NBA League Pass Picks: New York Knicks at Utah Jazz

New York at Utah

Time: 8 PM CST (NBA LP)

Spread: UTA -13.5

Total: 215

Odds c/o 5dimes

The Utah Jazz have won six-straight games and climbed to No. 5 in the Western Conference with its 24-14 record. The Jazz are 13-3 at home where it hosts the hapless 10-27 New York Knicks. Utah is heavy favorites, with oddsmakers setting the line 13.5 points in favor of the Jazz. The over/under is set at 215 total points according to oddsmakers at bookmaker 5dimes.


The New York Knicks have lost its last three, and six of its last nine overall. The Knicks have already fired its head coach David Fitzdale, but it is hard to find any real reasons to blame him for the Knicks’ lack of roster-balance nor its lack of success. There have been a few silver linings but not many for a team that had so much money to spend on a free agency period it mostly whiffed on. No stars chose the Knicks, and instead a large contract was given to Julius Randle.

While Randle has played well for his part, the Knicks were hoping for Kevin Durant or one of the other megastars. Marcus Morris Sr. has also thrived in the offensive vacuum of New York. He is having his best career season, averaging 19.1 points per game and posting a PER of 17.42. However, outside of Mitchell Robinson who plays just 22 minutes a night, this is New York’s highest Player Efficiency Rating.

Randle is averaging 18.6 points and 9.1 rebounds, but his defense has continued to draw criticism throughout his entire career. The Knicks have been fairly pleased with the progress of rookie RJ Barrett. The former Duke Blue Devil is No. 3 on the team in scoring at 13.7 points per game, while adding 5.2 boards and 2.6 assists per game, as well. He has the potential to be a big-time player, but it is not yet clear whether he has “Cornerstone” potential.

Robinson was expected to make a leap to that, but he really never did and has made precious little progress over his impressive rookie season last year. Bobby Portis is a model of inconsistency, but at times he looks as though he has figured it all out and is ready to take the next steps in his career— before he utterly vanishes and proceeds to lay bricks.

None of it makes sense, but that has become something of a mantra for describing the Knicks’ franchise. Career seldom blossom in New York, and with a roster so deficient in playmakers it is not hard to see why the Knicks have struggled so bad, averaging just 104.7 points per game. The Knicks average only 21.1 assists per game, and Elfrid Payton—the team’s best passer—has not been healthy for most of this season. Frank Ntilikina is still figuring things out and he is not a good scoring threat. He averages under six points per game despite 22.6 minutes per contest. There is just not a lot of hope that this Knicks team turns it around any time soon, especially since no free agents really seemed interested in donning Knicks threads, instead opting for the Brooklyn Nets (both Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant, that is).


The Utah Jazz is 24-12 thus far this season, and it is riding a six-game win streak entering tonight’s matchup. Utah defeated Portland, Los Angeles Clippers, Detroit, Chicago, Orlando, and New  Orleans, over that span.

Things have been slower coming together following the addition of point guard Mike Conley, perhaps than anyone may have expected. The veteran is coming around after a horrid start to this season and now averaging 13.6 points and 4.6 assists per game. His ball-handling and offense help keep Donovan Mitchell ready to find his scoring spots, and Mitchell is blossoming into a true superstar in his third season.

“Spida” as Mitchell goes by, is averaging 25.1 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 4.3 assists per game while talking a PER just over 20. Perhaps the biggest surprise for the Jazz has been that Bojan Bogdanovic is far more than a role player, but more of a second star. This changes a lot.

Bogdanovic is averaging 20.5 points per game while shooting 42.1 percent from behind the arc on seven-plus attempts per game. His offense helps the Jazz continue to play its slow, defense-first style of basketball, of course, cued by the defense of Rudy Gobert. Gobert is averaging 14.7 points and 14.2 boards per game, but his 2.5 blocks/steals help further illustrate his importance to Utah. His rim protection is among the league’s best, and he covers the occasional blunders of Mitchell and the Jazz’s other perimeter defenders nearly flawlessly.

Also, Utah has stepped up its scoring to 107.9 per game this year, and with the way that Utah defends, that should be adequate to put together another very nice season. While few are quick to credit the Jazz in the realms of the elite and true contenders, it arguably is the strongest of the dark horse contenders in either conference.

Share This Post

The information contained at this site is for entertainment purposes only. Any use of this information in violation of any state, federal, or local laws is prohibited.
Copyright © - Premier Sports Picks and Sports Odds Web site