Best Bets for NBA Tonight - Picks, Props & Same-Game Parlay

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander drives past a defender
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander #2 of the Oklahoma City Thunder drives into Talen Horton-Tucker #0 of the Utah Jazz during the second half of a game at Vivint Arena on February 28, 2023 in Salt Lake City, Utah. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Alex Goodlett/Getty Images

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The NBA has two more days in the spotlight before March Madness gets underway in earnest on Thursday. Tuesday's NBA slate features eight games, including a matchup between the L.A. Lakers and New Orleans Pelicans which carries big implications for the Western Conference playoff race. The Lakers, Pelicans, and OKC Thunder all have identical 33-35 records and occupy the 9 through 11 seeds in the West, with the Dallas Mavericks half a game in front and Utah Jazz half a game behind.

The table below displays the odds (spread, moneyline, and total) for all Tuesday's games. Under the table, find my best bets for the day. All wagers are one unit unless stated otherwise. (NBA season betting record: 7-4-1, +8.23 units.)

NBA Odds - Tuesday, March 14

Cavaliers vs. Hornets-7.5 (-110) / +7.5 (-110)-310 / +250221.5 (-110o / -110u)
Pistons vs. Wizards+11.5 (-110) / -11.5 (-110)+460 / -620223.5 (-110o / -110u)
Nuggets vs. Raptors+1 (-110) / -1 (-110)-104 / -112227 (-110o / -110u)
Lakers vs. Pelicans+1 (-110) / -1 (-110)-104 / -116226.5 (-110o / -110u)
Nets vs. Thunder+1.5 (-110) / -1.5 (-110)+102 / -120233.5 (-110o / -110u)
Magic vs. Spurs-5.5 (-112) / +5.5 (-108)-230 / +190232.5 (-110o / -110u)
Knicks vs. Trail Blazers-2 (-110) / +2 (-110)-126 / +108228 (-110o / -110u)
Bucks vs. Suns-1.5 (-110) / +1.5 (-110)-120 / +102232 (-110o / -110u)

Five of the eight games on Tuesday's schedule have a point spread of two or fewer. The biggest favorites on the board are the Wizards laying 11.5 at home against the Pistons, and the Cavaliers laying 7.5 on the road at Charlotte. Nuggets vs. Raptors, Lakers vs. Pelicans, and Nets vs. Thunder are virtual pick'em games.

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Pick #1: Nets moneyline (+102) vs. Thunder

The Brooklyn Nets (39-29, 20-17 away) didn't initially respond well after the Kevin Durant trade, but have coalesced around their new lineup more recently. Brooklyn has won five of its past six, including hugely impressive Ws on the road against Boston and Denver.

Mikal Bridges is turning into a bona fide superstar almost over night. The former 10th-overall pick, who is averaging 18.8 PPG on the year, has increased that average to 27.6 over his past 11 games, exceeding the 30-point plateau on six occasions. He dropped a career-high 45 in a win over Miami on Feb. 15.

The Thunder (33-35, 20-15 home) are having an excellent season for a team that was projected to win 23.5 games. They also come into Tuesday playing well, winning five of six. But their quality of wins are not on the same level (Utah twice, Golden State at home, and New Orleans and San Antonio on the road). Prior to this run, they had dropped five straight. They are only 4-4 in their past eight at home, and 1-4 against teams that currently occupy playoff positions.

Ben Simmons is out of the Brooklyn lineup tonight but that's been the case for the past month. Expect the new-look Nets to keep surging with Bridges leading the charge.

Pick #2: Pelicans moneyline + C.J. McCollum over 23.5 points (+226)

Today's same-game parlay comes from the Lakers/Pelicans game, where injuries are rampant. LeBron James is out for Los Angeles, while Anthony Davis is listed as probable with a foot injury. On the New Orleans side, Zion Williamson remains out with a hamstring injury and Brandon Ingram (ankle) is questionable.

The Pelicans (33-35, 22-12 home) are not the same team without Zion, but are much better at home than on the road (11-23). The same can be said of the Lakers (33-35, 15-19 away). While New Orleans is only 3-7 in its past ten, they are still 5-3 in their last eight at home, including a 131-126 win over the Lakers in early February, a game that LeBron was in the lineup for.

With Zion out and Ingram uncertain, C.J. McCollum is going to have to shoulder a lot of the scoring load for New Orleans. The former Blazer is averaging 21.2 PPG on the season but has exceeded 23.5 in four of his past six.

Parlaying the Pels' moneyline (-116) with McCollum's over (-115) results in a same-game parlay of +227.

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