Thursday’s NBA Predictions and Betting Tips (May 13, 2021)

| May 13, 2021 5:27 am PDT

The NBA is getting down to the nitty-gritty. The 2020-21 NBA regular season wraps up this weekend, but several teams have to figure some things out before it does.

Thursday could tie up a few loose ends, of course. The 76ers have a shot at locking down the top seed in the Eastern Conference, while the Bucks could get one step closer to stealing the #2 seed in the east from Brooklyn.

The Suns are down to their final chances in their pursuit to steal the top seed in the west, as well.

Wondering how it’ll all shake out and how you should bet? Join me for Thursday’s NBA predictions and picks.

NBA Predictions for Thursday, May 13th

  • Bucks to beat Pacers
  • Clippers to beat Hornets
  • Hawks to beat Magic
  • 76ers to beat Heat
  • Spurs to beat Knicks
  • Bulls to beat Raptors
  • Nuggets to beat Timberwolves
  • Grizzlies to beat Kings
  • Suns to beat Blazers

The Bucks may care less about getting the 2-seed than some realize. After all, settling into the three-seed means they know exactly who they’d be playing, and they wouldn’t have to worry themselves with all of the play-in tourney chatter.

Even so, I like the Bucks to down the Pacers. It allows them to beat a division rival while also building positive momentum toward the playoffs.

Several other bets look fairly obvious on paper, too. Philly has a major incentive to keep it rolling and get a win over Miami. Provided Joel Embiid is back on the floor, I’d expect the Sixers to officially grab the #1 seed in the east.

Denver should have little trouble with Minnesota, Memphis is a good bet to beat the Kings, the Clippers should take out the Hornets, and Atlanta shouldn’t fall asleep against the Magic.

Most of these games should play out as planned, and the only decision-making will be how to bet on them. If any of these games harbor some of the best NBA bets, I’ll touch on them more in a bit, but you can at least target those respective moneylines.

The remaining games are a bit trickier, but the Spurs need to keep winning to make sure they’re in the play-in tournament. Ditto for the Bulls. While the Suns are still clinging to hope that they can snag the top seed in the Western Conference, they have to win out (and get some help) for that to happen.

NBA Upset Picks for Thursday

  • 76ers (+1) -110
  • Spurs (+5) -113

The two NBA upset picks that stand out the most are Philadelphia and San Antonio. There are other games where the pricing will be far more tempting, but these two teams look like solid bets.

Philly could still be without big man Joel Embiid, but they have everyone else, and they have incentive to win and lock up the #1 seed in the east. It’s a bit of a song and dance here, as Embiid returning would make the Sixers a stronger bet, but they may morph into the favorites.

Miami could also be without Jimmy Butler, so this may just be a bet to hop on as soon as possible.

There’s also the Spurs, who offer nice value against the Knicks. San Antonio has been weirdly better all year on the road (19-16), and they still need to win to make sure they get into the NBA play-in tourney.

Best NBA Bets for Thursday, May 13th

  • Hornets (+8) -110
  • Nuggets (-5.5) -115

There could be some merit to the Hornets as a straight-up underdog pick if the Clippers sit some guys. For now, I just really like Charlotte’s chances of beating this 8-point spread at home.

Charlotte can’t really change their playoff seeding at this point, but they probably still want to be playing good basketball as the regular season winds down. To get them as 8-point dogs at home feels like a steal, especially since they were a solid 12-8-1 ATS in these situations on the year.

Denver also looks good as 5.5-point favorites. Minnesota is talented and have been playing better, but they still are the inferior team here.

The Nuggets can still get the third-best record in the NBA, and they’ve looked good (7-3) over their last 10 games. I think they keep it going here and get an easy win.

These are the best NBA bets for Thursday. If you’re ready to roll with them, visit the best sites for betting on the NBA now.

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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