NBA Predictions and Best Bets – January 20, 2021

| January 20, 2021 5:10 am PDT

After a mild break on Tuesday, the NBA is back in full force with a huge 10-game slate on Wednesday.

This is a star-studded night a day after some of the most boring teams hit the floor. James Harden, Stephen Curry, and Luka Doncic are all in action, making this a really fun slate to bet on.

Here’s a quick look at every game on the docket for Wednesday, January 20th.

  • Brooklyn Nets vs. Cleveland Cavaliers
  • Dallas Mavericks vs. Indiana Pacers
  • Boston Celtics vs. Philadelphia 76ers
  • Detroit Pistons vs. Atlanta Hawks
  • Miami Heat vs. Toronto Raptors
  • Orlando Magic vs. Minnesota Timberwolves
  • Phoenix Suns vs. Houston Rockets
  • San Antonio Spurs vs. Golden State Warriors
  • Sacramento Kings vs. Los Angeles Clippers
  • Memphis Grizzlies vs. Portland Trail Blazers

There is a lot to digest here, as John Wall and several other big names will not be hitting the court on Wednesday.

I’ll try to incorporate key news into my NBA predictions and top betting picks. With that, let’s dive into Wednesday’s NBA slate.

Brooklyn Nets vs. Cleveland Cavaliers Predictions

  • Nets to beat Cavaliers
  • Predicted total: 225-230

The Nets are on fire right now. They’re won four straight, and are 2-0 since trading for James Harden. Things could get even better with Kyrie Irving slated to return in Cleveland against the Cavs.

Brooklyn is in a nice groove, they get their top point guard back, and the Cavs are not much of a threat at 6-7.

Cleveland has way more size in this matchup, but Harden, Irving, and Kevin Durant are more than enough to push Brooklyn’s winning streak to five games.

Dallas Mavericks vs. Indiana Pacers Predictions

  • Mavericks to beat Pacers
  • Predicted total: 220-225

Indiana plays host the Luka Doncic and the Mavs on Wednesday. The Pacers are just 5-5 over their last 10 games, and are a middling 4-3 at home.

The Pacers are basically a two-man show right now with Malcolm Brogdon and Domantas Sabonis doing the heavy lifting. Trading Victor Oladipo out of town didn’t go as planned, as new acquisition Caris LeVert isn’t able to hit the floor yet.

Dallas is sliding with three straight losses lately, but they have a healthy Kristaps Porzingis on hand. The Mavs should snap out of their funk with a much-needed road win here.

Boston Celtics vs. Philadelphia 76ers Predictions

  • 76ers to beat Celtics
  • Predicted total: 215-220

Philly and Boston have dealt with injuries lately, but both are inching closer to 100% as they face off on Wednesday. The Sixers have been virtually unbeatable (7-1) at home, so they may have the upper hand here.

They also have one of the league’s nastiest defenses. It’s so good, in fact, that two of their players have a shot at winning 2021 NBA Defensive Player of the Year.

Boston is at the top of the Eastern Conference at 8-4, and they are close to 100% after seeing Kemba Walker make his season debut in their last game.

The Celtics are a tough out, but I prefer to trust in the 76ers at home.

Detroit Pistons vs. Atlanta Hawks Predictions

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

Detroit looks like the worst team in basketball at 3-10. Jerami Grant keeps doing all he can to will the Pistons to wins, but this team is being held back by a declining Blake Griffin.

It’s unlikely Detroit will get it going in a positive direction in this spot, as they try to corral a talented Hawks team in Atlanta. The Hawks don’t play any defense, but I think they can at least take care of the Pistons at home.

Miami Heat vs. Toronto Raptors Predictions

  • Raptors to beat Heat
  • Predicted total: 220-225

Word of Toronto’s demise was somewhat exaggerated. The Raptors still aren’t where they need to be after a slow start, but they’ve won three in a row and big man Chris Boucher has been a revelation.

The Raptors have their work cut out for them against a talented Miami squad, but the Heat are still down some key players. Look for Toronto to get their fourth win in a row.

