NBA Picks: Sacramento Kings vs. Utah Jazz 1/3/23

by | Jan 3, 2023 | nba

Sacramento Kings (19-16 SU, 18-16-1 ATS) vs. Utah Jazz (19-20 SU, 20-17-2 ATS)
When: Tuesday, January 3rd, 9:00 PM (ET)
Where: Vivint Smart Home Arena, UT, Salt Lake City
TV: NBCS

Point Spread: SAC +2.5/ UTA -2.5
Total: 243.0
Money Line: Sacramento Kings +113/ -137

Notable Injuries

Kings

  • Malik Monk (Questionable) Wrist
  • Kevin Huerter (Questionable) Back

Jazz

  • Collin Sexton (Out) Hamstring

Recent Form

Heading into the game, Sacramento is 19-16 overall. When taking to the road, Sacramento has a mark of 8-9 and a win percentage of 47%. Currently, the team is 5th in the Western Conference. So far, they are 18-16-1 vs. the spread. When looking at how the team has performed of late straight and vs. the spread, they are 2-3 in their past five games and 0-5 ATS. Over their past ten games, they are 5-5 SU and 3-7 ATS.

Most recently, Sacramento lost to the Grizzlies by a score of 118-108. De’Aaron Fox and his 19 was not enough for the team to pull out a win as 4-point underdogs. The Kings also finished with an ATS loss in the game.

Heading into the game, Utah is 19-20 overall. When playing at home, Utah has a mark of 12-6 and a win percentage of 67%. Currently, the team is 10th in the Western Conference. So far, they are 20-17-2 vs. the spread. The Jazz need a win in today’s matchup vs. Sacramento to avoid their 5th straight loss.

Utah most recently lost to the Heat by a score of 126-123. The team high 29 points from Lauri Markkanen was not enough to come home with the win. The Jazz were 4-point favorites going into the game.

The Historicals

In the most recent game between the two teams, the Kings picked up a 126-125 win over the Jazz. However, heading into the game, Sacramento was favored to win by 3.0 points, giving the Jazz and ATS victory. This has been the only matchup between the two teams this season. The ATS record across the previous five head-to-head meetings is 3-2 in favor of the Jazz. In these matchups, Utah has averaged 122 points per game while allowing 114. Over the course of these games, they averaged 236 points per game, leading a 4-1 over-under record.

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Analysis

This season, Sacramento is among the league leaders in scoring, averaging 118.0 points per game. So far, the Kings are also one of the more up-tempo teams in the league, sitting at 101.4 possessions per game. The three-point shot has been a big part of Sacramento’s offensive game plan, as they are ranked 7th in 3-point attempts per game. So far, they have connected on 35.7% of their looks from the outside. The defense hasn’t been a bright spot for Sacramento, as they are currently allowing 115.77 points per game. The team’s 3-point shooting defense has been a problem this year. So far, opposing offenses have hit 37.05% of their looks from the outside.

De’Aaron Fox is the top scorer for the Kings, with an average of 23.4 points per game. This season, his field goal percentage is 49.9%. Domantas Sabonis is the team’s second-leading scorer, averaging 18.6 points per game.

For the season, Utah has put together one of the top-scoring offenses in the NBA at 117.3 points per game. When looking at their style of play, the team is currently near the league average in pace, averaging 100.3 possessions per contest. Utah’s offensive attack has benefited from some hot shooting from outside. Not only are they among the league leaders in 3-pointers attempted per game, but they are 12th in 3-point shooting percentage at 36.7%. Defensively, the Jazz has been one of the best units in the NBA, allowing just 107.57 points per game. So far, they have allowed a 3-point shooting percentage of 35.09%, placing them 15th in the NBA.

Lauri Markkanen is the top scorer for Utah, averaging 23.8 points per game. This season, his field goal percentage is 53.1%. The team’s second-leading scorer is Jordan Clarkson, with an average of 20.5 points per game.

Betting Trends

  • The Kings are 2-5 ATS in their last seven games playing on one day’s rest.
  • The Kings are 2-5 ATS in their last seven road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600.
  • The Jazz are 11-5-1 ATS in their last 17 Tuesday games.
  • The Jazz are 16-37-3 ATS in their last 56 games following an ATS loss.

Joes Pick To Cover The Spread

The Jazz have been playing teams tough lately but have nothing to show for it, with an 0-4 record in their last four games. These teams are very similar, but the Kings have some exploitable matchup advantages. Betting on close games isn’t usually my thing, but I watch the Kings quite a bit, and I really like what I’ve seen from them over the past three games, despite one of those contests being a loss to the Grizzlies. I like Sac to win tonight, so I am happy to bet them at +2.5.