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Tuesday features Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals between the Milwaukee Bucks and the Atlanta Hawks. Yahoo Sports’ Jared Quay has the advice that you need.
All odds via BetMGM.
Either the Milwaukee Bucks or Atlanta Hawks are going to break a long NBA Finals drought.
The No. 2 seeded Bucks haven’t been to an NBA Finals since 1974 when Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was part of the team. The No. 5 seeded Hawks’ streak is even longer. Atlanta hasn’t been to the Finals since 1961. The team was the St. Louis Hawks back then.
Milwaukee is a big favorite to win the series and entering Wednesday night’s Game 1 and is giving Atlanta a lot of points against the spread. Milwaukee is now an 8-point favorite against the Hawks after the line shifted late Tuesday night.
Why is the line so big? Atlanta is 21-22 on the road this year while Milwaukee is 31-10. Though the Bucks are just 38-45 against the spread so far in 2020-21.
Bucks games have tended to go over the total this year as the over has hit 44 times. But four of the last five games between the two teams have gone under the betting total. And five of the last six Hawks games have also hit the under. You may want to think about betting the under.
Yahoo Sports’ Jared Quay also thinks you should go with the upset on the moneyline. The Hawks won Game 1 against the New York Knicks in the first round and also won Game 1 against the Philadelphia 76ers. He thinks that will continue on Wednesday night.
“Follow the trend and take the Atlanta Hawks moneyline on the road,” Quay said.
Prop bet we like: Brook Lopez over 13.5 points
The New York Islanders are on the brink of elimination from the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but they'll have a chance to survive at home in Game 6 against the Tampa Bay Lightning tonight. Bet on Isles vs. Lightning (-155) and get your first bet risk-free up to $1,000. (New users only. 21+. Terms apply.)
While it seemed like the entire betting sharp community was touting the efforts of the Islanders as underdogs during these playoffs, the heavily favored Lightning went about their business and then some in Game 5, completely crushing New York en route to an 8-0 ... uh, victory.
That's obviously a devastating, hard-to-replicate loss, but let's get the obvious out of the way: The Islanders aren't going to lose Game 6 in similar fashion.
Game 5 showed just how hard it is to beat Tampa Bay when it hits its stride. Its potent top lines are nearly impossible to stop — Brayden Point, Steven Stamkos, and Nikita Kucherov (more on him later) have been masterful — and once it became clear that Islander pucks would rather hit posts instead of the net, the game was over.
New York will undoubtedly be looking to play a tighter, cleaner form of hockey in Game 6 and avoid another game getting out of hand, but that could play right into Tampa Bay's gloves. All the pressure is on the Islanders this game, while the reigning champs are one win away from returning to the promised land.
Who do you think will be looking to play carefully — perhaps even too carefully?
If there's one thing going for the Isles (not much is — most advanced stats have the Lightning well ahead of New York in terms of puck control and offensive hockey) — it's that they'll be able to fight one last time at the uber-friendly confines of the Nassau Coliseum. The Islanders are 5-0 against the spread in their last 10 games at home.
So, why would we take the Lightning in this elimination game?
The Lightning have low odds (low for them, of course). The moneyline seems right coming off that monstrous victory, but they're still having to play a desperate Islanders team at home. I'd bet this up to -160, but anything past that and I wouldn't look at a Lightning bet.
Pick(s): Tampa Bay Lightning ML (-155) / Nikita Kucherov OVER 1.5 points (+140)
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