Friday NBA picks, best bets: Sixers pull ahead at home, Nuggets keep rolling

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By Webdesk

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Now that we are in the heat of battle NBA playoffs, the basketball betting market is hotter than ever. CBS Sports will make daily picks during the postseason. Sam Quinn will make at least one pick for every game between now and the NBA Final. All rules courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook.

Recommended game | Philadelphia 76ers vs Boston Celtics

Yes, Joel Embiid struggled with his return in Game 2, but that was far from the only reason Philadelphia lost. A 14 3-pointer difference also played a big part, and while James Harden is unlikely to score 45 points again, he probably won’t shoot 2-of-14 from the field in Game 3 either. Close the 3 point shooter game, get a better game out of Harden and expect a slightly healthier Embiid and Game 3 should be a much closer affair. With that in mind, I’m taking the points on the home underdog, especially as the Celtics have struggled lately in games that haven’t qualified as must-wins. The choice: 76ers +2

Recommended game | Phoenix Suns vs Denver Nuggets

Regardless of your opinion on the value of 37-year-old Chris Paul, Phoenix really couldn’t afford to lose a single starter given the state of his depth. After two games, their leading scorer in this series outside of Devin Booker, Kevin Durant, DeAndre Ayton and Paul… reserve center Jock Landale, who has scored seven runs. Their four most used perimeter role players, Cameron Payne, Damion Lee, Torrey Craig, and Josh Okogie, shot a combined 3-of-20 from 3-point range. The Suns could undermine their offense by giving a few minutes to Terrence Ross, Landry Shamet or TJ Warren… but that would weaken their already fragile defense. The Suns don’t have the bodies to answer Denver right now. The choice: Nuggets +4

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