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Pelicans look to pounce on struggling Knicks

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After four Monday matchups, Tuesday's slate features 11 NBA games, including a TNT doubleheader. We're targeting one rested team against another tired and injured group and three other bets.

Pelicans @ Knicks (+2.5, O/U 218.5)

The Knicks are in a tailspin as they deal with injuries to three starters. They've lost five of their last seven games and narrowly escaped the Pistons -with some help from the referees - on Monday night.

Although the Knicks didn't have to travel, they're still on the second leg of a back-to-back on Tuesday night. New York is 4-6 against the spread with no rest.

The team is also playing a tight rotation with OG Anunoby, Julius Randle, and Mitchell Robinson still out. Jalen Brunson and Josh Hart each played at least 40 minutes on Monday night. It's fair to expect the Knicks to have tired legs against the Pelicans, the NBA's sixth-best defense.

New Orleans has lost two straight, but every game is paramount as it attempts to avoid the play-in tournament and remain in sixth place in the crowded West.

Pick: Pelicans -2.5

Jazz @ Hawks (-1.5, O/U 236.5)

The Jazz picked up a much-needed win against the lowly Spurs on Sunday but lost five straight before that.

As the 11th seed, Utah is probably better off losing games to secure a higher draft pick - the team has a 1-10 protected first-round pick - but it's still too early for the organization to think like that.

This play is more about the Hawks' situation than anything else. Atlanta's in the play-in tournament as the 10th seed but will be without Trae Young for the next month.

Although they play at an incredibly fast pace, I don't trust Atlanta's supporting cast to contribute enough offensively to produce consistent wins.

Pick: Jazz +1.5

Donte DiVincenzo: Over 3.5 threes

Donte DiVincenzo has earned a heavier workload in New York due to the absence of multiple starters.

He's made the most of his opportunity, averaging 22.2 points per game in February. He's also averaging 4.6 3-point makes and 11.7 attempts on 39% shooting from beyond the arc.

DiVincenzo has drilled at least four threes in 10 of his last 11 games, while New Orleans has the second-best opponent 3-point percentage. The Pelicans force teams to shoot at a worse percentage from beyond the arc, but they allow the second-most 3-point attempts and the seventh-most 3-point makes per game.

If he shoots his usual 10 or 11 threes, DiVincenzo should connect on at least four.

Odds: +100

Deandre Ayton: Under 17.5 points

Deandre Ayton is one of the NBA's most inconsistent big men. The Blazers never know which version of him will show up.

Ayton's scored at least 20 points in four games this month, but the Blazers have lost seven straight. And they face a difficult matchup against the Heat on Tuesday night.

The Heat upset the Kings on Monday night without their two leading scorers and other contributors. Although Miami is on a back-to-back, Jimmy Butler and Nikola Jovic sat out against Sacramento and will be well-rested in their return to the lineup.

The Heat own the league's seventh-best defensive rating, but they make life especially miserable for opposing centers. Miami allows the fewest points per game to centers. Bam Adebayo is a dominant defender and rim protector, and he should keep Ayton in check.

Odds: -115 (playable to -125)

Sam Oshtry is a sports betting writer at theScore. You can follow him on X @soshtry for more betting coverage.

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