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Wizards vs Thunder Picks, Predictions & Odds Tonight - NBA

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One of the worst teams in the NBA will take to the road as heavy NBA odds underdogs, battling one of the league’s best when the Washington Wizards visit the Oklahoma City Thunder on Friday night.

The Wizards (9-46) have lost nine straight, throwing themselves right in the race with the Detroit Pistons for the worst record in the NBA. On the other hand, the Thunder (38-17) have won three straight and are just one game behind the Minnesota Timberwolves for the top seed in the Western Conference. 

Nobody will be surprised if this game turns into a rout, but how can bettors take advantage of that? We’ll break it down in our free NBA picks and predictions for Wizards vs. Thunder on February 23. 

Wizards vs Thunder odds

Wizards vs Thunder predictions

The woeful Wizards aren’t equipped to compete with the top teams in the NBA. Sure, Kyle Kuzma is a capable scorer, and Deni Avdija has shown flashes of brilliance this year, including a 43-point outburst against the New Orleans Pelicans right before the All-Star Break. But Washington doesn’t have the talent to compete right now, and the 2024 NBA Draft doesn’t look like it will have the best crop for reloading a roster, either.

Tonight, the Wizards get to travel to Oklahoma City for the second game of a back-to-back. The Thunder are in the same situation, having beaten the Los Angeles Clippers 129-107 last night, but they’ll at least have the benefit of playing both games at home. Washington is flying in from Denver after a 130-110 loss to the Nuggets on Thursday.

This all suggests a blowout win for the Thunder tonight. But Oklahoma City only won the first meeting between these teams by eight points (albeit in Washington), and the 16-point spread is just a little too rich for my blood. 

So, where else can we look for a bet tonight? I’m intrigued by the total, which currently sits around 242 points at most books. Both of these teams typically play to totals below this number, and on the second night of a back-to-back for both teams, there may be some tired legs — especially coming off the rust of the All-Star Break. 

Washington does play at the fastest pace of any team in the league. However, the pace metrics for the NBA are a lot more similar across teams than in college basketball, where the Virginia Cavaliers are essentially playing a different sport than the Arizona Wildcats. Even with their high-tempo style, the Wizards have played to totals of 142 points or less in seven of their last 10 games.

While we know they can score, the Thunder are middle of the pack when it comes to pace. Oklahoma City has played to a total of 241 or less in nine of its last 11 games, including all three games during its current winning streak. 

The justification for this total seems to rely on two factors. The Thunder have hit the Over seven straight times, but none of those totals were set at 240 points or more. The first Game between these teams went well Over the total, but that’s the only time in the last 10 meetings between these teams that they’ve combined for over 241 points.

Neither of those factors convinces me that we’ll see a ton of points tonight. Both based on the season-long numbers for these teams and the recent trends, the Under is the clear play in this Game.

My best bet: Under 242 (-105 at Caesars)

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Wizards vs Thunder same-game parlay

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Under 242

Thunder -16

Chet Holmgren Over 15.5 points

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I may have stayed away from the spread for my best bet tonight, but I still think there’s a clear lean here. Oklahoma City outclasses Washington across the board, and showed how it can dominate games against even elite competition against the Clippers last night. Let’s take the Thunder to cover the spread to go along with the Under in our same-game parlay.

I’ll also throw in a bet on Chet Holmgren to go Over his scoring total of 15.5 points. The 7-foot-1 Holmgren should feast on the Wizards, having scored 31 in the first meeting between these teams. The former Gonzaga standout is also scoring more consistently as of late, having put up at least 13 points in each of his last eight Games. 

Learn how to bet a same-game parlay with these helpful tips and strategies.

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Wizards vs Thunder spread and Over/Under analysis

The Thunder opened tonight’s game as a 15.5-point favorite. The consensus spread has moved up to a flat 16 points, and you can still get a slight discount on Washington at that number, with several books offering -108 on the Wizards.

Washington has been mediocre against the spread this year, posting a 26-27-2 ATS record. On the other hand, Oklahoma City has paid for bettors, beating the books with a 34-21 ATS mark. 

There’s no way the Wizards should be able to stay in this game. Not only are the Thunder the far superior team, but Washington is on the second leg of a back-to-back in which it’s had to travel for both contests. I see Oklahoma City putting this one away early and running up the score, so I’m leaning towards the Thunder on the spread.

The total tonight opened at 241.5 points. Most books have since moved their main Over/Under up a half-point to a flat 242. Lines vary, with the Over available at -105 but other sites favoring it and instead setting the Under at -108. 

Oklahoma City has been an Over team all year long, with the Over going 33-22 in its games this season. Washington has played closer to the total, with the Under holding a 29-26 edge when the Wizards play.

Both teams have largely been playing under tonight’s total as of late. They’re also coming off games last night, which could lead to a sluggish performance and a slower pace of play. Finally, this game could well be a blowout, which would again depress scoring as the Thunder pull their stars and even Washington looks to the bench. I’m taking the Under tonight.

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Wizards vs Thunder betting trend to know

The Thunder have played to totals below 242 in nine of their last 11 games. Find more NBA betting trends for Wizards vs. Thunder.

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Wizards vs Thunder game info

Location: Paycom Center Oklahoma City, OK
Date: Friday, February 23, 2024
Tip-off: 8:00 p.m. ET
TV: KSBI OKC, MNMT
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