The final 3 days of the 2017-2018 NBA Regular Season takes place from April 9 through April 11. On Tuesday, April 10, the Lakers host the Houston Rockets. Western Conference Playoffs 1-seed Houston no doubt will rest players. Will that open up things for the Lakers to upset Houston? On Wednesday, San Antonio heads to New Orleans. Both the Spurs and Pelicans are fighting for a playoff berth. Who wins in one of Wednesday’s most important games? The final game I like this week also takes place on Wednesday. Will Utah or Portland take it in an important game for the Utah Jazz?
NBA Expert Picks April 9-15
Houston at L.A. Lakers
When: Tuesday, April 10 at 10:30 pm ET
Where: Staples Center, Los Angeles, CA
Analysis: The Lakers match up well with the Houston Rockets. L.A. lost 142 to 148 the last time they battled the Rockets. That game took place on Dec. 31. L.A. hasn’t got any worse although most of their starters will sit this one out due to injuries.
The Rockets might rest their entire starting 5. That means this game could go either way. In a game that could go either way, I’ll side with the better team, the Houston Rockets. Once hoops handicappers hear that Houston’s resting their starters, no doubt the Lakers will be overplayed.
I’ll back Houston to cover if they’re the favorites. If they aren’t the favorites, I’ll back the Rockets on the money line as the dog.
San Antonio at New Orleans
When: Wednesday, April 11 at 8:00 pm ET
Where: Smoothie King Center, New Orleans, LA
Analysis: Both the Spurs and Pelicans should secure an NBA Western Conference Playoff bid. However, neither is guaranteed to do so. The reason is because San Antonio and New Orleans are in a dog fight for a playoff spot with Denver, Oklahoma City, Minnesota and Utah.
San Antonio beat New Orleans 98 to 93 the last time these two battled each other. In that game, the Spurs only shot 37.4% from the field. They shot only 26% from three. They still beat the Pelicans who shot 40% from the field and 37.5% from three because San Antonio controlled the flow of the game.
Things might not be as easy for San Antonio on Wednesday. I believe the Pelicans get it done.
Pick: New Orleans
Utah at Portland
When: Wednesday, April 11 at 10:30 pm ET
Where: Moda Center, Portland, OR
Analysis: This Wednesday, Utah heads to Portland with a lot on the line. The Jazz could end up as the fourth seed, or worse in the Western Conference Playoffs. Or, and this is no joke, Utah could end up out of the playoffs all together.
Portland already has the 3-seed in the Western Conference Playoffs wrapped up. That means Utah has more of an incentive of winning this game than Portland does. I think the Jazz roll.