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I played against Atlanta in its last game vs. Minnesota and if you didn’t have a chance to read that analysis, I think it’s worth a look here as a lot of the situational factors I outlined in that selection also directly apply to this one:
I played this line right when it came out, it’s since gone up a bit as of writing, but may settle back down to 16.5, but regardless, I love this pick and think that the lowly Wolves can catch the surprising home side a bit complacent here and expect them to comfortably sneak in through the back door as the game comes down the stretch. What more can be said about the Atlanta Hawks right now that hasn’t literally been said by every NBA analyst across North American a million times by now, obviously the team is playing at an extremely high level on both ends of the court. I won’t try to convince you that the Wolves are a good team which has just been unlucky this season, injuries and other factors have Minnesota in the cellar for a reason, it’s a club which is in transition this season. However, what I would point out is that after covering 13 straight games and with contests vs. Minnesota today and Brooklyn (just 18-25) on Wednesday, there’s no question in my mind that this short stretch vs. the league’s worst teams definitely sets up as a classic “letdown” spot for the home side. Conversely, the Wolves have lost three straight (both SU and ATS) and will be “hungry” to not get blown out here with the knowledge that the eyes of the basketball World are all on the city of Atlanta right now. I think this is a few too many points, grab as many as you can with the WOLVES.
I believe that tonight’s game also sets up as a classic “letdown/look ahead” spot for the home side with a game at home vs. the Blazers on Friday. Also note that this is a revenge game for Brooklyn after falling 98-75 to the Hawks at home back on December 5th as a 1-point underdog. A few too many points again in my opinion, consider a second look at the NETS in this one.
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