The Phoenix Suns play the second of back-to-back games in the Big Apple when they visit the red-hot New York Knicks on Monday.
Phoenix, which lost 128-119 to the Brooklyn Nets on Sunday, runs into a Knicks team that has strung together nine straight victories—but more importantly is on a 12-game NBA betting tear against the spread.
New York’s ATS bonanza has boosted the club to the top of the gambling charts with a 39-21-1 record against the spread, including a 20-10-1 ATS mark at home.
Here are our free NBA picks and predictions for Suns vs. Knicks on April 26.
Suns vs Knicks odds
Odds via the Covers Line, an average comprised of odds from multiple sportsbooks.
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NBA sharp money and line movement reportBy Patrick Everson
The Suns hit PointsBet USA's odds board as a 2.5-point favorite Sunday afternoon and quickly dipped to -1, then rose to -3 by this morning. As of 4:15 p.m. ET, Phoenix is -2.5 while grabbing 64 percent of bets and 79 percent of cash on the point spread. In fact, a Suns cover is PointsBet's top NBA liability tonight. The total is up a point to 215.5, with 82 percent of bets/88 percent of money on the Over.Check out the full line movement for this game
Suns at Knicks betting preview
Suns: Jae Crowder F (Questionable), Langston Galloway G (Questionable), Abdel Nader F (Out).
Knicks: Alec Burks G (Out), Mitchell Robinson C (Out).
Find our latest NBA injury reports.
Betting trend to know
The Suns are 18-5 ATS in their last 23 games following an ATS loss. Find more NBA betting trends for Suns vs. Knicks.
Against the spread (ATS) pick
The Suns didn’t play poorly in Sunday afternoon’s loss to the Nets: they simply got outgunned. Phoenix still scored 119 points on 48 percent shooting but they just didn’t have an answer for Brooklyn when Kevin Durant was thrown into the mix.
The Knicks aren’t at the same level as their NYC neighbors in terms of scoring the basketball but have powered this nine-game run with added offense. Before this streak, New York was 28th in scoring and averaging a mere 105.4 points per game. However, the team has upped that output to 118.6 points a night during this winning run.
Phoenix poses the stiffest test for the Knicks’ newfound offense during this stretch, with six of those nine games coming against defenses ranked 13th or worst, as well as the L.A. Lakers playing without its standouts. The Suns sit Top 10 in many key defensive metrics, including defending the 3-point arc—something that could throw a speed bump in front of the Knicks.
New York has had the hot hand from distance this month, shooting almost 42 percent from beyond the arc and averaging nearly 14 triples an outing over the past nine contests. Overall, the Knicks aren’t the sharpest shooting team on the season and run into a Suns squad that sits fifth in 3-point defense and allows an average of 11.6 3-pointers against.
Head coach Monty Williams knows there’s no margin for error on Monday night, especially with huge Western Conference matchups versus the L.A. Clippers and Utah Jazz at home later this week. Phoenix is a resilient team that doesn’t compound losses, boasting a 9-1 ATS record in its last 10 games coming off a defeat.
PREDICTION: Phoenix -2 (-110)
This will be a defensive grinder in the Garden Monday. The Knicks play the slowest offensive pace in the NBA (96.43) and the Suns aren’t too far behind them at 98.11 (seventh slowest).
Both offenses rely on taking and making mid-range shots and both defenses don’t give much space on the perimeter, ranked No. 1 and No. 5 in 3-point defense.
The Suns are playing the second game of a back-to-back and the starters logged a lot of minutes chasing the Nets around on Sunday. What energy Phoenix does have in the tank will be used on defense, with the offense playing a calculated tempo to reserve as much as it can.
PREDICTION: Under 215.5 (-110)
Player prop pick
The Knicks do a great job plugging up the paint and not allowing for easy looks around the basket. On the season, New York is holding foes to just 59 percent shooting within five feet of the hoop and surrender only 43.7 points in the paint—fourth-lowest in the NBA.
A big part of that is the rim protection of 6-foot-10 center Nerlens Noel, who is registering 2.2 blocks an outing and changing countless other shots. Phoenix will look to draw the Knicks’ shot swatter away from the hoop by running center Deandre Ayton from the foul line extended and working the ball through the high post.
Ayton had 13 rebounds and three assists in the loss to Brooklyn on Sunday and will be a tough box out coming from the top of the key. Earlier in this road trip, he recorded 13 boards and two assists versus Milwaukee, which protects the paint similar to the Knicks.
The 6-foot-11 Arizona product may not pick up a ton of points against N.Y., but we’re banking on him to contribute in other ways Monday night.
PREDICTION: Deandre Ayton rebounds + assists Over 11.5 (-113)
Suns vs Knicks betting card
- Phoenix -2 (-110)
- Under 215.5 (-110)
- Deandre Ayton rebounds + assists Over 11.5 (-113)
Picks made on 4/26/2021 at 8:51 a.m. ET
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