NBA Betting Picks for Thursday 2/22/24: Will the Mavericks Extinguish the Suns?

Riley Thomas
Riley Thomas_riley8

The 82-game NBA regular season offers us a wide variety of betting options, including point spreads, moneylines, and totals. The Association features 1,230 regular season games, which can make sifting through the odds an overwhelming task.

However, various advanced statistics can help narrow the choices. numberFire's NBA power rankings and daily projections paired with advanced stats from the NBA can help give the inside track to winning big.

While utilizing some of the mentioned tools, which NBA odds from FanDuel Sportsbook look like the best bets today?

Please note lines are subject to change throughout the day after this article is published.

NBA Best Bets

Phoenix Suns at Dallas Mavericks

Mavericks -1.5 (-110)

The Dallas Mavericks are hoping to stay red-hot following the All-Star break as they are on a six-game winning streak -- the best ongoing streak in the Western Conference. Dallas has also had success against the spread (ATS), covering five of their last six games.

Coming up with another cover against the Phoenix Suns will be no easy task, though. The Suns are also blazing hot as they are 7-3 over their previous 10 contests. However, Phoenix is 1-2 ATS over their past three road games.

Dallas' defense has excelled during its winning streak, holding opponents to only 104.2 points per game (PPG), a 41.4% field goal percentage (FG%), and 31.2% shooting from three. For reference, opponents have posted a 48.0 FG% (11th-worst for defense) while shooting 36.4% (13th-best) against the Mavs this season. This has not been a good Dallas defense by any means. In fact, Dallas' defense has been like a leaky faucet at times as they own the 12th-worst defensive rating in the Association.

The recent leap in defense should be a massive help against one of the league's most efficient offenses as the Suns have a 49.9 FG% (third-best) and convert 37.8% of their three-point looks (sixth-best). Phoenix could also be without their third-leading scorer as Bradley Beal (18.2 PPG) is questionable with a hamstring injury.

Ultimately, I like the Mavericks to stay hot and notch their seventh straight win paired with another cover. Dallas is a changed team with an improved defense as they already have the 11th-best offensive rating. They can take advantage of the Suns' perimeter D as Phoenix gives up the 12th-most three-point attempts while the Mavs attempt the 2nd-most shots from deep.

Boston Celtics at Chicago Bulls

Over 224 (-108)

The Boston Celtics-Chicago Bulls clash looks to be poised for a low-scoring outcome on the surface. The Celtics boast the third-best defensive rating while the Bulls average the sixth-fewest PPG (111.8). Boston also plays at the 12th-slowest pace while Chicago operates at the slowest pace. However, both offenses could hold enough advantages for the over to hit; it wouldn't take much with the 224.0-point total.

The Bulls are still without a couple of starters in Zach LaVine (19.5 PPG) and Patrick Williams (10.0 PPG). Both players have a big impact on Chicago's three-point attack, with LaVine shooting 6.8 shots per game (second-most on the team) and Williams converting 39.9% of his looks (third-best on the team). Despite the absences, the Bulls have been scorching the nets from three of late, making 40.9% of their shots from beyond the arc over the last five games.

While Boston has an elite defense by nearly all accounts, the Celtics' perimeter D is susceptible as they permit the fourth-most three-point shots per contest. The same can be said for Chicago's defense as they surrender the most three-point attempts in the NBA. Meanwhile, the Celtics make and attempt the most threes per game in the league. Boston has also made 43.8% of its threes over the last three games. Both perimeter defenses could be shaking in their boots ahead of tonight's clash.

I expect both teams to stay hot from three, leading to the over.

Los Angeles Clippers at Oklahoma City Thunder

Thunder Moneyline (-116)

The top matchup of the night is a battle between the Los Angeles Clippers and Oklahoma City Thunder. The Clippers hold the No. 3 seed in the West and are only a half-game behind the No. 2 seed Thunder. Oklahoma City is riding a four-game winning streak at home, and Los Angeles has won five straight on the road.

Something has to give tonight, and my pick is in line with numberFire's game projections, which side with the Thunder.

This is a pretty even matchup across the board, but OKC is the more complete team, boasting the fourth-best offensive and defensive ratings. Meanwhile, the Clippers have the 3rd-best offensive rating and 13th-best defensive rating.

As their rating suggests, L.A. has pretty mediocre marks in some defensive categories. For instance, they give up the 13th-fewest points in the paint and 16th-fewest three-point shots. The Thunder love to attack the rim, recording the sixth-most points in the paint while carrying the seventh-best two-point percentage. With the Clippers giving up 58.0 points in the paint per game over their last five, Oklahoma City could find plenty of success around the bucket.

Additionally, the Thunder have made 44.1% of their threes over their past two contests. This is yet another red flag for L.A. after the Clips allowed a whopping 47 three-point shots in their previous game.

On the other end of the court, the Clippers tout the best three-point percentage in the Association. However, this number has dipped in recent games, with Los Angeles shooting only 33.3% from beyond the arc over the last three contests. OKC has a strong interior defense, giving up the fourth-fewest points in the paint, but the perimeter defense surrenders the fifth-most three-point shots. Fortunately, the Thunder's weakness on defense could be masked thanks to the Clippers' recent shooting struggles.

Dive into the action with FanDuel Sportsbook's No Sweat Same Game Parlay for the upcoming Suns vs. Mavericks or Lakers vs. Warriors games on February 22nd. See the promotions page for more information.

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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.