NBA: Picks and Preview for Raptors vs Warriors, Pacers vs Pelicans Games Tonight

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Warriors Swing Through Toronto 

The Toronto Raptors (22-27, 12th in the Eastern Conference) continue a four-game homestand tonight against the visiting Golden State Warriors (31-27, 10th in the Western Conference). Toronto won the first meeting between these two teams, 133-118, back on Jan. 7 on the road. The Raptors shot a season-best .585 (55-94) from the field in the win, led by RJ Barrett who scored a season-high 37 points. The Raptors are looking for their first two-game series sweep of the Warriors since the 2018-19 season. 

NBA Schedule: Game Details

 DateTimeLocationHow to Watch
Raptors vs. WarriorsMarch 1, 20247:30 p.m. ESTScotiabank Arena, Toronto, ONTV: Sportsnet; Radio: Sportsnet 590 The Fan
Pacers vs. PelicansMarch 1, 20248:00 p.m. ESTSmoothie King Center, New Orleans, LABally Sports, Fubo, NBA League Pass

Game 1: Raptors vs. Warriors Insights

The Raptors are coming off a 136-125 loss to the Dallas Mavericks Wednesday night. Surprisingly, C Jakob Poeltl played in that game, after he turned his ankle in the previous outing against the Indiana Pacers. 

So, the Raptors are relatively injury-free, and will roll out a starting five tonight of SG RJ Barrett, SF Scottie Barnes, Poeltl, SG Gary Trent Jr. and PG Immanuel Quickley, no question a core that is starting to jell. The Raptors are 5-5 in their last ten. Toronto has scored 120+ points in a season-high five straight games (Feb. 14-28), tied with Indiana for the longest active streak in the NBA. Both the Raptors (3rd; 29.4 per game) and Warriors (4th; 29.2 per game) rank in the top-5 in the NBA in assists this season. Toronto has dished out 30 assists in a single-season franchise record 27 games this year.

The only exception on the injury front is PF Chris Boucher (illness), listed this morning as questionable for tonight.

Trae Young’s finger surgery has put the tenth spot (and final NBA Play-In Tournament spot) in the Eastern Conference in focus for the Raptors. The Atlanta Hawks star will be re-evaluated in several weeks. The Raptors sit four games behind the Hawks.

🏀 Bet on Raptors vs. Warriors at DraftKings 🏀

The Warriors come into town winners of two straight – most recently a 110-99 win in New York last night over the Knicks, led by PG Stephen Curry’s 31 points and 11 rebounds. The Warriors raced out to a 14-0 lead last night and never gave it up. 

Curry had a three-pointer to open the scoring last night and had a double-double by the half. PF Jonathan Kuminga had 25 points for the Warriors who extended their road winning streak to seven games. PG Chris Paul is back for the Warriors after being out with a broken hand and had 11 points in 26 minutes.

Draymond Green came out this week and said he sees the Warriors as legitimate title contenders, despite their spot in the standings. They’re healthy now, that’s one thing. As well as Paul, they also have Klay Thompson coming off the bench, so that’s a pretty good back-up back court.

Player Props

If you’re into online betting, most bet player props according to FanDuel this morning are Barrett To Score 15+ Points (1.20), Curry to Score 25+ Points (1.43) and Curry to Score 20+ Points (1.12). 

At BetMGM, leading the way is Curry Under 28.5 Points (1.77), Curry Over 4.5 Assists (1.91) and Barrett Under 31.5 Total Points, Rebounds, Assists (1.71). 

Finally, at DraftKings, Curry Over 5.5 Three Pointers Made (2.00) and Curry First Field Goal (9.50) are most bet player props.

Game 2: Pacers vs. Pelicans Insights

The Indiana Pacers (34-26, 7th in the Eastern Conference) are in the thick of the race, coming off a 123-114 win over the New Orleans Pelicans (35-25, 6th in the Western Conference) Wednesday. So two teams with similar records, both in the middle of playoff races, and the one team (Pacers) featuring a former Raptor, PF Pascal Siakam. So there’s betting interest there. Siakam led the way for the Pacers the other night – 24 points, 11 rebounds, in 33 minutes. Tyrese Haliburton had 17 points and 13 assists. Siakam has championship pedigree and has been lending that to Indiana since they acquired him in the January trade with the Raptors.

🏀 Bet on Pacers vs. Pelicans at FanDuel 🏀

A player to watch for the Pacers is Canadian SG Bennedict Mathurin, the sixth overall draft pick in 2022, who had 16 points against the Pelicans. Post all-star his minutes have gone from 25.5 to 34.3, his production from 14.1 points to 19.8 (3PT% from 36.6 to 48.1). The Raptors saw that first hand earlier this week, beating the Pacers 130-122. Mathurin had 34 points in that game, going 11-15 in FGs, 5-8 in 3PT shooting.

On the injury front: SF Aaron Nesmith (ankle) is questionable for tonight. G Dyson Daniels (knee) is out for the Pelicans.

Player Props

On the NBA betting front, Zion Williamson to Score 20+ Points (1.33), Siakam to Score 15+ Points (1.15), and Haliburton to Score 15+ Points (1.34) are most bet player props at FanDuel

At BetMGM, leading the way is Williamson Over 23.5 Points (1.77), Haliburton Over 10.5 Assists (1.67), Myles Turner Under 7.5 Rebounds (2.05).

And at DraftKings, Williamson Over 23.5 Points Made (1.71), Williamson Under 5.5 Assists (1.74), CJ McCollum Over 3.5 Rebounds (1.74), and Haliburton Over 10.5 Assists (1.67) are most bet player props.

Our NBA Picks Today

Betting is weighted in the Warriors favour this morning, according to BetMGM: 67% of spread bets and 73% or money bets are on Golden State. The Raptors have been coming on lately, but the Warriors are experienced, talented, deep, and focused now. Go with Golden State ATS at BetMGM.

Interesting trends with the Pacers-Pelicans – that’s a big spread, so while 64% of money bets are on the Pelicans, 66% of spread bets are on the Pacers at +5.5. We concur. Take the Pacers ATS at 888 Sport

BetMGMRaptors 2.35, Warriors 1.62Raptors +3.5 (1.87), Warriors -3.5 (1.95)237.5; Over 1.87; Under 1.95
888 SportPacers 2.70, Pelicans 1.47Pacers +5.5 (1.85), Pelicans -5.5 (1.90)239.5; Over 1.90; Under 1.85

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Mark Keast

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