NBA picks: Wednesday, Feb. 26

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NBA picks: Wednesday, Feb. 26

Total to target

Suns at Jazz – over 200

Since playing to an 87-84 final on the season’s second day, these two teams proceeded to split high-scoring affairs (112-101, 112-104) in a home-and-home matchup on Nov. 29-30. The Suns have not played much defense on the road lately, allowing an average of 110.6 points over their last five games, while the Jazz have surrendered at least 98 and an average of 107.3 in their last four home contests. Both teams are giving up more than 100 points per game on the season.

Hot ‘dog

Brooklyn (+120) at Portland

Having split the first four games of a seven-game road trip and with a back-to-back in the thin air of Denver looming Thursday, this is a huge game for the Nets, who are in a dogfight to avoid Miami and Indiana in the first round of the playoffs. Jason Kidd knows he has to pick his spots with a veteran-laden team, so look for him to give Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce some extended minutes before dialing it back in Denver. The Blazers have won three straight, but they’re just 3-3 in their last six home games and 8-9 overall since a five-game win streak pushed them a season-high 22 games over .500.

Safe side

Houston (+5) at Los Angeles Clippers

The Rockets have dropped both of their matchups with the Clippers – by 19 and 13 points, respectively – but both of those games came in the first week of the season. Houston is a different team now, having lost just once in their last 11 tries (a 102-99 overtime setback at Golden State). The Clippers haven’t maintained anything close to that kind of consistency this month, sandwiching six wins around a pair of two-game skids. Houston has a legitimate shot at winning this game outright. Either way, it should be tight.

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