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Thread: Cnotes 2017 NBA Best Bets-Trends-News Thru Playoffs !

  1. #1501  
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    Sunday's NBA Playoffs betting preview and odds


    The four remaining first round series of the NBA Playoffs tip off on Sunday, which includes the beginning of Lebron's quest to advance to the Finals for an eighth consecutive year when he and the Cavs host the Pacers.


    Milwaukee Bucks at Boston Celtics (-4, 201.5)


    The Boston Celtics endured a regular season filled with injuries and were barely above .500 over the final three months. The second-seeded Celtics hope to turn the page from some trying times when they host the Milwaukee Bucks on Sunday in Game 1 of a best-of-seven Eastern Conference first-round series.


    ABOUT THE BUCKS (44-38, 34-43-5 ATS, 46-35-1 O/U): Milwaukee is in the playoffs in consecutive years for the first time since 2003 and 2004 and is looking to snap a string of seven straight first-round exits, including a six-game setback against Toronto last spring. "We're a better team than last year, more mature," Antetokounmpo told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "We're older and hopefully we can be focused as a team because I think that's what sometimes lacks on our team. There's some stages of the game that we're not focused. I don't know why that comes to our team, but hopefully this year when we get to the playoffs we can be focused for 48 minutes and do what we got to do and that's getting the job done." The Bucks did not have Jabari Parker in the playoffs last year due to an ACL tear but the 23-year-old forward is all the way back from the injury and averaged 19.5 points in April.


    ABOUT THE CELTICS (55-27, 50-30-2 ATS, 43-38-1 O/U): With no Kyrie Irving, Gordon Hayward and Marcus Smart, Boston will lean heavily on second-year guard Jaylen Brown and rookie Jayson Tatum for scoring, while Terry Rozier - who took over at point guard when Irving was lost for the season - will be trying to prove he can run the show in a more pressure-packed environment. "It sucks to see your brothers go down ... but, like I said, it's not over," Rozier told reporters. "It's not going to be an easy road for our opponents. They still have to go through us. We're ready." Reserve center Greg Monroe, who spent two-plus seasons with the Bucks before being traded to Phoenix in November, has become a key contributor and averaged 13.5 points on 63.3 percent shooting and 7.7 rebounds in April.


    SERIES PRICE (PER PINNACLE):





    BETTING ACTION AND LINE MOVES: The Celtics opened Game 1 as 3.5-point home favorites and have been bet up slightly to the current number of -4. The total has seen considerably more movement dropping 3.5-points from 205 to 201.5. Despite the downward movement, the Over is getting 52 percent of wagers according to our Covers Consensu. Bettors are giving the edge to the home-side Celtics here, with them seeing 55 percent of wagers. Check out the complete line history here.


    INJURY REPORT:


    Bucks - No injuries to report.


    Celtics - PG T. Rozier (Probable, finger), PG M. Smart (Out, thumb), PG K. Irving (Out, knee), PF D. Theis (Out, knee), SF G. Hayward (Out, ankle).


    MATCHUP CHART:





    TRENDS:


    * Bucks are 4-1 ATS in their last five road games.
    * Celtics are 5-1 ATS in their last six home games.
    * Over is 9-1 in Bucks last 10 vs. Eastern Conference opponents.
    * Over is 4-0 in Celtics last four overall.
    * Over is 8-1-1 in the last 10 meetings in Boston.








    Indiana Pacers at Cleveland Cavaliers (-6.5, 212.5)


    The Cleveland Cavaliers are hitting the playoffs and trying to earn their fourth consecutive trip to the NBA Finals but will be doing it from an unfamiliar position - fourth place. The Cavaliers will have homecourt advantage in the first round as they try to carry the momentum from a strong finish in the regular season into Game 1 against the visiting No. 5 seed Indiana Pacers on Sunday.


    ABOUT THE PACERS (48-34, 47-35 ATS, 32-49-1 O/U): Indiana was swept in the first round of the playoffs by the Cavaliers last spring but is a different team this time around thanks to the presence of Oladipo, who was acquired last summer in the deal that sent Paul George to Oklahoma City. Oladipo led the team in scoring at an average of 23.1 points and is part of a roster that enjoys being around one another. "Great group of guys, man," point guard Darren Collison - another new addition this season - told the team's website. "Everybody is great people. It's one thing to have great players, but I've been on a lot of teams. When you play with great people, it makes everybody's job easier. Everybody's listening. Nobody has egos. You come in the locker room and everybody's smiling. It's positivity. We trust each other."


    ABOUT THE CAVALIERS (50-32, 32-49-1 ATS, 39-41-2 O/U): Cleveland's advantage over every other team in the East is the presence of superstar forward LeBron James, who played in all 82 regular-season games for the first time in his career. James, 33, averaged career highs in rebounds (8.6) and assists (9.1) while adding 27.5 points on 54.2 percent shooting. "Has it been my best year? It's the best I've felt all season and I've got the numbers to back it up and I've got the wins to back it up as well," James told reporters. "Me, personally, I've just tried to be available to my teammates every single night and do everything that I could to win ball games. Either by scoring, by rebounding, by defending, by assisting, taking charges, whatever the case may be. Statistically it all speaks for itself."


    SERIES PRICE (PER PINNACLE):





    BETTING ACTION AND LINE MOVES: The Cavaliers hit the board as 6.5-point favorites and while the number touched seven at a few places, the line mostly remains unmoved. This is yet another game where the total is seeing more action. After hitting the board at 216.5, the total has dropped 4-points to the current number of 212.5. Just like in the Bucks-Celtics game, this total is seeing reverse line movement, with 58 percent of wagers on the Over according to our Covers Consensus. The side is almost split down the middle with Indiana seeing 51 percent of wagers.


    INJURY REPORT:


    Pacers - SG V. Oladipo (Probable, foot).


    Cavaliers - C T. Thompson (Probable, personal), SG R. Hood (Probable, achilles), SG K. Korver (Questionable, foot).


    MATCHUP CHART:





    TRENDS:


    * Pacers are 6-1 ATS in their last sevne games vs. a team with a winning SU record.
    * Cavaliers are 0-4 ATS in their last four games playing on three or more days rest.
    * Under is 7-1 in Pacers last eight games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
    * Under is 5-1 in Cavaliers last six home games.
    * Pacers are 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings in Cleveland.








    Utah Jazz at Oklahoma City Thunder (-3.5, 206)


    The Utah Jazz were one of the hottest teams in the NBA over the final two-plus months of the regular season and they'll try to carry that momentum into the playoffs, which begins with a visit to the Oklahoma City Thunder for Game 1 of their best-of-seven Western Conference first-round series on Sunday. The Jazz were 19-28 after a loss at Atlanta on Jan. 22 but stormed back with a 29-6 mark down the stretch to seize the fifth seed in the West.


    ABOUT THE JAZZ (48-34, 43-39 ATS, 39-42-1 O/U): Utah's turnaround roughly coincided with Gobert's return from a knee injury and he was dominant at times during the stretch run, averaging 16.6 points on 68.2 percent shooting to go along with 12.7 rebounds and 2.3 blocks in March. "As a competitor, it's always hard to watch from the sideline," he told the Tribune. "But watching them every night really gave me the motivation. When I came back, I really felt like we could do something special." Mitchell averaged 20.5 points in his first season and did not show any signs of hitting a rookie wall by scoring above his average in 12 of the final 14 games of the regular season.


    ABOUT THE THUNDER (48-34, 34-47-1 ATS, 36-46 O/U): Following a first-round exit last season during Russell Westbrook's MVP campaign, Oklahoma City brought in forwards Paul George and Carmelo Anthony for support, and while it took time to develop, a strong finish has the team feeling pretty good entering the postseason. "This is part of kind of why we wanted to all come together, because we saw an opportunity," Anthony told reporters. "This is actually a part of the big picture. This is the journey; to be able to accomplish what we came together to accomplish." While Westbrook rallied late to produce his historic triple-double average, George heated up offensively down the stretch while averaging 27.6 points and shooting 40.7 percent from 3-point range in April.


    SERIES PRICE (PER PINNACLE):





    BETTING ACTION AND LINE MOVES: The Thunder opened this matchup as 3.5-point home faves and were briefly bet to -3 before returning to the opening number. The total opened at 205 and is up slightly to 206. Despite little movement, bettors are giving the edge to the Thunder here, with 57 percent of wagers backing them, according to our Covers Consensus. The total has been bet evenly with the Over seeing 52 percent of wagers.


    INJURY REPORT:


    Jazz - SF T. Sefolosha (Out, knee).


    Thunder - SG C. Brewer (Probable, knee), SG A. Abrines (Questionable, concussion), A. Roberson (Out, knee).


    MATCHUP CHART:





    TRENDS:


    * Jazz are 12-2 ATS in their last 14 road games vs. a team with a winning home record.
    * Thunder are 0-4-1 ATS in their last five home games.
    * Over is 6-1 in Jazz last seven road games.
    * Under is 8-2 in Thunder last 10 overall.
    * Under is 21-7 in the last 28 meetings.








    Minnesota Timberwolves at Houston Rockets (-11.5, 216.5)


    The Minnesota Timberwolves needed to scratch their way to an overtime victory on the final day of the regular season to clinch a playoff spot - the franchise's first since Kevin Garnett led the team to the 2004 Western Conference finals. The Timberwolves' reward for that strong finish is a date with the NBA-best Houston Rockets, who host Game 1 of the first-round series on Sunday.


    ABOUT THE TIMBERWOLVES (47-35, 37-42-3 ATS, 45-36-1 O/U): Minnesota hovered around the third or fourth spot in the West for much of the season before falling off when Butler went down with a knee injury. Butler's return sparked the team down the stretch, and the No. 8 seed and a date with the Rockets is not about to intimidate the Timberwolves. "We’re a talented group, we got a lot of talent on this team,” point guard Jeff Teague, whose Atlanta squad took top-seeded Indiana to seven games in the 2014 postseason, told the Minneapolis Star Tribune. "In the playoffs, you need someone who can make shots and take over games at times. I think we have a lot of people on this team who can take over games and have moments. It’s all about having fun now. There’s no pressure on us. We got in, eighth seed. I’ve been there and it’s a lot of fun. When you're the eighth seed, I promise you it’s a lot of fun."


    ABOUT THE ROCKETS (65-17, 41-40-1 ATS, 33-48-1 O/U): Houston, which set a franchise record with 65 wins, is led by superstar guard James Harden, who is the odds-on favorite to win his first MVP award this season after leading the league in scoring at an average of 30.4 points and adding 8.8 assists. The difference for the team this time around in the playoffs is that Harden has another future Hall of Famer in the backcourt with the addition of point guard Chris Paul, who is in awe of his teammate. "You just never get this opportunity too often in your career to play with somebody like James," Paul told reporters. "You get a chance to appreciate greatness. What he's doing on a nightly basis and stuff like that, it's crazy, and I'm grateful that I get the opportunity to play alongside him."


    SERIES PRICE (PER PINNACLE):





    BETTING ACTION AND LINE MOVES: The Rockets opened this matchup as 9.5-point home favorites, but bettors did't think that was enough, moving the line all the way to -11.5. The total meanwhile, has dropped two points to sit at the current number of 216.5. Even with the line moving in the Rockets favor, 53 percent of wagers are on teh T-wolves according to our Covers Consensus, while the total has also seen reverse line movement as a big 68 percent of wagers are on the Over.


    INJURY REPORT:


    Timberwolves - C J. Patton (Questionable, illness).


    Rockets - SG E. gordon (Probable, ankle), PF R. Anderson (Questionable, ankle), C C. Capela (Questionable, hand), PF L. Mbah a Moute (Out, shoulder).


    MATCHUP CHART:





    TRENDS:


    * Timberwolves are 4-0 ATS in their last four games overall.
    * Rockets are 0-6 ATS in their last six vs. Western Conference opponents.
    * Over is 11-3 in Timberwolves last 14 vs. a team with a winning SU record.
    * Under is 8-2 in Rockets last 10 home games.
    * Over is 14-3 in the last 17 meetings.
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  2. #1502  
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    NBA
    Dunkel


    Sunday, April 15




    Milwaukee @ Boston


    Game 509-510
    April 15, 2018 @ 1:05 pm


    Dunkel Rating:
    Milwaukee
    115.801
    Boston
    121.980
    Dunkel Team:
    Dunkel Line:
    Dunkel Total:
    Boston
    by 6 1/2
    219
    Vegas Team:
    Vegas Line:
    Vegas Total:
    Boston
    by 3 1/2
    203
    Dunkel Pick:
    Boston
    (-3 1/2); Over


    Indiana @ Cleveland



    Game 511-512
    April 15, 2018 @ 3:35 pm


    Dunkel Rating:
    Indiana
    116.416
    Cleveland
    125.623
    Dunkel Team:
    Dunkel Line:
    Dunkel Total:
    Cleveland
    by 9
    224
    Vegas Team:
    Vegas Line:
    Vegas Total:
    Cleveland
    by 6 1/2
    216 1/2
    Dunkel Pick:
    Cleveland
    (-6 1/2); Over


    Utah @ Oklahoma City



    Game 513-514
    April 15, 2018 @ 6:35 pm


    Dunkel Rating:
    Utah
    127.420
    Oklahoma City
    124.041
    Dunkel Team:
    Dunkel Line:
    Dunkel Total:
    Utah
    by 3 1/2
    206
    Vegas Team:
    Vegas Line:
    Vegas Total:
    Oklahoma City
    by 4
    205
    Dunkel Pick:
    Utah
    (+4); Over


    Minnesota @ Houston



    Game 515-516
    April 15, 2018 @ 9:05 pm


    Dunkel Rating:
    Minnesota
    115.677
    Houston
    124.784
    Dunkel Team:
    Dunkel Line:
    Dunkel Total:
    Houston
    by 9
    211
    Vegas Team:
    Vegas Line:
    Vegas Total:
    Houston
    by 11 1/2
    217
    Dunkel Pick:
    Minnesota
    (+11 1/2); Under









    NBA
    Long Sheet


    Sunday, April 15



    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    MILWAUKEE (44 - 38) at BOSTON (55 - 27) - 4/15/2018, 1:05 PM
    Top Trends for this game.
    MILWAUKEE is 74-91 ATS (-26.1 Units) in all games over the last 2 seasons.
    MILWAUKEE is 376-456 ATS (-125.6 Units) in the second half of the season since 1996.
    MILWAUKEE is 201-247 ATS (-70.7 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record - 2nd half of the season since 1996.
    BOSTON is 48-30 ATS (+15.0 Units) in all games this season.
    BOSTON is 16-5 ATS (+10.5 Units) revenging a loss vs opponent this season.
    BOSTON is 11-1 ATS (+9.9 Units) off an upset win as an underdog this season.
    BOSTON is 24-14 ATS (+8.6 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record this season.
    BOSTON is 27-15 ATS (+10.5 Units) versus good offensive teams - scoring 106+ points/game this season.
    MILWAUKEE is 135-98 ATS (+27.2 Units) in road games against Atlantic division opponents since 1996.
    MILWAUKEE is 12-2 ATS (+9.8 Units) in road games after allowing 115 points or more over the last 2 seasons.

