The NBA betting board for Sunday is headlined by a clash between two of the top teams in the league as the Brooklyn Nets face the Los Angeles Clippers in what might be a preview of the NBA finals.
The Clippers are tied for second in the Western Conference standings with a 22-9 record while the Nets are second in the East with a 19-12 mark.
Here are our best free Nets vs. Clippers picks and predictions for Sunday, February 21, with tipoff at 8 p.m. ET.
Brooklyn Nets at Los Angeles Clippers betting preview
Nets: Kevin Durant F (Out), Spencer Dinwiddie G (Out).
Clippers: Paul George F (Probable).
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Betting trend to know
The Over is 21-4 in the Nets' last 25 games overall. Find more NBA betting trends for Nets vs. Clippers.
NBA sharp money and line movement reportBy Patrick Everson
FanDuel opened Los Angeles -5 Saturday evening and late this morning peaked at -7 for a few minutes, then inched back to -6.5, where the line remains about 30 minutes before tipoff. However, Brooklyn is taking 78 percent of bets and 68 percent of money on the spread. The total is 235.5 off an opener of 240, even though ticket count is 2/1 and money 3/1 on the Over.Check out the full line movement for this game
Against the spread (ATS) pick
The Brooklyn Nets are rolling, having gone 5-0 SU and ATS in their last five games and coming off a 109-98 win on the road against the Lakers.
They remain in LA and hope to replicate that success tonight as they face the Clippers, who are 5-1 SU over their last six contests and 4-1 ATS over their previous five. The Clippers' lone loss during that span came Wednesday against the league's top team – the Utah Jazz – and they avenged that defeat with a 116-112 win on Friday night.
The Nets have the best offense in the NBA, leading the league with 121.3 points per game and a field goal percentage of 50.2. While they will be without All-NBA forward Kevin Durant for the fourth straight game, they still have a dynamic duo with James Harden and Kyrie Irving.
Both of these teams are playing very well at the moment and both squads have championship aspirations. However, the Nets are 9-4 ATS in their last 13 games as a road underdog while the Clippers are just 2-6 ATS in their last eight contests versus teams with a winning percentage above .600. With oddsmakers giving the Clips a tad too much love against top competition, I'm grabbing the six points with the underdogs.
PREDICTION: Brooklyn +6.5 (-110)
These teams are ranked first and second in the league in offensive efficiency, with Brooklyn averaging 115.1 points per 100 possessions and L.A. averaging 115. They also combined for 244 points when they previously met up on February 2.
As good as the Nets are on offense, they've also been brutal on the defensive end of the court where they allow a whopping 117.3 ppg. The Clips are much better defensively, but they've taken a step back in recent weeks, giving up over 110 points in seven of their last eight games.
Even with oddsmakers setting extremely high Over/Under numbers for Brooklyn games, the Nets continue to cash the Over, going 10-4 O/U with the total set above 230 since acquiring Harden.
Meanwhile, the Clippers are 8-2-1 to the Over in their previous 11 contests. Although we were a bit wary of biting on the Over when the O/U opened at 240.5, we're feeling more comfortable about hitting it at 235.5.
PREDICTION: Over 235.5 (-110)
Player prop pick
Kawhi Leonard appears to be flying under the radar when it comes to MVP recognition but he might be having his best offensive season ever. The two-time finals MVP is averaging 26.8 points and a career-high 5 assists per game while posting 51/38/88 shooting lines.
The Over/Under for Leonard's points total is set at 27.5 tonight—a number he has surpassed in nine of his last 12 games. Even though George is back in the lineup, he looked a bit rusty against Utah and Leonard has been much more assertive in looking for his own shot lately, attempting more than 20 field goals in four straight games.
Factor in a Nets team that doesn't care about playing defense and we like the Over on Kawhi's points total.
PREDICTION: Kawhi Leonard Over 27.5 points (-120)
Nets vs Clippers betting card
- Brooklyn +6.5 (-110)
- Over 235.5 (-110)
- Kawhi Leonard Over 27.5 points (-120)
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