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January 13th 2014 - Posted 5:00 PM Eastern Time

There are two bets risking a total of 4% tonight.

#1: Take New York Knicks at -4 spread against Phoenix Suns risking 2%

The New York Knicks look to continue their hot streak tonight when they play host to the Phoenix Suns at Madison Square Garden. The Knicks seem to have a completely new and refreshed attitude as of late and have been playing fantastic defense which, along with great production from Amare Stoudemire has translated to this successful stretch. Over the past 4 games, the Knicks have been holding opponents to an average of just 87 points per game!

The Knicks have won 4 consecutive games and are now looking for a season-high fifth straight win after taking down Philadelphia 102-92 on Saturday. The Knicks have also managed to cover the spread in 6 straight games and at this point are one of the hottest teams in the league after what was a disastrous start to the season.
What has impressed us is the fact that they won outright against both Spurs and the Heat recently which has given them great confidence and could be a sign that they have finally turned the corner.

The Suns on the other hand were one of the surprise teams this season but have cooled off recently after losing 3 of their last 4 games. It appears that the injury bug may have bitten the Suns a bit harder than they initial thought with Eric Bledsoe being out now for the foreseeable future! His energetic play in the backcourt has been severely missed. The last two losses have come against teams with losing records and their lack of defense has become a major concern. The Suns gave up 110 points to the Pistons and 104 to the offensively challenged Memphis Grizzlies showing that their defense is not near where it needs to be. As it stands right now the Suns give up an average of 100.7 points per game to opposing teams! Tonight's matchup with the Knicks is also a tough scheduling spot for Phoenix.
This is the end of a 5-game road trip for Phoenix but this will also be their 5th game in 7 nights! Fatigue could become a factor late in the game and with the way that the Knicks have been defending, we could see them start to pull away in the second half against a Suns team that probably can't wait to go back home.

As we stated earlier, the New York Knicks have been playing like a completely different team lately and have great momentum on their side. The players have been vocal in their determination to make the playoff and if they continue to perform as they have been, there's no reason they shouldn't at least have a shot. The Knicks have talent on their roster and appear to be peaking at the right time. Last year's "6th Man" JR Smith is a wildcard and can provide a spark off the bench. In terms of talent and depth, the Knicks have the edge. New york has been beat up for much of the early part of the season and we don't see them taking teams for granted. It's time for them to start beating teams and they will want nothing more than to extend their current streak! Lay the small points with the home team as they keep on rolling.

Othe notable facts to consider:

  • Knicks are 7-0 ATS since all the way back on March 6th after Raymond Felton scored fewer than 10 points but they won.
  • Phoenix is 3-12 ATS in road games after playing 2 or more consecutive road games!
  • Knicks are 15-5 ATS after covering the spread in 3 or more consecutive games.
  • The Knicks swept the series meeting with the Suns last season.

#2: Take Chicago Bulls at -2.5 spread against Washington Wizards risking 2%

Typically when a team trades away their most effective offensive player, they struggle, the Bulls however are proving to be the exception to that rule. Since trading away Luol Deng, they have won 5 straight games and have done so with what has been their strength over the years; physical solid defense and tanacity!
The Bulls are ranked 2nd in the league in scoring defense allowing teams to score just an average of 91 points per game! Their defense has been the key to being able to wear down opponents and grind out victories. The Bulls are not an offensive minded team by any stretch of the imagination. They do not lead in any offensive category but their "system" has been working and that is a huge credit to the coaching of Tom Thibodeau and the physical style of his players. United Area is one of the toughest venues to play for an away team and we don't expect tonight to be any different.

The Wizards are a team that is on the rise and we have all seen the transition that they are going through, however they are not quite there yet. They are team that have historically struggled against the Bulls; Chicago has won 11 of the last 15 meetings between these two teams. Washington has also been very poor against top-notch defensive teams. The Wizards have not cracked the code against the league's elite defenses; the Pacers recently held them to a franchise low 66 points! The Bulls play a similar style to that of the Pacers in many ways. Washington also finds themselves in an unfortunate scheduling spot. This will be their 5th game in 7 days and the fast-paced style of basketball that they play is bound to catch up with them, especially against such a physical defense on the road.

Much like the Bulls, the Wizards are not offensive powerhouses. They do well enough but they are only scoring an average of 97 points per game and those offensive numbers have significantly dropped when playing elite defenses. Washington has typically been a team that has thrived in shootout situations, unfortunately for them that will not be the style of game that the Bulls will dictate tonight. This game is going to be won on the defensive side and with this game being played at United Center, the edge has to go towards Tom Thibodeau's team. Take the Bulls to cover the small number at home.

Other notable facts to consider:

  • Chicago Bulls have won and covered their last 5 games!
  • Bulls are 7-0 ATS in their last seven games against teams with losing records.
  • Bulls are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 home games.

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