Friday’s NBA Predictions and Betting Tips (May 7, 2021)

| May 7, 2021 4:57 am PDT

The Nikola Jokic slander has to stop. Nick Wright made waves recently when he vouched for Chris Paul as the NBA MVP over The Joker, which is getting out of control.

I’ll admit, I broke down reasons why Joel Embiid could win the 2021 NBA MVP, but I still said it’s Jokic’s award to lose. But CP3? Please.

As wild as that is, all three of the players above will hit the floor in their plight to not only win games but to state their claim for the league MVP on Friday.

The regular work week wraps up with a pretty loaded NBA schedule, as 10 games are available to bettors. Let’s break this slate down with some NBA predictions, upset picks, and best bets to target online.

NBA Predictions for Friday, May 7th

  • 76ers to beat Pelicans
  • Celtics to beat Bulls
  • Heat to beat Timberwolves
  • Bucks to beat Rockets
  • Hornets to beat Magic
  • Mavericks to beat Cavaliers
  • Nuggets to beat Jazz
  • Suns to beat Knicks
  • Blazers to beat Lakers
  • Spurs to beat Kings

Too many of the favorites on this slate have serious motivation to keep winning. You could aim high for a wild upset in some spots, but I won’t be betting against Philly, Milwaukee, or Phoenix.

It does get a bit tricky after those three picks, but Boston feels like another strong pick. Chicago has been trending in the wrong direction, and the Celtics still have a shot at the four seed.

I like the Celtics to keep it going, while Miami, Charlotte, and San Antonio all face inferior teams. The Heat feel like the most stable of that trio, as they’re 7-3 over their last 10 games. Along with many of the playoff teams in the east, they can still upgrade in terms of seeding.

Dallas is another easy call, as they get the lowly Cavs.

Portland and Denver are the two spots that could be tricky. The Blazers should be able to get past an undermanned L.A. team, while the Nuggets could do the Suns a favor by knocking off a Utah team that is far less than 100% right now.

You can attack these bets in the moneyline arena, but a good chunk of them won’t have ideal pricing. Some of those games will give way to spread and total bets, and I’ll break down my favorite underdogs, as well.

NBA Upset Picks for Friday

  • Nuggets (+155)

I have faint interest in the Bulls (+156), Magic (+245), Kings (+170), and Knicks (+240), but nothing so strong that I’ll suggest them here.

That said, Chicago and Sacramento are home dogs in seemingly winnable matchups, the Magic are facing an undermanned Charlotte team, and the Knicks are battling a Suns team that plays pretty much the same brand of basketball.

Those are appealing NBA upset picks, but the one that stands out is undeniably a pretty good Denver team going to war with a mangled Jazz squad.

Utah is priced as the favorite because they’re at home and have the best record in basketball, but they might not actually be the better team here.

Denver has had injuries of their own, but they still have Nikola Jokic, who has completely smoked Utah in two previous meetings this year. The season series is split 1-1, and the one game Denver lost was only by four points.

I’ll side with The Joker, who is playing at an MVP level and has Denver at 8-2 over their last 10 games.

Best NBA Bets for Friday, May 7th

  • Pelicans vs. 76ers Over 228.5 (-110)
  • Knicks (+6) -110
  • Knicks vs. Suns Under 218 (-110)

Just because there aren’t many odds out does not mean there aren’t great spots to target at your favorite NBA sportsbook.

I don’t hate the Pels at +8.5, but betting against the Sixers in any capacity simply isn’t encouraged. I do love the Over, though, as the Sixers often play down to the level of their competition, and New Orleans helps out with bad defense and a fast pace.

A lot of points are coming at us in that game. New Orleans ATS is a decent secondary bet, but I love the Over in that one.

I am the exact opposite for the Knicks vs. Suns game. New York has the slow pace and defense to keep it right against Phoenix. They are a legit 37-29, and they played the Suns pretty well in an eight-point loss in late April.

That game ended with – you guessed it – a 218 total. I still think the Under is the way to go here, as both of these teams defend, and both are super slow in terms of pace. I like the Knicks to hang tight and beat the spread, but the Under is the bet to hammer.

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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