The NBA play-in tournament is set to get underway on Tuesday. The final games of the season were played on Sunday, and Monday will provide teams in the tournament to get some rest and preparation.

The Atlanta Hawks will take on the Miami Heat on Tuesday at 7:30 PM EST. Atlanta and Miami both underperformed this season, but they are both still alive.

The Los Angeles Lakers will then host the Minnesota Timberwolves on Tuesday night at 10:00 PM EST. The Lakers certainly had their ups and downs this year, and they cannot afford to take Minnesota for granted.

On Wednesday, the Chicago Bulls and Toronto Raptors will play at 7:00 PM EST, and that game will be followed by the Oklahoma City Thunder and New Orleans Pelicans clash at 9:30 PM EST.

In what projects to be an eventful tournament, let’s take a look at each NBA matchup and share the best bets for this week and our NBA Play-In Tournament Picks.

Overall Info & Outlook

  • NBA play-in tournament
  • Two games are scheduled for Tuesday; two games are on the NBA schedule for Wednesday.

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NBA Play-In Tournament Betting Preview

Atlanta Hawks at Miami Heat Preview

The Miami Heat and Atlanta Hawks will kick off the tournament.

The Heat and Hawks were generally regarded as two of the better Eastern Conference teams heading into the season. Miami has been a consistent postseason contender over the past few years, while Atlanta formed an interesting big three with Trae Young, John Collins, and Dejounte Murray.

Things didn’t go according to plan for either team, but the Heat still ended up having a respectable year. Meanwhile, the Hawks were mediocre throughout the campaign.

  • The Atlanta Hawks are 36-45-1 against the spread this season. 
  • The Miami Heat are 30-49-3 against the spread this year.

Top Sportsbooks Odds

Betonline: Miami Heat -4.5

Bovada: Miami Heat -4.5

MyBookie: Miami Heat -4.5

BetUS: Miami Heat -5

BetNow: Miami Heat -4.5

The Hawks will rely on their offense, while the Heat will continue to do everything they can to win on both sides of the floor. Miami has the advantage, but the Hawks won’t make things easy. 

In the end, roll with the Miami Heat as your betting selection.

Minnesota Timberwolves at Los Angeles Lakers Preview 

The Los Angeles Lakers are back in the play-in tournament with a chance to make a playoff run. The Timberwolves have dealt with chemistry concerns, and the Lakers should be able to take advantage.

Minnesota still features intriguing talent, however, which should make this a difficult matchup for L.A.

The Lakers will need to win the rebounding battle or at least keep the rebounding separation close. Los Angeles cannot let Minnesota consistently grab boards, especially on the offensive end. 

  • The Minnesota Timberwolves are 40-42 against the spread this year.  
  • The Los Angeles Lakers are 40-41-1 against the spread this season.

Top Sportsbooks Odds

Betonline: Los Angeles Lakers -6.5

Bovada: Los Angeles Lakers -6.5

MyBookie: Los Angeles Lakers -6.5

BetUS: Los Angeles Lakers -6.5

BetNow: Los Angeles Lakers -6.5

The Lakers are favored to win this game, and it’s difficult to find a good reason to bet against them.

Yes, Los Angeles hasn’t been the most reliable team by any means this season. Nevertheless, the Lakers are the pick to click.

Take the Lakers as your NBA betting selection.

Chicago Bulls at Toronto Raptors Preview

The Chicago Bulls and Toronto Raptors are fairly evenly matched. The Raptors are favored to win, but Chicago features upset potential.

For the Bulls, their stars are capable of leading them to victory. If they can get strong efforts from those players, then Toronto Raptors may be in trouble.

As an overall team, though, the Raptors likely hold the advantage.

  • The Chicago Bulls are 40-39-3 against the spread this year.  
  • The Toronto Raptors are 41-39-2 against the spread this season. 

Top Sportsbooks Odds

Betonline: Toronto Raptors -4.5

Bovada: Toronto Raptors -4.5

MyBookie: Toronto Raptors -4.5

BetUS: Toronto Raptors -4.5

BetNow: Toronto Raptors -4.5

We’ve rolled with the favorites in the first two games. In this contest, however, the underdog is an appealing option.

Chicago dealt with inconsistency all season long, but this is a team with players like Zach LaVine ready to take charge.

Roll with the Bulls as your betting pick.

Oklahoma City Thunder at New Orleans Pelicans Preview

The Oklahoma City Thunder weren’t expected by many people to make a competitive run during the 2022-23 season after Chet Holmgren went down with an injury prior to the year. OKC ultimately upset the NBA odds and impressed with their decent performance. 

New Orleans is the team to beat in this game, but ruling out this Thunder squad is a risky thing to do. 

  • The Oklahoma City Thunder are 45-34-3 against the spread this year.  
  • The New Orleans Pelicans are 39-41-2 against the spread this season.

Top Sportsbooks Odds

Betonline: New Orleans Pelicans -5

Bovada: New Orleans Pelicans -5

MyBookie: New Orleans Pelicans -5

BetUS: New Orleans Pelicans -5

BetNow: New Orleans Pelicans -5

The Pelicans are favored across the board. The Thunder should keep this game competitive, but New Orleans will find a way to get the job done nonetheless.

Take the Pelicans as your betting selection.


The first four games of the NBA play-in tournament all have exciting storylines that should lead to competitive play. Some NBA teams, such as the Lakers, feature veteran stars with playoff experience. Other squads, like the Thunder, are loaded with young and inexperienced talent. 

In summary, the Heat, Lakers, Bulls, and Pelicans are the best bets in each of their respective games.

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