NBA All-Star Weekend takes place in Charlotte, North Carolina, this weekend, and the 2019 Rising Stars Challenge will headline Day 1 of the festivities. The game will tip off Friday at 9 p.m. ET at the Spectrum Center and Team USA is a two-point favorite over Team World in the latest 2019 NBA Rising Stars Challenge odds. The total is listed at 296.5 for this entertaining exhibition featuring some of the game’s top young talent. However, before you make your 2019 NBA Rising Stars Challenge picks, you’ll want to see what SportsLine’s resident NBA expert, Mike Barner, has to say. He’s on an amazing 28-10 run with his recent NBA picks. 

A respected NBA Fantasy expert, both season-long and daily, Barner has seen his work appear in Sports Illustrated and on Yahoo, RotoWire and KFFL. He has also been featured on ESPN Radio. Barner digs deep into the data, examining team trends and projecting game outcomes. 

Barner’s expertise has been on full display lately: Over his past 38 NBA picks, Barner has cashed at a massive 74 percent win rate that has returned nearly $1,700 to $100 players. That payout doesn’t include the 6-1 parlay he nailed by hitting all three of his best bets for Monday. 

Now, he’s locked in on the 2019 Rising Stars Challenge as part of NBA All-Star Weekend. He has released a confident against-the-spread pick that’s only available at SportsLine.

For Friday’s 2019 Rising Stars game, Barner knows that Team USA’s big advantage will come in the backcourt. There is impressive offensive talent at guard with Donovan Mitchell, De’Aaron Fox and Trae Young. Mitchell should provide the scoring punch since he averages 22.4 points, while Young and Fox will share responsibilities at point guard. 

That blend should be particularly interesting, with Young providing incredible range and the ability to create offense from anywhere off the dribble and Fox providing the slashing ability. Team World doesn’t have matching production in its backcourt and could have issues defending on the perimeter too. 

But just because Team USA features plenty of talent doesn’t mean it’ll cover the Team USA vs. Team World NBA Rising Stars spread.

Luka Doncic and Ben Simmons are point guards in the bodies of small forwards, so their length will be problematic for the smaller guards on Team USA’s NBA Rising Stars Challenge roster. Doncic can create off the dribble and get to the rim, and the favorite to win Rookie of the Year is going to be difficult to guard. 

Simmons’ ability to create for himself and for teammates around the rim is truly remarkable. Expect DeAndre Ayton and Lauri Markkanen to regularly reap the rewards of his exceptional vision, with Markkanen also creating space for Doncic and Simmons with his ability to shoot it from the power forward position. 

We can tell you Barner is leaning under, but his stronger pick is against the spread. He knows a hidden x-factor makes one side of the spread a must-back. He’s only sharing what it is, and who to back, at SportsLine.

So who wins Team USA vs. Team World at the 2019 NBA Rising Stars Challenge? And what x-factor makes one team a must-back? Visit SportsLine now to get Friday’s 2019 NBA Rising Stars Challenge picks, all from the expert on a massive 28-10 NBA heater, and find out.

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