The New Orleans Pelicans Need A Win Over San Antonio Spurs to Save NBA Playoff Hopes

Dan Favale
By , Updated on: Mar 20, 2023 08:00 PM
The New Orleans Pelicans Need A Win Over San Antonio Spurs to Save NBA Playoff Hopes

Do the New Orleans Pelicans still have time to save their odds to make the NBA playoffs? Mathematically, yes. In actuality, that's to be determined. But if the Pelicans are going to salvage what's left of their season, they'll need to start picking up wins against teams they're supposed to beat—such as the San Antonio Spurs.

To New Orleans' credit, they are coming off a victory against the Houston Rockets and are now 3-3 over their last six games. As such, linemakers have billed them as heavy favorites versus the Spurs. Here are the latest NBA online betting odds for this showdown:

To WinBetOnlineBovadaBetUS
New Orleans Pelicans-323-350-401
San Antonio Spurs+230+270+290

Please make sure to double-check these online NBA betting odds until you actually submit your wager. Our Pelicans vs. Spurs betting odds are accurate as of all games played on Monday, March 20. That gives linemakers plenty of time to implement adjustments ahead of tip-off on Tuesday, March 21, at 8 p.m. EST. Believe it or not, in fact, we've actually already seen some movement on the Spurs vs. Pelicans betting odds. New Orleans opened up as a -7 favorite. That point spread has since shifted all the way to -11 in a matter of just a couple of hours.

These last-minute changes aren't anything you need to worry about if you sign up with the right sportsbook. Fortunately, this is where our reviews of the top online sportsbooks come in handy. All the information we provide should help you spot the best online NBA betting sites in 2023.

With fewer than 12 games to go in the 2022-23 NBA regular season, what should you make of the Pelicans' playoff chances? Let's wade into these murky waters together—and bust out some Pelicans vs. Spurs picks just for the occasion.

The New Orleans Pelicans Should Take Care of Business Against the San Antonio Spurs

For some context: New Orleans has a 19 percent chance of making the 2023 NBA playoffs, according to FiveThirtyEight. This upcoming stretch will go a long way towards determining whether those odds decrease or increase. The Pelicans just wrapped up a two-game set against the Rockets and face the Spurs on Tuesday; the Charlotte Hornets on Thursday; the L.A. Clippers on Saturday; and then the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday. They are 1-1 so far. Anything short of a 4-2 performance during this six-game set will all but annihilate their postseason hopes.

Scooping up the second victory shouldn't be too much of a problem. The Spurs are not actively trying to win games; they're more committed to improving their draft lottery odds. San Antonio will wind up sitting a couple of key players while everyone on New Orleans, aside from Zion Williamson and Jose Alvarado, should most likely be available.

Playing at home helps the Pelicans' cause, as well. They are 22-13 in New Orleans; it is their road record that has killed them.

Contrary to the Pelicans' play since the beginning of January, when Zion first went down with his hamstring injury, this should be an easy win.

OSB Prediction: New Orleans Pelicans (-323)

New Orleans Pelicans To beat San Antonio Spurs

Can You Trust New Orleans to Cover the Point Spread Against San Antonio?

Below you can see the latest NBA point spread betting odds for Pelicans vs. Spurs:

  • New Orleans Pelicans, -11 (-110)
  • San Antonio Spurs, +11 (-110)

Early bettors and odds makers have more faith in the Pelicans than we do. Moving the opening line from seven points to 11 represents a massive increase. And we can't get there on the Pelicans' front.

New Orleans has won only one game by more than 11 points since Feb. 6. The Spurs, for their part, are no strangers to losing by double digits. They have one of the NBA's three worst offenses and defenses. But the Pelicans have been far too inconsistent and don't shoot nearly enough threes for us to trust that they'll take care of business.

OSB Prediction: San Antonio Spurs, +11 (-110)

San Antonio Spurs To cover the point spread over the New Orleans Pelicans

Will the Pelicans be Able to Slow Down the Spurs' Frenetic Offensive Pace?

Here are the latest NBA over/under betting odds for Spurs vs. Pelicans:

  • Over 236.5 (-110)
  • Under 236.5 (-110)

Our first inclination is to invest in the under. The Spurs field a wildly inefficient offense, and the Pelicans continue to rank inside the bottom of three-point-attempt rate while placing 25th in points scored per possession since Zion's injury. Those factors lend themselves to a low-scoring affair.

At the same time, the Spurs play fast and furious and, if we're being honest, a little chaotically. Six of their last seven games have cleared the 237-point threshold, and not all of those outings have come against the league's best offenses. San Antonio is going to put up points by default.

New Orleans feels like more of a wild card. Even if they match the Spurs' pace (they might!), they don't get to the rim or foul line very often, and they continue to skirt three-pointers in favor of mid-range jumpers. Still, they are not incapable of putting up gaudy point totals. They have scored 110 or more points in five of their last seven games.

Factor in a very opponent-friendly Spurs defense, and the Pelicans should be able to eclipse the 120-point marker. And on the flip side, their defense remains shoddy enough to fall victim to San Antonio's relentless transition attack.

Pelicans and Spurs To score over 236.5 combined points

Take a look at this list of the top online sportsbooks so you can decide which one to use for all of your NBA betting:

Meet the author

Dan Favale

Dan Favale leverages over 12 years of sports journalism expertise in his role as New York staff writer. He provides in-depth analysis across the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, tennis, NASCAR, college basketball, and sports betting. Dan co-hosts the popular Hardwood Knocks NBA podc...

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