Brooklyn Nets vs Toronto Raptors: Prediction, Starting Lineups, Odds (12/16/22)

Don’t blink now, but the Nets are slowly rounding back into championship form. After a horrendous start full of drama and underachievement, they have been on a roll the past few games and look to continue their dominance against the Raptors. While the Raptors are trending in the wrong direction, a win over the Nets would go a long way to getting back into the mix.

Brooklyn Nets vs Toronto Raptors Betting Odds

As for who will come out on top, oddsmakers slightly lean towards the Nets on the road by opening them up as a -2 favorite. Bettors have been torn, leaning towards the Raptors in pulling it out by taking them down to +1. While the Nets have looked formidably better as of late, the Raptors have a stingy defense that is capable of slowing down the Nets scoring output.

As for the total, points are expected to be scored at a premium as oddsmakers opened the total at 226.5. Bettors have been neutral on the expected stylistic clash, keeping the number the same at the open with slight dips to 226. While the Raptors are more than capable of slowing down the Nets, it will be their anemic offense that decides the outcome of this game.

Brooklyn Nets vs Toronto Raptors Prediction

The Pick: Live over

With that said, I am passing on this game in a pregame perspective. Even though the Nets are running hot, they are now on the road against a stingy defense that will come in highly motivated to salvage their losing streak. Instead, I will take a look at the live over should the Raptors disrupt the Nets early and often while keeping an eye on the Raptors offensive scoring production.

While looking for a low total to buy into, this means that the Raptors defense will need to show up early and often. Easier said than down as the Nets offense has ranked near top-10 in all offensive metrics including three-point shooting and Adjusted Offensive production. Kevin Durant has silently put together an early MVP campaign, averaging 30 points per game, 6.7 rebounds, and 5.5 assists.

With Durant commanding a brunt of the opposing defensive attention, it’s been up to their role players to get them over the hump and they have done just that. Nic Claxton has stepped up in scoring, the only player not named Kyrie Irving or Kevin Durant to be in double digit figures. They also have eight other role players averaging 7-9 ppg, providing a deep rotating supporting cast.

Speaking of that supporting cast, their scoring depth may be tested with injury uncertainty to both deep threats Seth Curry and Royce O’Neal. Both have hit at 40% or better from deep, stretching out opposing defenses and giving a boost to their scoring output. Without them, Kyrie and Durant will need to shoulder more of the load. While doable, it’s never efficiently ideal.

Betting Trends

  • Over is 9-4 in Raptors last 13 when following an ATS loss
  • Under is 27-10 in Nets last 37 when facing a team with a straight up losing record

Key Matchups

Can the Raptors provide enough offense to keep up with the Nets scoring pace?

Raptors scoring production vs Nets defense

While the Nets offense has been rolling and garnering much of the warranted attention, it’s their defense that has sneakily been stepping up and giving them a much-needed boost. They rank top-10 in both opposing shooting percentage and opposing total points.

As for the Raptors, their offense ranks average to below average in scoring metrics. Without OG Anunoby, they will need to facilitate more to generate scoring opportunities. Luckily for the Raptors, they run deep with plenty of other options to pick up the scoring. Their best bet is to drive to the lane and create high quality looks at the rim and get bonus points at the free throw line.

Verdict

With interests towards the over, I will patiently wait to see if the Raptors defensive intensity arrives early and halts the Nets scoring output. Should they start to get back into a groove, I will hit the over.

Brooklyn Nets Starting Lineup

PG: Kyrie Irving
SG: Ben Simmons
SF: Royce O’Neale
PF: Kevin Durant
C: Nicolas Claxton

Toronto Raptors Starting Lineups

PG: Fred VanVleet
SG: Gary Trent Jr
SF: Thaddeus Young
PF: Scottie Barnes
C: Pascal Siakam

Key Injuries

Brooklyn Nets Injuries: Seth Curry (Q), Patty Mills (Q), Royce O’Neal (P)

Toronto Raptors Injuries: OG Anunoby (O), Otto Porter Jr (O)

Kody is a sports betting writer here at Lineups. He specializes in college sports as well as the NFL and NBA. He won’t quit believing in the Lions Super Bowl chances even when they are eliminated.

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