Orlando Magic vs. Minnesota Timberwolves Predictions

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

The Magic have been hit hard by injuries, but shooting guard Evan Fournier figures to be finally trending in the right direction.

Nikola Vucevic has been tasked with too much offensively, even though he’s responded with a career-high 22.9 points per game.

He’s been great, but his stellar play hasn’t prevented an ugly six-game slide for the Magic.

The good news is Orlando faces a mangled Timberwolves team that is still without Karl-Anthony Towns. Minnesota (3-9) is rivaling the Pistons as the worst team in the NBA, so they’re a pretty easy team to bet against.

Phoenix Suns vs. Houston Rockets Predictions

  • Suns to beat Rockets
  • Predicted total: 215-220

The Rockets aren’t remotely close to 100%, as they traded away James Harden, and are still without John Wall.

Victor Oladipo did make his debut in the team’s last game, and he played very well.

It didn’t translate into a win, but it was at least encouraging to see him find his spot in the offense instantly.

Houston has a chance to get going in the right direction at home, but Chris Paul and a feisty Suns team should be too much of a challenge.

San Antonio Spurs vs. Golden State Warriors Predictions

  • Warriors to beat Spurs
  • Predicted total: 225-230

The Dubs delivered a shocking upset over the Lakers in their last game. They’re still just 7-6 and can’t defend, but that was an eyebrow raiser.

Golden State is in position to win another game on Wednesday, as they host a fairly beatable Spurs squad. San Antonio has oddly been quite good (6-2) on the road this year, however.

Sacramento Kings vs. Los Angeles Clippers Predictions

  • Clippers to beat Kings
  • Predicted total: 225-230

The Clippers are among the league’s best teams at 10-4, and they’re a stout 5-2 at the Staples Center. Weirdly, that still hasn’t been enough to get them first place in the Pacific Division.

They’re not the favorites to get there when you look at the latest 2021 Pacific Division odds, either.

Even so, they seem like a strong bet to add to a four-game winning streak on Wednesday.

L.A. will host the Kings, who are struggling at 5-9, and are allowing an unfathomable 123 points per contest. Hammer the Clippers and the Over here.

Memphis Grizzlies vs. Portland Trail Blazers Predictions

  • Blazers to beat Grizzlies
  • Predicted total: 225-230

Lastly, you can bet on this Grizzlies vs. Blazers game. Ja Morant is back for Memphis, who have weirdly won five games in a row.

I tend to think their luck runs out a bit here, as the Blazers are a tough out in general, and are usually strong at home. Portland will go into this one at far less than 100%, of course.

Jusuf Nurkic got hurt a couple of games ago, and star scorer C.J. McCollum has also been added to the injury list.

Luckily, Portland is at home, and they have a good amount of depth. I like Portland and the Over in this one.

Best NBA Bets for Wednesday, January 20th

  • Mavericks (PK) -110
  • Pistons vs. Hawks Over 220.5 (-105)
  • Blazers (-1.5) -110
  • Kings vs. Clippers Over 231.5 (-110)
  • Warriors (-1.5) -110

You can bet based on my NBA predictions above, or you can go with my favorite NBA picks listed here.

I tend to think the Mavs will start rounding into form as they get healthier. They should be able to get it going against the Pacers, and their -110 pick’em price is pretty nice.

Detroit won’t beat the Hawks, but a 6-point spread feels trappy. I’d rather just hit the Over in a game that should feature almost zero defense.

Portland is very banged up, but as noted, they’re still quite deep. They’re at home and it isn’t like Memphis is a team bettors should actively be trusting.

Sacramento is horrid defensively. If they can hang around in the Clippers game, that contest will have zero issue topping 232 points.

Lastly, the Dubs proved with a win over the Lake Show that they can hang with anyone. The Spurs are a much easier test, and the Dubs are at home. I’ll have whatever Chef Curry is cooking up.

Hopefully these NBA picks serve you well. This is a big slate, but these bets stand out the most.

If you’re ready to bet, be sure to stop by the top NBA sportsbooks.

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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