    Head-to-Head Series History
    BOSTON is 7-4 against the spread versus MILWAUKEE over the last 3 seasons
    BOSTON is 7-4 straight up against MILWAUKEE over the last 3 seasons
    7 of 10 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    INDIANA (48 - 34) at CLEVELAND (50 - 32) - 4/15/2018, 3:35 PM
    Top Trends for this game.
    INDIANA is 47-35 ATS (+8.5 Units) in all games this season.
    INDIANA is 12-3 ATS (+8.7 Units) in April games over the last 2 seasons.
    INDIANA is 12-3 ATS (+8.7 Units) on Sunday games this season.
    INDIANA is 33-18 ATS (+13.2 Units) vs. division opponents over the last 3 seasons.
    INDIANA is 74-51 ATS (+17.9 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record over the last 3 seasons.
    INDIANA is 23-12 ATS (+9.8 Units) versus poor defensive teams - allowing 106+ points/game this season.
    CLEVELAND is 32-49 ATS (-21.9 Units) in all games this season.
    CLEVELAND is 19-43 ATS (-28.3 Units) as a favorite this season.
    CLEVELAND is 13-27 ATS (-16.7 Units) in home games this season.
    CLEVELAND is 20-34 ATS (-17.4 Units) vs. division opponents over the last 3 seasons.
    CLEVELAND is 5-14 ATS (-10.4 Units) after a loss by 10 points or more this season.

    Head-to-Head Series History
    INDIANA is 11-4 against the spread versus CLEVELAND over the last 3 seasons
    CLEVELAND is 11-5 straight up against INDIANA over the last 3 seasons
    9 of 15 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    UTAH (48 - 34) at OKLAHOMA CITY (48 - 34) - 4/15/2018, 6:35 PM
    Top Trends for this game.
    UTAH is 18-7 ATS (+10.3 Units) on Sunday games over the last 3 seasons.
    UTAH is 18-7 ATS (+10.3 Units) in road games when playing against a team with a winning record - 2nd half of the season over the last 2 seasons.
    UTAH is 13-3 ATS (+9.7 Units) versus good offensive teams - scoring 106+ points/game - 2nd half of the season this season.
    OKLAHOMA CITY is 33-47 ATS (-18.7 Units) in all games this season.
    OKLAHOMA CITY is 24-41 ATS (-21.1 Units) as a favorite this season.
    OKLAHOMA CITY is 15-24 ATS (-11.4 Units) in home games this season.
    OKLAHOMA CITY is 19-35 ATS (-19.5 Units) in home games in April games since 1996.
    OKLAHOMA CITY is 2-14 ATS (-13.4 Units) vs. division opponents this season.
    OKLAHOMA CITY is 7-15 ATS (-9.5 Units) after a win by 10 points or more this season.
    OKLAHOMA CITY is 16-25 ATS (-11.5 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record this season.

    Head-to-Head Series History
    OKLAHOMA CITY is 7-4 against the spread versus UTAH over the last 3 seasons
    OKLAHOMA CITY is 10-2 straight up against UTAH over the last 3 seasons
    9 of 12 games in this series have gone UNDER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    MINNESOTA (47 - 35) at HOUSTON (65 - 17) - 4/15/2018, 9:05 PM
    Top Trends for this game.
    MINNESOTA is 372-436 ATS (-107.6 Units) in the second half of the season since 1996.
    HOUSTON is 13-4 ATS (+8.6 Units) against Northwest division opponents this season.
    HOUSTON is 118-88 ATS (+21.2 Units) after 3 or more consecutive unders since 1996.
    HOUSTON is 37-50 ATS (-18.0 Units) in home games over the last 2 seasons.
    HOUSTON is 4-13 ATS (-10.3 Units) in April games over the last 2 seasons.

    Head-to-Head Series History
    MINNESOTA is 6-5 against the spread versus HOUSTON over the last 3 seasons
    HOUSTON is 10-1 straight up against MINNESOTA over the last 3 seasons
    8 of 11 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------








    NBA
    Armadillo's Write-Up


    Sunday, April 15



    Bucks vs Celtics (0-0)
    Milwaukee lost its last seven first round series; their last series win was in 2001. Bucks fired their coach during the season. Milwaukee split its last six games with Boston; they’re 5-3 in last eight games overall, 4-1 vs spread in last five road games. Over is 7-2-1 in last ten series games. Celtics are without Hayward/Irving; they lost four of last six games, but covered three of their last four home games. Six of last seven Celtic games, 8 of last 10 Buck games went over the total. Boston is in playoffs for 10th time in last 11 years; they lost three of last four first round series.


    Pacers vs Cavaliers (0-0)
    Indiana won/covered three of last four games with Cleveland, splitting pair here; under is 3-1-1 in last five series games. Pacers are in playoffs for 7th time in last eight years; they lost in first round last two years. Indiana won seven of its last 10 games, covered four of last six road games. Over is 5-5 in their last ten games. Cavaliers won six of last eight games, are 3-2 vs spread in last five home games. Three of their last four games went over total. Cleveland was in Finals the last three years; they won their last six first round series.


    Jazz vs Thunder (0-0)
    
Utah is in playoffs for 2nd year in row, after missing them five of previous six years; Jazz won four of last six first round series. Utah lost six of last seven games with Oklahoma City (2-5 vs spread); they’re 2-4 vs spread in last six games in this arena. Last four series games stayed under the total. Jazz won six of their last seven games; they’re 3-3 vs spread in last six road games. OKC won its last three games; under is 8-2 in their last 10 games. Thunder is 0-4-1 vs spread in last five home games; they’re in playoffs eight time in last nine years, and won five of last six first round series.


    Timberwolves vs Rockets (0-0)
    Minnesota is in playoffs for first time in 14 years; Houston is in playoffs for 6th year in row; they are 2-3 in last five first round series. Rockets won more games this year than in two years when they won NBA title in 90’s. Houston won its last six games with Minnesota, covering last four; Wolves are 3-2 vs spread in last five games in this building. Over is 7-3 in last ten series games. Minnesota beat Denver in OT Wednesday just to make playoffs; they won five of last seven games, covered last four. Rockets split their last six games, are 1-6 vs spread in last seven, as they coasted at end to get to this point.


    Wizards-Raptors

    Tor 114-106, -7.5, O211


    Heat-76ers

    Phil 130-103, -6.5, O212


    Spurs-Warriors
    
GState 113-92, -8, U209.5


    Pelicans-Blazers

    NO 97-95, +5.5, U216.5








    NBA


    Sunday, April 15



    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Trend Report
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Milwaukee Bucks
    The total has gone OVER in 15 of Milwaukee's last 17 games
    Milwaukee is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games on the road
    The total has gone OVER in 5 of Milwaukee's last 5 games on the road
    Milwaukee is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games when playing Boston
    Milwaukee is 3-6 SU in its last 9 games when playing Boston
    The total has gone OVER in 7 of Milwaukee's last 10 games when playing Boston
    Milwaukee is 12-6 ATS in its last 18 games when playing on the road against Boston
    Milwaukee is 2-4 SU in its last 6 games when playing on the road against Boston
    The total has gone OVER in 8 of Milwaukee's last 10 games when playing on the road against Boston
    Boston Celtics
    Boston is 14-6 ATS in its last 20 games
    Boston is 8-4 SU in its last 12 games
    Boston is 2-4 SU in its last 6 games
    The total has gone OVER in 6 of Boston's last 7 games
    Boston is 5-1 ATS in its last 6 games at home
    Boston is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games at home
    The total has gone OVER in 5 of Boston's last 6 games at home
    Boston is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games when playing Milwaukee
    Boston is 6-3 SU in its last 9 games when playing Milwaukee
    The total has gone OVER in 7 of Boston's last 10 games when playing Milwaukee
    Boston is 6-12 ATS in its last 18 games when playing at home against Milwaukee
    Boston is 4-2 SU in its last 6 games when playing at home against Milwaukee
    The total has gone OVER in 8 of Boston's last 10 games when playing at home against Milwaukee




    Indiana Pacers
    Indiana is 7-3 ATS in its last 10 games
    Indiana is 7-3 SU in its last 10 games
    The total has gone UNDER in 16 of Indiana's last 22 games
    Indiana is 4-2 ATS in its last 6 games on the road
    Indiana is 4-2 SU in its last 6 games on the road
    The total has gone UNDER in 16 of Indiana's last 23 games on the road
    Indiana is 14-4-1 ATS in its last 19 games when playing Cleveland
    Indiana is 3-8 SU in its last 11 games when playing Cleveland
    Indiana is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games when playing on the road against Cleveland
    Indiana is 1-10 SU in its last 11 games when playing on the road against Cleveland
    The total has gone OVER in 4 of Indiana's last 5 games when playing on the road against Cleveland
    Cleveland Cavaliers
    Cleveland is 10-3 ATS in its last 13 games
    Cleveland is 11-3 SU in its last 14 games
    The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Cleveland's last 9 games
    Cleveland is 7-2 ATS in its last 9 games at home
    Cleveland is 8-1 SU in its last 9 games at home
    The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Cleveland's last 6 games at home
    Cleveland is 1-3-1 ATS in its last 5 games when playing Indiana
    Cleveland is 8-3 SU in its last 11 games when playing Indiana
    Cleveland is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games when playing at home against Indiana
    Cleveland is 10-1 SU in its last 11 games when playing at home against Indiana
    The total has gone OVER in 4 of Cleveland's last 5 games when playing at home against Indiana




    Utah Jazz
    Utah is 4-2 ATS in its last 6 games
    Utah is 6-1 SU in its last 7 games
    The total has gone OVER in 8 of Utah's last 11 games
    Utah is 12-4-1 ATS in its last 17 games on the road
    Utah is 15-2 SU in its last 17 games on the road
    The total has gone OVER in 6 of Utah's last 7 games on the road
    Utah is 2-5 ATS in its last 7 games when playing Oklahoma City
    Utah is 1-6 SU in its last 7 games when playing Oklahoma City
    The total has gone UNDER in 13 of Utah's last 16 games when playing Oklahoma City
    Utah is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games when playing on the road against Oklahoma City
    Utah is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games when playing on the road against Oklahoma City
    The total has gone UNDER in 10 of Utah's last 14 games when playing on the road against Oklahoma City
    Oklahoma City Thunder
    Oklahoma City is 3-6-1 ATS in its last 10 games
    Oklahoma City is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games
    The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Oklahoma City's last 5 games
    Oklahoma City is 0-4-1 ATS in its last 5 games at home
    Oklahoma City is 6-3 SU in its last 9 games at home
    The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Oklahoma City's last 9 games at home
    Oklahoma City is 5-2 ATS in its last 7 games when playing Utah
    Oklahoma City is 6-1 SU in its last 7 games when playing Utah
    The total has gone UNDER in 13 of Oklahoma City's last 16 games when playing Utah
    Oklahoma City is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games when playing at home against Utah
    Oklahoma City is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games when playing at home against Utah
    The total has gone UNDER in 10 of Oklahoma City's last 14 games when playing at home against Utah




    Minnesota Timberwolves
    Minnesota is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games
    Minnesota is 5-2 SU in its last 7 games
    The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Minnesota's last 6 games
    Minnesota is 6-16 ATS in its last 22 games on the road
    Minnesota is 6-16 SU in its last 22 games on the road
    The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Minnesota's last 5 games on the road
    Minnesota is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games when playing Houston
    Minnesota is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games when playing Houston
    The total has gone OVER in 14 of Minnesota's last 17 games when playing Houston
    Minnesota is 5-2 ATS in its last 7 games when playing on the road against Houston
    Minnesota is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games when playing on the road against Houston
    The total has gone OVER in 7 of Minnesota's last 9 games when playing on the road against Houston
    Houston Rockets
    Houston is 1-6 ATS in its last 7 games
    Houston is 21-4 SU in its last 25 games
    The total has gone UNDER in 7 of Houston's last 8 games
    Houston is 20-1 SU in its last 21 games at home
    The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Houston's last 5 games at home
    Houston is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games when playing Minnesota
    Houston is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games when playing Minnesota
    The total has gone OVER in 14 of Houston's last 17 games when playing Minnesota
    Houston is 2-5 ATS in its last 7 games when playing at home against Minnesota
    Houston is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games when playing at home against Minnesota
    The total has gone OVER in 7 of Houston's last 9 games when playing at home against Minnesota
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  3. #1503  
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    SUNDAY, APRIL 15
    GAME TIME(ET) PICK UNITS



    MIL at BOS 01:00 PM
    MIL +3.5
    U 200.5



    IND at CLE 03:30 PM
    IND +7.0
    U 212.5



    UTA at OKC 06:30 PM
    OKC -4.0
    O 205.0



    MIN at HOU 09:00 PM
    HOU -11.0
    U 215.5
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    Oladipo scores 32 points, Pacers stun LeBron, Cavs
    April 15, 2018



    CLEVELAND (AP) Victor Oladipo scored 32 points and the Indiana Pacers held off Cleveland's second-half rally for a stunning 98-80 victory Sunday in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference series, handing LeBron James and the Cavaliers' their first loss in the opening round in eight years.


    Indiana was in control from the outset, opening a 21-point lead in the first quarter and leading by 23 in the third. The Cavs stormed back and got within seven, but Oladipo hit a big 3-pointer and Bojan Bogdanovic helped put Cleveland away with a 3 to make it 88-71.


    The Pacers completely outplayed the three-time defending conference champions, whose turbulent regular season has carried over into the playoffs.


    Game 2 is Wednesday night.


    James scored 24 with 12 assists and 10 rebounds for his 20th career triple-double. But James got little help as Cleveland's four other starters - Kevin Love, Jeff Green, Rodney Hood and George Hill - combined for 25 points.


    This is all new to James, who had won 21 consecutive first-round games and lost a postseason for the first time in his 13th playoffs. The 33-year-old is trying to get to his eighth straight Finals, and already the path is tougher than imagined.


    Cleveland had won 14 straight first-round games, last losing on April 22, 2010, the last season of James' first stint with the Cavs. Indiana was swept by Cleveland in last year's opening round.


    CELTICS 113, BUCKS 107, OT


    BOSTON (AP) - Al Horford had 24 points and 12 rebounds and Boston overcame Khris Middleton's long 3 that beat the fourth-quarter buzzer to top Milwaukee in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference series.


    The Celtics led 99-96 with 0.5 seconds left in regulation when Middleton took an inbounds pass on the far right wing and hit a contested 35-footer.


    Terry Rozier added 23 points, four rebounds and three assists for Boston in his first career playoff start. Jaylen Brown finished with 20 points, and rookie Jayson Tatum added 19 points and 10 rebounds.


    Giannis Antetokounmpo led the Bucks with 35 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists before fouling out in overtime. Middleton had 31 points, eight rebounds and six assists.


    Game 2 is Tuesday night in Boston.


    ROCKETS 104, TIMBERWOLVES 101


    HOUSTON (AP) - James Harden scored 44 points and powered a big fourth-quarter run that allowed Houston to outlast Minnesota in Game 1 of the first-round playoff series.


