Pick 'n' roll: Sunday's best basketball bets
Los Angeles Clippers at Miami Heat (-11.5, 203)
The Clipper Bandwagon has a dark secret. The team not only is in the midst of a brutal stretch of road games, but also is tied for the second-fewest road wins in the NBA at three.
“We have so many young guys, and they’re just learning about how tough it is on the road,” guard Baron Davis said. “They’ve never played in Milwaukee, never played in Chicago or Portland or Denver. So everything is new to them.”
The biggest problem for the Clippers has been playing defense away from Staples Center. The Clips are allowing a horrid 101.5 points per game on the road. Overall, opponents have topped the century mark three times in the team’s past four away tilts as the over is 8-1-1 in the team’s past 10 road contests.
And the Heat love putting on a show at home. Miami has seen the over go 6-2-1 in the team’s past nine home games. The team also has a day of rest coming after a comfortable, double-digit win over the Bobcats on Friday.
It seems to be a different star every night now for the Heat. On Thursday, LeBron James went for 51 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists in a 104-100 win over the Magic. Against Charlotte, Dwyane Wade blew up for 22 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists.
“We’re playing great basketball right now,” James said. “To feel whole, finally, it’s good for our team. Everyone is feeling confident that they can make a contribution to our team.”
Michigan State Spartans at Wisconsin Badgers (-9, 124.5)
It’s hard to put into perspective just how bad the Spartans are playing right now.
Michigan State is 0-8 ATS in its past eight games, 0-8 ATS in its past eight Big 10 games and not surprisingly is a wretched 3-5 SU over that span. The team has struggled to play consistent defense and each of its past three wins have come in overtime.
For the season, the Spartans are letting opponents shoot an absurd 37.4 percent from beyond the arc and are allowing a terrible 67.7 points per game. And the team’s rotation is in shambles.
Chris Allen was kicked off the team this summer and stud sixth man Korie Lucious was suspended for the season last month. Additionally, senior Durrell Summers been inconsistent on both ends of the floor, forward Derrick Nix took a leave of absence early in the season and still hasn’t played himself into shape and freshman Russell Byrd suffered a broken foot.
"I don't feel any regrets with anybody who's left this program because nobody ever leaves under one, two or three chances," Michigan State coach Tom Izzo said. "The regret is that guys didn't grow up and understand what they had to do.”
For that rag-tag group to upset the Badgers 64-61 in overtime in East Lansing earlier this year, Wisconsin had one of its worst late-game collapses in the past decade when it gave up a nine-point lead with 2:42 remaining.
The Badgers will close the game out this time.