By Justin "Smoove" Everett
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Phoenix Suns (-420) vs. Los Angeles Clippers
The market has the Suns as a heavy favorite to win the series and advance to the NBA Finals, but I wouldn’t count out the Clippers just yet. Sure, I know they're still without their best player in Kawhi Leonard, but Paul George is also proving to be a player that can be an all around stat sheet stuffer and score at elite levels, as well as getting contributions from his teammates like Reggie Jackson, Marcus Morris and even a surprise Game 3 performance out of Ivica Zubac. You also can’t count out the impact that head coach Ty Lue is having on this team by making seemingly the same in-series adjustments he’s made throughout the playoffs and going all the way back to the first round matchup against Dallas.
We’ve seen Lue make plenty of adjustments, whether its going to a small ball lineup by inserting Nicholas Batum into the center spot or benching Rajon Rondo for more minutes out of Reggie Jackson and inserting Luke Kennard and Terrance Mann into the rotation. I believe that shows just how much versatility is on this Clippers roster, and having a coach like Lue using every player on the roster makes the most out of L.A.'s talent and potential. The Clippers are also the only team in NBA Playoff history that has come back to win multiple series after being down 0-2, and they’ll indeed have to make it three in a row if they want to reach the NBA Finals for the first time. After their convincing win in Game 3 I’m sure it’s tough for them not to look back at the end of Game 2 and not thinking they should be up 2-1 if George is able to knock down his free throws at the end. Either way, I expect this is another series that will go at least six or seven games.
Like: Series Total 6 Games (+170) & 7 Games (+170) @ FanDuel
Milwaukee Bucks (-210) vs. Atlanta Hawks
In their current and previous postseason matchups the Atlanta Hawks have not been the better team, but they’ve still found a way to be up 1-0 in the Eastern Conference Finals and steal home court advantage from the Bucks. At what point do we believe what we're seeing with our own eyes? In their series with the 76'ers they were down by 18+ points in 5 of those 7 games but managed to come back and win two.
They also managed to get down by as many as nine points in Game 1 against the Bucks multiple times but still managed to come back and win the game outright as well. I believe the market is still pricing this team as it was pre All-Star break, but Atlanta has in fact proven that they are not that same team since Nate McMillan took over as head coach. The Hawks back-to-back road games as seven-point underdogs and there simply has been no adjustment in this Game 2 line of the Eastern Conference Finals. The line for tonight opened at +7 for the Hawks again and the line is moving towards the Bucks again. I strongly believe there’s value in the Hawks winning this series and even in a certain amount of games to boot.
Like: Series Total Games 6 (+155) / Hawks in 6 (+550) @ FanDuel