    Minnesota scored four straight points to get within 3 with about 30 seconds left. Chris Paul added two free throws after that for Houston, but a tip-in by Karl-Anthony Towns got Minnesota back within 3. After a bad pass by Paul gave Minnesota a chance to tie with 1.5 seconds left, Jimmy Butler's shot was short.


    The top-seeded Rockets had their hands full with the No. 8 Timberwolves on a night where Houston made just 10 of 37 3-pointers. Harden made 7 of 12 3-pointers, but Trevor Ariza, P.J. Tucker, Eric Gordon and Paul combined to make just 3 of their 22 tries.


    Houston kept All-Star big man Towns in check, limiting him to just eight points. Andrew Wiggins scored 18 points to lead Minnesota.


    Game 2 is Wednesday night in Houston.


    THUNDER 116, JAZZ 108


    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Paul George scored 36 points to help Oklahoma City beat Utah in Game 1 of the Western Conference series.


    George set an Oklahoma City playoff record with eight 3-pointers, blowing past the previous record of five. He made 8 of 11 shots from long range, and 13 of 20 shots overall. It was his first playoff game with the Thunder since being acquired in a trade with Indiana in the offseason.


    Russell Westbrook had 29 points, 13 rebounds and eight assists, and Carmelo Anthony added 15 points for the Thunder Jazz rookie Donovan Mitchell had 27 points and 10 rebounds, but he left in the second half with left foot soreness. He returned in the fourth quarter but was noticeably hobbling.


    Game 2 is Wednesday night in Oklahoma City.


    **************


    Harden scores 44 points, Rockets beat Wolves 104-101
    April 15, 2018



    HOUSTON (AP) James Harden scored 44 points and powered a big fourth-quarter run that allowed the Houston Rockets to outlast the Minnesota Timberwolves 104-101 on Sunday night in Game 1 of the first-round playoff series.


    Minnesota scored four straight points to get within 3 with about 30 seconds left. Chris Paul added two free throws after that for Houston, but a tip-in by Karl-Anthony Towns got Minnesota back within 3. After a bad pass by Paul gave the Timberwolves a chance to tie it with 1.5 seconds left, Jimmy Butler's shot was short.


    The Timberwolves had a one-point lead with about seven minutes left when Houston used a 9-0 run, with the last seven points from Harden, to make it 94-86 with about four minutes to go. Harden, who also had a steal in that span, capped the run with a 3-pointer that prompted Minnesota coach Tom Thibodeau to call a timeout.


    Jeff Teague ended Minnesota's scoring drought with two free throws after the timeout and added a 3-point play after a basket by Harden. Harden made another shot to give him 11 straight points for Houston before another basket by Teague.


    Harden got Capela in on the scoring after that, finding him for an alley-oop that pushed the lead to 101-93 with less than three minutes left.


    The top-seeded Rockets had their hands full with the No. 8 Timberwolves on a night where Houston made just 10 of 37 3-pointers. Harden made 7 of 12 3-pointers, but Trevor Ariza, P.J. Tucker, Eric Gordon and Paul combined to make just 3 of their 22 tries.


    Houston kept All-Star big man Towns in check, limiting him to just eight points after he'd averaged 21.3 in leading the Wolves to their first playoff appearance since 2014. Andrew Wiggins scored 18 points to lead Minnesota.


    The Wolves scored the first nine points of the second half to take a 56-54 lead. Tucker made a 3 for the Rockets after that, but Minnesota used a 6-1 spurt, with 3s from Wiggins and Teague, to go back on top 62-58.


    The Rockets had managed just six points in the quarter when Gerald Green made a basket with to cut the lead to 1 with about five minutes left in the third. Derrick Rose added a bucket seconds later, but Houston scored six straight points after that to put Houston up 68-65. Harden got things going when he made a 3-pointer while being fouled by Rose and also made the free throw.


    Minnesota led by a basket after a jump shot by Towns with about two minutes left in the quarter. Harden took over after that, scoring the last six points of the quarter to leave Houston up 76-72 entering the fourth.


    Harden hit a 3-pointer before making a driving layup he was fouled on by Gorgui Dieng. Harden flexed each bicep twice while peering down at the muscles after the shot before making the free throw.


    The Rockets swept the regular-season series 4-0, winning by an average of 15.8 points a game and it looked like this one might be another blowout early as the Rockets raced out to a 17-6 lead behind 10 early points from Clint Capela. But the Timberwolves got going after that and had tied it up by late in the first quarter.


    The Rockets led 54-47 at halftime.


    TIP-INS


    Timberwolves: Butler, who led the team by averaging 22.2 points in the regular season, finished with 13 points. ... The Wolves made 8 of 23 3-point attempts. ... Towns had 12 rebounds and two assists.


    Rockets: Ryan Anderson missed the game with a sprained left ankle. Coach Mike D'Antoni said there was a chance he could return for Game 2, but that he would know more in the next couple of days. ... Capela had 20 points and 10 rebounds at halftime, but was limited in the second half and added just four more points and two rebounds.

    UP NEXT



    Game 2 is Wednesday night in Houston.
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    SCHEDULE FOR MONDAY APRIL 16, 2018
    Time (ET) Away Home Site
    8:00 PM Miami Heat Philadelphia 76ers Wells Fargo Center
    10:30 PM San Antonio Spurs Golden State Warriors ORACLE Arena


    SCHEDULE FOR TUESDAY APRIL 17, 2018
    Time (ET) Away Home Site
    7:00 PM Washington Wizards Toronto Raptors Air Canada Centre
    8:00 PM Milwaukee Bucks Boston Celtics TD Garden
    10:30 PM New Orleans Pelicans Portland Trail Blazers Moda Center at the Rose Quarter


    SCHEDULE FOR WEDNESDAY APRIL 18, 2018
    Time (ET) Away Home Site
    7:00 PM Indiana Pacers Cleveland Cavaliers Quicken Loans Arena
    8:00 PM Utah Jazz Oklahoma City Thunder Chesapeake Energy Arena
    9:30 PM Minnesota Timberwolves Houston Rockets Toyota Center


    SCHEDULE FOR THURSDAY APRIL 19, 2018
    Time (ET) Away Home Site
    7:00 PM Philadelphia 76ers Miami Heat AmericanAirlines Arena
    9:00 PM Portland Trail Blazers New Orleans Pelicans Smoothie King Center
    9:30 PM Golden State Warriors San Antonio Spurs AT&T Center


    SCHEDULE FOR FRIDAY APRIL 20, 2018
    Time (ET) Away Home Site
    7:00 PM Cleveland Cavaliers Indiana Pacers Bankers Life Fieldhouse
    8:00 PM Toronto Raptors Washington Wizards Capital One Arena
    9:30 PM Boston Celtics Milwaukee Bucks BMO Harris Bradley Center


    SCHEDULE FOR SATURDAY APRIL 21, 2018
    Time (ET) Away Home Site
    2:30 PM Philadelphia 76ers Miami Heat AmericanAirlines Arena
    5:00 PM Portland Trail Blazers New Orleans Pelicans Smoothie King Center
    7:30 PM Houston Rockets Minnesota Timberwolves Target Center
    10:00 PM Oklahoma City Thunder Utah Jazz Vivint Smart Home Arena


    SCHEDULE FOR SUNDAY APRIL 22, 2018
    Time (ET) Away Home Site
    1:00 PM Boston Celtics Milwaukee Bucks BMO Harris Bradley Center
    3:30 PM Golden State Warriors San Antonio Spurs AT&T Center
    6:00 PM Toronto Raptors Washington Wizards Capital One Arena
    8:30 PM Cleveland Cavaliers Indiana Pacers Bankers Life Fieldhouse


    Updated Mon Apr 16 12:00 AM EDT




    **********************




    NBA PLAYOFF RECORD


    DATE W-L-T % UNITS RECORD


    04/15/2018 5-3-0 62.50% +8.50
    04/14/2018 1-6-1 14.29% -28.00


    TOTALS.............6-9-1........40.00%....-19.50
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    Whoa, Your Wife Is Ugly!


    Three guys die together in an accident and go to heaven.


    When they get there, St. Peter says, "We only have one rule here in heaven: Don't step on the ducks!"


    So they enter heaven, and sure enough, there are ducks all over the place.


    It is almost impossible not to step on a duck, and although they try their best to avoid them, the first guy accidentally steps on one.


    Along comes St. Peter with the ugliest woman he has ever seen. St. Peter chains them together and says:


    "Your punishment for stepping on a duck is to spend eternity chained to the ugly woman!"


    The next day, the second guy steps accidentally on a duck, and along comes St. Peter, who doesn't miss a thing, and with him is another extremely ugly woman.


    He chains them together with the same admonishment as for the first guy.


    The third guy has observed all this and not wanting to be chained for all eternity to an ugly woman, is very, VERY careful where he steps.


    He manages to go months without stepping on any ducks, but one day St. Peter comes up to him with the most gorgeous woman he has ever laid eyes on: a very tall, tan, curvaceous, sexy blonde.


    St. Peter chains them together without saying a word.


    The guy remarks, "I wonder what I did to deserve being chained to you for all of eternity?"


    She says, "I don't know about you, but I stepped on a duck!"
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    Monday’s 6-pack


    — Idaho is the fastest growing state in this country.


    — Penguins 5, Flyers 1— Pittsburgh scored two goals 0:05 apart.


    — Mets 3, Brewers 2— Wilmer Flores hit a walk-off homer on a cold day in Queens.


    — Cardinals 3, Reds 2— Cincinnati is off to a 2-13 start this season.


    — Celtics 113, Bucks 107 OT— Milwaukee’s Khris Middleton sent game to OT with a 3-pointer at the buzzer of regulation.


    — Satoshi Kodaira won his first PGA tournament, beating Si Woo Kim in a playoff on Hilton Head. He started Sunday six shots out of the lead- it is 6th year in a row the winner of this tournament started the final round 3+ shots out of the lead.


    Quote of the Day
    “When all is said and done, more is said than done.”
    Aesop


    Monday’s quiz
    What team did Bartolo Colon begin his major league career with?


    Sunday’s quiz
    Steve Kerr was once the GM of the Phoenix Suns.


    Saturday’s quiz
    Kevin Durant began his NBA career with the Seattle SuperSonics, in 2007-08. Sonics then moved to Oklahoma City the next year.


    ****************


    Monday’s List of 13: Wrapping up a sports weekend


    13) Idea for a reality TV show: Pro teams do exit interviews with players after each season; would be television gold to see some of them, especially with disgruntled players, or with guys who are delusional about their abilities. Kind of like a postseason Hard Knocks.


    For instance, Cowboys/Dez Bryant exit interview in December must’ve been a good one.


    12) Los Angeles Angels used nine different starting pitchers in their first 15 games this year, the most by any team in their first 15 games since the 1960 Baltimore Orioles.


    11) Monday morning’s 11am Orioles-Red Sox game was postponed late Sunday afternoon, so no need to post your fantasy lineups early Monday. This is first time since 1984 the Patriots Day game was rained out.


    It also means I get to sleep later Monday morning ��


    10) Odd managing in the Brewers-Mets game Sunday; Mets led 1-0 in top of 5th inning, Brewers had a guy on 3rd with two men out, and pitcher Jhoulys Chacin was due up, you think they’d pinch-hit for him, but Chacin grounded out to shortstop. Since Chacin hit, you assume he’ll pitch the bottom of the 5th inning, right?


    Wrong. Milwaukee takes Chacin out after not pinch-hitting for him with the tying run on third base. Go figure. Must be an analytics thing.


    9) Boston media will be happy; Angels’ rainout in Kansas City Sunday means that Shohei Ohtani will make his next start against the Red Sox in Anaheim Tuesday night.


    8) Six baseball postponements Sunday; the only time in last 20 years with six postponements in one day was September 12, 2008.


    7) Oakland starting pitchers have finished the 6th inning in 3 of their 16 games; three times by Sean Manaea, zero times by everyone else.


    For the record, the A’s traded Ben Zobrist for Manaea, back when they helped he Royals win the World Series with that trade- now it is paying off for them.


    6) Saturday night in Dodger Stadium, Arizona’s Deven Marrero hit a home run, but passed the runner on first base, who was going back to tag up, thinking the ball might be caught.


    Play results in a 2-run single for Marrero, but he does not score because he passed a runner, so he was out on the play- that doesn’t happen very often.


    5) Matt Harvey hasn’t gotten an out in the 6th inning in any of his starts since May 28, 2017 vs Pittsburgh- thats 11 starts in a row. Harvey is a free agent after this season; good luck there.


    4) NFL Draft note: New England drafted a DL/LB with its first pick in five of last six drafts.


    3) Pacers 98, Cavaliers 80— Lebron James teams had won their last 21 first round playoff games, but that streak was ended rudely here.


    2) Twins had a miserable baseball-free weekend at home, with a foot of snow falling; now they head to Puerto Rico to play a couple of games with the Indians in San Juan.


    1) They had 23 inches of snow in Green Bay this weekend, in mid-April. Oy.
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    Monday's Tip Sheet
    April 15, 2018



    Eastern Conference First Round
    No. 6 Miami at No. 3 Philaelphia (TNT, 8:05 p.m. ET)


    2017-18 Regular Season (Series tied 2-2)
    Mar. 8 - Heat (-1) vs. 76ers 108-99 (Under 210.5)
    Feb. 27 - Heat (-1) vs. 76ers 102-101 (Under 205)
    Feb. 14 - 76ers (-4.5) vs. Heat 104-102 (Over 202.5)
    Feb. 2 - 76ers (-4) vs. Heat 103-97 (Under 203)


    2017-18 Postseason (76ers 1-0)
    Apr. 14 - 76ers (-6.5) vs. Heat 130-103 (Over 214)



    The 76ers last suffered a defeat on March 13 at home against the Pacers. Philadelphia finished the regular season with 16 consecutive wins, while extending that overall streak to 17 victories in a row with Saturday’s 130-103 blowout of Miami.


    The Heat built a 12-point first quarter lead at 35-23, but the Sixers scored the final six points of the quarter to trail by six. Philadelphia headed into the half down, 60-56, but blew the game open in the third quarter by outscoring Miami, 34-18, thanks to five treys. The Sixers dropped a 40-point spot in the fourth quarter to easily cash as 5 ˝-point favorites, while picking up the franchise’s first playoff win since Game 6 of the 2012 Eastern Conference semifinals.


    The key to Philadelphia’s success in Game 1 was its prowess from long range by hitting 18-of-28 three-point attempts. The trio of J.J. Redick, Marco Belinelli, and Dario Saric each knocked down four three-pointers, while Belinelli led the way with 25 points off the bench. Ben Simmons struggled from the floor in his playoff debut (5-of-13), but the Sixers’ young star scored 17 points and dished out 14 assists, while pulling down nine rebounds.


    Miami’s starting five had its problems hitting shots as Goran Dragic, Tyler Johnson, James Johnson, Josh Richardson, and Hassan Whiteside combined to shoot 13-of-40. Whiteside put together a putrid effort by scoring only two points in 12 minutes of action, but Kelly Olynyk pumped in 26 points off the bench to help Miami reach triple-figures.


