By Jason McIntyre
FOX Sports activities betting analyst
Unofficially, the beginning of the NBA season is Christmas Day, when the league produces mouth-watering matchups for 12 straight hours. That is much more true this 12 months, when the vacation falls throughout the precise, official opening week of the 2020-21 season.
In between sipping eggnog and opening Christmas presents, it’s at all times a enjoyable thought to throw some cash on NBA video games. Listed here are my 4 favourite Christmas Day NBA playing performs, with all odds via FOX Bet.
Zion Williamson beneath 34.5 mixed factors, rebounds, and assists
As bullish as I’m on Williamson this season, he’s solely had three double-doubles in his younger profession, and Miami is an elite defensive crew when locked in.
Williamson is a proficient passer, however not a lot of 1 (but?), and given he’s solely had three five-assist video games in his profession, this complete appears too excessive at this juncture within the season.
The Warmth have been 27-8 in opposition to the unfold final 12 months after a loss, so anticipate a a lot stronger effort at each ends after a defeat versus Orlando.
Milwaukee Bucks (-9.5) vs. Golden State Warriors
Per week after signing the richest contract in NBA historical past, Giannis missed a free throw that might have despatched the opener in opposition to Boston to time beyond regulation, and Milwaukee misplaced. With seven turnovers and simply two assists, it was an uneven recreation for the two-time MVP.
The Warriors, if Draymond Inexperienced doesn’t return, don’t have anybody to matchup with Giannis — except it’s baptism by fireplace for 19-year outdated rookie James Wiseman.
A Bucks loss right here could be gorgeous, and ship them right into a 3-game street journey 0-2.
Los Angeles Clippers (-1) at Denver Nuggets
The NBA set the Clippers as much as begin the season on a revenge tour. They took down the Lakers within the opener, and subsequent up are the Nuggets, who they have been embarrassed by within the playoffs after holding a 3-1 collection lead.
Nikola Jokic opened this season with a triple-double in a loss to Sacramento, however he bought no matter he wished within the playoff collection in opposition to the Clippers. His battle with Serge Ibaka will probably be enjoyable.
The Nuggets received’t have the wings to sluggish Paul George and Kawhi Leonard, who have been famously horrendous within the Sport 7 loss (10-for-38 capturing, 3-for-17 on 3s).
Dallas Mavericks at Los Angeles Lakers: Over 229.5
As we chronicled in our futures bets piece, the Lakers will probably be an over crew this 12 months, going 11-deep on offense and never having the defensive chops of final 12 months’s title-winning crew.
The Mavericks have been essentially the most environment friendly offense within the NBA final 12 months, led by Luka Doncic, and regardless of a slow-ish begin in opposition to the suddenly-defensive minded Suns, I anticipate this crew to be among the many greatest offensive items once more.
The 4 conferences between these groups final 12 months totaled 243, 203, 224, 229. Take the over.
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