Home | News | Top NBA Betting Picks of the Week – February 26th, 2024

Top NBA Betting Picks of the Week – February 26th, 2024

By Hank Blaine

There was some talk earlier this season that Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr might step away after it because his team was struggling, but that will no longer be the case as the Warriors gave him a two-year extension worth a record $35 million over the weekend. That salary makes Kerr the highest-paid coach in league history, so he won’t be going anywhere. Here’s a look at two intriguing early week games around the NBA.

Top NBA Betting Picks of the Week (February 26th, 2024)

Miami Heat vs. Sacramento Kings

  • When: Monday, February 26th, 2024, 10:00 PM ET
  • Where: Golden 1 Center, Sacramento, CA
  • TV: NBCSCA, Bally Sports Sun
  • Radio: 560 The Joe WQAM (Heat) // Sactown Sports 1140 AM (Kings)
  • Stream: NBA League Pass
  • NBA Odds: Heat (+7.5) // Kings (-7.5)

The Heat will be without star Jimmy Butler and reserves Nikola Jovic and Thomas Bryant as Butler and Jovic were suspended one game each for their role in an on-court altercation Friday against the New Orleans Pelicans, while Bryant got three games.

The altercation erupted in the fourth quarter when the Heat’s Kevin Love fouled Pelicans star Zion Williamson on an attempted layup that led to Williamson crashing to the floor. Both teams started going back and forth verbally after Williamson fell. Butler will lose $259,968 because of the suspension — by far the most among the five total players receiving bans. Bryant will be docked $52,308, while Jovic will lose $12,655. Butler is averaging 22.9 points, 5.9 rebounds and 4.9 assists per game and remains one of the league’s best perimeter defenders.

Miami did get the win in New Orleans on Friday, 106-95, its third straight victory. Butler had 23 points and nine rebounds before being sent to the locker room. Bam Adebayo scored 24 points for Miami, which returned from its All-Star break by snapping the Pelicans’ four-game winning streak in what also marked the Heat’s seventh straight victory over New Orleans.

“Our team is so ready for anything that anybody’s thrown at us,” Butler said after the Heat won for the seventh time in nine games. “We’re so together, playing some incredible basketball. I don’t think it matters who we go up against right now. It’s that time of the year.”

Starting guard Tyler Herro hyperextended his left knee late in Friday’s game, but the Heat guard doesn’t believe it’s a cause for concern. Herro suffered the injury when he slipped and lost control of the ball. He grabbed at the knee in pain and had to be helped to the locker room, but he was moving fine after the game. Herro was already experiencing discomfort in his right foot, a condition that developed during the All-Star break. He opted to play Friday because guards Josh Richardson and Terry Rozier are sidelined by injuries. Herro made a three-point field goal in 28-straight games, tying the second-longest streak of his career (32 is the longest career streak).

Veteran guard Delon Wright wasn’t used Friday in his first game since signing with the Heat last week.

“He’s a guy that figures it out, and we thought it would be a good fit for him and us, for the reasons of how he plays and how he competes and how he prioritizes defense and how disruptive he is on that side of the floor,” coach Erik Spoelstra said. “Then offensively, he’s always been a guy that just fits in, sets up a team. And those kinds of guys have a way of making it work quickly.”

While Miami will be well-rested, the Kings will be playing the second of a back-to-back after visiting the LA Clippers on Sunday night. The Heat try for the season sweep as they beat the Kings 115-106 on Jan. 31 in Miami. Butler had 31 points on 10-for-14 shooting. Adebayo added 16 points and 11 rebounds. The Heat finished with a season-high 38 assists. Sacramento’s Domantas Sabonis had 19 points, 17 rebounds and 13 assists for another triple-double. The Kings haven’t won in Miami since 2018. The Heat haven’t swept the season series since 2020-21. Miami leads the all-time series 46-24, but trails 19-15 as the road team.

De’Aaron Fox struggled that night with 13 points, but his six games this season with 40+ points are the 11th-most in a single season in team history and the most since Tiny Archibald (18) during the 1972-73 season. Fox has notched 26 multi-steal games this season, which is tied for second in the NBA. He has 13 games with three-plus steals this season, which is tied for the second-most in the NBA.

NBA Betting Pick: Kings

Utah Jazz vs. Atlanta Hawks

  • When: Tuesday, February 27th, 2024, 7:30 PM ET
  • Where: State Farm Arena, Atlanta, GA
  • TV: Bally Sports SE-ATL, KJZZ
  • Radio: KZNS-AM 1280 (Jazz) // 92.9 The Game FM (Hawks)
  • Stream: NBA League Pass
  • NBA Odds: TBA

The Hawks have lost All-Star point guard Trae Young for at least a month as he tore a ligament in a finger on his left hand on Friday against Orlando and will have surgery on Tuesday and then be re-evaluated. Young, who made his third All-Star team this year, leads Atlanta with his averages of 26.4 points and 10.8 assists per game.

He has scored 10+ points in 60 straight games, the 10th-longest active such scoring streak in the NBA. The sixth-year guard, who passed Mookie Blaylock for the most three-pointers in franchise history on Feb. 14, is just 28 assists away from tying Doc Rivers (3,866 assists, 568 games) for the most dimes in club history.

With the loss of Young, Dejounte Murray likely will assume primary ball-handling duties, but young Kobe Bufkin also could see an uptick in minutes. When he played 16 minutes in a win over the Rockets earlier this month, Hawks head coach Quin Snyder loved what he saw out of Bufkin.

“I thought he did a terrific job. He took shots when he was open, which is what we want. There were a couple of possessions where most importantly … it is hard to stay in front of those guys, they are quick” Snyder said. “You know, he was down in his stance, moving his feet, he had his hands out and moving in space and doing the things that you need to do to be a defender in this league.”

The loss of Young comes as the Hawks, fighting for the final play-in tournament spot in the Eastern Conference, are facing front-line depth issues as center Onyeka Okongwu recovers from a sprained left toe. Coach Quin Snyder said Thursday that Okongwu “is not going to be available for the foreseeable future.”

Snyder led the Utah Jazz for eight seasons (2014-22), winning 372 of 636 games (.585%). Tuesday is the first meeting of the season between the teams. The split last year with the Jazz taking the first game, 119-125, in State Farm Arena and the Hawks winning the second contest, 115-108, in Utah.

Jazz forward John Collins played 364 games (313 starts) in his six seasons for the Hawks after being drafted 19th in the 2017 NBA Draft, the Wake Forest product averaged 15.8 points, 8.0 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.0 block in his time with the team.

Utah’s Collin Sexton is one of just six players in the NBA who as a starter this season is averaging 20+ points per game while shooting 50 percent or better from the field and 40 percent from 3-point range (Jimmy Butler, Kevin Durant, Kawhi Leonard, Domantas Sabonis and Karl-Anthony Towns). Since Dec. 1, Sexton (7th/27.9) and Lauri Markkanen (21st/25.8) both rank in the NBA’s top 25 in points per 36 minutes (min. 20 GP). Utah is one of only six teams in the NBA with two players that rank in the top 25 during that time frame.

NBA Betting Pick: Jazz

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This is just one of the many sports betting guides that you can read here at Nitrobetting news. Stay tuned for more 2023-24 NBA season previews and articles, and don’t forget to check out the latest basketball betting odds on our online BTC sportsbook.

*All odds stated are subject to change without prior notice.

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