The Jazz travel to Brooklyn at 3.5 point favorites against the Nets tonight. They will be getting Donovan Mitchell back after he missed the last game with a rib injury. The Jazz lost that game to the Pacers 121-88. The Nets are coming off a 127-125 loss to the 76ers that occurred when Jimmy Butler hit a 3 with 0.4 seconds remaining to get the win. The Nets were winning most of that game but lost in the final quarter 38-23. I always say the NBA betting lines are full of public perception and this is another example. The Jazz are definitely a bit inflated here because of Mitchell returning from injury and the Nets having a reputation for being among the league’s worst teams. Only one game separates these two teams as the Nets have a record of 8-13 compared to the Jazz 9-12. I think after tonight both teams will be 9-13.
The Nets have not earned their reputation of being one of the league’s worst teams by accident. They have not played well for much of the last three years. Their young talent has been developing and has been playing pretty well this year. The Nets and Jazz play at a similar pace but the Nets have a turnover ratio that is 1.6 fewer than the Jazz while having an assist ratio that is fewer by only 0.7. The Nets and Jazz shooting numbers are almost identical but the Nets have a higher offensive efficiency than the Jazz do. They also do better on the offensive glass which will be important against Rudy Gobert. The Jazz have their reputation after only one year of making the playoffs and getting into the second round. They have been very disappointing so far this season as Donavan Mitchell has struggled. I do not think he will be at his best tonight coming off the rib injury. The Nets have had three days off with the last second loss to the 76ers in their mind. I see the Nets winning this game outright.
Brooklyn Nets +3.5