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NBA Playoffs Betting Overview: April 16, 2019

NBA Playoffs Betting Overview: April 16, 2019

 

There’s nothing better than the NBA playoffs and using our NBA DFS lineup optimizer to win money while watching the playoffs. After three of four teams lost home court advantage in Saturday upsets, we saw tremendous schematic adjustments last night from Brett Brown and Doc Rivers to tie their series’ at one game a piece.

 

I expect to see similar bold moves from Nick Nurse, Mike Malone and Billy Donovan this evening and at least two of these series move to the underdog’s court knotted at one.

 

 

 

Magic-Raptors

Total: 211.5

Spread: TOR -10.5

ORL: 43-40, Last 10: 8-2, Away: 18-24, ATS: 45-36-2,   Dog: 24-30,  Streak: W5

TOR: 58-25, Last 10: 7-3, Home: 32-10, ATS: 37-44-2,   Fav: 49-18 Streak: L1

 

It took shooting damn near 50% from deep and a career performance from DJ Augustin for the Magic to steal game one. It’s safe to say those aren’t repeatable performances, but Orlando’s defensive output is duplicable and they can get a more out of Nikola Vucevic if they figure out a way to screen him free of Marc Gasol — or if Toronto sits him for Serge Ibaka due to the limitations Gasol showed in transition defense in game one — so there’s a path for them to win again tonight, but it’s narrow.

 

Kyle Lowry was the worst in a game of bad Raptors performances, not scoring on seven shot attempts and showing absolutely no ability to drive against the Magic. If he continues to struggle, a postseason tradition like no other, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Nick Nurse run the offense through Kawhi Leonard and Fred Vanvleet.

 

I expect the Raptors to build a sizeable lead on the back of a smothering defensive performance, be more open to sitting Lowry than they were in game one and make a statement by covering the double digit spread before heading to Orlando.

 

 

 

Spurs-Nuggets

Total 208.5

Spread DEN -7

SAS: 49-34, Last 10: 6-4, Away: 17-25, ATS: 44-38-1,   Dog: 14-20,  Streak: W4

DEN: 54-29, Last 10: 5-5, Home: 34-8, ATS: 42-41,   Fav: 44-14,  Streak: L1

 

The Spurs got the shots they wanted and far too many of them were around the rim for Mike Malone’s liking. Denver battled back from an early deficit, but the lack of end of game execution spoke of a young team and a young coach making their playoff debuts and getting a bit overwhelmed.

 

Most of what went wrong for the Nuggets should be easily addressed with schematic adjustments — if you can’t protect the rim with Nikola Jokic, Mason Plumlee and Paul Millsap on the roster then something’s rotten in Denver — and settling on a wing rotation from the likes of Gary Harris, Will Barton and Malik Beasley should help as well.

 

Like Toronto, I don’t think Denver has anything to worry about as the Spurs simply don’t have the shooting in their starting five to win if they’re denied easy access to the paint, but if the Nuggets lose game two I’d start to panic as Malone has the roster to counter anything that San Antonio can throw at them.

 

Regardless of who wins tonight, the over is a great bet as Denver didn’t have a single fast break point on Sunday and they should be looking to push the pace and take advantage altitude.

 

 

 

Thunder-Trailblazers

Total: 223

Spread: POR -1.5

OKC: 49-34, Last 10: 7-3, Away: 22-20, ATS: 42-41,   Dog: 9-8,  Streak: L1

POR: 54-29, Last 10: 8-2, Home: 33-9, ATS: 46-36-1,   Fav: 41-9,  Streak: W4

 

Oklahoma City didn’t seem to have a plan for Damian Lillard like Alvin Gentry did last season which was surprising given Billy Donovan’s well earned reputation as a sterling X’s and O’s coach, but I expect we see a shift in defensive philosophy for game two.

 

The Thunder got the shots that they wanted — Steven Adams found great success in those few times they targeted Enes Kanter in the post, Paul George got off 15 three point attempts with most coming in rhythm and just four of Russell Westbrook’s 17 shots came from beyond the rim — but they weren’t falling and if that’s due to George’s shoulder issue then OKC should be able to find a way to be competitive in this series and a potential second round matchup, doesn’t stand a chance in the western conference finals as PG13’s sharpshooting is the engine that makes the Thunder offense go.

 

Terry Stotts got more out of Kanter than anyone thought possible, Lillard and CJ McCollum were able to hoist a combined 45 shots and yet OKC nearly stole a game on Portland’s homecourt which doesn’t bode well for the Blazers odds in the series.

 

 

 

Has a late scratch sent you scrambling for answers? Looking for a sharp GPP pivot or want to debate a matchup? Reach me on Twitter (@TheHyperCritic) for the advice you need to be profitable.

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