    Expecting the Heat to right the ship in Game 2 and even up this series appears to be a long shot when you look at Miami’s form outside of South Florida plus the recent NBA playoff trends for visitors.


    VegasInsider.com NBA analyst Chris David explained, “Only 10 teams in the NBA posted winning records on the road and the Heat weren’t one of them. Including Saturday’s loss, the Miami is now 5-16 in their last 21 away games and that includes a 1-11 mark against playoff teams while allowing 109.8 PPG in those 12 contests. Earning a split on the road is nothing more than wishful thinking and bettors should note that in the last three postseasons, home teams have gone 27-5 straight up in Game 2 after winning Game 1 of their series.”


    The total for Game 2 opened 215 ˝, which was a tad higher than Game 1’s closing number of 214. David believes you have value with the ‘under’ with the contingent that Joel Embiid plays.


    “Philadelphia’s offense has been on fire lately and it’s helped the ‘over’ go 5-1 but a lot of the scoring has had to do with their pace, which is much quicker without Embiid in the lineup. His return would pump the breaks on the offense and it would also improve the defense of the 76ers. Philadelphia is still going to chuck from distance but another repeat of 18 triples is unlikely. Plus I don’t see the pair combining for another 60 free throw attempts.”


    Although Miami has gone through several roster overhauls throughout the years, the last time Erik Spoelstra’s team trailed, 2-0 in playoff series came back in the opening round of 2010 against Boston. The Heat were knocked out in five games of that series, as Miami has posted a perfect 6-0 record in its last six opportunities in Game 2 of a playoff series after losing the opener since 2011.


    Western Conference First Round
    No. 7 San Antonio at No. 2 Golden State (TNT, 10:35 p.m. ET)


    2017-18 Regular Season (Warriors 3-1)
    Mar. 19 Spurs (-8) vs. Warriors 89-75 (Under 210)
    Mar. 8 Warriors (-11) vs. Spurs 110-107 (Under 223)
    Feb. 10 Warriors (-10.5) vs. Spurs 122-105 (Over 219)
    Nov. 2 Warriors (-8.5) at Spurs 112-92 (Under 219.5)


    2017-18 Postseason (Warriors 1-0)
    Apr. 14 - Warriors (-8) vs. Spurs 113-92 (Under 205.5)



    The Warriors struggled towards the end of the regular season by losing seven of their last 12 games. Golden State flipped the switch, at least in Saturday’s Game 1, as the Warriors destroyed the Spurs in a Western Conference Finals rematch, 113-92 as eight-point home favorites.


    The victory was the fifth straight in the playoffs for Golden State over San Antonio after sweeping the conference finals in four games last May. Stephen Curry remained out for the Warriors with an MCL injury, but Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant picked up the slack by combining for 51 points. Thompson connected on 11-of-13 shots from the floor, including 5-of-6 from three-point range, while Draymond Green put together a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds.


    Steve Kerr’s squad jumped out to a 57-41 halftime lead, while not giving the Spurs any room to come back in Golden State’s sixth consecutive win in a playoff series opener. San Antonio has lost five straight playoff games for the first time since 2010-11 when the Spurs were swept by Phoenix in the second round, followed by a Game 1 loss the next season to Memphis.


    The Spurs shot 40% in the Game 1 loss on Saturday, as Rudy Gay led San Antonio with 15 points off the bench. The lone San Antonio starter to post double-figures was LaMarcus Aldridge with 14 points, while the Spurs were outrebounded by the Warriors, 50-31.


    The game barely finished UNDER the total of 205 ˝, in spite of the two teams combining for 56 points in the final quarter. The Spurs and Warriors needed seven points in the final two minutes to eclipse the OVER, but scored six points, which included two missed free throws. The UNDER improved to 4-1 between San Antonio and Golden State this season, which is in stark contrast to the 6-1 mark to the OVER in 2016-17.


    Gregg Popovich’s team will try to fix their road woes as the Spurs are in the midst of a 1-13 SU and 4-10 ATS funk away from AT&T Center since February 10. Only four of those losses came in the favorite role, while the lone victory came at Cleveland as 4 ˝-point underdogs, 110-94 on February 25.


    Since 2015, the Warriors own a 9-2 SU and 6-5 ATS record in Game 2’s of a series after capturing Game 1. In 2015, Golden State failed to cover in all four opportunities in this situation, but have cashed in six of the past seven chances since 2016.
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    NBA playoffs


    Monday’s games



    
Heat vs 76ers (1-0)



    Miami led Game One 60-56 at half, then lost by 27, as 76ers made 18-28 on arc in winning their 17th game in row. Home side won last ten series games; Heat is 2-4 vs spread in last six games in this building. Under is 3-2 in last five series games. 76ers’ last loss was March 13; they’re 8-2 vs spread in last ten home games. Miami is 5-6 in its last 11 games; they’re 1-3-1 vs spread in last five road games. Miami starters other than Johnson shot combined 8-31 in Game 1; sub Olynyk scored 26 points in 31:00 off Heat bench.


    Spurs vs Warriors (1-0) 



    San Antonio is 0-8 vs spread in last eight road games; their last road cover was March 8, a 110-107 (+11) loss here in Oakland. Spurs lost Game One 113-92 here Saturday, as Thompson was 11-13 from floor, 5-6 behind arc. San Antonio lost nine of last ten games with Golden State; they’re 2-3 vs spread in last five visits to Oakland. Warriors are 1-5 vs spread in last six home games. Game 1 was 57-41 at half, not much of a contest; Warriors had 51-30 edge on boards, shooting 45.3% from floor but also grabbing 10 offensive rebounds. No Curry or Leonard in this series.
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    NBA
    Dunkel


    Monday, April 16




    Miami @ Philadelphia


    Game 701-702
    April 16, 2018 @ 8:05 pm


    Dunkel Rating:
    Miami
    115.552
    Philadelphia
    130.453
    Dunkel Team:
    Dunkel Line:
    Dunkel Total:
    Philadelphia
    by 15
    226
    Vegas Team:
    Vegas Line:
    Vegas Total:
    Philadelphia
    by 6 1/2
    215 1/2
    Dunkel Pick:
    Philadelphia
    (-6 1/2); Over


    San Antonio @ Golden State



    Game 703-704
    April 16, 2018 @ 10:35 pm


    Dunkel Rating:
    San Antonio
    116.139
    Golden State
    128.208
    Dunkel Team:
    Dunkel Line:
    Dunkel Total:
    Golden State
    by 12
    214
    Vegas Team:
    Vegas Line:
    Vegas Total:
    Golden State
    by 9 1/2
    205 1/2
    Dunkel Pick:
    Golden State
    (-9 1/2); Over









    NBA
    Long Sheet


    Monday, April 16



    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    MIAMI (44 - 39) at PHILADELPHIA (53 - 30) - 4/16/2018, 8:05 PM
    Top Trends for this game.
    PHILADELPHIA is 49-34 ATS (+11.6 Units) in all games this season.
    PHILADELPHIA is 34-22 ATS (+9.8 Units) as a favorite this season.
    PHILADELPHIA is 28-13 ATS (+13.7 Units) in home games this season.
    PHILADELPHIA is 23-12 ATS (+9.8 Units) in the second half of the season this season.
    PHILADELPHIA is 14-5 ATS (+8.5 Units) against Southeast division opponents this season.
    PHILADELPHIA is 21-10 ATS (+10.0 Units) after a win by 10 points or more this season.
    PHILADELPHIA is 30-17 ATS (+11.3 Units) after scoring 115 points or more over the last 2 seasons.
    PHILADELPHIA is 17-6 ATS (+10.4 Units) in home games when playing against a team with a winning record this season.
    MIAMI is 90-71 ATS (+11.9 Units) in all games over the last 2 seasons.
    MIAMI is 54-36 ATS (+14.4 Units) as an underdog over the last 2 seasons.
    MIAMI is 49-31 ATS (+14.9 Units) in road games over the last 2 seasons.
    MIAMI is 38-25 ATS (+10.5 Units) in the second half of the season over the last 2 seasons.
    MIAMI is 47-33 ATS (+10.7 Units) revenging a loss vs opponent over the last 2 seasons.
    MIAMI is 25-13 ATS (+10.7 Units) in road games when playing against a team with a winning record over the last 2 seasons.
    MIAMI is 24-9 ATS (+14.1 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record - 2nd half of the season over the last 2 seasons.
    MIAMI is 13-5 ATS (+7.5 Units) in road games versus good offensive teams - scoring 106+ points/game this season.
    MIAMI is 11-2 ATS (+8.8 Units) in road games versus good offensive teams - scoring 106+ points/game - 2nd half of the season over the last 2 seasons.

    Head-to-Head Series History
    PHILADELPHIA is 7-5 against the spread versus MIAMI over the last 3 seasons
    MIAMI is 7-5 straight up against PHILADELPHIA over the last 3 seasons
    6 of 12 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    SAN ANTONIO (47 - 36) at GOLDEN STATE (59 - 24) - 4/16/2018, 10:35 PM
    Top Trends for this game.
    SAN ANTONIO is 15-24 ATS (-11.4 Units) in road games this season.
    SAN ANTONIO is 6-15 ATS (-10.5 Units) in road games when playing against a team with a winning record this season.
    SAN ANTONIO is 6-16 ATS (-11.6 Units) in road games versus poor defensive teams - allowing 106+ points/game this season.
    SAN ANTONIO is 6-18 ATS (-13.8 Units) in road games versus good offensive teams - scoring 106+ points/game this season.
    GOLDEN STATE is 130-95 ATS (+25.5 Units) in April games since 1996.
    GOLDEN STATE is 57-35 ATS (+18.5 Units) in all playoff games since 1996.
    GOLDEN STATE is 25-8 ATS (+16.2 Units) in the first round of the playoffs since 1996.
    SAN ANTONIO is 1045-917 ATS (+36.3 Units) in all games since 1996.
    SAN ANTONIO is 142-109 ATS (+22.1 Units) after a loss by 10 points or more since 1996.
    GOLDEN STATE is 34-46 ATS (-16.6 Units) in all games this season.
    GOLDEN STATE is 33-41 ATS (-12.1 Units) as a favorite this season.
    GOLDEN STATE is 15-27 ATS (-14.7 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record this season.
    GOLDEN STATE is 5-16 ATS (-12.6 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record - 2nd half of the season this season.

    Head-to-Head Series History
    GOLDEN STATE is 10-6 against the spread versus SAN ANTONIO over the last 3 seasons
    GOLDEN STATE is 12-4 straight up against SAN ANTONIO over the last 3 seasons
    8 of 15 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------






    NBA
    Armadillo's Write-Up


    Monday, April 16



    Heat vs 76ers (1-0)

    Miami led Game One 60-56 at half, then lost by 27, as 76ers made 18-28 on arc in winning their 17th game in row. Home side won last ten series games; Heat is 2-4 vs spread in last six games in this building. Under is 3-2 in last five series games. 76ers’ last loss was March 13; they’re 8-2 vs spread in last ten home games. Miami is 5-6 in its last 11 games; they’re 1-3-1 vs spread in last five road games. Miami starters other than Johnson shot combined 8-31 in Game 1; sub Olynyk scored 26 points in 31:00 off Heat bench.


    Spurs vs Warriors (1-0) 

    San Antonio is 0-8 vs spread in last eight road games; their last road cover was March 8, a 110-107 (+11) loss here in Oakland. Spurs lost Game One 113-92 here Saturday, as Thompson was 11-13 from floor, 5-6 behind arc. San Antonio lost nine of last ten games with Golden State; they’re 2-3 vs spread in last five visits to Oakland. Warriors are 1-5 vs spread in last six home games. Game 1 was 57-41 at half, not much of a contest; Warriors had 51-30 edge on boards, shooting 45.3% from floor but also grabbing 10 offensive rebounds. No Curry or Leonard in this series.


    Wizards-Raptors
    Tor 114-106, -7.5, O211


    Heat-76ers
    Phil 130-103, -6.5, O212


    Spurs-Warriors
    GState 113-92, -8, U209.5


    Pelicans-Blazers
    NO 97-95, +5.5, U216.5


    Bucks-Celtics
    Bos 113-107 OT, -4.5, O199.5


    Pacers-Cavaliers
    Ind 98-80, +7.5, U212.5


    Jazz-Thunder
    OKC 116-108, -4.5, O205


    Wolves-Rockets
    Hst 104-101, -11.5, U215.5








    NBA


    Monday, April 16



    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Trend Report
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Miami Heat
    Miami is 2-6 ATS in its last 8 games
    Miami is 1-3-1 ATS in its last 5 games on the road
    Miami is 2-13 SU in its last 15 games on the road
    The total has gone OVER in 10 of Miami's last 13 games on the road
    Miami is 17-8 SU in its last 25 games when playing Philadelphia
    Miami is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games when playing on the road against Philadelphia
    Miami is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games when playing on the road against Philadelphia
    The total has gone OVER in 6 of Miami's last 8 games when playing on the road against Philadelphia
    Philadelphia 76ers
    Philadelphia is 12-3 ATS in its last 15 games
    Philadelphia is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games
    The total has gone OVER in 5 of Philadelphia's last 6 games
    Philadelphia is 8-2 ATS in its last 10 games at home
    Philadelphia is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games at home
    Philadelphia is 2-3-1 ATS in its last 6 games when playing Miami
    Philadelphia is 8-17 SU in its last 25 games when playing Miami
    Philadelphia is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games when playing at home against Miami
    Philadelphia is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games when playing at home against Miami
    The total has gone OVER in 6 of Philadelphia's last 8 games when playing at home against Miami




    San Antonio Spurs
    San Antonio is 1-5 ATS in its last 6 games
    San Antonio is 2-4 SU in its last 6 games
    The total has gone OVER in 4 of San Antonio's last 6 games
    San Antonio is 0-5 ATS in its last 5 games on the road
    San Antonio is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games on the road
    The total has gone OVER in 5 of San Antonio's last 6 games on the road
    San Antonio is 2-6 ATS in its last 8 games when playing Golden State
    San Antonio is 1-9 SU in its last 10 games when playing Golden State
    The total has gone UNDER in 4 of San Antonio's last 5 games when playing Golden State
    San Antonio is 3-6 ATS in its last 9 games when playing on the road against Golden State
    San Antonio is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games when playing on the road against Golden State
    The total has gone OVER in 5 of San Antonio's last 7 games when playing on the road against Golden State
    Golden State Warriors
    Golden State is 7-15 ATS in its last 22 games
    Golden State is 1-5 ATS in its last 6 games at home
    Golden State is 14-6 SU in its last 20 games at home
    Golden State is 2-4 SU in its last 6 games at home
    The total has gone OVER in 4 of Golden State's last 6 games at home
    The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Golden State's last 12 games at home
    Golden State is 6-2 ATS in its last 8 games when playing San Antonio
    Golden State is 9-1 SU in its last 10 games when playing San Antonio
    The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Golden State's last 5 games when playing San Antonio
    Golden State is 6-3 ATS in its last 9 games when playing at home against San Antonio
    Golden State is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games when playing at home against San Antonio
    The total has gone OVER in 5 of Golden State's last 7 games when playing at home against San Antonio
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    Monday's NBA Playoffs Betting Preview and Odds


    The opening round of the 2018 NBA Playoffs continues Monday night with two games tipping off tonight, including the Warriors looking to win their fifth straight playoff game against the Spurs.


