Sunday's Best Bets
April 13, 2018
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Sunday NBA Playoffs Best Bets
If Saturday's quadruple-header of NBA playoff action wasn't enough, bettors on Sunday can get right back at it with another quadruple-header on tap. Sunday's actions features plenty of favorites to go all the way as the likes of Boston, Cleveland, OKC, and Houston all begin their playoff campaigns. All of them are also laying various amounts of chalk as home favorites on Sunday, so let's get right to where my money has already gone.
Odds per - Intertops.eu
Best Bet #1: OKC -3
When OKC spent last summer doing what they could to bring Carmelo Anthony and Paul George into the fold, it was for this time of year when a championship run is needed. Now there is always the cloud of George leaving this summer looming overhead, so chances are the better the Thunder do in the playoffs during this run, the better their odds of keeping George long-term become.
Of all the home favorites on Sunday, it's OKC laying the fewest points and I think that's a little disrespectful. I get that it's a 4 vs 5 matchup in the West where the final day's results determined who would get home court, but this OKC team is built for finding success in the playoffs and they've got plenty of guys who know how to get the job done. In fact, I wouldn't even be shocked to hear that guys like George, Anthony, and Westbrook (among others) are using this small spread as some motivation that the Thunder are indeed getting slighted here.
To be honest, I'll take the value at -3 if oddsmakers are offering it to me for this game because I just don't see how Utah matches up well enough to win more than a game or two (at home) in this series. OKC won three of the four meetings this year between the two teams and all of them were done by Christmas. And while you could say that the Jazz are a much improved team since then, the same can easily be said about the Thunder, and it's probably OKC that has made bigger leaps in that regard as well. Back in the final few months of 2017, all the talk about OKC was surrounding the new stars in town and how they could all coexist. Working things out in that respect took some time, but OKC still managed to beat Utah three times in December while they were working through those motions. Now the Thunder are a finely tuned machine and are only laying a single possession? Sign me up.
Odds per - Intertops.eu
Best Bet #2: Minnesota/Houston Over 216.5
The Houston Rockets have slid into the favorite roll to win it all this year the past few months as Golden State dealt with numerous injuries and plenty of poor play as a result. Without question the Rockets have been the best team in the NBA all year, and now it's time to live up to expectations and breeze through the first round or two of the playoffs. As 11.5-point favorites in Game 1, breezing to a victory shouldn't be a huge concern, but I also don't really want to be sweating out a backdoor bucket, missed FT's, etc to really be laying that kind of chalk. Instead, I'm going to the total here and while the the inkling through many betting circles is to lean to the 'under' in Game 1's of the NBA playoffs, I don't see too many scenarios where these two teams don't hit 220+ points.
These two teams split the results in terms of Over/Under this year, with both games in Houston cashing 'under' tickets. The Rockets did go 4-0 SU and ATS in those meetings, but what's important to me there is the fact that Houston did score at least 116 points in all four games. Give the Rockets that number in Game 1 on Sunday and this game should easily sail 'over' the total as Minnesota scored 100+ in three of the four regular season meetings as well.
Finally, what is a little surprising about this number – that has already been bet down – is the fact that the Game 1 'under' bias seems to be working in full force here. This 216.5 number is by far the lowest total we've had for these two teams all year, and while the playoffs should take a few points of the number, this is a full 7 points lower then any other Timberwolves/Rockets game this year. So while the O/U did go 2-2 during the regular season, three of the four games would have easily passed this total, and the one that didn't was just a three-pointer short. These two teams combined for 249 points when they played about a month ago, and even with fewer fouls and defensive play being tighter, getting to 230 points here is definitely not out of the question.
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