NBA Predictions and Best Bets – February 12, 2021

| February 11, 2021 1:36 pm PDT

NBA bettors can bask in the glory of a massive 11-game basketball betting slate. Friday closes the week out in style, as this schedule is loaded in terms of volume but also features some fantastic games.

Before you get ready to bet on Friday’s NBA games, see who is playing.

  • New York Knicks vs. Washington Wizards
  • Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Charlotte Hornets
  • San Antonio Spurs vs. Atlanta Hawks
  • New Orleans Pelicans vs. Dallas Mavericks
  • Detroit Pistons vs. Boston Celtics
  • Los Angeles Clippers vs. Chicago Bulls
  • Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Denver Nuggets
  • Milwaukee Bucks vs. Utah Jazz
  • Memphis Grizzlies vs. Los Angeles Lakers
  • Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Portland Trail Blazers
  • Orlando Magic vs. Sacramento Kings

Bettors will want to start off their research with a little checklist, especially with a slate this large.

Be sure to check for the latest betting odds, but also keep an eye on anyone resting or injured players that may not suit up.

It’s worth noting that Boston, Portland, Detroit, and Orlando all played on Thursday. Players from those teams could be banged up or rested, and that may impact how you decide to bet.

I’ll include anything that stands out for all games, of course. For an idea as to how to bet tonight, join me as I break down my NBA predictions and top betting picks.

New York Knicks vs. Washington Wizards Predictions

  • Wizards to beat Knicks
  • Predicted total: 220-225

This is a clash of styles, as the Knicks struggle to score, and the Wizards can’t stop anyone on defense.

Washington has been getting housed lately, but this feels like a spot where they have a real chance to get a win. 

They’re just 3-7 over their last 10 games, but the Wizards should be able to get a nice home win against the Knicks.

Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Charlotte Hornets Predictions

  • Hornets to beat Timberwolves
  • Predicted total: 225-230

The Timberwolves finally have big man Karl-Anthony Towns back, but he wasn’t able to stop them from losing a third straight game.

Minnesota gets a big boost with him back, but he’s never really aided their defense. That’s the main reason not to fall in love with them while they’re on the road and are just 2-11 away from home this year.

Charlotte has been a lot of fun with LaMelo Ball in the starting lineup, so look for him to stay in that first group. If so, the Over feels like the best bet here, but Charlotte should be able to get it done at home, as well.

San Antonio Spurs vs. Atlanta Hawks Predictions

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

The Hawks looked like a deep playoff contender before the season began, but they’ve been bogged down by injuries.

Here’s a quick list of the key players that probably won’t suit up on Friday.

  • Rajon Rondo
  • DeAndre Hunter
  • Bogdan Bogdanovic
  • Kris Dunn

Most of those absences aren’t too damaging, but the depth is being chiseled away, to be sure.

That might hurt Atlanta against the Spurs. San Antonio doesn’t have the size to contend with Clint Capela, but they’re otherwise capable of dictating this game, and they’ve been weirdly good (7-3) on the road this year.

New Orleans Pelicans vs. Dallas Mavericks Predictions

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

Dallas has endured significant struggles to start the year, but they are finally rounding into form. 

Check out their last five games.

Opponent Result Score
VS. Hawks W 118-117
VS. Timberwolves W 127-122
VS. Warriors W 134-132
VS. Warriors L 147-116
@ Hawks W 122-116

The defense still isn’t where it needs to be, but Dallas is clicking offensively right now. More importantly, they are coming up clutch and finishing games late, which isn’t something they’d been doing.

Dallas has benefited from this current homestand, and the Mavs look like a solid bet to keep the good times coming on Friday.

Detroit Pistons vs. Boston Celtics Predictions

  • Celtics to beat Pistons
  • Predicted total: 210-215

Detroit is a little better than anyone seems to care to admit, but they still have one of the worst records in the NBA at 6-18.

They remain competitive, but the Pistons should be more concerned with locking up the #1 pick in the 2021 NBA Draft than getting wins.

I suspect they’ll still fight hard on Friday, but with both teams playing last night, the edge goes to the Celtics at home.

Boston is finally fully healthy, and they need a break after a two-game skid. The Pistons should give them that.

