Last Update: 10/18/2021

NBAThe NBA is back and for the first time since 2019, we’re looking at a regular season of 82 games starting in mid-October. To help punters celebrate the return of the league, we at BetPicks have selected 10 NBA best bets from the first week of games to help you win!

Chicago Bulls @ Detroit Pistons

October 20th @ 7:00 P.M. (EST), Little Caesars Arena

BetPicks Best Bets

One of our favorite NBA predictions for this first-week slate is on the debut of the new-look Bulls. With recent additions Vucevic, DeRozan, and Ball combining with one of the best young talents in Zach Lavine, we could be looking at a Bulls team contending for Eastern Conference supremacy. The Pistons are still in the midst of a serious rebuild, not to mention that they have over a dozen guys on the mend right now. The Bulls are somehow only -3.0 point favorites in this mismatch, so we’re jumping all over that.

Pick: Bulls -3.0 Point Spread (-110)

Boston Celtics @ New York Knicks

October 20th @ 7:30 P.M. (EST), Madison Square Garden

BetPicks Best Bets

Two of the most storied franchises meet to open their seasons at Madison Square Garden—and they both love to play some scrappy defense. In defensive guru Tom Thibodeau’s first year with the Knicks in 2020-2021, they were 4th with a 107.8 defensive rating, and the Celtics have always been solid on the defensive end under longtime head coach and new president of basketball operations Brad Stevens. With those defensive chops in mind, one of our NBA picks will be for this one to hit the under on its point total.

Pick: Game Total Points Under 218.5 (-110)

Washington Wizards @ Toronto Raptors

October 20th @ 7:30 P.M. (EST), Scotiabank Arena

BetPicks Best Bets

After the departure of Russell Westbrook, Washington has had to deal with Bradley Beal’s continued unvaccinated status which has no doubt been a distraction. The Raptors, meanwhile, are playing their first regular-season game back home in Toronto in nearly a year and a half after spending last season in Tampa Bay, which should give the Raps the emotional advantage. Expect the Raptors to win in their long-awaited homecoming and cover the spread as one of our NBA best bets for Wednesday.

Pick: Raptors -3.0 Point Spread (-110)

Sacramento Kings @ Portland Trail Blazers

October 20th @ 10:00 P.M. (EST), Moda Center

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Damian Lillard has had a ton of individual success in his basketball career, but he’d never won a major team honor—until this summer when he won Olympic Gold with Team USA. Knowing how determined Lillard is, you better believe that he’ll bring that winning DNA into this NBA season. Norman Powell is also a full offseason more comfortable in his role alongside Dame and CJ McCollum. The fact that the Kings have somehow yet to tell head coach Luke Walton to kick rocks makes Portland’s point spread one of our best NBA picks on Wednesday.

Pick: Blazers -5.5 Point Spread (-110)

BetPicks Best Bets

We’re going to stay in Oregon for our next pick as well. The Kings and the Blazers were the two worst defensive teams in the NBA last season as measured by defensive rating (how many points a team gives up per 100 possessions), and neither of them did much to secure that end of the floor in the offseason, so another NBA best bet here is for the game to hit the over on the 231-point total.

Pick: Game Total Points Over 231 (-110)

Milwaukee Bucks @ Miami Heat

October 21st @ 8:00 P.M. (EST), FTX Arena

BetPicks Best Bets

After bowing out to the Heat in an ugly five-game series in the bubble, the Bucks came back last season and swept their tormenters in the first round en route to the franchise’s first-ever NBA title. For some reason, they’re favored by just one point in this one, so all the value is with the newly-minted champions. The Heat did add Kyle Lowry, but Milwaukee’s Jrue Holiday should be able to counter the savvy veteran just fine to help the Bucks cover the spread as one of our favorite NBA picks.

Pick: Bucks -1.0 Point Spread (-110)

Phoenix Suns @ Los Angeles Lakers

October 22nd @ 10:00 P.M. (EST), Staples Center

BetPicks Best Bets

This is a rematch of last year’s Western Conference first-round matchup which the Phoenix Suns won. LeBron James doesn’t lose in the first round, so he will be looking to get even heading into this Friday night affair. If the Lakers lose their opener to the Dubs, they will have lost 10 straight including last year’s playoffs and the preseason. The King will no doubt be hungry for a victory, and we like his team to cover the spread as one of our NBA picks.

Pick: Lakers -3.5 Point Spread (-110)

Brooklyn Nets @ Philadelphia 76ers

October 22nd @ 7:30 P.M. (EST), Wells Fargo Center

BetPicks Best Bets

The Sixers are a completely fractured team right now and the status of Ben Simmons looms over them quite heavily right now. With the title favorites coming to town, I expect them to have a rough night. Joel Embiid might go off, but he does that a lot in losing efforts, unfortunately, and Philly will have a tough time defending Brooklyn’s dynamic duo as well. The Nets should have no trouble winning this one comfortably so we’ll take their itty bitty spread as one of our best NBA picks.

Pick: Nets -1.5 Point Spread (-110)

Brooklyn Nets @ Milwaukee Buck

October 19th @ 7:30 P.M. (EST), Fiserv Forum

BetPicks Best Bets

In the first game of the season, we have a rematch of last campaign’s Eastern Conference Finals. While the Bucks have been enjoying the glory of the Larry O’Brien trophy, the Nets have been dealing with a lot of negative media surrounding star guard Kyrie Irving’s refusal to take the COVID vaccine. With him likely out for the game and Giannis Antetokounmpo’s jumper looking silky smooth in preseason, we like the Bucks to cover a tiny spread as one of our NBA best bets.

Pick: Bucks -1.0 Point Spread (-104)

Golden State Warriors @ Los Angeles Lakers

October 19th @ 10:00 P.M. (EST), Staples Center

BetPicks Best Bets

The Lakers were excited by the offseason arrivals of Carmelo Anthony, Russell Westbrook, and others, but they went a clean 0-6 in the preseason. The team doesn’t exactly look like a cohesive unit either, so we at BetPicks are not willing to give 4.5 points on a Lakers favorite bet right now. The Warriors, meanwhile, went 5-0. I know, I know, it’s just preseason, but when Steph Curry goes off for 40+ in a preseason game, you still tend to take notice. We like the Chef to not only cover the spread but win outright.

Pick: Warriors Moneyline (+160)

Alex is an alumnus of Ryerson University's RTA Sport Media program, a contributing NHL, NBA, and MLB writer in the team. He has been writing on sports, betting, and fantasy contests for several years, including pitstops as an NFL Editor for theScore and as one of the lead NBA news writers for fantasy sports site FantasyPros. As a lifelong athlete, bettor, and sports fan, Alex is uniquely qualified to help you reach the sports betting success that you've always dreamed of and your wife never believed you could achieve. Follow Alex on Twitter

All Reviews by Alex Murray

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