The Brooklyn Nets and the New Orleans Pelicans will meet for the second and last time in the 2022-23 NBA regular season this Saturday. Will the Nets avenge their opening-day loss to New Orleans? Or, will the banged-up Pelicans screw Brooklyn again?
Catch this game live on Saturday, January 7, at 8:30 AM, Manila time
Away: Brooklyn Nets (25-13/12-8 Away)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Kyrie Irving
- SG: Royce O’Neale
- SF: Kevin Durant
- PF: Ben Simmons
- C: Nic Claxton
The Nets will look to get back to their winning ways after being cooled off by the Chicago Bulls in a 121-112 loss in Windy City last Thursday. That defeat ended Brooklyn’s 12-game win streak. In any case, Brooklyn must be awake now after tasting defeat for the first time in a long while. The Nets clearly have the advantage over New Orleans, at least on paper. For one, Brooklyn has their superstars intact, while the Pelicans are to be without Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram.
Zion and Ingram combined for 53 points in the Pelicans’ 130-108 road win over the Nets way back in October. The Nets, on the other hand, still have Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving smoking hot even with the loss to Chicago, as they have averaged 29.8 and 28.0 points, respectively, over the last 10 Brooklyn games.
With Larry Nance in danger of missing another game for New Orleans, the Pelicans are likely to miss three of their top four rebounders versus the Nets.
Brooklyn is 8-3 ATS in its last 11 games.
Home: New Orleans Pelicans (24-14/17-4 Home)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: CJ McCollum
- SG: Trey Murphy III
- SF: Herbert Jones
- PF: Naji Marshall
- C: Jonas Valanciunas
Sure, the Pelicans will not have Zion and Ingram in the rematch versus Brooklyn, but it’s not like they don’t have someone capable of being a focal point on offense. They still have CJ McCollum, who was awesome last Thursday in New Orleans’ 119-108 win at home over the Houston Rockets. In that game, McCollum had a game-high 28 points with five 3-pointers. Jonas Valanciunas, meanwhile, provided a double-double of 16 points and 17 rebounds.
Valanciunas can be a tough customer on the glass. He is 12th in the league so far this season with 17 double-doubles. McCollum and Valanciunas aren’t the scary tandem that Zion and Ingram are, but the Nets still shouldn’t sleep on them. Another sneaky player for the Pels is Naji Marshall, who has scored in double figures in each of his last three games and in six of his last seven.
Whether you believe in trap games or not, this Nets-Pelicans showdown does show some signs of becoming one in favor of New Orleans, which is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 home games.
Spread: The Pelicans (+4) cover the spread.
Over/Under: The total (231) hits the Under.