There’s a few different angles working in the January 8th NBA free pick from Talking Stick Resort in Phoenix. The Kings are listed as -2.5 favorites over the home team Suns despite the fact that Sacramento played last night. The Kings did win by 16 vs. Orlando however so they were able to manage their minutes. The Suns in turn have dropped 6 in a row and leading scorer Devin Booker is questionable Tuesday with a back injury. Who has the edge in all of that?
How Fatigued is Sacramento on the Back to Back?
The Kings were able to get back in the win column Monday after dropping four straight prior. The best part for Sacramento was that they were able to dominate Orlando 111-95 without sacrificing Tuesday night’s January 8th NBA free pick. Four starters besides Bogdan Bogdanovic (32:16 logged 24 minutes or less. Justin Jackson and Yogi Ferrell each had 25 minutes off the bench and the Kings welcomed Marvin Bagley back from a knee injury (8 points, 6 rebounds, 20 minutes). Sacramento is developing nice depth which should help them avoid their 7th straight loss on 0 days rest.
The Kings are on the road Tuesday where they are a so-so 9-10 on the season. Sacramento just had a 4-game losing streak but it came against four playoff contenders (LAL, POR, DEN, GS). Sacramento has been able to beat up on lesser opponents this year, going 7-0 their last seven vs. teams with a winning percentage less than .400%. The Suns definitely qualify as a lesser opponent, but how worn down are the Kings in their 3rd game in 4 nights?
Suns Desperate to Snap Skid
Looking up and down the Phoenix roster, they are much more talented than their six game losing streak would suggest. Top pick Deandre Ayton had picked up his game with the return of Devin Booker from injury. Ayton had three straight 23+ point, 17+ rebound nights around Christmas but was held to 10 points and 9 rebounds vs. the Kings in early December. Booker left the last game with back spasms so more of the offense could fall on TJ Warren in the January 8th NBA free pick. Warren has 20+ in 7 of 10.
For as talented as they are – or have the potential to be – the Suns have still dropped six in a row and are just 9-32 this season. The Suns have dropped four straight home games and their last five when playing on just 1 days rest. Phoenix has allowed 118+ in six straight games and the Kings play a fast-paced offense that is 2nd in the NBA in possessions per game. The Kings have a night off Wednesday and head back home for three more following that so they are able to use all their resources to get the W.
January 8th NBA Free Pick Betting
It looked like the Kings giving +2.5 on a B2B looked like a solid play for the Suns but in actuality Sacramento may have the value. This is especially true if Devin Booker is unable to go for Phoenix.
NBA Free Pick: Sacramento Kings -2.5