The Association keeps up a brisk pace Monday night, with eight games on the docket. There’s actually only two contests between two teams with winning records, but another – Raptors versus Hawks – between a pair of clubs that are very evenly matched. Additionally, given the unpredictable nature of the NBA, there’s certainly a chance some of the perceived mismatches turn much more competitive than point spreads would suggest. Only one game, Warriors-Rockets, carries a double-digit figure as of early Monday.
NBA odds for Monday, January 31
Here are the latest basketball point spreads, moneylines and totals for today’s games.
Player and team props
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Pacers F Domantas Sabonis
Domantas Sabonis has returned from an ankle injury with his typically gaudy production, as he produced 45 points, 33 rebounds, and 18 assists in a B2B situation on Friday and Saturday. The Pacers are playing faster and giving up more points over the past few weeks with Myles Turner (foot) out, and they need more play-making with Malcolm Brogdon (Achilles) still inactive. Sabonis averages 20 PPG, 16.2 RPG, and 9 APG over five appearances without Turner this season and he’s averaging 16 RPG and 8.2 APG over his last five appearances without Brogdon. Take the Over on Sabonis to top 19.5 combined points and rebounds, or the Over on 12.5 rebounds against a Clippers team that ranks 29th in defensive rebounding rate.
76ers G Tyrese Maxey
With Joel Embiid out tonight for rest purposes, the 76ers will unleash Tyrese Maxey. The second-year guard has already become the primary playmaker out of the backcourt for Philly with Ben Simmons sitting and Seth Curry (ankle) hobbled. Over his last five games with Embiid active, Maxey is averaging 14.8 PPG, 7.2 APG, and playing 40.5 MPG. Over his last five with Embiid out, he’s averaging 23.2 PPG and 5.8 APG and his usage rate (which is around 16% with Embiid) skyrockets to 29% in those contests. Maxey dropped 23 points with seven assists in a blowout loss at Memphis (without Embiid) on Dec. 13 and he should top 19.5 points at home tonight, with a good shot to go Over 24.5 combined points and assists in a closer game.
What to watch for today
Cavs try to rebound quickly from surprising Sunday stumble: The Cavaliers went into their visit to the lowly Pistons on Sunday evening perhaps a bit too confident after having rattled off eight wins in nine games. However, Cleveland had an epic fourth-quarter collapse, allowing a 26-7 run over the final 7:37 of the contest to suffer the loss. Luckily, J.B. Bickerstaff’s crew gets an immediate chance to rectify its wrongs Monday night, as they welcome in another struggling squad in the Pelicans.
Grizzlies test their mettle against 76ers: The Grizzlies have long proven their improvement is no fluke, but continuing to sharpen their collective iron against quality teams, especially on the road, can only help their burgeoning confidence. Memphis, which has won three straight to move into the No. 3 seed in the Western Conference, is at Wells Fargo Center on Monday night to face the 76ers, which have four in a row in their own right and also sit behind just two teams for the top spot in their neck of the woods. In what could be the night’s marquee matchup, Philadelphia is a slim 3.5-to-4-point favorite early Monday.
Celtics welcome in East-leading Heat: The Celtics are Eastern Conference contenders as well, albeit of a lesser caliber than the 76ers by a good bit. However, Boston is very much in the mix at a mark of 26-25 and has been especially effective on its home floor of TD Garden, where it boasts a 16-10 mark straight up. Ime Udoka’s club gets quite the test of its home-court mettle Monday night, however, as the conference’s No. 1 seed, the Heat, are in town for the second meeting between the clubs this season. Boston notably handed Miami a 95-78 loss in South Florida in the first game back in November, and the hosts are narrow home favorites Monday.
Hawks put eight-game win streak on line vs. Raptors Much like the Celtics squad they just defeated Friday night, the Hawks are a talented team with some big names that has nevertheless underachieved for most of the season. Atlanta may finally be starting to discover its form as the All-Star break approaches, as it carries a seven-game winning streak into Monday night’s visit from the Raptors. Toronto has been up and down in its own right and is just 11-11 on the road, so Nate McMillan’s squad should have a solid chance of keeping the good times rolling in a game they’re modest home favorites for.
Warriors on hunt for sixth straight in visit to Rockets: The Warriors looked almost ordinary for a brief spell a couple of weeks ago, but Golden State has quickly hit its stride once again to the chagrin of the rest of the Western Conference. The Dubs head into Monday night’s visit to the Rockets boasting a five-game winning streak that has them back within 2.5 games of the top-seeded Suns. Klay Thompson’s further integration into play following his two-year-plus layoff certainly has helped, and he, Stephen Curry and the rest of their talented teammates could be in for a prolific night versus a Houston squad allowing a league-high 117.3 points per home contest.