We have made it to Day Five of the NBA Restart. Day Four was a good day in picks for The Playmaker, going 4-2 on the day. That puts the overall record to 13-6 on the season.
Six more games are on deck on today with a lot of interesting aspects. You call today, Big Game Monday.
NBATV and ESPN have the doubleheaders for today.
NBA Monday Slate:
Toronto Raptors vs. Miami Heat 1:30PM NBATV
Denver Nuggets vs. Oklahoma City Thunder 4PM NBATV
Indiana Pacers vs. Washington Wizards 4PM
Memphis Grizzlies vs. New Orleans Pelicans 6:30PM ESPN
San Antonio Spurs vs. Philadelphia 76ers 8PM
Los Angeles Lakers vs. Utah Jazz 9PM ESPN
The Playmaker's Picks:
Toronto Raptors vs. Miami Heat
Two teams coming off impressive wins in their Restart opener, do battle to today's slate basketball in the East.
The Toronto Raptors made a statement win on Saturday night over the Los Angeles Lakers. The Raptors defeated the Lakers, 107-92. There have talks of Milwaukee or Boston coming out of the East and even after the game on Saturday the talk was on LeBron and the Lakers, but did people forget that it is the Raptors that are the reigning, defending World Champs? Yes, the Raptors lost Kawhi Leonard to the LA Clippers, but Kyle Lowry is still there, who dropped 33 points with 14 rebounds and 6 assists on the Lakers. Pascal Siakam is still there, who had 15 points and 9 rebounds. OG Anunoby continues to grow in Toronto with 23 points on Saturday night. The people might have forgotten about the Raptors, but their opponent hasn't as they are five and half games ahead of going into today.
That team would be the Miami Heat. The Heat currently 4th in the East and as mentioned five and half games behind Toronto for the 2nd seed. Miami picked up a huge over the Denver Nuggets to open their Restart season even though the Nuggets didn't have three starters, mainly Jamal Murray. Six Heat players scored in double-figures on Saturday in a 125-105 win led by Jimmy Butler, 22 points, 7 assists performance and Bam Adebayo, 22 points, 9 rebounds, 6 assists performance. This is questions surrounding Jimmy Butler status for today's after he had an excuse absence from practice on Sunday, but expect Butler to suit up today.
Playmaker's Pick: Toronto Raptors
Denver Nuggets vs. Oklahoma City Thunder
Game Two on the day is a Western matchup.
The Denver Nuggets as mentioned earlier, took a 20-point lost to Miami in their opener. Also as mentioned the Nuggets with into that Heat without three starters including Jamal Murray. Five Nuggets scored in double-figures but not having three starters hurt more. Nikola Jokic with 19 points, 7 rebounds, 6 assists and Jerami Grant with 19 points did all they could. According to the Nuggets Twitter, the Nuggets mostly likely will be without the three starters again for today's which is important considering their opponent.
That opponent will be the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder opened their Restart season by beating up on the Utah Jazz, 110-94. Six Thunder players scored in double-figures led by Shai Gilgeous-Alexander stat stuffer performance: 19 points, 2 rebounds, 6 assists, and 3 blocks. Chris Paul had 18 points, 7 rebounds, and 7 assists. OKC looks very good since they traded Russell Westbrook for Chris Paul. Only one and half games back against they opponent today for the 3rd seed.
Playmaker's Pick: Oklahoma City Thunder
Indiana Pacers vs. Washington Wizards
A game that should go one-sided but anything can happen in basketball.
Indiana Pacers coming off winning their opener against the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday, 127-121. TJ Warren put on the performance of the Restart with 53 points on Saturday. TJ would not need another performance in today's matchup.
That's because the Washington Wizards will be on the other side. The Wizards is all but eliminated from playoff contention. They have dropped both games thus far, last one coming to the Brooklyn Nets on yesterday. It's only gonna get worse going forward. No Wall. No Beal. No Playoffs.
Playmaker's Pick: Indiana Pacers
Memphis Grizzlies vs. New Orleans Pelicans
First game of the ESPN Doubleheader, sees two young stars do battle. Ja Morant vs. Zion Williamson.
Memphis is off the a bad start inside the Orlando Bubble. Dropping both of their first two games more notably losing to the San Antonio Spurs on yesterday, 108-106. Five Grizzlies scored in double-figures, but just against the Blazers and against the Spurs, they can't finish games. This game on today could be their best chance to right the ship, but it wouldn't be easy.
As the New Orleans Pelicans are looking to get rid of the sour taste in their mouth as the LA Clippers put the hammer to them on Saturday, 126-103. Zion Williamson only played 14 minutes and is growing frustrated. With Portland and San Antonio looking good New Orleans needs to put it get together soon.
Playmaker's Picks: Memphis Grizzlies
San Antonio Spurs vs. Philadelphia 76ers
Very interesting game here that doesn't need much diving into.
San Antonio Spurs defeated the Grizzlies on yesterday as mentioned. Pop and the Spurs currently hold the 9th seed in the West and look to continue their playoff streaks but that is a tall task considering their opponent on today.
The Philadelphia 76ers is a team that is looking to wash out that bad taste out of their mouth that the Pacers put there. Giving up 53 points to TJ Warren while Joel Embiid put in 41 points. Philly has major problems that needs to be fix if they are going to be a threat in the playoffs. They need to stop underachieving and play ball beginning today.
Playmaker's Pick: Philadelphia 76ers
Los Angeles Lakers vs. Utah Jazz
The second of ESN's doubleheader has another Western Conference matchup.
Two teams that were impressive in their openers, but laid eggs in their following game.
The LA Lakers to one on the chin as the defending champs put a 15-point beating on them. Now they loo to bounce back today in a what could a West Semis matchup.
The Utah Jazz, just like the Lakers, took one on the chin as the OKC put the wood on them on Saturday. A 16-point lost definitely had the Jazz looking in the mirror. Donovan Mitchell had only 13 points on Saturday which led the team. Goes to show how bad they played. They want to bounce back, but will have to do it against the top team in West.
Playmaker's Pick: LA Lakers