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Kyrie Irving will now be allowed to play in New York City. The Miami Heat are popping off at each other. The Oklahoma City Thunder won a game. As did the Knicks and Pistons.

If you hit an 11-for-11 parlay last night, you are in the wrong business. Drop whatever it is you are doing, move to Vegas and keep it going, OK?

There is one truism about NBA basketball in March that holds steady year after year and decade after decade: The games are extraordinarily unpredictable because some teams are gunning for the lottery, others are playing solely for playoff positioning, and a select few are doing what they usually do: Winning. That is what happened with the Phoenix Suns last night as they went into Minnesota, withstood the trash-talking Timberwolves and improved the NBA’s best record to 59-14.

Some folks call it silly season, which is fitting.

Tonight, there are five more games on the schedule and a bunch of teams on the second night of back-to-backs, always a tricky thing to navigate, especially when some teams need to keep their best players sharp for the postseason.

One of the teams taking a deep breath today is the Brooklyn Nets, who learned this morning that New York City Mayor Eric Adams is lifting the city’s vaccination mandate for private employers, which will allow Irving to play home games. And since the guy just dropped 43 on the Memphis Grizzlies after scoring 60 in his previous game against Orlando, Brooklyn is now the +450 (down from +475 earlier today) second choice to win the NBA championship despite sitting in eighth place in the East.

Still, if the season ends with the standings looking the same as they do today, the Nets will have to travel to Toronto for a No. 7 vs. No. 8 play-in game that Irving would have to sit out because Ontario still has a vaccine mandate and Kyrie remains unvaccinated.

Amid all the chaos, keep something in mind: Two years ago, almost nobody saw the Miami Heat coming. Same last season with the Suns.

As for this season, the “it” team seems to be the Grizzlies, and they will get a test tonight at home against an Indiana Pacers team that bears little resemblance to the squad that Rick Carlisle started the season with. But is Memphis the next incarnation of the Heat/Suns? Or are we all sleeping on someone?

Good question, and there is no clear answer. So let’s focus on what we know.

The Grizzlies have gone 1-1 against the Phoenix Suns this season with one game remaining, and Jaren Jackson Jr. was on ESPN last night openly advocating his case for Defensive Player of the Year. He had four blocks in a victory over the Nets, and he is a decent wager at +1600 because he has 163 blocks, which is 124 more than favorite Bam Adebayo of the Heat and 30 more than anyone else.

So if there is one and only one wager you want to make today, make it JJJ for DPOY. He is far from a lock, but that award is a crapshoot because voters do not look at defensive qualities the same way that coaches do. And +1600 is screaming “play me immediately.”

So let’s have a look at tonight’s slate, which most people will not be watching because of the resumption of the NCAA tournament with Gonzaga, Duke, Arizona and Villanova all in action in the Sweet 16.

Cleveland (+5) at Toronto: The Cavs are just 6-10 since Jarrett Allen went down with a broken finger, and they are going up against a Raptors team that has a huge incentive to beat them. The Raptors begin the day one game ahead of Toronto for sixth place in the East, and they are 0-3 thus far against Cleveland and thus cannot win the tiebreaker. Allen was injured the last time these two teams played on March 6, so that could provide some incentive for the Cavs. The Raptors have lost two of their last three but won five in a row before that. This one should be close, so take the points (-110) and go with Evan Mobley over 9.5 rebounds (-105). He had 17 the last time these teams met.

Indiana (+12.5) at Memphis: Both teams played last night, and the Pacers are the team that had to travel although it was not an onerous journey from Indianapolis aboard a private jet. The teams played nine days ago and the Grizz won by 33, but Ja Morant is questionable tonight after having tests conducted on his sore knee, and it behooves Memphis to rest him in what should be a winnable game without him. Desmond Bane has been killing it this month from 3-point range, so take him going over anything around 3.5 3-pointers made (+140), along with JJJ over 2.5 blocks (+125)

Washington (-9.5) at Milwaukee: Both of these teams had Wednesday night off, and the last time they met Giannis Antetokounmpo had a triple-double of 33 points, 15 rebounds and 11 assists. He was ruled out because of knee soreness earlier today, and the line dropped from Milwaukee -13.5. With Khris Middleton also out, the Wizards should be able to keep this close in a low-scoring game. Take the points (-110) and go under 229.5 (-110).

Chicago (+2) at New Orleans: No team has been worse against the spread as a road underdog than the Bulls, who are 5-14-0 in such games and will be going up tonight against a Pelicans team that is just a half-game back of the Los Angeles Lakers in the 9-10 race and is incentivized to surpass El Lay so that a 9-10 play-in game would be played in the Big Easy, perhaps with Zion Williamson finally back. These teams have not met since the second game of the season when Lonzo Ball had a triple-double against his old team. He is out with a torn meniscus in his knee, so his alumni game in NOLA will have to wait until next season. The Bulls have lost four of five and are making the second stop of a five-game road trip. The pick here is Jonas Valanciunas over 18.5 points (-105) and over 10.5 rebounds (-155). He has been playing exceptionally well over the past five games.

Phoenix (+4) at Denver: The Suns are underdogs? Yup, and that is something that has happened only 10 times all season, nine times when they were a road team (they have gone 6-3 against the spread in those games). The Nuggets have a rest advantage and are just 6-9-0 against the spread in such situations. These teams have not seen each other since Nov. 21, and the season series is knotted 1-1. The Nuggets have gone over in 16 of 28 games as a home favorite, which is not a strong enough trend to bet. Don’t touch this game.