All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.
I’m looking into these Wednesday play-in games (as I publish on April 13) and I really can’t come up with anything I want to play. I lean to both favorites winning these games at home, but if you made me play the spreads I think it’s too many points and would lean to both dogs. Probably leaves me in a stay away spot here, but I’ll be locked into both games and put out anything that I play on the live line. However, another series line does jump out to me after we confirmed some playoff matchups following Tuesday’s play-in games.
As 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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I put these plays out on Twitter as soon as I could following Brooklyn’s play-in win. I acknowledge the numbers have moved, but still feel Boston is the right side both in Sunday’s opener and the series. Hopefully you got in early, but still play-able.
This series line opened with the No. 2 seed Celtics at +115, moving all the way to -130 overnight. The futures board told us the C’s would open dogs, as the Nets are favored above Boston to win the east. But early money pounded the Celts to make it out of the first-round, even without Robert Williams. This line is a little disrespectful to the Celtics, still pricing the Nets to play at a level we haven’t seen them ever reach for a consistent period of time.
Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving are a big problem offensively, but this isn’t the play-in round. The Celtics have been the best team in the NBA for a few months now, and it starts with their elite defensive efficiency. They have the bodies to throw at KD and Kyrie, not to shut them down, but slow them compared to some of the lesser teams we’ve seen Brooklyn pound recently. Specifically, matching up Marcus Smart with Kyrie — someone Smart has a lot of experience covering and should be able to bother.
The rest of the talent on Brooklyn is where the issue will lie. Who knows if we’ll see Ben Simmons, but I refuse to factor him into this handicap. If he see Simmons on the floor, his confidence issues and the fact he hasn’t played in a year should be much larger negatives than the positives he brings on defense. It’s not like he can play off the ball and let KD and Kyrie do their thing either. Simmons needs the ball in his hands. Seth Curry is battling an ankle injury and didn’t look himself in the play-in round, and the bench minutes for Brooklyn really hurt them — hence the 22-point lead they blew on Tuesday.
For Boston, things are just clicking on every level. There’s chemistry, balance and depth, along with top-end talent in Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. The Nets have two of the top-three players in the series, and the top player in KD. But the C’s have a much more sound rotation, and one that’s been working well together.
Pair the more balanced team with home court this time around, along with some revenge for beating the team that bounced them in the first-round a year ago, and I think the Celtics are the right side of this one, despite the tough draw this early in the playoffs.
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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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