NBA Playoffs Betting Tips
Milwaukee Bucks vs. Orlando Magic Game 5
The real Milwaukee Bucks have turned up and normality can resume in the east. Milwaukee dropped Game 1 of the series in stunning fashion but they have since won three consecutive games.
After being ahead by only three points with a quarter to go on Monday, the Bucks pulled out all the stops in the fourth. They outscored the Magic 37-25 to take a commanding 121-106 victory in Game 4.
Most punters are expecting the Bucks to roll through the Magic again on Thursday, but can Orlando force a Game 6 on Saturday?
After a 33-40 regular season, it’s unlikely that the Magic can respond to three straight losses. Even with Nikola Vucevic scoring 31 points on Tuesday, they couldn’t get the job done.
Bookmakers have the current line at 13.5 and we think the Bucks will cover the spread and storm into the second round.
They didn’t play lights out to win by 15 earlier this week, so an improved performance could see a 20-point win or more.
Tip: Milwaukee Bucks –13.5 @ $1.90 – Bet Now
Houston Rockets vs. Oklahoma City Thunder Game 5
The Houston Rockets led the series 2-0 and it’s now tied at 2-2 after two stunning Thunder comebacks.
Chris Paul and the Thunder have firmly applied the pressure and we’re starting to see signs of the Rockets missing Russell Westbrook.
James Harden isn’t scoring at his usual clip and although he still scored 32 points on Tuesday, they are missing a quality secondary scorer.
The Thunder scored an overtime win to peg the deficit to 2-1 before Dennis Schroder chimed in with 30 points to even the series. It was a great effort from the bench player and he has always been a classy player.
Houston don’t respond well to pressure and they often find themselves getting knocked out of the playoffs in stunning fashion. History could be repeating this year and the Thunder are paying generous odds.
Oklahoma City is paying $2.34 to go 3-2 ahead in the series and we can’t turn down those odds. They have all the momentum and the neutral court plays into their hands.
Tip: Oklahoma City Thunder to win @ $2.34 – Bet Now
Los Angeles Lakers vs. Portland Trail Blazers Game 5
The Trail Blazers are starting to suffer from fatigue, after essentially playing playoff basketball since the NBA restarted.
Winning Game 1 was huge for Portland, but the Lakers have righted the ship and now hold a commanding 3-1 lead in the best of seven series.
LeBron James showed why he’s still the best player in the world on Tuesday. He scored 30 points and the Lakers never let Portland into the game.
Adding to Portland’s woes is the injury to star point guard Damian Lillard, who will miss Game 5 with a knee sprain. The injury should all but put an end to Portland’s hopes of beating the top seed in the western conference.
The Lakers should win this game but there is little value in taking the $1.07 head-to-head odds. Bookmakers have set the line at 13.5 points and that should garner two-way action.
We believe the Lakers will be out to make a statement before their second-round clash. A big victory over Portland on Thursday would send that statement, so expect an easy victory.
LeBron might take it easy and let the likes of Anthony Davis and Kyle Kuzma enjoy the spoils.
Tip: LA Lakers –13.5 @ $1.90 – Bet Now
Denver Nuggets vs. Utah Jazz Game 6
Just when it looked as though the Utah Jazz had the series wrapped up, the Nuggets fought back gamely in the second half.
The Jazz were 15 points up at one stage of the game and they looked home, but no one told Jamal Murray, who went off in the fourth.
The comeback win for Denver should give them every reason to get up for Game 6 on Friday. They have been largely outplayed by the Jazz, but the pre-series favourites are showing why they had support.
Nikola Jokic was incredible in the first half on Wednesday, going 7-7 and shooting deep threes with regularity. His contribution on Friday will be important if the Nuggets want to force a Game 7.
Jamal Murray has been the difference in this series for the Nuggets. He has emerged as a great talent and if he can play more consistently in the first half, they should be winning this game.
Bookmakers have the Jazz as $1.75 favourites, which is fair. However, the value is with the Nuggets. They played much better defense in Game 5 and if they do the same on Friday, they could win comfortably.
Tip: Denver Nuggets to win @ $2.10 – Bet Now
Boston Celtics vs. Toronto Raptors Game 1
Game 1 of a series is always hard to predict, especially with both teams coming off dominant Round 1 performances.
The Celtics scored a 4-0 series win over the Philadelphia 76ers and they were never really tested throughout that series.
They controlled the pace in all four games and despite Philadelphia making runs at various stages, they were always repelled with ease.
Defending champions, Toronto Raptors, also won 4-0. They had some nervous moments against the Brooklyn Nets, but class prevailed.
Despite not having Kawhi Leonard this season, the Raptors haven’t slowed down. Pascal Siakam is playing at an All-Star level and he is getting help from the likes of Fred VanVleet, who played extremely well against the Nets.
Facing the Celtics is a much harder task than the Nets. Boston has at least four players on the court that can score 20+ points, including Kemba Walker and Jayson Taytum.
Locking down those scorers will be tough for Toronto and they don’t have home-court advantage to rely on this year.
Take the Celtics at better than even money in Game 1, and look for them to set the tone of this playoff series.
Tip: Boston Celtics to win @ $2.10 – Bet Now
Los Angeles Clippers vs. Dallas Mavericks Game 6
It was a familiar story for the Dallas Mavericks in Game 5, and it didn’t boost their chances of winning this series.
Not only did they not have Kristaps Porzingis to start the game, but Luka Doncic could be missing for Game 6 and a possible Game 7.
It was a marginally dirty play that led to the injury of Doncic, which hasn’t gone down well in Dallas. Doncic is the only hope that Dallas has of pulling off an upset on Friday, so his availability is crucial.
Given the odds set by bookmakers, they are expecting Doncic to be on the sidelines. The Mavs are $5.20 outsiders and if Doncic was playing, they would be paying $2.90.
Porzingis is a chance of playing but without their star scorer, the end is nigh for Dallas’ season.
The current points spread line is 10.5 and that should be covered by Kawhi Leonard and the Clippers. They played much better in Game 5, winning 154-111.
It shouldn’t be a 43-point margin this time around but the –10.5 should be safe for punters.
Tip: LA Clippers –10.5 @ $1.90 – Bet Now