NBA Three at 3: Best Bets for Tuesday, December 14

Last Friday, the Three at 3 delivered readers a trio of winners and now it's back with a three-game NBA slate that features the Golden State Warriors facing the New York Knicks and the Portland Trail Blazers hosting the Phoenix Suns in a doubleheader on TNT. Check out our plays below: 

1. Warriors at Knicks - Over the last three seasons, the Knicks are 18-7 against the spread in home games after having lost five or six of their previous seven games. Now, New York faces a very good Golden State team that is fresh off a tight win over the Indiana Pacers last night. The Warriors were likely going to be fatigued to begin with here, but their flight also got delayed from last night to early this morning because of mechanical issues. That's going to be even more straining on Golden State, and then there's the fact that Steph Curry is going to be shooting to break the all-time threes made record in this game. It's a near certainty that Curry will end up breaking that record in Madison Square Garden tonight, but he could launch some bad shots in trying to do so. That has been the story of the last few games for Golden State, with the Warriors failing to cover in four of their last five. Curry is clearly playing a different game than he normally does as he nears the finish line. Also, this Knicks crowd should be juiced up for what is one of the biggest games of the season. Look for New York's shooters to feed off that energy. 

THE PICK: Knicks +4.5

2. Raptors at Nets - Kevin Durant is questionable for the Nets in tonight's game against the Raptors, but Brooklyn is going to be in a tough spot even if the superstar ends up playing in this game. The Nets are currently dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak and will be without LaMarcus Aldridge, James Johnson, DeAndre' Bembry, Jevon Carter and Paul Millsap tonight. That leaves this Brooklyn rotation in a pretty tough spot, as the team is already without Kyrie Irving and Joe Harris for the foreseeable future. The Raptors also match up rather well against the Nets, as they have a number of long forwards that they can throw at Durant in this game. Meanwhile, Fred VanVleet should be up for the challenge of going head to head with James Harden. It's also worth noting that Toronto has won and covered in four of its last five games. The Nets are also just 3-7 straight-up and 3-6-1 against the spread after having let up 105 or fewer points in each of their previous two games over the last three seasons. 

THE PICK: Raptors +5.5

3. Suns at Blazers - The Suns got blown out by the Los Angeles Clippers last night and will now have to take on a Blazers team that is coming off a rest day. Phoenix is still without Devin Booker right now, and the team could also be missing both Deandre Ayton and Jalen Smith in this game. While the Suns are winning games at an impressive clip right now, the team has failed to cover in four of its last five. Last night, it was rather evident that the Suns are missing Booker's offensive creativity, and they could start to slide a bit until the All-Star returns to the lineup. Also, when these teams met at the Moda Center on October 23, the Blazers beat the Suns by 29 points as 2.5-point favorites. Portland isn't going to have CJ McCollum for a few weeks, but this should be a game that Lillard can win on his own. Just outplaying Chris Paul would go a long way and he's definitely capable of doing that. Also, the Blazers have a big size advantage in the frontcourt, where Larry Nance Jr. and Jusuf Nurkic should give the Suns trouble on the glass. That's where Phoenix would miss Ayton, if he can't play. 

THE PICK: Blazers +1.5

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Blazers star Damian Lillard
Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports
Blazers star Damian Lillard just returned from an injury.
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