All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.
Per usual, I’ll put everything official up on Twitter that I bet on personally. This is a betting guide for this NBA card, and anything I’ve actually bet will include a unit amount.
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Celtics 1H +1.5 (-110) — 1.5-units
Take any narrative about this being a down spot for Boston and throw it away. This is the most rest the Celtics have gotten between games since they got the same rest between Games 2 and 3 against Milwaukee in the second-round of the playoffs. Since then, the C’s went on to play 12 games in 23 days.
When Boston was coming off that emotional Game 7 victory, Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals was supposed to be a down spot. While the Celtics did go on to lose that game, they were up by eight at halftime without Al Horford and Marcus Smart.
I think we could see a similar result in this game. Golden State will have been off for a week when this game tips off, so we have the potential for some rust. From a pure matchup standpoint, the Celtics are in position to play the Warriors tough. I think we say that play out early in this series with Boston finding success in the first half.
If the Celts do wear down, I think the fatigue would catchup to them in the second half. Not to mention Golden State’s experience could also come into play later in the game — they are 9-0 at home in this postseason. I think this is a close game, and lean C’s, but playing Game 1 on the first half if the better bet to me.
Horford’s point prop is set at 10.5, while Draymond’s is set at 8.5. I lean to the under on Green, but will lay some extra juice to play this matchup bet instead. Everything about Draymond points to him shying away from scoring in this matchup, particularly in the early going.
Boston’s defense is going to leave Green wide open on his touches, letting him facilitate — which is what he wants to do. If you look at Green’s game log in the playoffs, he generally shoots/scores less earlier in a series, and then looks to be a bit more aggressive when there’s more on the line in closeout games.
The matchup doesn’t fare well for Green around the rim, as that’s where the majority of his scoring would likely come. This bigger team with Horford, Rob Williams, and even Grant Williams should do a good job protecting the rim. If Draymond somehow decides to shoot and makes his shots, we live with it — but he scored just eight total points in two games against Boston in the regular season.
As for the Celtics side, they should be looking to take advantage of their size in this matchup. That should mean some extra paint touches for people like Horford, not to mention his willing ability to step out and knockdown triples. The edge here feels much wider than the -160 price.
Series Winner: Celtics (+130) — 1.5-units
Prior to the end of the ECF we did put in some Celtics for 1.5-units in a best bets article. Now we’re going to add to it for another 1.5-units, which also happens to be a slightly better price. Now we are at 3-units at +125 total for the series. Outside of NBA Finals experience, the C’s have edges all over the floor. Obviously, I’m pulling for them in Game 1, but if they happen to drop this game, I’d probably look to add another unit or so on the new series line.
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All views expressed are my own. I am an employee of DraftKings and am ineligible to play in public DFS or DKSB contests.
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