    Miami Heat at Philadelphia 76ers (-6.5, 215.5)


    The Philadelphia 76ers' phenomenal 17-game winning streak now includes one playoff victory, the franchise's first in six years. The Sixers will try to make it two straight over the Miami Heat in their best-of-seven Eastern Conference first-round series when the teams meet in Game 2 on Monday in Philadelphia.


    After a slow start in Saturday's opener, Philadelphia outscored the Heat by a whopping 74-43 margin in the second half en route to a convincing 130-103 Game 1 victory. "I feel this group has something special in it," coach Brett Brown told reporters after his team made 18-of-28 3-pointers and recorded 34 assists against just 10 turnovers in a dominant effort. The last nine of the Sixers' 17 straight wins have come without All-Star center Joel Embiid (orbital fracture), who could return as soon as Game 2 or 3. The Heat will need to get more out of their own big man, as Hassan Whiteside provided just two points on 1-of-4 shooting in 12 lackluster minutes.


    TV: 8 p.m. ET, TNT, FS Sun (Miami), NBCS Philadelphia


    SERIES PRICE (PER PINNACLE):





    BETTING ACTION AND LINE MOVES: The Sixers opened as 7-point home favorites and as of Monday morning that number is down to -6.5. According to consensus numbers 72 percent of the side wagers are on the favorites, so this is a little bit of reverse line movement. The total hit betting boards at 216.5 and has been dropped slightly to 215.5.


    ABOUT THE HEAT (44-39 SU, 40-37-6 ATS, 38-44-1 O/U): Whiteside has expressed displeasure at times with head coach Erik Spoelstra and the center seemed to display frustration over his limited minutes in Game 1. "It's not about him," Spoelstra told the media. "This series and this game, it's going to move quickly. It's not necessarily an indictment to his (play)." The play of another 7-footer, Kelly Olynyk, was perhaps another reason for Whiteside's limited contributions, as Olynyk scored a team-high 26 points on 9-of-13 shooting - including 4-of-5 from beyond the arc - off the bench.


    ABOUT THE 76ERS (53-30 SU, 48-33-2 ATS, 42-40-1 O/U): With Embiid sidelined, Philadelphia has been thriving on its many quality outside shooters, and the quartet of JJ Redick, Dario Saric, Marco Belinelli and Ersan Ilyasova combined to hit 15-of-23 long-range attempts in Game 1. "Whether Ersan comes in or Marco comes in, that's who we are," Brown told reporters. "That's what we're trying to coach here. And the guys have bought in. We play fast, we look for each other. The 3-point shot, without Joel, has become a real big part of our identity. We'll continue to do that. You have to do that or you won't win games when it matters." Rookie Ben Simmons was the one finding most of those shooters and he finished his playoff debut with 17 points and 14 assists.


    INJURY REPORT:


    Heat - SG Dion Waiters (Out For Season, Ankle).


    76ers - C Joel Embiid (Questionable, Face), SG Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot (Out Indefinitely, Knee).


    MATCHUP CHART:





    TRENDS:


    * Heat are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 after scoring 100 points or more in their previous game.
    * 76ers are 9-1 ATS in their last 10 games following a straight up win of more than 10 points.
    * Over is 5-0 in Heat last 5 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
    * Over is 5-0 in 76ers last 5 vs. Eastern Conference.
    * Home team is 7-1-1 ATS in the last 9 meetings.







    San Antonio Spurs at Golden State Warriors (-9.5, 205.5)


    The Golden State Warriors came into the postseason injured and slumping but quickly proved they can flip the switch to playoff mode with a dominating Game 1 win over the San Antonio Spurs on Saturday. The Warriors will try to keep the pressure on and get off to another hot start to make it a 2-0 cushion when they host the Spurs in Game 2 on Monday.


    Golden State dropped 10 of its last 17 games in the regular season and struggled on defense but tightened things up that end and held the Spurs to 17 first-quarter points to establish a lead it wouldn’t relinquish in Game 1. "Just wanted to put our best defensive lineup on the floor from the beginning," Warriors coach Steve Kerr, who inserted small forward Andre Iguodala into the starting lineup, told reporters. "I think the whole point of these games here early in this series is to re-establish our defense. I think you guys know, over the last month or so, our defense has been subpar. Can't win in this league in the playoffs unless you defend, and they defended tonight, and we went with our best defensive group." San Antonio's starting unit wasn't up to the task and only LaMarcus Aldridge (14 points) scored in double figures among the starting five. "I thought we were very prepared physically and mentally," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich told reporters. "But I was mistaken. As I said, we looked like deer in the headlights. The defense was really poor as far as following game plan of the first quarter, and it's a bad combination to play defense like that and not shoot at the other end."


    TV: 10:30 p.m. ET, TNT, FS Southwest (San Antonio), NBCS Bay Area (Golden State)


    SERIES PRICE (PER PINNACLE):





    BETTING ACTION AND LINE MOVES: The Warriors opened as 9.5-point home favorites for Game 2 and as of Monday morning that number has not moved. Consensus numbers are showing a fairly even split with 55 percent of the side wagers on the Dubs. The total hit betting boards at 206 and has been dropped slightly to 205.5.


    ABOUT THE SPURS (47-36 SU, 42-39-2 ATS, 38-44-1 O/U): San Antonio shot 40 percent from the floor in Game 1 and managed only three offensive rebounds in the 113-92 setback. "We've got to regroup, feel hurt, upset, kind of desperate," guard Manu Ginobili told reporters. "We don't want to go home (down) 0-2. But at the same time, we've got to be smarter. Offensively, we're going to have to move the ball better, sharper, be more aggressive and see what happens. We are underdogs. We've talked about it. To get a win here, we've got to overachieve." Popovich started Rudy Gay in the second half over Kyle Anderson to generate more offense and could insert Gay into the starting lineup for Game 2.


    ABOUT THE WARRIORS (59-24 SU, 35-47-1 ATS, 39-43-1 O/U): Starting Iguodala over Quinn Cook left Golden State without a true point guard, leading to All-Star forward Kevin Durant running the offense. "It's not just one guy who has the ball all the time and making all the plays," Durant, who finished with 24 points, eight rebounds and seven assists, told reporters. "I think that's the beauty of our team, that all of us can go off and score 30 or get eight, nine assists or grab 11 rebounds. That's just the beauty of our team, and all of us chip in when it comes to facilitating and orchestrating." The Warriors recorded 32 assists on 44 made field goals in the win, led by forward Draymond Green's 11.


    INJURY REPORT:


    Spurs - SF Kawhi Leonard (Out For Season, Quadricep).


    Warriors - PG Stephen Curry (Late April, Knee), SG Patrick McCaw (Out Indefinitely, Back), SF Chris Boucher (Out Indefinitely, Ankle).


    MATCHUP CHART:





    TRENDS:


    * Spurs are 0-8 ATS in their last 8 road games.
    * Over is 5-0-1 in Spurs last 6 road games.
    * Over is 3-0-1 in Warriors last 4 home games.
    * Over is 5-1-1 in the last 7 meetings in Golden State.
    * Favorite is 7-1 ATS in the last 8 meetings.
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  12. #1512  
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    MONDAY, APRIL 16
    GAME TIME(ET) PICK UNITS



    MIA at PHI 08:00 PM
    PHI -6.5
    U 215.5



    SA at GS 10:30 PM
    SA +9.5
    O 205.5
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    Heat snap 76ers 17-game winning streak, even up series
    April 17, 2018



    PHILADELPHIA (AP) Dwyane Wade turned in a vintage performance, scoring 28 points to end the 76ers' 17-game winning streak and lead the Miami Heat to a 113-103 Game 2 win over Philadelphia on Monday night and even the first-round playoff series.


    Playing without injured All-Star center Joel Embiid for the 10th straight game, the Sixers nearly pulled off an epic comeback and rallied from 16 down to just two points late in the fourth.


    Philly fans were going wild and suddenly the home-court edge that had made the Sixers unbeatable for a month seemed like it would perk the team back up for one more notch on the winning streak.


    Wade buried two big buckets down the stretch that pushed back the Sixers and tied the series as it shifts to Miami for Game 3 on Thursday.


    The Sixers lost for the first time since March 13 to Indiana. They won 16 straight to end the regular season and the first game of the playoffs.


    Ben Simmons led the Sixers with 24 points and Dario Saric had 23.


    WARRIORS 116, SPURS 101


    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) - Kevin Durant sparked a decisive third-quarter run on the way to 32 points, Klay Thompson added 31 points and five assists in another superb playoff performance and the Warriors rallied in the second half to beat the Spurs for a 2-0 lead in their first-round series.


    As Stephen Curry remains out likely for the entire series nursing a sprained left knee, the defending champions used all the offensive power they had to take both home games in the best-of-seven series. Wearing a dark checkered sport coat, Curry was all smiles watching another lopsided win without him.


    LaMarcus Aldridge scored 34 for the Spurs and Rudy Gay moved into the starting lineup and scored 12 points.


    Game 3 is Thursday as the series shifts to San Antonio.
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    Wade turns back the clock and 76ers in Game 2 Heat victory
    April 16, 2018



    PHILADELPHIA (AP) Dwyane Wade snuffed out one 76ers' rally by popping a 16-foot fadeaway with the shot clock ticking down. Wade made a halfhearted attempt at reaching his hand out toward a fallen defender before he scooted on his way.


    Wade was up, the Sixers were down and suddenly, a series.


    The Heat had to have this one - a brooding Joel Embiid is angling for a comeback.


    Wade turned in a vintage performance, scoring 28 points to end the 76ers' 17-game winning streak and lead the Miami Heat to a 113-103 Game 2 win over Philadelphia on Monday night and even the first-round playoff series.


    ''It's just in my DNA,'' Wade said. ''I love the stage.''


    The 36-year-old flashed the form of a three-time NBA champion with the Heat, not the journeyman who bounced around the last two seasons with forgettable stints in Chicago and Cleveland.


    Wade made 11 of 17 shots and put on a show in the second quarter and put it away in the fourth.


    ''I saw moments,'' Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. ''That's what defines Dwyane Wade.''


    The 76ers could soon get their defining Process moment from Embiid.


    The Sixers sorely needed Embiid, their All-Star center out with a broken orbital bone, to settle them as they fell in a quick a 16-point hole.


    The Sixers lost for the first time since March 13 to Indiana. They won 16 straight to end the regular season and the first game of the playoffs and played their 10th straight game without Embiid.


    ''You need Joel Embiid,'' Sixers coach Brett Brown said.


    Embiid went on Instagram after the game and wrote, ''sick and tired of being babied.''


    Pack the black mask for Miami.


    ''Joel is a superstar. Of course we're missing him offensively, defensively,'' Sixers forward Dario Saric said. ''He's a guy who wants to play all the time. I can't wait for Joel to come back and help us because we're a better team with him.''


    Even without Embiid, the Sixers trimmed the lead to two points late in the fourth.


    Philly fans were going wild and suddenly the home-court edge that had made the Sixers unbeatable for a month seemed like it would perk the team back up for one more notch on the winning streak.


    Not so fast.


    Ersan Ilyasova made a tip shot to close to 98-96 but Wade answered and stripped Saric and finished on the other end with a basket that steadied the Heat.


    The series shifts to Miami for Game 3 on Thursday.


    Wade's play resembled his glory days at times and he carried the Heat in a sensational second quarter that was the difference. He pump-faked his way to 15 points in the quarter - impressive enough, even moreso that he outscored the potent Sixers by two points.


    Wade made his first seven shots of the game and passed Larry Bird for 10th on the NBA's career postseason scoring list.


    ''I play the game for these moments,'' Wade said.


    After a Game 1 victory where they couldn't miss, the Sixers couldn't make a big bucket in the first half. The Sixers made a team playoff-record 18 3s in Game 1 and missed a whopping 16 of 18 3s in the first half.


    The Heat slowed the game down - exactly the kind of style where the Sixers needed Embiid in the middle - and used a collective of defenders on Ben Simmons that rattled the rookie point guard early.


    The passing-and-pushing offense that got the Sixers to the No. 3 seed in the East failed them for the first time since early March.


    But there was life left in the fourth.


    Saric was fouled by Wade and sank both from the line to make it 91-82 and he followed with a 3 the next time down that sent the crowd into a frenzy. Saric broke up a pass on defense that led to a Simmons dunk and suddenly 18 straight wins was within reach.


    Wade contributed with baskets, assists and free throws over the final 4 minutes to close out the win.


    ''We played Game 1 like a regular-season game and tonight was a playoff game,'' Wade said.


    Simmons, who had a triple-double in the opener, led the Sixers with 24 points and Saric had 23.


    ''I hate this feeling but maybe it's a good reminder for everybody for next game to lock in,'' Simmons said.


    TIP-INS


    Heat: Goran Dragic scored 20 points and James Johnson had 18.


    76ers: Philly native and Hollywood star Kevin Hart rang the ceremonial Liberty Bell and sat courtside a few seats down from Allen Iverson.


    Wade said he was motivated by Hart's trash talk. ''To be able to hush a crowd, that's a great feeling,'' Wade said.


    LINEUP CHANGE


    Ilyasova got the start at center for the first time in Embiid's absence over Amir Johnson.


    REMEMBERING GREER


    The 76ers held a moment of silence for Hall of Famer Hal Greer. Greer died Saturday after a brief illness. He was 81. He's the 76ers' career leader in points, field goals, field goals attempted, games and minutes played.


    ''He was a graceful man. He was class. He was a gentleman,'' Brown said.


    UP NEXT


    Game 3 is Thursday and Game 4 is Saturday in Miami.
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    SCHEDULE FOR TUESDAY APRIL 17, 2018
    Time (ET) Away Home Site
    7:00 PM Washington Wizards Toronto Raptors Air Canada Centre
    8:00 PM Milwaukee Bucks Boston Celtics TD Garden
    10:30 PM New Orleans Pelicans Portland Trail Blazers Moda Center at the Rose Quarter


    SCHEDULE FOR WEDNESDAY APRIL 18, 2018
    Time (ET) Away Home Site
    7:00 PM Indiana Pacers Cleveland Cavaliers Quicken Loans Arena
    8:00 PM Utah Jazz Oklahoma City Thunder Chesapeake Energy Arena
    9:30 PM Minnesota Timberwolves Houston Rockets Toyota Center


    SCHEDULE FOR THURSDAY APRIL 19, 2018
    Time (ET) Away Home Site
    7:00 PM Philadelphia 76ers Miami Heat AmericanAirlines Arena
    9:00 PM Portland Trail Blazers New Orleans Pelicans Smoothie King Center
    9:30 PM Golden State Warriors San Antonio Spurs AT&T Center


    SCHEDULE FOR FRIDAY APRIL 20, 2018
    Time (ET) Away Home Site
    7:00 PM Cleveland Cavaliers Indiana Pacers Bankers Life Fieldhouse
    8:00 PM Toronto Raptors Washington Wizards Capital One Arena
    9:30 PM Boston Celtics Milwaukee Bucks BMO Harris Bradley Center




    *********************




    NBA PLAYOFF RECORD


    DATE W-L-T % UNITS RECORD


    04/16/2018 1-3-0 25.00% -11.50
    04/15/2018 5-3-0 62.50% +8.50
    04/14/2018 1-6-1 14.29% -28.00


    TOTALS...........7-12-1........36.84%....-31.00
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    Tuesday’s 6-pack


    — Rockies 6, Pirates 2— Colorado TV guys estimated the crowd for this game at 1,500 on a cold, snowy night.


