NBA Betting Picks: Toronto Raptors at Atlanta Hawks

NBA Betting Picks:  Toronto Raptors at Atlanta Hawks

Most sports bettors are focused on football right now but if they’re not paying attention to indoor sports they’re likely missing some easy profits. In particular, the early part of the NBA season is ripe with good value betting opportunities. In this writeup we’ll focus on a Friday night matchup between the Atlanta Hawks and Toronto Raptors at Phillips Arena in Atlanta, Georgia. Each team has a game under their belt heading into this matchup. Atlanta opened the season on the road with a loss to the Dallas Mavericks while Toronto beat the Boston Celtics at home in their first action of the year.

The Toronto Raptors have struggled for the past few seasons but finally appear to be headed in the right direction. In fact, they may be one of the most improved teams in the NBA and have a good shot of making the playoffs for the first time since 2008. The Raptors picked up forward Rudy Gay from Memphis at the trade deadline last season and went 18-18 with him in the lineup. Gay’s contract expires at the end of this season and there are already rumors that he and possibly shooting guard Demar DeRozen could be moved. Retaining the services of point guard Kyle Lowrey appears to be a bigger priority. Team GM Masai Ujiri is keeping his cards close to his vest but for now the Raptors have a lot of talent.

Atlanta is in a bit of transition–they sent head coach Larry Drew packing despite the fact he made the playoffs in each of his three years at the helm. Mike Budenholzer is the new coach and it may take the former San Antonio assistant some time to ‘grow in’ to the job. He’s installing a new offensive and defensive system and there are plenty of new faces on the court as well. AL Horford is the only significant holdover from the previous regime which could mean that the Hawks will have some ‘growing pains’ and they put all of the pieces together.

Bottom line–there’s a lot to like about the Raptors and some reasons to concerned about the Hawks (at least in the short term). We’ll take the points with the road team here.