Los Angeles Clippers vs. Chicago Bulls Predictions

  • Clippers to beat Bulls
  • Predicted total: 215-220

The Clippers continue to go to work without star forward Paul George, who did not travel with the team for their two-game road trip.

That’s a big absence, but the Clippers still have Kawhi Leonard and a very deep rotation around him.

I’m not too worried about them, as they have shown well (10-4) on the road, and Chicago isn’t scary defensively.

On the flip side, the Clippers are a tough defensive matchup for the Bulls. Provided Zach LaVine doesn’t go ham, L.A. should win easily.

Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Denver Nuggets Predictions

  • Nuggets to beat Thunder
  • Predicted total: 210-215

Don’t disrespect the Thunder. They have quietly been absurdly competitive all year, and even in a clear rebuilding season, they’re a respectable 10-14.

They also just took the Lakers to overtime twice in a row.

Yeah, this Thunder team has some dog in them. 

I wouldn’t be that shocked if they played hard and kept it reasonably close against the Nuggets, either.

But keeping it close and actually winning are two different things. OKC really doesn’t have an answer for Nikola Jokic down low, and the Nuggets need to take advantage of winnable games like this.

Denver has won 9 of the last 10 meetings, so look for that ugly trend to continue tonight.

Milwaukee Bucks vs. Utah Jazz Predictions

  • Bucks to beat Jazz
  • Predicted total: 225-230

This could easily be labeled the game of the night, as you have a very good Jazz team (20-5) hosting the explosive Bucks. Utah has been nasty (10-2) at home, and they’re 9-1 over their last 10 games.

There is little denying that the Jazz look like the best team in basketball at the moment, but I still can’t get away from the Bucks here.

Milwaukee is about as hot (7-3 over their last 10), and they’re putting up over 121 points per game. They could still be without top point guard Jrue Holiday, but I like the value with them on this slate.

Memphis Grizzlies vs. Los Angeles Lakers Predictions

  • Lakers to beat Grizzlies
  • Predicted total: 215-220

The Lakers have missed Anthony Davis lately. They still beat the Thunder twice and have won six straight, but they needed OT to win each of their last three contests.

LeBron James is crushing, but he’s surely getting tired. The Brow would be a nice get for this road game, but once again, I like the Lake Show no matter what.

Memphis has fresher legs and are at home, but they’re just 4-7 there this year. They also don’t have a “LeBron stopper,” so there’s little reason to love them in this spot.

Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Portland Trail Blazers Predictions

  • Blazers to beat Cavaliers
  • Predicted total: 220-225

The Cavs are in steep decline as losers of their last five. Now they have to take it to the road, where they’re an alarming 3-9 on the year.

Damian Lillard and the banged-up Blazers did play late last night, but they’re at home against an inferior team.

Andre Drummond could feast here, but everything else about this game screams for you to back the Blazers. I like Portland and the Over here.

Orlando Magic vs. Sacramento Kings Predictions

  • Kings to beat Magic
  • Predicted total: 220-225

The last game of the night features the Magic, who also played late last night. Orlando will probably be fatigued, and they’re another banged-up team that has road issues.

The Magic are down a ton of bodies these days, and they’re just 4-8 on the road this season.

Sacramento is trending in the right direction with a 7-3 record over their last 10 games, and they had the upper hand in a previous meeting this season.

Nikola Vucevic should have his way down low, but the deeper home team should prevail.

Best NBA Bets for Friday, February 12th

  • Spurs (+2) -109
  • Mavericks (-2) -110
  • Clippers (-6.5) -105
  • Bucks (+1) -110
  • Blazers (-4.5) -110

I think you can get away with just betting on the moneylines for all of my NBA picks above. For any games not listed, follow my NBA predictions, analysis, or total suggestions to place other bets.

I like San Antonio’s resolve on the road, and they’re the more balanced team when compared to the Hawks right now. Dallas is on a heater, and L.A. is fully capable of dominating the Bulls sans PG-13, too.

Milwaukee is a great value as a slight road dog, and the Blazers are equipped to take care of business at home against the Cavs. All of these bets stand out as nice options at whatever sites you use to bet on sports online.

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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