NBA Picks February 26: Sacramento hosts Miami in featured game

The NBA All-Star weekend is in the rearview mirror and the teams are ready to start the final third of the season for playoff position. There is a light four-game schedule for February 26 with the Kings hosting the Heat in the headlined game.

Miami Heat versus Sacramento Kings

Both teams enter play eighth in their respective conference and looking to make a push to avoid the play-in round. Miami is 4-2 over the last six games and “burning hot” the Team Strength Oscillator. Sacramento is also “burning hot” and trails Miami on the Power Ranks Indicator by a single point, +23 to +22. The teams have been trending on opposite sides of the “over/under” line and the Score Prediction is 121-110 in favor of the Kings but with only 49 percent confidence. Miami won the first game between the teams this season at home and are a solid 15-13 on the road. Miami has won three of the last four games between the teams. I like Miami in a road upset by three points or less, in a game “over” the line.

Toronto Raptors versus Indiana Pacers

Indiana is sixth in the Eastern Conference and Toronto is well on the outside looking in. The Pacers are “burning hot” versus “average” and +19 to +7 on the Power Ranks Indicator. The Score Prediction is for a high-scoring 124-112 win for Indiana, but the teams have been trending in games mainly “under” the line over the last couple of weeks. Toronto is a mere 8-20 on the road and Indiana is 18-11 at home. The teams have split the two games this season, both winning on the road. I like Indiana is reverse that trend and win this one handily, perhaps by double digits, but pass on the “over/under” bet.

Detroit Pistons versus New York Knicks

Detroit comes in “ice cold down” after four straight losses and has only eight wins all season. The Knicks are “ice cold up” after breaking a four-game skid. They have a +12 to +2 advantage on the Power Ranks Indicator and 19-8 at home versus 4-24 on the road for the Pistons. The teams have been trending in games “under” the line. Both teams have been very consistent regarding their favorite/underdog status. The Knicks won the first meeting between the teams and should have little problem winning this one. I like the Knicks by double digits in a game “over” the line.

Brooklyn Nets versus Memphis Grizzlies

Here’s a game with two teams heading in opposite directions. The Nets are “dead” on the Team Strength Oscillator after three straight losses and the Grizzlies are “average up” after winning the last two. Both teams are on the outside of the playoff picture looking in. Memphis is just 7-20 at home and have a worse record than the Nets’ 8-17 road record. The teams are trending in games on opposite sides of the line and the Score Prediction has the Grizzlies by a 115-108 margin with 68 percent confidence. I like Memphis at home but pass on the “over/under” bet.

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