The final game of the first stage of the NBA play-in tournament features No. 10 San Antonio visiting No. 9 New Orleans in the Western Conference on Wednesday. The loser’s season is over and the winner advances to the play-in final on Friday. The Pelicans are favored on the NBA betting odds.
How to Bet San Antonio at New Orleans NBA Odds & TV Info
When: Wednesday, 9:30 PM ET
Where: Smoothie King Center
Stream: ESPN app
NBA Odds: Pelicans -5.5 (total 227)
The Spurs won three of four in the season series. They last played on March 26 in New Orleans and San Antonio won 107-103. After the Spurs extended their lead to 10 in the fourth, New Orleans held the Spurs scoreless for the final three minutes of the game to cut the deficit to two. Jose Alvarado missed the go-ahead three to seal the win for the Spurs. Dejounte Murray had 15 points, 13 assists and 11 rebounds, and Keldon Johnson punctuated his 21-point night with a breakaway dunk in the final seconds.
Why Bet on San Antonio?
The Spurs made the playoffs every season from 1998 to 2019 and won five NBA championships during that run. Those 22 consecutive years making the playoffs tied an NBA record. If the play-in Spurs can knock off the Pelicans and then win one more game, they can start their quest for a new record after missing the playoffs the past two seasons.
First-time All-Star Dejounte Murray has averaged 21.2 points, 9.3 assists, 8.4 rebounds and 2.0 steals per game to go along with his single-season franchise-record 13 triple-doubles. Murray is the first player in NBA history to average 20-9-8-2 over an entire season.
The Spurs average 27.9 assists per game, for the second most assists in the NBA. They dished 31 assists in a win against the Nuggets on 4/5. San Antonio has recorded at least 30 assists in 31 games this season. That is the most such games by any NBA team in the league and is the most games by the Spurs in a single season in the last 38 seasons. Murray handed out at least 10 assists in 30 games, most by a Spur since Avery Johnson has 36 in 1995-96.
The Spurs have their youngest roster ever since Gregg Popovich became coach in 1996, with an average age of 25.0. The roster this season includes eight players under the age of 25 and 13-of-17 players under the age of 27. Spurs guard Josh Primo became the youngest player in league history to appear in an NBA game after going to college.
Guard Lonnie Walker IV, the Spurs’ top scorer off the bench, has been plagued by a sore back since colliding with New Orleans’ Willy Hernangomez but should play. Walker had a six-game stretch from late February to early March where he averaged 22.5 points while hitting 52 percent of his field-goal attempts and 42.5 percent of his triples.
If the Spurs fight their way into the playoffs and become the 8th seed in the West, they will get the 15th draft pick. Stars like Kawhi Leonard, Giannis Antetokounmpo, and Steve Nash were drafted as No. 15 picks. If the Spurs don’t make the playoffs, they’ll have the 9th best odds for the No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft.
Why Bet on New Orleans?
As expected, Brandon Ingram will play after missing the final three with a knee injury. Ingram was the only player in the NBA during the regular season to average 22-plus points, 5.4-plus assists, 5.5-plus rebounds and three or less turnovers per game. He had a usage rate of 30.7-percent, falling in the 96th percentile of all forwards in the NBA. Ingram averaged a career-high 5.6 assists per game and his assist percentage of 26.8 ranked him in the 97th percentile among forwards.
After a 1-4 start, the Pelicans have won eight of 10 games in which CJ McCollum and Ingram have played together. The Pelicans have a 116.9 offensive rating with those two on the court, the third-best rating on the team among two-man lineups with at least 200 minutes. The only two better are McCollum with two other starters: Jonas Valanciunas (119.0) and Herb Jones (117.5).
One of the reasons the Pelicans made the deadline deal for McCollum was to improve their outside shooting. This season, the Pelicans rank last in 3-pointers made (859) and 27th in 3-point percentage (33.2%). After acquiring McCollum, New Orleans didn’t improve much from behind the arc, rising to just 26th in 3-point percentage (34.1%) and dipping to 28th in made 3s (280).
McCollum finished the regular season tied for 20th in the NBA in three-pointers made per game (3.0). Additionally, McCollum is the only player in the NBA to average 22-plus points and five-plus assists this season while averaging less than 2.1 turnovers during the regular season.
Jonas Valanciunas was a force in the paint this season. JV finished the regular season ranked 4th in the NBA in total rebounds (843) and ranked 8th in the NBA in rebounds per game (11.4). On the offensive side of the ball, Valanciunas is tied for 8th in the NBA in total offensive rebounds with 226, which led to the big man being tied for 4th in the NBA in second chance points with 3.8 points per game.
Among NBA rookies during the regular season, Herbert Jones ranked 1st in steals per game (1.7), 1st in total steals (130) and 2nd in steal/turnover ratio (1.30).
- Spurs are 10-1 ATS in their last 11 games overall.
- Spurs are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 road games.
- Spurs are 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 road games vs. a team with a losing home record.
- Pelicans are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games as a home favorite.
- Pelicans are 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games vs. a team with a losing straight up record.
- Spurs are 8-1 ATS in the last 9 meetings.
Pelicans 113, Spurs 109