    — Nationals 8, Mets 6— New York bullpen blew a 6-1, 8th inning lead.


    — Bryce Harper got sawed off on the fists and still hit a HR into the RF bullpen.


    — Heat 113, 76ers 103— Series is now tied 1-1.


    — Big guy Omar Yurtseven transfers from NC State to Georgetown; not good for the Wolfpack.


    — RIP Harry Anderson 65, who played a funny judge on the TV show Night Court for nine years.


    Quote of the Day
    “I’d feel a little bit uneasy if I were at the top of this draft and I decided I had to have a quarterback. The pressure to get a quarterback is so great in this league, I get that. But we can’t create ’em. I wouldn’t be surprised if only one of these guys is left standing in four or five years, and if so, I’d guess it would be Sam Darnold.”
    Sean Payton


    Tuesday’s quiz
    What state is Vice-President Mike Pence from?


    Monday’s quiz
    Bartolo Colon begin his major league career with the Cleveland Indians, in 1997.


    Sunday’s quiz
    Steve Kerr was once the GM of the Phoenix Suns.


    **********************


    Tuesday’s List of 13: Nobody asked me, but…..
    13) Tonight in Oakland, the A’s commemorate the 50th anniversary of their first-ever game in the Oakland Coliseum. Admission is free, place will be packed as the A’s play the White Sox.


    50 years ago, the A’s lost 4-1 to Baltimore in their home opener; Rick Monday hit a solo homer for the A’s only run. A pinch-hitter named Tony LaRussa had Oakland’s only other hit.


    12) If I was a D-I college basketball coach, I’d make sure my school offered a course called Financial Literacy, and all my players/support staff would take it.


    How to write a check, open a savings account, invest money, divorce laws, child support, stock market- all that stuff would be covered. Every day things you will need whether you play in the NBA or not.


    You read about a lot of pro athletes going broke after they’ve made millions and it makes you want to puke. They need to learn how to handle their own money instead of trusting others— in this crazy world of ours, it is a debatable strategy to trust strangers with your money.


    11) Ice problems in Toronto; CN Tower was closed Monday, after reports of ice chunks falling off the tower, endangering buildings and pedestrians.


    The roof on Rogers Centre was damaged by falling ice; Royals-Blue Jays game was postponed.


    A chunk of ice also flew off the roof of one of the Kansas City Royals’ team buses and broke the windshield of the second bus. One of the players grabbed the wheel of the bus after the driver was hit by a piece of the broken glass.


    10) Nickname of the Day: Teams at the U of Arkansas-Monticello are known as the Boll Weevils.


    9) Arizona Wildcats are hurting for basketball players; they signed 6-6 wing Omar Thielemans from Belgium, who was described this way: “……..is a good athlete who is a “mid-major” level player.” That description came from someone who has seen Thielemans play in Europe, and it didn’t sound like much of an endorsement for a kid headed to the Pac-12.


    8) For the record, the last major league baseball game to have only one hit: Sandy Koufax’s perfect game against the Cubs on September 9, 1965.


    Astros-Rangers was headed that way Sunday night; Bartolo Colon was still throwing 92 in the 8th inning, and he is 44 years old.


    7) High school football games in Alabama are going to have instant replay at every game starting this fall. Note to self: Never, ever visit Alabama- it seems like a very strange place.


    Even Texas doesn’t have instant replay for high school games; they probably will now.


    6) Sports Illustrated’s Peter King mentioned more than once in his weekly column Monday that the Bills might trade as many as three first-round draft picks to move into the top 4 of the draft next week. If I owned an NFL team that had a top 4 pick, I’d tell my GM to accept any offer of three first round picks in a trade, or else I’d fire him. First round picks are gold.


    Say the Browns draft a QB with the first pick, doesn’t matter which one; the Giants take either Barkley or Chubb, and the Jets take the QB they want. Then if I’m the Browns and Buffalo calls and wants to give me three #1 picks for the 4th pick, I’m just fine with that.


    5) Guy I know who knows a lot about the NFL is down on Wyoming QB Josh Allen, and that is being kind. Allen won me a lot of units when I picked Wyoming on this site, but he has to become a more accurate passer and he damn well better learn how to slide when he runs with the ball. I still like him, but the accuracy thing reminds me a little of Jake Locker.


    4) My thought is that FOX should put together a QB classroom TV show like the one Jon Gruden used to do, using Troy Aikman in Gruden’s role. I think he’d be very good at it, and I’d think he’d enjoy doing it.


    3) Baseball injuries:
    — Pirates lost 2B Josh Harrison (broken hand) for six weeks
    — Rays lost OF Kevin Kiermaier (thumb ligaments) for 8-12 weeks


    2) This spring, someone in my fantasy baseball league offered me Aaron Sanchez and Braves’ prospect Ronald Acuna for Giancarlo Stanton— not a strong offer, but Acuna is being touted as God’s gift to baseball and the second coming of Barry Bonds— I declined.


    Acuna started the season at AAA Gwinnett so the Braves can keep him under team control for an extra season; as you read this, he is hitting .139 in AAA.


    1) It was windy as hell and raining sideways for the Boston Marathon Monday; too bad. People work so hard to get ready to run the 26-mile marathon. Hell, I get tired driving 26 miles.


    Tuesday’s List of 13: Nobody asked me, but….


    13) Tonight in Oakland, the A’s commemorate the 50th anniversary of their first-ever game in the Oakland Coliseum. Admission is free, place will be packed as the A’s play the White Sox.


    50 years ago, the A’s lost 4-1 to Baltimore in their home opener; Rick Monday hit a solo homer for the A’s only run. A pinch-hitter named Tony LaRussa had Oakland’s only other hit.


    12) If I was a D-I college basketball coach, I’d make sure my school offered a course called Financial Literacy, and all my players/support staff would take it.


    How to write a check, open a savings account, invest money, divorce laws, child support, stock market- all that stuff would be covered. Every day things you will need whether you play in the NBA or not.


    You read about a lot of pro athletes going broke after they’ve made millions and it makes you want to puke. They need to learn how to handle their own money instead of trusting others— in this crazy world of ours, it is a debatable strategy to trust strangers with your money.


    11) Ice problems in Toronto; CN Tower was closed Monday, after reports of ice chunks falling off the tower, endangering buildings and pedestrians.


    The roof on Rogers Centre was damaged by falling ice; Royals-Blue Jays game was postponed.


    A chunk of ice also flew off the roof of one of the Kansas City Royals’ team buses and broke the windshield of the second bus. One of the players grabbed the wheel of the bus after the driver was hit by a piece of the broken glass.


    10) Nickname of the Day: Teams at the U of Arkansas-Monticello are known as the Boll Weevils.


    9) Arizona Wildcats are hurting for basketball players; they signed 6-6 wing Omar Thielemans from Belgium, who was described this way: “……..is a good athlete who is a “mid-major” level player.” That description came from someone who has seen Thielemans play in Europe, and it didn’t sound like much of an endorsement for a kid headed to the Pac-12.


    8) For the record, the last major league baseball game to have only one hit: Sandy Koufax’s perfect game against the Cubs on September 9, 1965.


    Astros-Rangers was headed that way Sunday night; Bartolo Colon was still throwing 92 in the 8th inning, and he is 44 years old.


    7) High school football games in Alabama are going to have instant replay at every game starting this fall. Note to self: Never, ever visit Alabama- it seems like a very strange place.


    Even Texas doesn’t have instant replay for high school games; they probably will now.


    6) Sports Illustrated’s Peter King mentioned more than once in his weekly column Monday that the Bills might trade as many as three first-round draft picks to move into the top 4 of the draft next week. If I owned an NFL team that had a top 4 pick, I’d tell my GM to accept any offer of three first round picks in a trade, or else I’d fire him. First round picks are gold.


    Say the Browns draft a QB with the first pick, doesn’t matter which one; the Giants take either Barkley or Chubb, and the Jets take the QB they want. Then if I’m the Browns and Buffalo calls and wants to give me three #1 picks for the 4th pick, I’m just fine with that.


    5) Guy I know who knows a lot about the NFL is down on Wyoming QB Josh Allen, and that is being kind. Allen won me a lot of units when I picked Wyoming on this site, but he has to become a more accurate passer and he damn well better learn how to slide when he runs with the ball. I still like him, but the accuracy thing reminds me a little of Jake Locker.


    4) My thought is that FOX should put together a QB classroom TV show like the one Jon Gruden used to do, using Troy Aikman in Gruden’s role. I think he’d be very good at it, and I’d think he’d enjoy doing it.


    3) Baseball injuries:
    — Pirates lost 2B Josh Harrison (broken hand) for six weeks
    — Rays lost OF Kevin Kiermaier (thumb ligaments) for 8-12 weeks


    2) This spring, someone in my fantasy baseball league offered me Aaron Sanchez and Braves’ prospect Ronald Acuna for Giancarlo Stanton— not a strong offer, but Acuna is being touted as God’s gift to baseball and the second coming of Barry Bonds— I declined.


    Acuna started the season at AAA Gwinnett so the Braves can keep him under team control for an extra season; as you read this, he is hitting .139 in AAA.


    1) It was windy as hell and raining sideways for the Boston Marathon Monday; too bad. People work so hard to get ready to run the 26-mile marathon. Hell, I get tired driving 26 miles.
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    Rajon Rondo has a knack for performing in the playoffs
    April 16, 2018



    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) Rajon Rondo is healthy and he's locked in.


    That's good news for the New Orleans Pelicans, not so much for the Portland Trail Blazers. When Rondo is locked in during the postseason, the 6-foot-1 guard who won an NBA title with the Boston Celtics has shown he can be a tough out.


    Over the course of his career, Rondo has averaged 10.5 points, 8.5 assists and 4.8 rebounds. Comparatively in the playoffs, he has averaged 14.3 points, 9.2 assists and six rebounds per game.


    Not that he is buying into the Playoff Rondo hype, however.


    ''There's a lot of factors into that. I don't think you can break it down as simple as one or two things,'' Rondo said after practice Monday. ''The interview would probably be too long for me to break it down completely. It's a matter of me being healthy, minutes, my teammates trusting me, my coaching staff trusting me.


    ''I think we, as a team, we're playing pretty good under pressure.''


    They are indeed.


    Rondo dished out 17 assists in Game 1 of the series, helping the Pelicans take a 1-0 series lead.


    ''You know, he's one of the smartest players in the league,'' Portland coach Terry Stotts said. ''He can really orchestrate an offense. He makes his teammates better because he can find them. Defensively, he's really smart: He can sniff things out on the defensive end.''


    This was the Rondo that New Orleans hoped it would see in the postseason when the Pelicans signed him to a one-year deal.


    Rondo has a reputation as a mercurial player - at times locked in and controlling games, at others seemingly disinterested. A big reason for his success in New Orleans is he's healthy. After missing the first 13 games with a core muscle injury, Rondo played in 65 regular-season games, starting 63.


    And he thrives under the playoff lights.


    New Orleans coach Alvin Gentry mused about Rondo's playoff aptitude before Game 1.


    ''I think that anyone, if you go back to last year and you watched the Chicago team, what he meant to that team, they went in there and won two games in Boston when Boston was really good,'' Gentry said. ''And I think there is a sense of confidence that he has, especially this time of the year.''


    Rondo played a major role in the Pelicans' 97-95 victory in Portland on Saturday night. He tied a franchise record with 17 assists, grabbed eight rebounds and stymied Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum with his defense.


    Anthony Davis, who was on the receiving end of many of those assists and finished with 35 points in the game, said Rondo took charge of the game.


    ''He's just in a different mode,'' Davis said.


    The Trail Blazers certainly noticed that.


    Rondo was in Chicago last year when Playoff Rondo emerged. After an up-and-down season, he played well in the first game of the team's opening series against the Celtics. But he was particularly good in Game 2, just missing a triple-double with 11 points, 14 assists and nine rebounds as the Bulls put Boston in an 0-2 hole. Just as important was his defense on Celtics star Isaiah Thomas.


    But he broke his thumb in that second game and was ruled out indefinitely before Game 3. Chicago went on to drop the series to the Celtics.


    The Pelicans brought Rondo in hoping he would run the offense and boost Jrue Holiday in the shooting guard position. In the process, Rondo has developed extraordinary chemistry with Davis - and Holiday has had one of the best seasons of his career.


    After DeMarcus Cousins injured his Achilles on Jan. 26, New Orleans shifted to more of an up-tempo offense and the change suited Rondo's ability to push the pace. He had 13 of his double-digit assist games in the 31 games he played after Cousins went out.


    Rondo averaged 8.2 points and 8.2 assists this year and finished the regular season with 15 double-doubles and two triple-doubles.


    Gentry has been impressed with what he's seen.


    ''He's a really bright player. One of the smartest guys I've ever been around,'' the coach said. ''I had the opportunity to coach Steph, Chris Paul, Steve Nash, Grant Hill. When you start talking about the extremely smart players, he's one of those guys. I also think he has a way of giving confidence to the other guys. He makes them believe in themselves.''


    After helping Davis notch his first playoff career victory, Rondo has the Pelicans believing there is more where that one came from.
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    On Pace: Indy opens eyes with blowout
    April 16, 2018



    CLEVELAND (AP) They've spent the entire season on the fringe, virtually ignored by all but the most savvy fans and NBA insiders.


    They don't have any household names or any superstars on their roster, just one All-Star and a role player best known for foolish on-court antics.


    But as the Indiana Pacers strolled quietly into practice on Monday at Quicken Loans Arena, a building they silenced less than 24 hours earlier with an eye-catching playoff win in Game 1 over the Cavaliers, there was something unmistakable about them.


    They're confident - and they're no longer a secret.


    ''People didn't expect us to do this well,'' Pacers forward Thaddeus Young said, leaning back in a cushioned chair at the end of Indiana's bench. ''We like that. That's what kind of drives our motor a little bit, being overlooked and no one expecting us to do what we're currently doing.''


    The Pacers were the better team - by far - on Sunday, leading from tip to final horn in a 98-80 victory over Cleveland that snapped a 21-game winning streak in the first round for LeBron James, who had never opened the playoffs before with a loss and figures to be more aggressive in Game 2 on Wednesday.


    Led by Victor Oladipo's 32-point, tough-shot-after-tough-shot performance, Indiana outplayed, outhustled and outlasted Cleveland, giving the Pacers a 4-1 record this season against the three-time defending conference champions.


    This may have been a surprise to outsiders, but it was just another day on the office hardwood for the Pacers, who won 48 games during the regular season and were the only team to beat Golden State twice.


    Didn't know that, did you?


