NBA Expert Picks and Best Bets | January 25

Bryan Zarpentine pic
Bryan Zarpentine
NBA Best Bets 2023-2024

The Thursday schedule in the NBA is a little light in terms of the number of games. But take a closer look at you’ll see some compelling matchups. No wonder why we’re so eager to do some basketball betting. In fact, we’ve picked out our three favorite bets on Thursday’s schedule to share with you.

Philadelphia 76ers vs Indiana Pacers Best Bet:

76ers -4.5 | -114 at FanDuel

Unfortunately for Indiana, Tyrese Haliburton is injured again, which changes the calculus for any game involving the Pacers. Keep in mind, the Pacers also lost to the Trail Blazers as an eight-point favorite in the last game Haliburton played. While they managed to stay competitive, they’ve lost their last two games to the Suns and Nuggets. Those games have helped to create some serious doubt about Indiana despite the Pacers being an impressive 5-2-1 against the spread as home underdogs.

The fact that Indiana has to host the 76ers makes it easier to doubt the Pacers. Joel Embiid is the definition of unstoppable right now, scoring 70 points in his last game and scoring at least 40 points in three of his last five games. Philly has now won six in a row, going 4-2 against the spread. When favored by five points or less, the 76ers are 8-1 against the spread this season, not to mention 8-4 against the spread as road favorites. As long as the spread doesn’t climb much higher, this is absolutely a game in which you want to back the Sixers.

FanDuel Sportsbook
76ers -4.5 | -114 at FanDuel

Denver Nuggets vs New York Knicks Best Bet:

Knicks ML | +110 at BetMGM

We’re taking a shot by picking a slight upset at Madison Square Garden on Thursday and taking New York’s moneyline. The spread is so small that it’s worthwhile to bet on the Knicks to win straight-up, especially since they have the 10th best record in the NBA when listed as an underdog. They are also 14-5 at MSG this season, so they don’t lose at home that often. Factor in the Knicks winning 10 of their last 12 games, and this bet makes a lot of sense.

Of course, beating the 31-14 Nuggets is never easy. They’ve won five of their last six games, including three in a row at home. However, Denver’s 12-7 road record isn’t that impressive for a team that fancies itself as a title contender. The Nuggets also have one of the worst records against the spread in the NBA, covering just 44% of the time. With such a small spread, this is a good time to fade them against a red-hot New York team.

BetMGM Sportsbook
Knicks ML | +110 at BetMGM

Chicago Bulls vs Los Angeles Lakers Best Bet:

Bulls +4.5 | -110 at BetRivers

Frankly, it’s tough to make sense of either of these teams. Both are under .500 on the season and should probably be better than what their indicates. Injuries haven’t helped either, as the Bulls are once again without Zach LaVine while LeBron James is day-to-day for the Lakers. 

While this is a tough game to call, we’ll side with the Bulls based on their recent form. The Lakers are 3-4 in their last seven games with two of those wins coming against the Mavericks and Trail Blazers. Chicago, on the other hand, is 6-3 over the last nine games and has at least been competitive losses, including Monday’s two-point loss in Phoenix. Despite being on the road, the Bulls have had an extra day of rest, so we’ll gladly take them and the points.

Bulls +4.5 | -110 at BetRivers

Top Sportsbooks for NBA Betting