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East-West Clash As Top Conference Teams Square Off For Friday Night Basketball

Posted by Craig Parsons on 3/6/2014 8:29:52 PM

Although making the playoffs is many NBA teams’ chief concern, it’s always fun to see what happens when teams in difference conferences square off. The Western Conference is believed to have more talent and playoff caliber teams, but that doesn’t mean the Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets will prevail against their Eastern Conference opponents.

Indiana Pacers @ Houston Rockets
Friday March 7, 2014 – 9:30 PM ET
Odds: Pacers -3.5

The Indiana Pacers and Houston Rockets have yet to face each other this season, making this one of the more intriguing games on Friday night. The Pacers are one of the better all-around teams in the league, which is shown by their +7.2 point differential this season, best in the NBA. The Rockets are more of an offensive team, obvious by the fact that James Harden cares more about shooting three’s than defending them, but it will be tough for the Rockets to top 100 points as the Pacers are a well built team with minimal weaknesses.There’s a possibility this game is a preview of the NBA Finals, but as of now I feel confident in the Rockets holding off the Pacers and getting the W at home.

Pick: Rockets

Atlanta Hawks @ Golden State Warriors
Friday March 7, 2014 – 10:30 PM ET
Odds: Warriors -8.5

Both the Warriors and Atlanta Hawks are sliding down their conference standings, and now is the time one will kick that losing trend and turn their season around. It’s unlikely that team is that Hawks, however, as they are without Al Horford and Paul Millsap, forcing them to start Elton Brand and Mike Scott down low. The Hawks are simply falling apart, and although they’re still in the eighth spot in the East it’s unlikely they will be playing more than 82 games this season. Kyle Korver’s three-point streak also came to an end recently, which although not an indicator of how this game will go is simply a testament to how the Hawks have been playing recently.

Pick: Warriors

Detroit Pistons @ Minnesota Timberwolves
Friday March 7, 2014 – 8 PM ET
Odds: Timberwolves -7.5

The Minnesota Timberwolves are beginning to enter crunch time as they are 30-30 on the season and five games back of the Western Conference eight seed. They have one of the best offenses in the league led by Kevin Love, Kevin Martin, and Nikola Pekovic, but their defense is atrocious and the reason they lost to the New York Knicks by 12 this past Wednesday night.  Although the Wolves aren’t at the top of their game, neither are the Detroit Pistons, who’ve won just two of their last ten games but are still just three games behind the eighth seeded Hawks in the East. The low post matchups in this game will be interesting to watch, but ultimately the Timberwolves have the better squad and should be able to cover the spread at home.

Pick: Timberwolves


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