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Wednesday, December 4, 2019
CAVALIERS VS PISTONS
Venue: Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse | Start: 11:00am AEDT
The Detroit Pistons will get an opportunity to build a little momentum with a matchup on the road against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday. Coming off a 132-98 victory over the San Antonio Spurs on Sunday, the Pistons now get the struggling Cavaliers in advance of a matchup Wednesday at home against the Milwaukee Bucks. Christian Wood led the Pistons on Sunday with a career-best 28 points, the first time he has led the team in scoring since an Oct. 28 victory over the Indiana Pacers. Wood’s production off the bench helped keep Andre Drummond to 26 minutes and Blake Griffin to just 22 in advance of the Tuesday-Wednesday back-to-back. Griffin has scored 18.5 points per game in the eight contests since returning from hamstring and knee issues. The Cavaliers will enter having lost three consecutive games and nine of their last 10. Rookie Darius Garland scored a team-best 21 points in a loss to the Bucks on Friday, while Cedi Osman had 20. Kevin Love has played in just five of the Cavs’ last eight games because of a back issue and has scored 14.0 points per game in that stretch, under his season average of 17.3. The Cavs have a combined 39 turnovers over their last two games.
Win: Detroit Pistons
Line: Cleveland Cavaliers
Total Points: Under 214.5
WIZARDS VS MAGIC
Venue: Capital One Arena | Start: 11:00am AEDT
The Orlando Magic will go for back-to-back wins to start the month of December when they visit the Washington Wizards on Tuesday night. Orlando is coming off a 100-96 win over the Golden State Warriors on Sunday evening. The victory included a game-high 32 points from Evan Fournier, who made 13 of 21 shots from the field and 6 of 10 shots from beyond the arc. Fournier is averaging a career-high 19.2 points per game to go along with 3.0 rebounds and 3.3 assists in 19 starts this season. The 27-year-old from France has notched double digits in 11 consecutive games. Orlando has not won consecutive games since mid-November but stands a good chance against Washington, which has lost 12 of 18 games to start the season. The Wizards are coming off a 150-125 drubbing against the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday night, which marked their second loss in a row and their fourth in the last five games. Rookie big man Rui Hachimura is coming off a team-high 30-point performance to go along with nine rebounds. The 21-year-old from Gonzaga is averaging 13.3 points on the season. This is the second meeting of the season between the teams. Orlando won the first game 125-121 on its home court Nov. 17.
Win: Washington Wizards
Line: Washington Wizards -1.5
Total Points: Under 226.5
RAPTORS VS HEAT
Venue: Scotiabank Arena | Start: 11:30am AEDT
Two of the top teams in the Eastern Conference will clash Tuesday when the Miami Heat hit the road to face the Toronto Raptors. Both teams have won eight of their last 10, while the Raptors will be putting their perfect 9-0 home record on the line. Toronto is looking to become the first team in the East with double-digit home victories. Pascal Skiam scored 35 points as the Raptors delivered a convincing 130-110 victory over the visiting Utah Jazz on Sunday. Fred VanVleet scored 21 points with 11 assists as Toronto led by 40 points at halftime, the largest lead at the break in the NBA this season and tied for eighth largest after two quarters in league history. The Heat have won consecutive games, including a 109-106 victory at Brooklyn on Sunday when they rallied from seven points down with under 2 minutes remaining. Goran Dragic had a team-best 24 points while Bam Adebayo had 17 points and 16 rebounds. The Heat’s Dion Waiters still has not played this season but is back to practice and could return to action soon after a 10-game suspension for an incident involving a THC-infused edible on a team flight.
Win: Toronto Raptors
Line: Miami Heat +4.5
Total Points: Over 210.5
PELICANS VS MAVERICKS
Venue: Smoothie King Center | Start: 11:30am AEDT
Luka Doncic will lead the Dallas Mavericks into New Orleans on Tuesday after yet another signature performance. Doncic’s 27 points Sunday were slightly under his season average, but 21 came in the second half as the Mavericks ended the Lakers’ 10-game winning streak with a 114-100 victory in Los Angeles. Add in 10 assists and nine rebounds and it was an impressive individual performance for Doncic, but Dallas is also learning it can compete with the best the NBA has to offer. The Mavericks have won consecutive games and seven of their last eight with only a loss to the Los Angeles Clippers in that stretch. Delon Wright had 17 points in 28 minutes off the bench Sunday for the Mavericks, the most playing time he has received since Nov. 3. The Pelicans will enter on a five-game losing streak, including back-to-back defeats against the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Pelicans blew a five-point lead with just over 5 minutes remaining in a 107-104 loss to the Thunder on Sunday. Jrue Holliday scored 26 points in Sunday’s defeat and has averaged 23.0 points over his last five games, above his season average of 19.4. New Orleans guard Lonzo Ball returned Sunday after missing two games because of an illness. Ball has missed eight of the Pelicans’ 19 games this season.
Win: Dallas Mavericks
Line: Dallas Mavericks -3.5
Total Points: Under 233.5
SPURS VS ROCKETS
Venue: AT&T Center | Start: 12:30pm AEDT
The Houston Rockets will try to win their third game in a row when they visit the San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday night. Houston’s season already has included some adversity, but the Rockets have looked much better lately with 10 wins in their past 13 games. They are coming off a dominant 158-111 win over the Atlanta Hawks, which came within one point of their season-best 159-158 win over the Washington Wizards on Oct. 30. The San Antonio crowd will get an up-close view of Houston teammates James Harden (38.9 points per game) and Russell Westbrook (22.1). Harden scored a season-high 60 points in his last game and has scored at least 32 points in four straight contests. Westbrook became known as a triple-double threat but has gone five consecutive games without posting a double-double. Meanwhile, San Antonio is looking for a statement win after losing three of its past four games and 11 of its past 13. The Spurs are led by DeMar DeRozan, who is averaging 21.6 points, 5.5 rebounds and 4.5 assists in 21 starts. LaMarcus Aldridge is not far behind with 18.9 points per contest.
Win: Houston Rockets
Line: San Antonio Spurs +4.5
Total Points: Over 215.5
NUGGETS VS LAKERS
Venue: Pepsi Center | Start: 1:00pm AEDT
The Los Angeles Lakers will be in an unfamiliar situation when they play Tuesday night at the Denver Nuggets. The Lakers will be coming of a loss because their 10-game winning streak was snapped Sunday night by the Dallas Mavericks. So after going 14-1 in November, the Lakers began December with a setback. It could be worth monitoring the status of Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma, who has been dealing with an ankle injury. He played 21 minutes in the Dallas game but managed only four points. This begins a three-game road stretch for the Lakers. The Nuggets also produced one of the best months in franchise history with a 10-2 mark in November, though it ended with an overtime road loss Saturday to the Sacramento Kings. The 97 points (despite OT) were their fewest in a defeat this season. The Nuggets have had a different leading scorer in each of their last five games. The latest of those was guard Gary Harris with 25 points to top the team in scoring for the first time this season. The matchup with the Lakers is basically a stopover for a home game for Denver, which next heads on a four-game East Coast swing. This is the first meeting of the season between the teams.
Win: Denver Nuggets
Line: Denver Nuggets -2.5
Total Points: Under 209.5