There are eight games on the schedule for Monday, with six pitting teams with above .500 records against teams with below. This leads to several large spreads, including at least one situation in which I advocate giving the points.
The matchup between two over .500 teams is an interesting one as well, particularly for player props. More on this and the other angles that caught my eye below.
Both teams are on the second half of a back-to-back after getting blown out on Sunday. But the Nuggets’ 12-point loss to the Cavaliers was an outlier, since Nikola Jokic battling foul trouble for most of the game. The Pistons’ 29-point loss to the Raptors is closer to business as usual. Detroit has the worst record in the NBA and an average scoring margin of -6.6 PPG, while the Nuggets are still a half-game from the best record in the Western Conference with a scoring margin of +5.6. Look for Jokic and the Nuggets to have a big bounce-back game on Monday night with a convincing win over the Pistons.
Fox has he has averaged 34.2 PPG and 6.2 APG over his past six games, going over 35.5 points and assists in four of the six games. The Kings are on the second half of a back-to-back, and Fox had 30 points and seven assists in 31 minutes Sunday. Sacramento faces a New Orleans Pelicans team that is also on the second half of a back-to-back and ranks in the bottom half of the NBA in points (20th) and assists (T17th) allowed to opposing point guards.
The Bulls beat the Heat by six points on Saturday, halting the Heat’s seven-game win streak and ending Chicago’s three-game losing streak. However, the Heat led by 21 points and were seemingly in control before the Bulls pulled off the comeback. Both teams’ performances leading into that game would suggest the Heat should be favored in Monday night’s matchup. Look for the Heat to bounce back and get a solid revenge win at United Center.
Randle has picked up his game in a major way after a relatively slow start to the season (13.7 PPG through his six games). He has averaged 24.3 PPG over the past two weeks with no performance under 21 points in his past seven games. Randle averaged 44.0 PPG in two games against the Timberwolves last season, and Minnesota ranks in the middle-of-the-pack (15th) in points allowed to opposing power forwards.