The 2021-22 NBA season continues Tuesday, November 2, with the Western Conference showdown from Footprint Center in Phoenix, so we’ve prepared the best Pelicans vs. Suns betting pick and tips.
New Orleans and Phoenix open their four-game regular-season series, and the Suns are huge favorites on Bovada Sportsbook to grab a win. The hosts might miss Deandre Ayton (leg), but the visitors are without Zion Williamson (foot), while Brandon Ingram (hip) is questionable to play.
The Pelicans lost three in a row
The New Orleans Pelicans fell to 1-6 on the young season following a 123-117 defeat to the New York Knicks this past Saturday. They covered as 8-point home underdogs to improve to 4-3 ATS, but the Pelicans extended their losing streak to three games.
Brandon Ingram sat out Saturday’s game, so Jonas Valanciunas led the way for the Pelicans with a 27-point, 14-rebound double-double. Once more, New Orleans played lousy defense, allowing the Knicks to make 51.9% of their field goals and 57.6% of their triples.
The Pelicans own the fifth-worst defensive rating in the NBA, yielding 111.4 points per 100 possessions. Their defense ranks 21st in the league in field goal percentage (45.9%) and 27th in 3-point percentage (39.0%).
The Suns are off to a shaky start
The reigning vice-champs snapped a two-game skid last Saturday, outlasting the Cleveland Cavaliers as 10-point home favorites, 101-92. It was their second victory in five outings this season, while the Suns fell to 1-4 ATS.
Phoenix overcame a 14-point first-half deficit, holding the Cavs to just 15 points in the second quarter. The Suns led by as many as 24 points, and Devin Booker led the charge with 27 points and nine assists. Deandre Ayton accounted for 17 points, 12 rebounds, and three steals before exiting with a right leg contusion.
The Suns have struggled on both sides of the ball through their first four games of the new season. They are scoring just 104.4 points per 100 possessions (20th in the NBA) while surrendering 109.3 in a return (23rd). The Suns’ D ranks 23rd in field goal percentage (46.1%) and 28th in 3-point percentage (40.0%).
- 1-4 ATS in the last five games against the Pacific Division
- 5-2 ATS in the last seven games against New Orleans
New Orleans Pelicans vs. Phoenix Suns Pick
The Suns have been awful against the spread as of late, so this is a nice opportunity for a bounce-back performance. They shut down the Cavaliers to show how good their defense can be, and the shorthanded Pelicans shouldn’t cause too many problems.
New Orleans desperately needs Brandon Ingram back, and I don’t think they’ll keep it close without their best player. Deandre Ayton’s eventual absence will be a chance for Jonas Valanciunas to dominate in the paint, but the Suns will still win comfortably if they defend the 3-point line well.
Pick: Take Phoenix Suns
The under has hit in 14 of the Pelicans’ last 20 games overall. Without their first two scoring options, they still managed to drop 117 points on the Knicks at home, but the Suns on the road will be a much taller task.
On the other side, the under is 5-1 in Phoenix’s last six games overall. The Suns should improve defensively after a slow start, so I’m backing the under on the totals. Also, Phoenix takes only 29 attempts from deep per game while shooting 31.0% from beyond the arc (27th in the league).
Pick: Go under