Two Duels in the NBA’s Wild West

Coming off hefty 12-game slate from yesterday, the Association is boasting just two games today, but both feature some of the Western Conference’s top teams, so it should still be an exciting day for bettors. We’ll see the league’s best team, the Oklahoma City Thunder, battle the Memphis Grizzlies and the Dallas Mavericks take on the Golden State Warriors. Here’s a brief breakdown of each game and solid, no-nonsense point-spread picks that you can trust.

Memphis Grizzlies +8.5 at Oklahoma City Thunder -8.5

After officially dealing leading scorer Rudy Gay to the Raptors yesterday, the Grizzlies have made a tough game even tougher, as they march into one of the most hostile road environments against the NBA’s best team. The Grizzlies have played well without Gay in the past, including a nice run last postseason while he was injured, but the team they lost to was in fact, the Thunder.

The Grizzlies did get the better of OKC back on Nov. 15 in a 107-97, accounting for one of only three home losses all year for the Thunder, who are 19-3 in their own building.

However, the Thunder really started to pick up steam in December and have continued to play well through January, establishing themselves as the team to beat this season out West. The Thunder lead the league in scoring with 105.7 points per game.

The Grizzlies play more of a defensive game, allowing just 89.5 points per game on the year, but they’ve slipped up a bit recently, winning just five of their last 10 games.

Although you have to like the Thunder to win this one, eight and half points seems a bit generous considering the Grizzlies have already defeated OKC in their house this year and that they are still a good defensive team even without Gay. Look for OKC to earn its league-best 35th win, but for Memphis to cover +8.5 in the loss.

Dallas Mavericks +3 at Golden State Warriors -3

With a 27-18 record, the Golden State Warriors aren’t surprising anyone anymore. They’ve proved they’re for real. However, they may be without Stephen Curry as they host the Mavericks, who have picked up the pace a bit, winning six of their last 10 games with star and leader Dirk Nowitzki back in the lineup.

If Curry is not able to go, the Warriors are obviously at a disadvantage but with All-Star David Lee leading the charge and with Andrew Bogut back in the rotation, the Warriors still have an ample amount of offensive weapons they can use to dispatch of the pesky Mavs.

Both teams are averaging around 100 points per game this season, but with the Mavs allowing 103 per contest and considering they have struggled mightily on the road this year, the Warriors should take care of business tonight, with or without a healthy Steph Curry. Look for Golden State to cover -3 points in the win.