NBA Playoff series betting is off to a scorching start! That the Brooklyn Nets were able to eliminate the Boston Celtics in five games wasn’t much of a surprise to anybody. But the Milwaukee Bucks may have caught some people a little off-guard when they swept the Miami Heat in four consecutive games.
And no doubt that won them support in the minds of some 1VICE.AG customers as they embark on the East semi-final series.
Now Here This
Remember two things here – the Bucks have endured a couple of genuine playoff disappointments in a row as Giannis Antetokounmpo was given back-to-back MVP awards, and the Nets haven’t even played together all that much as a team.
Obviously the plan all along was for Brooklyn to deal itself into position to stack the deck with superstars and win themselves a title, and they couldn’t be in a better spot to do that than they are right now.
Milwaukee’s plan has been solidly in place for a few years now, as head coach Mike Budenholzer, one of the best in the business, has posted a regular season record of
162-65 with the franchise.
NBA Playoff Series Betting – Current Odds
Here are the odds on the series as they are currently posted at top online sportsbooks:
Brooklyn Nets to win -205
Milwaukee Bucks to win +175
Sure, the Bucks look solid for the most part for bettors enjoying some NBA Playoff series betting. They actually led the NBA in scoring this season. And they have world-class defenders like Giannis and Jrue Holiday.
But I think you have to look at this Nets team in a different way than you did in the regular season. As we looked at them earlier in the campaign, we had our doubts when it was a “Kevin & Kyrie” show, because Kyrie Irving’s immaturity (which persists) has the ability to bring down a team.
But then they brought aboard James Harden, and things changed. He brings a steady quality to the floor leadership that Irving does not necessarily provide.
Injuries and the Big Three
Of course, the Nets’ injury situation is what prevented them from capturing the #1 seed in the East. In fact, coming into the opening-round series against Boston, their Big Three had played only 202 minutes together. Looking at these stats makes it more difficult when choosing what to bet.
And now it’s time for some perspective. This season, the Nets registered an Offensive Rating (points per 100 possessions) of 118.3, which is the highest ever in the NBA since that statistic has been documented.
Against Boston, the Offensive Rating was 130.1, and perhaps that is an indication as to what kind of offensive machine they’ve got with Durant, Harden and Irving healthy and in the lineup at the same time, along with Blake Griffin (who can still show some flashes) and Joe Harris, who is only the best three-point shooter in the NBA (47.5% in the regular schedule and 51.5% vs. the Celtics).
NBA Playoff Series Betting – Betting Totals
Yes, Milwaukee is a high-scoring bunch. But considering that they take more shots than anybody and also allow their opponents to take more shots than any other team has, you really have to wonder whether their style of play doesn’t fit right into Brooklyn’s wheelhouse.
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It would be one thing if they had enough to muscle the Nets inside. That is one thing Brooklyn would seem to be vulnerable to (as they showed at time against Boston’s Tristan Thompson), and what would give Philadelphia a chance with a healthy Joel Embiid. But the Bucks really don’t have that going for them.
Bucks vs. Nets NBA Playoff Betting – Series Winner
And that’s why the Nets are an easy play here. Could they sweep? Hmmm, not sure. But I have seen a price of +385 on Brooklyn winning in five games and +400 for a six-game victory. Either of those looks like it might be a judicious wager.
A quick note – I’d look to the “over” first on totals. The Celtics actually had an Offensive Rating equaling Brooklyn’s 118.3 in the playoff round. So the Bucks will score points. They just won’t score as many.
So it’s -205 on the Nets. I can’t see them losing a best-of-seven.
By Charles Jay
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