Rolling with chalk Celtics and underdog Kings: Best bets for Jan. 3

Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum, right, drives to the rim as Denver Nuggets guard Bones Hyland defends in the first half of an NBA basketball game, Sunday, Jan. 1, 2023, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Each day, one of our experts will offer up a best bet (or two or three) that mobile sportsbooks are offering. It might be a traditional spread bet, a player prop or one of the various odds boosts that books offer.

Here are our best bets for Tuesday, Jan. 3:


The play: Celtics (-8.5) over Thunder

The odds/bet: -110 ($33 to win $30)

The book: Caesars Sportsbook

Time/TV: 8 p.m. (NBA League Pass)

Our take: The Celtics have not only been dominant as far as winning games, they’ve also been covering machines since they tend to win by double figures.

The Thunder have performed well at times this season with a young cast of talent, but they don’t project to hang with a Celtics team that’s one of the deepest and most dangerous in the NBA with superstar Jayson Tatum leading the way.

8.5 is a wide spread, but we still see value here with the Celtics set to continue their run of dominance.


The play: Kings (+3.5) over Jazz

The odds/bet: -110 ($11 to win $10)

The book: Caesars Sportsbook

Time/TV: 9 p.m. (NBA League Pass)

Our take: The Kings have overachieved this season with Domantas Sabonis and De’Aaron Fox leading the way, so it’s puzzling as to why they’re getting 3.5 points tonight.

The Jazz have also overachieved this season with a rebuilt core, but they’ve cooled off somewhat after a hot start and will be without one of their key players in Collin Sexton.

We’ll take the underdog here with Sabonis and company showing no signs of slowing down.


Monday’s best bets

  • Citrus Bowl, LSU (-15) over Purdue (WON $30)
  • Cotton Bowl, Tulane (+2.5) over USC (WON $10)

Monday’s profit/loss: +$40 (2-0)

Total for the week: +$40 (2-0)

Total for January: -$4 (2-2)

Total for 2023: -$4 (2-2)

NOTE: If a line or odds are minus, it considers the juice one must lay to place the bet. Ex: Team A is -160 on the money line, one would have to bet $160 to win $100 (or $16 to win $10). OR Team B is a 5-point favorite at -110, one would have to bet $110 to win $100 (or $11 to win $10.)

Conversely, on positive lines, if Team C is +140 on the money line, a $100 would bring in $140 (or $10 to win $14).


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