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The Philadelphia 76ers (22-13) will try to bounce back from a disappointing Christmas Day loss when they visit the Utah Jazz (17-18) as solid road underdogs at sportsbooks.
The 76ers are coming off a 121-114 defeat to the Boston Celtics in overtime Tuesday, while the Jazz routed the Portland Trail Blazers 117-96 that night.
NBA betting pick, via OddsShark computer: 112.5-105.9 Jazz. NBA picks on every game.
Why the 76ers Can Cover the Spread
Philadelphia’s roster is one of the most talented in the Eastern Conference, and the team’s occasional struggles from have more to do with the inexperience and lack of focus from the younger players than anything else.
The 76ers outscored the Celtics 38-29 in the third quarter of their most recent game but totaled half that amount of points in the fourth and had to settle for OT, which led to a loss. Utah is in a similar boat but has fared worse overall, sitting below .500 and out of the playoff race.
Why the Jazz Can Cover the Spread
The Jazz proved on Christmas night that they are still capable of making a run at the postseason if they continue to play that well. Seven Utah players scored in double figures, but none had more than the 19 points second-year shooting guard Donovan Mitchell finished with.
Mitchell has been mired in a minor sophomore slump, with most of his statistics dropping slightly across the board, but he remains the team’s best player and can still take over a game as well as just about anyone else in the league.
Smart Betting Pick
These two teams do not meet often, but Philadelphia has controlled the series lately, going 3-0 both straight up and against the spread in the past three games against Utah, according to the OddsShark NBA Database.
They did square off once earlier this season, and the 76ers won 113-107 as 2.5-point home favorites on the point spread back on November 16. Mitchell scored a game-high 31 points in that matchup but made just 13 of 35 shots from the field, including 1-of-11 from three-point range. Look for Philadelphia’s defense to be the difference again as the 76ers rebound with a victory and cover in Salt Lake City.
NBA Betting Trends
The total has gone over in five of Philadelphia’s past seven games on the road.
Philadelphia is 4-2 ATS in its past six games when playing Utah.
The total has gone over in four of Philadelphia’s past five games.
All NBA odds and betting trends according to Bleacher Report’s official odds partner, OddsShark. Check out OddsShark on Twitter and Instagram or head to YouTube for more betting picks and analysis on this week’s top games. You can also download the free odds tracker app.