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The opening round of the NBA postseason is underway, and we’re here to take a look at the early reviews. Let’s check out the adjusted future odds to win the conferences and championship while we talk about a cool NBA contest over at Sportsbook Review.
Eastern Conference Series Scrutiny
No. 8 Washington Wizards vs. No. 1 Toronto Raptors (Toronto leads 1-0)
Fans of the Raptors are going gaga over their 114-106 opening series win over the Wizards, but those who bet them had varying degrees of joy. I always say shop around to get the sharpest line available and the only way to do that is to check out the best online sportsbooks before you make the plunge. Case in point was the Raptors laying between 7½ and 8 points from the oddsmakers at various offshore books. It proved to be the difference between a win and a push for Toronto’s backers and a quick check at tonight’s game sees the Raps laying 6½ to 7½ in Game 2 of the series. The boys from the Great White North appear poised to win the series, but can they cover the number? Toronto is +145 to win the East and +950 to win the championship while Washington is +6250 to win the East and +30000 to win the championship.
No. 7 Milwaukee Bucks vs. No. 2 Boston Celtics (Boston leads 1-0)
Bloodied, battered and without their two major stars Gordon Hayward and Kyrie Irving, this band of Celtics are bent on proving they are more than a blue-collar crew just trying to eke out a win. But the fact is, despite the burgeoning talent of Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, the Green did just that and escaped with a 113-107 overtime win over the Bucks in the opening game of their series. The Celtics may have a tough road to hoe after Game 2 when the venue shifts to Milwaukee, where the Bucks have a 25-16 home record this season but have failed miserably at the windows in those contests with a dismal 13-25-3 ATS mark. Make sure to get the latest on this and all the playoff games over at SBR’s NBA Picks section. The Celtics are +1850 to win the East and +8500 to win the championship while the Bucks are +6250 to win the East and +30000 to win the championship.
No. 6 Miami Heat vs. No. 3 Philadelphia 76ers (Series tied 1-1)
The knock on the Sixers coming into the postseason was their lack of experience vs. a veteran Miami team devoid of stars but long on maturity. The first game was a blowout, with Philadelphia cruising to a 130-103, win but things changed quickly in Game 2 where Miami returned the favor with a 113-103 victory to knot the series at one apiece. Miami now gets the home-court advantage and this one could get interesting. The 76ers are +360 to win the East and +1825 to win the championship while the Heat are +4500 to win the East and +20000 to win the championship.
No. 5 Indiana Pacers vs. No. 4 Cleveland Cavaliers (Indiana leads 1-0)
We all know the Cavs have been a mercurial team this season and have absolutely bludgeoned those betting them this season with a woeful ATS record of 32-50-1. Well, their erratic play has once again cost them as they succumbed to the Pacers on Sunday in a 98-80 loss as seven-point home chalk. Will King James abdicate his Eastern Conference throne in the opening round of the playoffs?! Things don’t look good for Cleveland but then again, when LeBron is on there’s nobody better. The Cavaliers are +255 to win the East and +1250 to win the championship while the Pacers are +2450 to win the East and 11000 to win the championship.
Western Conference Series Update
No. 8 Minnesota Timberwolves vs. No. 1 Houston Rockets (Houston leads 1-0)
James Harden did what James Harden does in Game 1 and outplayed everyone on the court, scoring 44 points in Houston’s 104-101 victory over the Wolves. The Rockets were 11-point favorites in that contest, but it was the Minnesota backers bringing home the cash despite the loss. As Harden goes, so too go the Rockets and tonight could get ugly for Minny if the Rockets do something they failed to do in Game 1 and that’s splash from beyond the arc. Houston is +133 to win the West and +233 to win the championship while Minnesota is a considerable dark horse at +10000 to win the West and +30000 to win the championship.
No. 7 San Antonio Spurs vs. No. 2 Golden State Warriors (Golden State leads 2-0)
The old lion is officially toothless as the Spurs are getting mauled by the whiz-bang crew from Oakland. San Antonio’s superstar Kawhi Leonard is rehabbing a thigh injury in New York while his team is getting punished 3000 miles away. It’s not a good look for Leonard, as his absence signaled the death knell for the Spurs before the series even began. If you’re into miracles and long shots then you can get the Spurs at +12000 to win the West and +40000 to win the championship. Their opponents from Golden State are the chalkiest team on the board at -103 to win the West and +115 to win it all.
No. 6 New Orleans Pelicans vs. No. 3 Portland Trail Blazers (New Orleans leads 1-0)
This was predicted to be one of the most intriguing series in the first-round as both teams are similar and had nearly identical regular season records. However, the five-point underdog from New Orleans took a narrow 97-95 win in Game 1 and paid off all those who had faith in the boys down on the bayou as five-point dogs. This series resumes on Tuesday night and it should be a dandy. The Pelicans are +5000 to win the West and +11000 to win the championship while the Blazers have identical odds on both.
No. 5 Utah Jazz vs. No. 4 Oklahoma City Thunder (OKC leads 1-0)
Utah was thunderstruck on Sunday when Oklahoma City drew away to a 116-108 win in their series opener. The Thunder’s Paul George was a downtown assassin hitting 8-of-11 treys and delivering 36 points in the victory. If Playoff P (George’s self-ascribed nickname) continues to lock and load from the rafters then the Jazz will be singin’ the blues. Oklahoma City is +2350 to win the West and +4000 to win the championship while Utah is +6000 to win the West and +15000 to win it all.
Ready to Handicap the NBA Playoffs?
If you like basketball and think you know it better than most then I suggest you run, don’t walk, over to Sportsbook Review to register for an account. It’s easy, painless and most of all…free! Once you do that you’re now eligible to register for their NBA Playoff 15K Challenge where you can win thousands of free play Betpoints. The down and dirty is that SBR is giving away top prizes to those contestants that place first through fifth. All you have to do is handicap a minimum of 40 games, or a maximum of 56, between now and the end of the postseason. You assign a rating of 1 to 3 for each wager – one if you like it, two if you really like it, and three if you love it.
At the end of the contest, the number crunchers over at SBR add and subtract to determine net units and give the top prize of 7500 free play Betpoints to the winner all the way down to 750 for the contestant finishing fifth. From there you can use those free play Betpoints to wager at the SBR sportsbook and turn those free plays into real Betpoints that can be used to purchase anything from a pizza to fill your belly, SBR merch to wear, or even get a big ass Samsung 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart LED flat screen! Click here for all the details and let’s see how much you really know about the NBA!