Game of the Month NBA 10*
(NBA) Utah vs. New Orleans, 07/30/2020 6:30 PM, Score: 106 - 104
Point Spread: 2.50 | -102.00 Utah (Away)
Bookmaker: PinnacleSports
Result: Win
Game of the  Month - Rickenbach NBA Rotation #701 Thursday 10* Top Play Utah Jazz (+) vs New Orleans Pelicans @ 6:30 ET - I am wasting no time in coming out with a big play to open up the NBA restart in Orlando but it comes with plenty of good reason. This line opened up in Vegas with the Jazz originally as a 1.5 point favorite but the line flipped and New Orleans is now up to a -2.5 choice as of Tuesday morning. Zion Williamson is back inside the NBA bubble in Orlando and is expected to be able to practice Wednesday. However, he has been away from the team for some time now and how effective (and how long) will he even be able to play in Thursday's opener. This is a very short turnaround for him. I am well aware of the fact of how important this game is for the Pelicans. However, this early line move is telling me people are overlooking the fact that the Jazz have 41 wins on the season and are the #4 seed currently in the West but have 3 teams with 40 wins hot on their tails. Do you really think Utah wants to possibly drop to the #7 seed which would lead to a match-up against a #2 seed to open up the playoffs in a couple weeks from now? That would likely mean a date with Kawhi Leonard and the Clippers. The Jazz absolutely do not want that to happen. In other words they are more motivated here than many realize and they're also hungry to let their play on the court do the talking to put an end to all chatter about the Donovan Mitchell - Rudy Gobert highly publicized "internal conflict" back in the spring at the time the entire pandemic and NBA shutdown started. The Pelicans won 10 of 19 games that Zion played in but there are a lot of question marks about him leading into this game. Additionally, the Jazz (even though without Bojan Bogdanovic) have a quality team. Bogdanovic averaged just 16 points and shot just 40% from the field over the last 10 games. Utah will be just fine without him here and this is a Jazz team that is 18 games over .500 for a reason! They lost their final game before the shutdown but that was preceded by a 5-game winning streak and the Jazz get right back to their winning ways immediately here to get the restart off to a strong start. 10* UTAH