New Years Day NBA action is an absolute treat.
The alarms need to be set for a 5:00am (AEDT) wake up as the best best get underway in the game between Boston and Phoenix.
phoenix @ boston
january 1st 5:00am
Boston will look to arrest a three-game slide when it faces the Phoenix Suns at TD Garden at 5:00am (AEDT) Saturday morning.
The Celtics have struggled to manufacture anything on offence in their last two games without the impact of Jayson Tatum.
Dennis Schröder, Aaron Nesmith, Bruno Fernando and Enes Freedom will also miss the game due to COVID protocols, which means the Celtics will be light on rotations against a Suns team which looks set for a championship tilt.
The scales are tipped in favour of the Suns and they deserve their -3.5 favourite status.
With Devin Booker fresh off a 38-point performance in a big win against Oklahoma, the Celtics are going to have a hard time of it.
Suggested Bet: Phoenix Suns -3.5 at $1.90
miami @ houston
january 1st 11:00am
The lights come on at the Toyota Center as Houston gets set to take on the Miami Heat on New Year’s Day.
In what is the first time these two teams meet this season, the Rockets bring in a losing 10-25 record, while the Heat has gone from strength to strength despite missing Jimmy Butler for large chunks to sit at 22-13.
The Heat has clearly been the better team all year and the return of Butler from injury could not have been timed any worse for the Rockets.
Butler went bang with 25 points, 15 assists and eight rebounds in the 119-112 win over Washington as he readies himself for a big second half of the season.
Heat should able to the cover the spread here, especially with Butler back in the fray.
Suggested Bet: Miami Heat -4.5 at $1.89
atlanta @ Cleveland
January 1st 11:30am
Cleveland plays on the quick back up when it hosts the Atlanta Hawks on New Year’s Day at the Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.
The Cavaliers are slightly favoured to immediately bounce back after their loss to Washington on Friday with the Hawks really struggling for form in their last three fixtures.
Atlanta has looked a complete shadow of the team that almost went all the way last season.
The Hawks’ 15-19 record has them at risk of missing the playoffs if they cannot get their act together.
Trying to reverse their form against a Cleveland team which has not dropped a game when starting as favourite at home is going to be an uphill task.
Predicting the Cavaliers to improve their impressive 7-0 record against the spread as home favourite this season.
Suggested Bet: Cleveland -1 at $1.91
new york @ oklahoma
January 1st 12:00pm
The Eastern Conference meets the Western Conference when the New York Knicks do battle against the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The Knicks are trying to notch up their fourth consecutive win and have began their road trip in the best possible way winning the first two of four on the road.
Oklahoma is going to have deal with the one of the in-form defensive units of the league at the moment.
New York is only giving up 105.6 points per game, which has it ranked eighth in the NBA for points conceded.
The Knicks will attempt to strangle the Thunder into submission here as they restrict their pathways to the basket, while letting Alec Burks and Julius Randle let rip up the other end of the court.
It will be another great test for young Aussie Josh Giddey who continues to impress in his rookie year, but he is going to have a tough time of it against the big bodies of New York.
Suggested Bet: New York -5.5 at $1.90