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NBA Plays 8/3

Toronto Raptors vs Miami Heat

The Raptors are coming off of a huge win over the Lakers which was absolutely a silencer to the haters. Kyle Lowry dropped 33/14/6 which in their 15 point win over AD and LeBron. Their defense was incredible as well, holding AD and LeBron to a combined 34 points. On the other side, the Miami Heat are coming off of an impressive 20 point win over the Denver Nuggets. In that game, they shot 56% from the field which is incredible, but not sustainable in every game. Also, Kelly Olynyk came out of nowhere and had 20 points hitting three after three. In this game, I don't see the Heat shooting 56% and I don't think Olynyk will drop 20 again. The Raptors rank second in the league in defensive efficiency and I think that they win this game. The Pick: Raptors -3 (-110)

Denver Nuggets vs Oklahoma City Thunder

As I mentioned in the write up above, the Nuggets are coming off of a 20 point loss to the Heat. Although, they were missing Jamal Murray in that game and he is currently questionable for this one as well. In my opinion, though, I think that the OKC Thunder are the much better team here. They are coming off of a huge win over the Jazz where we got to see Chris Paul's beautiful mid-range again as well as Shai Gilgeous-Alexander's ability to score at the rim. I think we see more of that today in a Thunder win. The Pick: Thunder -4.5 (-110)

Indiana Pacers vs Washington Wizards

I mean c'mon. The Wizards don't have Bradley Beal to drop 50 for them or Davis Bertans to shoot 55% from the 3. They are coming off of an ugly loss to the Brooklyn Nets. The Brooklyn Nets. That's all I have to say for this game. the Pacers will blow them out with or without Oladipo. The Pick: Pacers -7.5 (-110)

Memphis Grizzlies vs New Orleans Pelicans

Both of these teams are coming off of very ugly losses while they are both fighting for the 8th seed in the West. As a fan, I am extremely excited to see Ja go against Zion, although it sucks that the Pelicans doctors keep limiting Zion's playing time. In my eyes, even though Zion is young, he needs to be on the floor for normal minutes so that he gets more experience and he can give the team a chance at the playoffs. Although, without Zion playing more than 20 minutes, I'm not sure what side to take here so I'm left with only one choice. The Pick: Under 237.5 (-110)

San Antonio Spurs vs Philadelphia 76ers

The Spurs restarted their season with a huge win over the Grizzlies. They are playing without their rebounder, LaMarcus Aldridge. In this game, I see the Spurs as very undersized against Joel Embiid and the 76ers. I think that both teams will be able to score a lot in this game. Both teams have had defenses that are not great and it should lead to a lot of points on the break. The Pick: First Half Over 114 (-110)

Los Angeles Lakers vs Utah Jazz

As I wrote in the Raptors vs Heat write up, the Lakers are coming off of an ugly 15 point loss where they couldn't seem to get their star players going. I think that this game is a perfect spot for LeBron and AD to bounce back and trounce on the Jazz. Utah is coming off of a loss to the Thunder and I'm not sure how they bounce back from it. They are already locked in for the playoffs, but these games matter greatly for seeding purposes. As of this morning, they are the 5 seed but within 3 games of the 2 seed. On the other hand, if they continue losing they could drop to the 6 or 7 seed and have to play the Clippers or the Nuggets or the Rockets in the first round. Even though these games are extremely important for Utah, I don't think LeBron is going to be very happy after his ugly performance against the Raptors and he's going to turn up this game. I think the Lakers will have their statement game tonight and we see them easily beat the Jazz. The Pick: LA Lakers -6 (-110)

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