The Brooklyn Nets visit their cross-town rivals, the New York Knicks, on Friday night. Tip-off is set for 7:35 PM ET at Madison Square Garden. The betting line is New York -2. It looks way too easy to take the Nets +2 in this one. Allow me to explain.
The Nets bring a 3-2 record into this contest, producing a 4-1 ATS mark in those games. On the flip side, the host Knicks are 0-3 SU and ATS so far this season.
Offense or Offensive?
Brooklyn is averaging a whopping 121.2 points per game. The Knicks? How about just 93.3 points per game. That is a difference of 27.9 points per game.
And if you are thinking, “Well, maybe New York is favored because they are the far better defensive team,” think again. Brooklyn and New York own nearly identical Defensive Efficiency Ratings, according to Hollinger. The Nets are at 109.6, while the Knicks are at 109.3.
What Goes Up, Should Come Down
Brooklyn is coming off a huge upset win. The Nets were 7.5-point home underdogs against LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday, but came away with a shocking 112-107 victory. That makes tonight a prime letdown spot for the Nets.
Professional athletes do not like getting embarrassed by their peers. So when a team gets blown out, they tend to play with maximum effort in their next game. The Knicks are coming off an embarrassing 21-point loss in Boston. I expect the Knicks to play with extra motivation tonight, considering they are coming off that humiliating defeat.
Your NBA Free Pick for Friday Is…
The Nets are 0-2 on the road this season. So, despite their massive numbers on the scoreboard, Brooklyn’s defense has kept them from securing road wins. They allowed a total of 265 points in their two road losses. That’s 132.5 points per game. Ouch! I expect the Knicks to step up tonight off that embarrassing loss and hand their cross-town rivals an L. Take NEW YORK -2.