommendation. Our algorithm is rating them as the outright favorite here.

Memphis Grizzlies at Detroit Pistons

We're seeing some heavy betting action on the under (222.0) in this game and also a 12-point gap between the tickets (60%) and money (72%).

Our algorithm sees the under as a one-star opportunity and considers it 52.9% likely to occur, so this one is more about following the money.

The Memphis Grizzlies are playing well since the trade deadline. Their record is an even 12-12, but their net rating is 1.3, and they sit 10th in offensive rating and 8th in adjusted offensive rating.

The relevant sample for the Pistons is a good deal smaller. Their injury report for tonight's game more or less mirrors what it has been the past four games with a lot of players hurt (or resting). In that four-game sample, the Pistons have a lowly net rating of -9.1 that is attached to the 26th-ranked offensive rating.

In that span, they did go over the closing total twice but have played in games with point totals of 220, 201, 231, and 201.

Atlanta Hawks at Indiana Pacers

Here's another under (239.5) play that is getting a lot of traction from both our algorithm and from the betting public.

We can see 67% of the money and 71% of the tickets has been placed on the under at FanDuel Sportsbook, and numberFire's model views this game as 70.4% likely to stay under 240.0 points.


Both teams played last night, and when both teams are playing on no rest this season, the over has hit 50.4% of the time -- so not a whole lot to go off of from that arbitrary trend.

Both defenses hover around 20th in adjusted defensive rating since the trade deadline, but even with adjustments for their current health, my model expected the over/under to be 231.0.

The Pacers' heavy over trends (they've gone over in five of their past six with an average of 245.0 points in them) seem to be driving up the line, and the data -- and betting public -- prefer the under.