@KeepTheJuice21 NBA Play-In Picks - 4/12

Los Angeles Clippers (42-40) @ Minnesota Timberwolves (46-36)

The play-in games are a unique new feature of the NBA and we don’t really have a playbook yet. The statistical models that work mid-season don’t apply, so you’re left with a gut call in most of these. And after watching this whole season, it’s hard to imagine that Minnesota isn’t the better team here. You can’t discount the return of Paul George, but he hasn’t done anything spectacular yet to show me this Clippers team is a tier better than they were three weeks ago. The Timberwolves on the other hand have solid depth and capable stars who are in a great position to make the leap to the next level this offseason. Towns specifically I think will be a difference maker in this game and have a breakout playoff performance in the next series.

The Pic: TWolves -3 @ -110

Cleveland Cavaliers (44-38) @ Brooklyn Nets (44-38)

There was a moment late in the season when the Nets got Kyrie back in home games and KD was hitting every shot where they looked like they would roll to the finals. Then the Bucks brought them down to earth and we remembered how much this team struggled this year. It’s undeniable that they’ve been excellent in the last month but the cracks are there. Many of their wins have come by single digits and not against elite teams either. The Cavs won’t be holding anything back tonight and even without Allen, they have great size and athleticism. I like this one to stay much closer than the spread suggests.

The Pick: Cavs +9.5 @ -110

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