    Well, most of Indiana's accomplishments have been woefully under-publicized. That's what happens when only one of your games is shown on national TV, you're playing in a mid-market city and you appeared to throw away the future by trading away your biggest star, Paul George, last summer.


    But the lack of attention doesn't faze Pacers. It fuels them.


    ''They underestimate us,'' Lance Stephenson said, referring to everyone, not just those Cleveland fans taunting the Pacers on Sunday. ''They didn't think we would get this far and they didn't think we was going to win that many games. But if you look at our team, I guess you could say we don't have that one player or the type of players that stand out, and that's why they underestimate us.''


    Stephenson, the Pacers' instigator, spark and arch-enemy to James, set the tone for Indiana's impressive win in Game 1 with a thunderous first-quarter dunk he celebrated by bashing his head into the padded basket stanchion.


    ''I'm a little dizzy right now,'' he joked before Monday's workout.


    His teammates' heads aren't spinning after the series-opening win over the Cavs, who swept the Pacers in the first round a year ago. They expected to play well, and they did. The Pacers aren't flashy, but fundamental. They do the little things: boxing out, diving for loose balls, taking charges.


    They've been successful by following coach Nate McMillan's simple formula: share the ball, stop your man and stay connected.


    ''We've been playing like this all year,'' said Oladipo, the team's rising star who has been on a mission since coming over from Oklahoma City in the deal for George. ''Been playing hard on both ends all year. It just hasn't been magnified. So it's the playoffs now, we've been doing this all year. Now everybody sees.''


    Young, who along with Myles Turner are the only starters from last year's playoff squad, said Indiana's success is rooted in the team's togetherness. A year ago, the Pacers were going in different directions.


    ''We had a lot of guys with egos that we really couldn't push aside'' he said. ''And there was a lot of miscommunication and a lot of different things that were going on. We didn't know if Paul was going to be here. We didn't know if Jeff (Teague) was going to stick around. There was a lot of uncertainty and no clarity from Day One and that hurt us from being a better team than we could've been.


    ''But this team here, we're all in. We take each and every step together. We try to work in unison each and every day. We come to work and put our hard hats on and we all believe in each other.''


    The Pacers took Sunday's win in stride, like a team that has won bigger games before. There was no chest-thumping, no bragging, nothing but talk of doing it again.


    ''There ain't nothing to celebrate about,'' Stephenson said. ''We won the game, but we got more to accomplish.''


    ---
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    Jazz G Mitchell uncertain for Game 2
    April 16, 2018



    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell has a left foot bruise and his status is uncertain for Game 2 of the Western Conference playoff series against the Oklahoma City Thunder.


    Mitchell left Oklahoma City's 116-108 win Game 1 on Sunday after stubbing his toe in the third quarter, and he played sporadically the rest of the way. A team spokesman said Mitchell had an MRI on Monday, and the team will provide a status update on Tuesday. When asked if he was concerned about missing Game 2 on Wednesday, Mitchell said, ''Not at all.''


    ''I can walk,'' he said. ''I think tomorrow will be the deciding factor, but I feel fine. I feel fine right now.''


    Mitchell is one of the league's top rookies. He averaged 20.5 points, 3.7 rebounds and 3.7 assists during the regular season. He had 27 points and 10 rebounds in Game 1.


    Mitchell did not try to run on the foot on Monday, saying there was no need to. He said he expects to be able to help the Jazz bounce back.


    ''We were stagnant,'' he said. ''The ball didn't move as much as we had hoped or as we would like. We made those adjustments in practice just now.''


    Oklahoma City's Carmelo Anthony and Russell Westbrook were asked about Mitchell after Sunday's game. At one point, Anthony said he'd already answered one and he'd let Westbrook take the second. Westbrook deflected it.


    ''We just came out and competed,'' Westbrook said. ''Both teams played hard.''


    As for the actual game, Mitchell said Westbrook was focused defensively and Thunder guard Corey Brewer was a better defensive player than he thought. He said being exposed to the environment should pay off on Wednesday.


    ''Now that we've got the first game under our belt - some of us haven't played in the playoffs - we know the atmosphere, we know how loud it's going to be in here,'' he said. ''I think coming out the second game, we'll be more poised and more calm.''
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    Blazers seek 1-1 tie vs Pelicans
    April 16, 2018



    The Portland Trail Blazers fought their way through a pressure-packed playoff race to earn home-court advantage in a series, then lost it in one game.


    The Toronto Raptors know that problem all too well, so they want to take advantage of playing from ahead for a change.


    They try for their first 2-0 playoff series lead ever Tuesday night against Washington, while the Trail Blazers try to even things up in against the New Orleans Pelicans.


    Boston and Milwaukee play the other Game 2 on Tuesday after the Celtics pulled out a 113-107 overtime victory on Sunday.


    The No. 3 Trail Blazers were the highest-seeded team to lose so far, falling 97-95 on Saturday. Anthony Davis was dominant, Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum were slow-starting, and the Pelicans got a couple big defensive plays down the stretch from Jrue Holiday to hold on after the Blazers nearly came back from a 19-point deficit.


    ''I think it puts some pressure on us,'' Lillard said. ''You know, you come in with home court, the first two games on your floor and you lose the first one, and now they're saying in their locker room we got one, why not go get another one. And our job is to defend the home court.


    ''We've got to tighten up, come back sharper, and take care of home floor.''


    Toronto had lost Game 1 at home all six times it had home-court advantage in a series, part of an overall 10-game losing streak in series openers, before beating Washington 114-106 dropped on Saturday. Finally, the Raptors could enjoy the start of postseason play.


    ''And for me, this year is finally a year I can be happy watching other games and not be like `Damn, I lost Game 1,''' point guard Kyle Lowry said.


    ---


    Some things to know about Tuesday's matchups:


    WIZARDS AT RAPTORS


    Toronto leads 1-0. Game 2, 7 P.M., NBA TV.



    NEED TO KNOW: Toronto's only other 1-0 series lead was in the 2001 Eastern Conference semifinals against Philadelphia, which won Game 2 and ultimately the series in seven games.


    KEEP AN EYE ON: The 3-point line. The Raptors made a franchise-record 16 in the opener, twice as many as Washington for a 24-point advantage behind the arc.


    INJURY UPDATE: Raptors reserve Fred VanVleet (right shoulder) went through most of practice Monday after missing the opener but remains day to day. Lowry was fighting a cold but joked he was ''out tanning'' Sunday during an ice storm.


    PRESSURE IS ON: Washington's bench. The Wizards' reserves probably aren't going to win the battle against Toronto's highly productive second unit, but need to produce something more after getting next to nothing beyond Mike Scott's 14 points in the opener.


    BUCKS AT CELTICS


    Boston leads 1-0. Game 2, 8 P.M., TNT.



    NEED TO KNOW: Giannis Antetokounmpo has scored 20 or more points in eight straight games against the Celtics after scoring 35 before fouling out in overtime of the opener.


    KEEP AN EYE ON: Boston's balance. With Al Horford (24 points), Terry Rozier (23), Marcus Morris (21) and Jaylen Brown (20), the Celtics had four 20-point scorers in a playoff game for the first time since Kevin McHale, Robert Parish, Reggie Lewis and Brian Shaw did it in a 1991 game. Throw in Jayson Tatum's 19 points, and the Bucks let too many players get hot in Game 1.

    INJURY UPDATE:
    Celtics coach Brad Stevens said Marcus Smart is getting some shots up and working on lower body and conditioning as much as he can, but has been told by the training staff that April 27 is the earliest the guard could begin basketball activity.


    ''We're still a ways away from that and a lot of games away from that,'' Stevens said.


    PRESSURE IS ON: Eric Bledsoe. Milwaukee needs more from its starting guard who had more combined fouls (6) and turnovers (5) than points (9) in a bit of a Game 1 dud.


    PELICANS AT TRAIL BLAZERS


    New Orleans leads 1-0. Game 2, 10:30 P.M., TNT.



    NEED TO KNOW: Anthony Davis had 35 points in the opener and has scored 25 or more in his first five postseason games. He can tie LeBron James for the second-longest streak to begin a career, behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's 14 straight, according to Elias.

    KEEP AN EYE ON:
    Rajon Rondo. A 17-assist, eight-rebound opener was another reminder of how much the Pelicans' point guard can elevate his game in the postseason.


    INJURY UPDATE: Portland's Maurice Harkless is nearing a return from late-season left knee surgery, but may not be available until later in the series.


    PRESSURE IS ON: The Blazers' backcourt. Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum combined to shoot just 13 for 41, and their three combined points on 1-for-15 shooting in the first half doomed Portland to a big hole from which it could not recover.
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    Tuesday's Playoff Tips
    April 17, 2018



    Eastern Conference First Round – Game 1 – Raptors lead 1-0
    Washington at Toronto (NBATV, 7:05 p.m. ET)



    After dropping an NBA-worst 10 consecutive Game 1s in the playoffs, Toronto finally snapped that streak last Saturday as it defeated Washington 114-106 in Game 1 as a 7 ˝-point home favorite. The line was holding -8 all day and most bettors likely earned a push and that only occurred because Wizards point guard John Wall scored a meaningless bucket with second remaining.


    Washington led 59-56 at halftime and Toronto recaptured the lead (86-85) heading into the final quarter. The Wizards went cold midway through the fourth quarter and the Raptors pushed the lead to as many as 12 points.


    The difference in Game 1 was 3-point shooting and bench scoring. The Raptors finished 16-of-30 (53%) from distance while Washington only connected on 38 percent (8-of-21) from 3-point land. Backup forward Mike Scott posted 14 points for the Wizards but the club only received a total of 21 from its reserves.


    Meanwhile, Delon Wright contributed 18 points for Toronto off the pine and the reserves posted 40 points in Game 1. Those numbers were a little surprising considering the Raptors didn’t have Fred VanVleet (shoulder) available for Game 1 and he’s been solid (10.1 PPG, 3.2 APG) this season. He’s listed as ‘questionable’ for Game 2.


    The Raptors snapped the Game 1 losing streak on Saturday and now they face another glaring mark on Tuesday as the team has never lead a playoff series 2-0 in franchise history.


    Oddsmakers opened Toronto as an eight-point favorite and the number has dropped to as low as 6 ˝ on Monday but most shops are holding -7 on Tuesday morning. The total was sent out at 215 and has held steady. The Raptors opened as -650 favorites to win the series but they’ve only moved to -750 after the win, which shows you that the books believe the Wizards can compete in this series. The takeback on Washington is listed as high as 11/2 odds (Bet $100 to win $550).


    Including Saturday’s win and cover, the Raptors are only 11-7 straight up and 5-12-1 ATS in their last 18 playoff games as home favorite. While that angle could have you leaning Washington, VegasInsider.com NBA expert Kevin Rogers is hesitant to back the Wizards.


    He said, “Washington is riding a horrific 1-8 run away from D.C. since March 10 with the only victory coming in overtime at Boston on March 14. The last time the Wizards won outright as a road underdog came on February 27 at Milwaukee, as Washington owns a 1-7 record both SU and ATS record in its past eight away playoff contests.”


    Considering both clubs haven’t been sound investments in the playoffs, the total might capture your interest in particular the ‘over.’


    The high side (214) cashed Saturday and the Raptors have seen the ‘over’ go 5-1 in their last six home playoff games when favored. Another trend supporting the ‘over’ is Washington’s defensive tendencies in the playoffs on the road. In their last eight playoff games as visitors, the Wizards have allowed 116.2 points per game which has led to a 7-0-1 ‘over’ mark.


    Game 3 is scheduled for Friday at the Capital One Arena in Washington D.C.


    Eastern Conference First Round – Game 1 – Celtics lead 1-0
    Milwaukee at Boston (TNT, 8:05 p.m. ET)



    Of the eight games that took place over the weekend, the opening matchup between the Celtics and Bucks delivered not one but two “Bad Beats.” Boston captured a 113-107 Game 1 overtime victory against Milwaukee and earned the cover as a four-point favorite but getting to the extra session looked improbable.


    After the Bucks tied the game 96-96 on a Malcolm Brogdon 3-pointer, the Celtics guard Terry Rozier stepped back and hit what look like a game-winning bomb from distance. Down 99-96 with .5 seconds left, the Bucks managed to inbound and barely execute a 3-pointer from Khris Middleton.


    If that shot or the previous attempt from Brogdon rim out, the Celtics would’ve won in regulation and bettors on the Bucks (+4) would’ve cashed. Sure enough, Boston outscored Milwaukee 14-6 in the five-minute overtime and ended up covering the spread plus the ‘over’ (199 ˝) came in as well.


    Fast forward to Game 2 and the oddsmakers opened Boston -3 and as of Tuesday morning, the early action is calling for a split in this series with the number dropping to 2 ˝. The total also dropped from an opener of 199 to 197.


    Including Sunday’s outcome, Milwaukee is just 19-23 SU and 22-19-1 ATS on the road this season while Boston owns a solid 28-14 SU and 23-17-2 ATS mark at TD Garden.


    Even though the Bucks had a shot to win Sunday, Kevin Rogers noted that backing Milwaukee on the road is a dicey proposition for bettors.


    “Following Sunday’s tough-luck overtime loss at Boston, the Bucks dropped to 1-7 SU in their last eight games in the role of a road underdog. The only win in that span occurred at Golden State as the Warriors played without Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson on March 29,” he said.


    “However, since the start of the 2016 playoffs, teams off an overtime win have slumped to a 2-5 record in the next contest, so Milwaukee may be worth a look, especially with the line dropping in its favor following Game 1.”


    Since head coach Brad Stevens took over the Celtics, the club has gone 8-8 SU and 10-6 ATS at home in the playoffs. If you take out games against LeBron James, that record improves to 8-3 both SU and ATS.


    With Giannis Antetokounmpo joining the Bucks in 2013, the team is 2-7 SU and 4-5 ATS on the road in the playoffs. The glaring stat is the Milwaukee offense, which has been held under 100 points in seven of those nine games.


    Even though the pair combined for 220 points in Game 1, this was an ugly contest to watch. The two teams combined for 35 turnovers and neither club shot well from the field. The ‘over’ is on an 8-2-1 in the last 11 matchups in this series, but the total listed in the 190s seems justified tonight.


    Game 3 is scheduled for Friday from Milwaukee’s BMO Harris Bradley Center.


    Western Conference First Round – Game 1 – Pelicans lead 1-0
    New Orleans at Portland (TNT, 10:35 p.m. ET)



    The late-night playoff tip on Tuesday isn’t an easy handicap and a lot of bettors will use the “Zig-Zag Theory” when handicapping this game and take Portland. However, make a note that this trend hasn’t been great over the last few postseasons according to VI expert Marc Lawrence.


    The Trail Blazers face a 0-1 hole and opened as a six-point favorite for Game 2 over the Pelicans. The number is sitting at 6 ˝ at a couple books as of Tuesday morning and the total was adjusted from 212 ˝ to 214.


    New Orleans was one of two underdogs to capture an outright victory this past weekend as it earned a 97-95 decision over Portland in Game 1 as a five-point underdog. The Pels were listed as high as 2/1 on the money-line and the ‘under’ (217 ˝) was never in doubt.


