Editor's Note: This article is a free preview of our new Betting Predators NBA Premium Package, which was built to deliver you the best NBA information, 7 days a week, for player prop betting and DFS. Our main goal is to give you the most actionable, high quality content that you need in order to win, period.
As an NBA Premium playoffs subscriber you'll get at least two pieces of premium content seven days per week, including DFS Top Plays and best bet player prop every single day from the Betting Predators team, delivered straight to your inbox for the upcoming day's main slate, with all results/records tracked here.
You'll also get access to weekly player prop strategy and player line value rankings from Mackenzie Rivers, futures betting strategy from J-Smoove, and team totals/trends to know from Dan Rivera, in addition to our live betting Discord channel for NBA Premium active subscribers only. We'll also include bonus DFS/player prop content for PGA, MLB, UFC and NASCAR from now until the end of the finals.
Does a regular season series matchup help with predicting those teams' success in the NBA Playoffs?
The playoffs are all about matchups and adjustments as we all know. Yet, despite how much the mainstream media (and other "sharp" betting analysts) make the regular season seem irrelevant, it’s actually very useful to break those down in regards to a subsequent playoff series between two teams.
In this article below, that's actually what we'll do: I’ll break down how each of these teams performed during the regular season against the team they’re currently matched up against in the playoffs, as well as highlight the relevant stats you can take away. Most importantly, we'll look at what’s carrying over into their playoff matchups so far, and what we can do to take advantage for the remainder of the playoffs:
Please Note: The series/game odds below are from DraftKings as of Saturday, May 29th, at 2:30 a.m. EST:
Nets (-10000) vs Celtics (+1300)
- Next Game: Sunday, 7 p.m. EST on TNT (@ Boston)
- Game 4 Odds: BKN -6.5 (-270), BOS +6.5 (+215), O/U Not Yet Available
Even before the Brooklyn Nets traded for James Harden and formed the newest "Big 3" in the league, the Nets still were the better team by beating the Celtics by 28 points in the second game of the regular season with Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant in the lineup (no Harden). In their three total regular season matchups, the Nets didn't play the Boston Celtics with their entire big three in the lineup and still won all three games while averaging 117.7 PPG and 118.9 points per 100 possessions with a +16.5 net rating.
Now, through their first two games in the playoffs with the big three healthy, the Nets have managed similar production - they've won both games while averaging 117 PPG and 120.6 points per 100 possessions with a +17.5 net rating. It also doesn’t help that Jaylen Brown, the Celtics' second-leading scorer and one of their two best players, was ruled out for the year. While I still believe the Nets will have a tougher time with teams like the Bucks and 76ers, this is a matchup that clearly favored them during the regular season and not much has changed in the playoffs. This series should be over in 4 or 5 games.
Knicks (+245) vs Hawks (-335)
- Next Game: Sunday, 1 p.m. EST on ABC
- Game 4 Odds: ATL -4.5 (-186), NYK +4.5 (+150), O/U Not Yet Available
The New York Knicks won all three games against the Atlanta Hawks during the regular season, but only one of those matchups took place after the Hawks made a coaching change to Nate McMillan. Since McMillan took over the helm, however, these same Hawks went 27-11 in their final 38 games. The sole matchup with the Knicks "post-coaching change" actually went to overtime after Trae Young left the game with an ankle injury. The Knicks didn’t have the most productive offense this season in averaging 107 PPG, but against the Hawks they improved by +17.3 PPG to average 124.3 PPG. The Knicks' best player, PF Julius Randle, averaged 37 PPG in that regular-season series as well. However all of those games came against the Hawks with a completely different defensive scheme under then head coach Lloyd Pierce.
The Knicks had a +7.8 net rating over the Hawks during the regular season and it's now +3.1 in the playoffs through three games. I still believe the Knicks are the better team though, and that they will win this series in 7 games even though they lost Game 3. The biggest area where they need to figure things out is how to get Julius Randle back to playing at the level he was during the regular season - he’s only averaging 15 PPG and shooting less than 40% against the Hawks in the playoffs. Randle had a good second half in Game 2, but it didn’t carry over in Game 3. Thibodeau and his staff need to figure out the best way to get Randle back into his scoring rhythm, as well as RJ Barrett, or they could lose this series.
Bucks vs Heat (Current Series Price Unavailable)
- Next Game: Saturday, 1:30 p.m. EST on TNT (@ Miami)
- Game 4 Odds: MIL -4.5 (-182), MIA +4.5 (+150), O/U 221.5
With how the Milwaukee Bucks lost to the Miami Heat last year in the playoffs, they made it a point to make some key offseason roster improvements by trading for Jrue Holiday and signing Bobby Portis.
Those two guys (especially Holiday) have added another element to this team in both the starting lineup and off the bench. The Bucks won 2 of the 3 regular season matchups here, but Jimmy Butler didn’t play in any of the three regular-season matchups. The data going into this first round matchup wasn’t the best to pull from because of his absence, although the Bucks did average 120 PPG during the regular season and 124 PPG against the Heat. Through their first three games in the playoffs, they’re now averaging 118 PPG.
The Heat - with or without Jimmy Butler on the floor - have had basically the same production. The Bucks have now blown out this Heat team in back to back games though, and their regular-season dominance has carried over into the playoffs as well. The Bucks have been the better basketball team here all season long and should move onto the next round with ease. Teams that held a 3-0 series lead are 140-0 all time.
76ers (-10000) vs Wizards (+2000)
- Next Game: Saturday, 7 p.m. EST on ESPN (@ Washington)
- Game 3 Odds: PHI -6.5 (-265), WAS +6.5 (+215), O/U 227.5
The Philadelphia 76ers swept the regular season series against the Washington Wizards, but all 3 games were played before April which is when those Wizards found their stride and played their best basketball of the season. But the 76ers have still continued their dominance in the first 2 games of this first-round NBA Playoffs series. Philadelphia had a +11 net rating in the three regular season meetings between these teams and a +15.5 net rating through two games. I expect the 76ers to win this series, but the Wizards should give their best effort in Game 3 and could win that game. During the last 26 games of the season they had +3 net rating and they won just as many home games as the 76ers won road games.
Russell Westbrook could be limited in Game 3 after injuring his ankle twice in Game 2, but even then, Bradley Beal has scored the ball really well despite the two road losses, averaging 33 PPG while shooting over 50% overall. An area where Beal could improve for Game 3 is knocking down more 3s, too, as he’s only shooting just16% from the three-point line compared to his +50% in their 3 regular season games.