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NBA Best Bets: NBA Picks and Betting Trends on DraftKings Sportsbook for May 16

Julian Edlow gives his best NBA bets and betting trends on DraftKings Sportsbook.

Denver Nuggets v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

The NBA Conference Finals get underway on Tuesday, starting in the west with the Lakers going to Denver for Game 1 against the Nuggets. Let’s breakdown some betting angles on DraftKings Sportsbook.

Any added plays will be posted to Twitter as I play them.

All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.

Los Angeles Lakers at Denver Nuggets

Denver Nuggets win Game 1/Series (+110) — 2-units

I’m having a tough time ultimately picking a winner in this series, but I do lean to Denver. We’ll have a full breakdown in the Unreasonable Odds Podcast, but I’ll also give a quick breakdown here.

I know that I like Denver early in the series here, where they’ve protected home court all season. Game 1 is massive in this series. The Lakers have stole Game 1 in both previous series, then the home team has won each game from that point, allowing the Lakers to win in six games each time. Winning in Denver will be the toughest task yet for the Lakers, as the Nuggets are 37-4 at home this season when Jokic plays.

The Lakers also have a tremendous home court with this new roster they’ve built, and the Nuggets struggle on the road. Stealing a road game for either team in this series would go a long way. The Lakers are tough to figure out because the roster is so new. Are they actually this good? Or are they just hot at the right time?

Sharp money agrees that the Nuggets come out and take a 1-0 lead in this series, but I’ll say in advance, I’ll likely come back and grab some Lakers at some point in this series. But for now, go Nuggets. We’ll figure the rest out later.

If you just want to get involved in the series on the Denver side, but don’t want to risk them losing Game 1, there are ways to discount the price. Denver is -160 on the series line, but you can bet Nikola Jokic to be WCF MVP at -130.

If you just want a bet for the game, but don’t want to be invested in the series, I’d look for ways to find the Nuggets at a cheaper price. Denver to win the first half and the full game is priced at -150.

Series 3’s Leader: Austin Reaves (+3000) — 0.1-units

We’ll call this one the Slop Special, as John Hyslop of Odds Jam dropped by Unreasonable Odds and dished this out as one of his props. I happen to agree with him, Reaves is much too underpriced in this market.

Jamal Murray is the obvious favorite, but +125 is way too much. Why I like this market is that the three best players in the series aren’t all that much of a threat — LeBron James (+350), Nikola Jokic (+8000) and Anthony Davis (OTB). Both of these teams played six games in the last round, and Murray hit 14 3-pointers. Reaves hit exactly as many. At 30-1 we only need to know if he has the upside to compete, and he does.

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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.

The contents contained in this article do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment.