NBA Betting Guide for Saturday, December 18: Expect Plenty Of Points In Utah


December 18, 2021

We’ve cashed the over in our last two plays, so I see no reason to buck the trend at the moment. Friday’s winner stretches our current winning streak to three straight games. Yesterday, I mentioned that you should be on full alert when bookmakers post a high total, particularly with how referees have officiated games this season. Well, we’ve got another high total on Saturday night in Utah, so let’s dig in to look at the matchup.

I’m not going to waste much time getting down to business. The total is 15-12-1 to the over in Utah’s games this season, but it’s 7-1-1 to the over in its last nine games. Utah’s scored at least 100 points during those nine games and at least 118 points in eight of those games. Thus, it should be no surprise that Utah leads the league in offensive efficiency with 114.6 points per 100 possessions. The Jazz will be up against a Wizards team ranked 22nd in defensive efficiency as they’re allowing 107.5 points per 100 possessions. Unfortunately, that number’s up to 113.9 points per 100 possessions over their last three games, which is the sixth-worst in the league during that span.

Ironically, the Wizards are one of the best teams defending against the three-point shot as they lead the league in allowing just 10.1 opponent three-pointers per game. We all know that Utah’s known for hoisting a ton of three-point shots as they’re tied for first with 42.2 attempts per game. Utah also makes a decent amount of its three-pointers as it leads the league with 15.7 field goals per game.

Before you start thinking that the Wizards can slow this Jazz team down, note that the total is 5-0-1 to the over in their last six head-to-head meetings. To Utah’s credit, it’s clear that they’re not going to change how they play. If the team misses a few three-pointers, the natural response is to keep shooting until you make the next one. As a result, it’s tough for opposing teams to dictate the pace and flow of the game when they play the Jazz.

There are quite a few trends that suggest we could see plenty of points in this game as the total is 5-0-1 to the over in Washington’s last six games against a team above .500. The total is also on a 5-0 run to the over in Utah’s last five home games. Put it all together, and that’s enough to get me to the window and play this one over the total of 224.

Pick: Over 224

All NBA predictions and picks are courtesy of SportsGrid

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Thumbnail photo via Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

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