NBA Predictions and Best Bets – April 9, 2021

| April 9, 2021 2:18 am PDT

NBA bettors are in for a fun night, as 10 games hit the hardwood, and several are at the very worst projected to be high-scoring.

I count five games with major entertainment value, and that should have bettors in love with the Over. Pricing could dictate things for you, of course.

Regardless, this looks like a fun slate. Take a quick look at who is in action before diving into Friday’s betting picks and predictions.

  • Indiana Pacers vs. Orlando Magic
  • Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Boston Celtics
  • Memphis Grizzlies vs. New York Knicks
  • Chicago Bulls vs. Atlanta Hawks
  • Philadelphia 76ers vs. New Orleans Pelicans
  • San Antonio Spurs vs. Denver Nuggets
  • Charlotte Hornets vs. Milwaukee Bucks
  • Washington Wizards vs. Golden State Warriors
  • Houston Rockets vs. Los Angeles Clippers

The first game is probably a snoozer, but it picks up after that. Several of these games should feature a lot of scoring, and that’s even with some likely blowouts on the table.

Not sure how to bet on the NBA? First, hit up our NBA betting guide, and then join me as I break down my favorite bets.

Indiana Pacers vs. Orlando Magic Predictions

  • Pacers to beat Magic
  • Predicted total: 215-220

The Magic are stripped down to spare parts these days. They are starting to get a bit healthier and they’re at home, but I don’t see much reason to back them.

Indy isn’t at full strength, but they still have a shot at the playoffs. I’d imagine Domantas Sabonis, Malcolm Brogdon, and Myles Turner all return for this one, and if so, they feel like a lock for me. 

If any of them are out, Orlando does heat up as a potential underdog play, and they’d certainly be a viable ATS bet.

Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Boston Celtics Predictions

  • Celtics to beat Timberwolves
  • Predicted total: 220-225

Boston is another team vying for the playoffs. They’re presently sitting 7th in the east, and they get to host a bad Timberwolves team that is likely playing for the #1 pick in the 2021 NBA Draft.

The Celtics should have Kemba Walker back for this one, which would put them about at full strength. They have a lot to play for and are 16-10 at the TD Garden this year, too, so I wouldn’t get too cute with Minnesota bets on Friday.

Minnesota does play zero defense, however, so the Over looks appealing here.

Memphis Grizzlies vs. New York Knicks Predictions

  • Knicks to beat Grizzlies
  • Predicted total: 210-215

New York defends well and slows things down, so this feels like a spot to back them. The Knicks are still fighting for a playoff spot, and they get a mediocre Memphis team at home.

The Knicks have dropped two in a row and are just 4-6 over their last 10, but I think them slowing this game down will give them the edge they need.

Chicago Bulls vs. Atlanta Hawks Predictions

  • Hawks to beat Bulls
  • Predicted total: 220-225

This should be one of many shootouts on the night. Chicago doesn’t defend well, but they’re capable of filling it up offensively.

The Hawks have slipped defensively, too, while the Bulls push the pace (9th). I think there are plenty of points here, but I do favor Atlanta.

Atlanta just has more ways to kill you offensively, and provided Clint Capela is back, he gives them a defensive edge the Bulls sorely lack.

Philadelphia 76ers vs. New Orleans Pelicans Predictions

  • 76ers to beat Pelicans
  • Predicted total: 230-235

More points should be flowing in when the Sixers visit the Pels. New Orleans can fill it up offensively, while both of these teams play reasonably fast.

The real kicker is a terrible Pelicans defense, which is the third worst unit in the NBA in terms of efficiency.

Philly is a bit more human on the road, but they’re playing for first place in the Eastern Conference. Provided Joel Embiid doesn’t rest here, I love the 76ers and the Over.

San Antonio Spurs vs. Denver Nuggets Predictions

  • Nuggets to beat Spurs
  • Predicted total: 220-225

San Antonio can be capable when at full strength, but they’re really banged up these days. They’re also a sinking ship, as they’ve lost four in a row, and no longer feel like a threat to make the playoffs.

This is all music to Denver’s ears. The Nuggets have an unstoppable force down low in Nikola Jokic, and they are red hot with seven consecutive wins.

I don’t see the Spurs killing their run here.

Charlotte Hornets vs. Milwaukee Bucks Predictions

  • Bucks to beat Hornets
  • Predicted total: 230-235

This game will be impossible to bet on until you know the status of Giannis Antetokounmpo.

That said, the Bucks have remained competitive even when he’s been out, and both of these teams push the pace offensively.

The Over feels like a strong bet here, and it’ll be hard not to like Milwaukee at home.  

They could be down their best player, but the Bucks are still pretty deep, and are a stellar 18-7 at home this year.

Washington Wizards vs. Golden State Warriors Predictions

  • Warriors to beat Wizards
  • Predicted total: 230-235

Yet another intense offensive battle awaits in California, where Stephen Curry and his Warriors host Russell Westbrook and the Wizards.

Washington can generate enough offense with the league’s fastest pace to potentially compete with anyone, but they don’t defend well at all.

The Wiz will be taking their paltry 8-16 road record up against Curry, who went off for 41 points in a win over the Bucks.

Golden State still has a shot at the playoffs, and they’re a solid 15-9 at home this year. I like their chances to draw closer to the 8th seed, while the Over feels like a smash play.

Houston Rockets vs. Los Angeles Clippers Predictions

  • Clippers to beat Rockets
  • Predicted total: 220-225

Another smash play is L.A. to win, as they host the lowly Rockets. The only reason to get cute here is if you suspect the Clippers will rest any of their top guys.

In this matchup, that’s always possible. That said, the Clippers are pretty deep, are 19-8 at home, and are in good form (8-2 over their last 10).

The Clippers are also still in position for the best record in the league if they can finish the year strong. I would imagine they go hard here, but I’m not sure there is a palatable bet on the table due to the massive mismatch.

Best NBA Bets for Friday, April 9th

  • Knicks (+1) -110
  • Timberwolves vs. Celtics Over 228 (-110)
  • Hawks (-3.5) -110
  • Wizards (+5) -110
  • Wizards vs. Warriors Over 240.5 (-115)

The Knicks are slipping a bit, but they’re at home and they could dictate the pace of their game.

If they can do that, they’re a nice value bet.

Minnesota could be okay ATS, but the real play is the Over in their road tilt with Boston. They just don’t play enough defense to stop the Celtics from scoring. As long as they don’t get housed, I love the Over in that one.

Atlanta should be able to take care of the Bulls, and four points isn’t a big ask. Washington probably loses on the road to Golden State, but I absolutely envision a close game.

Both teams push the pace and can get hot, so even though the game total is obscene, I’m all in on the Over there, as well.

Noah Davis
Noah Davis

Noah Davis is one of the more diverse writers at Like many of his colleagues, he's a huge fan of both football and basketball. But he also writes about box office records, TV show prop bets, DFS, and all kinds of other subjects.

When it comes to the NFL, Noah's favorite team is the Cleveland Browns. He enjoys cheering them on with his wife and daughter.

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