I usually do 5 games, but hey, I liked what I saw.
Monday, January 4: Indiana Pacers @ Miami
- These two usually have great games between each other and the scores are always below 100. Two great defensive teams with two differing style of play. The Pacers, led by Paul George, have a perimeter-based attack, while Miami looks to attack the rim and dominate the paint with Whiteside and Bosh. I think the Heat win this one at home.
Monday, January 4: Toronto Raptors @ Cleveland Cavaliers
- I love this matchup! Toronto has a backcourt advantage with Lowry and DeRozan, but Kyrie Irving has a few games under his belt and may be able to balance that out. The Demarre Carroll matchup with Lebron is always good, as Carroll has had defensive success against him in the past. I’ll be bold and pick the Raptors to win on the road in a close one.
Thursday, January 7: Utah Jazz @ Houston Rockets
- This is an interesting matchup. The Jazz like to slow it down, while the Rockets know only one thing and that is to RUN. The battle between Dwight Howard and Rudy Gobert will be a really entertaining one while a sleeper star in Gordon Hayward will give Ariza a good run for his money. The Jazz’s one big problem is James Harden. Who will guard him? Burks? Hood? They should figure that out and hope his shot is off that night. I pick the Rockets here, but not with a ton of confidence. Don’t be surprised if Utah wins in Houston.
Friday, January 8: Golden State Warriors @ Portland Trailblazers
- Upset Alert! The Trailblazers are a dangerous team at the Rose Garden and the Warriors have had their difficulties on the road as of late (for Warriors standards that is). If Lillard is healthy and McCollum continues to play at his current level, we could be in for a shootout in Portland. The big thing here is Draymond Green. He will have to be the difference maker for the Dubs. He can outplay his matchup no matter who it is, so expect a good game from him. Like I said, however, I like an underdog, so I’m picking Portland at home!
Saturday, January 9: Chicago Bulls @ Atlanta Hawks
- Possible playoff matchup??? It is very possible, which means good games for us. Gasol/Horford, Teague/Rose, Gibson/Millsap, need I say more? This could be a high or low-scoring game. It is hard to tell right now since both teams are capable of both styles. I am excited for this one and we should see many big plays throughout. My pick is Chicago on the road. I think the Bulls are starting to figure things out and have an opportunity to take this one. The Hawks won’t make it easy, they’ve been on a tear the past 10 games and have done it with DEFENSE.
As always, if there are any game that you would like to discuss that weren’t on the list, please comment below or on our Facebook page!