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Sean B’s Best NBA Bets Today: Free Expert Betting Picks | Wednesday 3/23/22

Sean Blazek

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With only 18 days left in the NBA regular season, the playoff race is heating up. Wednesday offers up an action-packed night with 11 games scheduled across the league. Two games will be in the national spotlight on ESPN, with Nets – Grizzlies tipping off first, followed up by 76ers – Lakers in Los Angeles. Keep focus on teams fighting for playoff positioning, as their motives can be drastically different from those teams who have been eliminated. Let’s dive into the best NBA bets today, picks and NBA betting tips for Wednesday, March 23.

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Best NBA Bets Today: Game Tips & Betting Predictions

Knicks vs. Hornets Best Bet

The New York Knicks will travel to Charlotte on Wednesday to take on the Hornets inside Spectrum Center. The Knicks are coming off a disappointing loss to Atlanta last night after blowing a 10-point lead in the fourth quarter. Trae Young exploded for 45 points, including seven 3-pointers against New York. The Knicks will travel overnight to Charlotte for the second game of a back-to-back. The Hornets playoff hopes were revived after stringing together five straight wins, including a 106-103 win over the Pelicans in their most recent outing. Tonight they will look to extend that streak to six wins and stay in the playoff picture in the Eastern Conference.

New York was without leading scorer Julius Randle in yesterday’s matchup versus the Hawks. Randle sat out in the front end of a back-to-back with a sore right quadriceps tendon and is listed as doubtful for tonight’s matchup. Keep an eye on his status throughout the day for the most up-to-date information. R.J. Barrett has stepped up his offensive production, posting 25.7 points per game since the All-Star break. Barrett is coming off a 30-point and 13-rebound performance against the Hawks. The Knicks will be without Derrick Rose (ankle), Nerlens Noel (foot), Cam Reddish (shoulder) and Kemba Walker (conditioning), as they are all listed as out. New York is averaging 106.1 points per game on 43.5% shooting and allowing 106.9 points. New York will need to stand their ground and shut down the Hornets on the offensive end of the floor if they want any chance to win.

Right when the Hornets season looked to be taking a turn for the worst, Charlotte ripped off five straight wins and now sit at 37-35 on the season. The Hornets are ninth in the Eastern Conference, just one game back from Brooklyn for the eighth spot. The Hornets are averaging 115 points per game and allowing 114.6 points. Charlotte has found a lot of their offensive success from behind the 3-point line. They rank fifth in 3-pointers made per game while ranking eighth in 3-point shooting percentage. The Hornets do an excellent job of sharing the basketball and finding the open shooter. They are an unselfish group that does not care who scores as long as they are playing efficiently on the offensive end. The Hornets’ challenges come on the defensive end of the floor, where they rank 23rd in defensive rating on the year. Their defense may allow a lot of points, but they are an active bunch that is averaging 8.7 steals per game (fifth) and five blocks per game (ninth).

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These two teams have faced off twice this season, with the Hornets winning both games. The Knicks are 0-4 against the spread in the last four meetings in Charlotte and 2-6 against the spread in the last eight meetings. The Hornets are 39-31-2 against the spread on the season, including 19-16-1 against the spread at home. The Knicks are 33-39 against the spread on the season. The Hornets have a lot more to play for in this one, as their hopes for a playoff chance are still alive. The Knicks are the 12th seed and have very little hope of making the playoffs with only 10 games left to play. LaMelo Ball and Miles Bridges have been balling out the past few weeks, and that trend should continue in tonight’s matchup. Lay the points with the home squad in Wednesday’s matchup.

Best NBA Bet for Today’s Game: Charlotte Hornets -7.5

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Nets vs. Grizzlies Best Bet

Brooklyn travels to Memphis to take on the Grizzlies in a what will be the front end of a back-to-back for Memphis. The Nets are streaking after winning six of their last seven games overall. Brooklyn’s Kyrie Irving will be available to play given this game is on the road. The Grizzlies will be without their star guard Ja Morant for a second straight game on Wednesday, as he continues to nurse a knee injury. Memphis does not want to risk rushing Morant back on the floor, as they would like to enter the playoffs as healthy as possible. The Grizzlies took home the first matchup in Brooklyn 118-104 back on Jan. 3. Memphis has owned Brooklyn as of late, winning five straight in the series matchup, but tonight will be a different look with Irving back in the lineup and Morant missing for Memphis.

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It is no surprise that the Brooklyn Nets are a much better team on the road given Irving is unavailable to play in home games due to the state COVID restrictions. The Nets are 38-34 on the season, sitting eighth in the Eastern conference. Brooklyn has a 22-15 record on the road while averaging 115.5 points per game compared to just 108.5 points at home this season. No one will question Brooklyn’s offensive abilities, but their defense is suspect, ranking 20th in defensive efficiency on the season and allowing 111.8 points per game. Ben Simmons, LaMarcus Aldridge and Joe Harris remain out, while Seth Curry is listed as questionable with an ankle injury. Goran Dragic (knee) is doubtful to play on Wednesday. If Curry and Dragic are unable to go, expect to see an increase in minutes for Cam Thomas and Patty Mills.

The Grizzlies have been red hot down the stretch this season, but they will be playing without Morant in this game. His absence will be a hit to a Memphis team that will need to find a way to slow down the dangerous duo of Kevin Durant and Irving. The Grizzlies enter Wednesday with a 49-23 record on the season, good for second in the Western Conference. Memphis is averaging 114.7 points per game while allowing 109.3 points. The Grizzlies rank top seven in both offensive and defensive rating on the year. This is a big opportunity for Memphis to make a statement on primetime TV, but they will need Desmond Bane, Dillon Brooks and Jaren Jackson Jr. to pick up the offensive production without their star guard.

While the Grizzlies have a 14-2 record without Morant in the lineup this season, only four of those wins came against teams with a record above .500. The Nets put up 150 points against the Magic in their last outing with both Irving and Durant on the floor together. Do not expect a repeat performance, as Memphis has a much better defense than the Magic, but this proves how lethal the Nets offense is with both their superstars sharing the court. The Nets are 7-1-1 against the spread in their last nine road games. Backing the Nets would be more concerning if Morant were in the lineup, but they are fortunate to not have to worry about the star guard putting on a show in the national spotlight. The Nets are fighting to avoid the play-in game and only have three road games left where Irving is eligible to play. These road games are must-wins for the Nets to secure a spot in the playoffs. Lay the point with the Nets in a must-win scenario for Brooklyn on Wednesday night.

Best NBA Bet for Today’s Game: Brooklyn Nets -1

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Sean Blazek (aka SweatBets) has contributed to Awesemo since November 2021 and is currently an NBA Betting Content Creator. His articles can be found on Awesemo as well as OddsShopper under the NBA Betting Articles section. Sean has a knack for identifying value in spreads and totals using an analytical approach to find his Best Bets. Follow him on Twitter @SweatBets and get ready to cash.

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