    As expected, the Trail Blazers had no answer for Anthony Davis. The New Orleans All-Star finished with 35 points, 14 rebounds and four blocks. What was more surprising is the backcourt of Jrue Holiday (21 points) and Rajon Rondo (17 assists) dominated the ball and made Portland’s top pair look invisible on their homecourt.


    Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum combined to shoot just 13-of-41 from the game and most of that damage came in the second-half as they started 1-of-15 in the first 24 minutes. Portland trailed 21-18 after the first quarter and 45-36 at the break. The Blazers did put 59 points on the board in the second-half but it wasn’t enough to overcome Davis and the veteran guards.


    Including Saturday’s win, the Pelicans have now won and covered six straight games and four of those wins took place on the road. Since the All-Star break, New Orleans has gone 9-3 both SU and ATS as a visitor and two of the three losses were by five points or less.


    Portland sits at 28-14 SU and 22-17-3 ATS at home this season after the Game 1 setback and that includes a 16-4 run over its last 20 games. The Trail Blazers have only lost back-to-back home games one time in 2018.


    While the stats and trends can certainly be argued both ways, VI NBA expert Joe Nelson stated his case for Portland to even up the series in Game 2.


    He explained, “The Blazers are the far superior defensive team in this matchup and this is a daunting scheduling spot for New Orleans, technically a fifth road game in 12 days and a clear letdown spot after the first playoff win for Anthony Davis and company.”


    “Portland had a grueling close to the season as well battling through a difficult early April road trip and then having to play San Antonio, Denver, and Utah in the final three games with high stakes. The flat Game 1 showing wasn’t a shock with a quick turnaround on the opening day of the playoffs but Portland has excelled at home vs. quality teams this season and in the slight favorite role, going 23-14 ATS this season favored by fewer than seven points. The Pelicans have been a great road team for the season but the success has come almost exclusively against bad teams with only five road wins vs. Western Conference playoff teams all season. Happy to have stolen a road game in this series the Pelicans won’t be able to match the Game 1 intensity.”


    The series will head back to “The Big Easy” on Thursday for Game 3 from the Smoothie King Center.
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    Tuesday's NBA Playoffs Betting Preview and Odds


    The opening round of the 2018 NBA Playoffs continues Tuesday night with three games, including Game 2 between the Bucks and the Celtics after a thrilling overtime victory for the C's in Game 1.


    Washington Wizards at Toronto Raptors (-6.5, 215)


    The Toronto Raptors spent the regular season making franchise history and started the postseason the same way while brushing aside memories of poor Game 1 performances and shoving aside the Washington Wizards. The pressure of Game 1 now off, the top-seeded Raptors will try to push the lead to 2-0 when they host the Wizards on Tuesday in Game 2 of the first-round Eastern Conference series.


    Toronto dropped 10 straight Game 1s before fighting for a 114-106 victory on Saturday and credited a change in philosophy from previous years that includes more ball movement to take the pressure off All-Star guard DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry. "You don't force the issue," Raptors coach Dwane Casey told reporters after the win. "You have to give it up and make a play. That's what Kyle and DeMar have been doing all year -- different than last year. If this were last year, they would be feeling the pressure of having to score and put all of the burden of their backs. I didn't feel that tonight." Toronto shot 52.3 percent from the floor in the win, and the Wizards are aware of the need to turn things up on the defensive end. "It’s definitely a pick your poison but we have to do it better," Washington coach Scott Brooks told reporters. "We have to be able to close out on point, close out on the catch, know who has the ball and which way to close out on them."


    TV: 7 p.m. ET, NBATV, NBCS Washington plus, TSN (Toronto)


    SERIES PRICE (PER PINNACLE):





    BETTING ACTION AND LINE MOVES: The Raptors opened as 7.5-point home favorite for Game 2 and steady early action on the Wizards has pushed that number down to -6.5. The total hit betting boards at 215 and has yet to move.


    ABOUT THE WIZARDS (43-40 SU, 37-45-1 ATS, 37-44-2 O/U): Washington All-Star point guard John Wall is still working his way back into shape following knee surgery and went 6-of-20 from the floor in Game 1 but still finished with 23 points and 15 assists. Fellow All-Star guard Bradley Beal scored 19 points and knows it's a long series. "We take it a game at time," Beal told reporters. "We had opportunities -- several opportunities -- to win tonight and close it out, but we didn’t. You know, you brush it off and move forward. We got another one on Tuesday."


    ABOUT THE RAPTORS (60-23 SU, 44-38-1 ATS, 42-40-1 O/U): Lowry and DeRozan combined for 15 assists in Game 1 as six Toronto players scored in double figures and eight attempted at least five field goals. "We've got the utmost confidence in our teammates," DeRozan told reporters. "The way we've been playing all year, the style of play we've been playing is having trust in our teammates to make the next play. You see it." The biggest surprise among the supporting cast in Game 1 was reserve point guard Delon Wright, who scored 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting - 10 points above his regular-season average.


    INJURY REPORT:


    Wizards - SG J. Meeks (Out For Season, Suspension).


    Raptors - PG F. VanVleet (Questionable, Shoulder).


    MATCHUP CHART:





    TRENDS:


    * Wizards are 1-8 ATS in their last 9 road games.
    * Raptors are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 Conference Quarterfinals games.
    * Over is 4-0 in Wizards last 4 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
    * Over is 6-1 in Raptors last 7 home games vs. a team with a losing road record.
    * Under is 5-1 in the last 6 meetings in Toronto.








    Milwaukee Bucks at Boston Celtics (-2.5, 197.5)


    The Boston Celtics are relying on everybody with injured Kyrie Irving done for the postseason and it worked pretty well in their playoff opener. Boston attempts to take a 2-0 lead over the Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday after having five players tally 19 or more points in Sunday's 113-107 overtime victory.


    Starting backcourt members Terry Rozier (23 points) and Jaylen Brown (20) plus wing Jayson Tatum (19) combined for 62 points in the Eastern Conference first-round opener and coach Brad Stevens feels that could catapult the trio's confidence level. "Those guys lived a lot of what the playoffs are about today," Stevens told reporters. "The good news is that they've got now a little bit of experience and know how hard it is, know how detailed you have to be to finish a team out." Milwaukee certainly had a chance to score a Game 1 victory but standout forwards Giannis Antetokounmpo (35 points) and Khris Middleton (31) didn't receive enough help from their teammates. "We know we can do a lot better," Antetokounmpo told reporters on Monday. "We're hoping (Tuesday) night we can play a lot better and win the game."


    TV: 8 p.m. ET, TNT, FS Wisconsin (Milwaukee), NBCS Boston


    SERIES PRICE (PER PINNACLE):





    BETTING ACTION AND LINE MOVES: The Celtics opened as 3-point home favorites for Game 2 and Monday evening that number was dropped to -2.5. The total hit betting boards 199 and steady action on the Under has push that number down to 197.5.


    ABOUT THE BUCKS (44-39 SU, 34-44-5 ATS, 47-35-1 O/U): Milwaukee will need better efforts from the starting backcourt as both Eric Bledsoe (nine points on 4-of-12 shooting, five turnovers) and Tony Snell (two points, minus-17 on the plus/minus ratio) had poor outings. Bledsoe's ball-handling troubles were particularly troublesome as his sloppiness set the tone for the club's 20 total miscues. "We need to be more aggressive and attack the paint," Bledsoe told reporters. "It's basketball, we're still going to turn the ball over. We still had numerous chances to win the game. We could've got a couple more rebounds and been up a few more points. Turnovers are going to happen."


    ABOUT THE CELTICS (56-27 SU, 51-30-2 ATS, 44-38-1 O/U): Rozier started just 16 regular-season games over his three NBA seasons but he was up for the task in a Game 1 effort that included four 3-pointers. "This is my third time in the playoffs and it just keeps getting better," Rozier told reporters. "It's unfortunate what happened to our teammates throughout the whole year, but we still got each other and we still got to fight, still got to win." Brown played an average of 12.6 minutes in 17 playoff games last season - he averaged five points - but looked like a well-experienced veteran in his 46 minutes of action in Game 1.


    INJURY REPORT:


    Bucks - No injuries to report.


    Celtics - PG M. Smart (Late April, Thumb), PG K. Irving (Out For Season, Knee), PF D. Theis (Out For Season, Knee), SF G. Hayward (Out For Season, Ankle).


    MATCHUP CHART:





    TRENDS:


    * Bucks are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 vs. NBA Atlantic.
    * Celtics are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 home games.
    * Over is 10-1 in Bucks last 11 road games.
    * Over is 5-0 in Celtics last 5 home games.
    * Over is 9-1-1 in the last 11 meetings in Boston.








    New Orleans Pelicans at Portland Trail Blazers (-6.5, 214)


    Anthony Davis felt the pressure dissipating in the final seconds of the opener and now he looks to help the New Orleans Pelicans take a 2-0 lead when they visit the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday. Davis had never been part of a playoff win until the Pelicans posted a 97-95 victory on Saturday in the first game of the Western Conference first-round series.


    Davis starred with 35 points, 14 rebounds and four blocked shots as the Pelicans stunned a Portland team that won 21 of its final 24 regular-season home contests. "It means a lot to get that monkey off your back and get your first win," Davis told reporters. "Now that's over with, and we want to come in Tuesday and get another one. That's our mindset." Portland will need an improved performance if it wants to even the series as it shot just 37.8 percent from the field as well as struggling to just 36 points in the first half. "I think it puts some pressure on us," star guard Damian Lillard told reporters. "You come in with home court, the first two games are on your floor, and you lose. And now they're saying in their locker room, 'We got one, why not get another?'"


    TV: 10:30 p.m. ET, TNT, FS New Orleans, NBCS Northwest (Portland)


    SERIES PRICE (PER PINNACLE):





    BETTING ACTION AND LINE MOVES: The Blazers opened as 6-point home favorites and as of Monday evening that number is up to -6.5. The total hit betting boards at 213.5 and has been bumped up slightly to 214.


    ABOUT THE PELICANS (49-34 SU, 46-3-1 ATS, 47-36 O/U): Veteran point guard Rajon Rondo reminded folks why he earned the tag "Playoff Rondo" as he once again elevated his play and matched the franchise record for assists in a playoff game (17 by Chris Paul in 2008) as well as helped force Lillard into 6-of-23 shooting. Rondo has averages of 14.3 points, 9.2 assists and 1.9 steals in 97 career playoff games and coach Alvin Gentry appreciates the calmness he provides to younger less-experienced players. "I think there is a sense of confidence that he has, especially this time of the year," Gentry told reporters. "He's a really bright player. One of the smartest guys I've ever been around. ... I also think he has a way of giving confidence to the other guys. He makes them believe in themselves."


    ABOUT THE TRAIL BLAZERS (49-34 SU, 45-33-5 ATS, 35-48 O/U): Lillard had just 18 points in Game 1 and backcourt sidekick CJ McCollum scored 19 on 7-of-18 shooting as the duo connected on just 13-of-41 attempts. "I thought we just didn't make shots. Give credit to what they did defensively," Lillard said. "They were physical, and they were up trapping a lot of my pick-and-rolls. I think it just comes down to the way we shot. We did get a fair amount of good looks -- we just didn't knock them down." Center Jusuf Nurkic had a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds but he was just 3-of-7 shooting in addition to having trouble defending Davis.


    INJURY REPORT:


    Pelicans - C A. Ajinca (Out For Season, Knee), PG F. Jackson (Out For Season, Foot), C D. Cousins (Out For Season, Achilles).


    Blazers - SF M. Harkless (Late April, Knee), SG C. Wilcox (Out Indefinitely, Knee).


    MATCHUP CHART:





    TRENDS:


    * Pelicans are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games overall.
    * Trail Blazers are 7-21-2 ATS in their last 30 Conference Quarterfinals games.
    * Under is 6-2 in Pelicans last 8 road games.
    * Under is 5-0 in Trail Blazers last 5 vs. a team with a winning straight up record.
    * Favorite is 10-4 ATS in the last 14 meetings.
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  23. #1523  
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    NBA
    Long Sheet


    Tuesday, April 17



    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    WASHINGTON (43 - 40) at TORONTO (60 - 23) - 4/17/2018, 7:05 PM
    Top Trends for this game.
    WASHINGTON is 36-45 ATS (-13.5 Units) in all games this season.
    WASHINGTON is 6-17 ATS (-12.7 Units) in road games against Atlantic division opponents over the last 2 seasons.
    WASHINGTON is 23-41 ATS (-22.1 Units) in road games versus good offensive teams - scoring 106+ points/game since 1996.
    WASHINGTON is 68-50 ATS (+13.0 Units) revenging a loss vs opponent over the last 3 seasons.
    TORONTO is 7-17 ATS (-11.7 Units) on Tuesday nights over the last 2 seasons.
    TORONTO is 196-247 ATS (-75.7 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record - 2nd half of the season since 1996.

    Head-to-Head Series History
    TORONTO is 7-5 against the spread versus WASHINGTON over the last 3 seasons
    TORONTO is 9-3 straight up against WASHINGTON over the last 3 seasons
    8 of 12 games in this series have gone UNDER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    MILWAUKEE (44 - 39) at BOSTON (56 - 27) - 4/17/2018, 8:05 PM
    Top Trends for this game.
    MILWAUKEE is 35-43 ATS (-12.3 Units) in all games this season.
    MILWAUKEE is 376-457 ATS (-126.7 Units) in the second half of the season since 1996.
    MILWAUKEE is 17-26 ATS (-11.6 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record this season.
    MILWAUKEE is 7-15 ATS (-9.5 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record - 2nd half of the season this season.
    BOSTON is 49-30 ATS (+16.0 Units) in all games this season.
    BOSTON is 25-14 ATS (+9.6 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record this season.
    BOSTON is 25-16 ATS (+7.4 Units) versus poor defensive teams - allowing 106+ points/game this season.
    BOSTON is 28-15 ATS (+11.5 Units) versus good offensive teams - scoring 106+ points/game this season.
    MILWAUKEE is 76-49 ATS (+22.1 Units) in road games on Tuesday nights since 1996.
    MILWAUKEE is 135-99 ATS (+26.1 Units) in road games against Atlantic division opponents since 1996.

    Head-to-Head Series History
    BOSTON is 8-4 against the spread versus MILWAUKEE over the last 3 seasons
    BOSTON is 8-4 straight up against MILWAUKEE over the last 3 seasons
    8 of 11 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    NEW ORLEANS (49 - 34) at PORTLAND (49 - 34) - 4/17/2018, 10:35 PM
    Top Trends for this game.
    PORTLAND is 45-31 ATS (+10.9 Units) in all games this season.
    PORTLAND is 29-20 ATS (+7.0 Units) as a favorite this season.
    PORTLAND is 20-10 ATS (+9.0 Units) in the second half of the season this season.
    PORTLAND is 13-2 ATS (+10.8 Units) in home games after 3 or more consecutive unders over the last 3 seasons.
    PORTLAND is 16-6 ATS (+9.4 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record - 2nd half of the season this season.
    PORTLAND is 50-33 ATS (+13.7 Units) versus poor defensive teams - allowing 106+ points/game over the last 3 seasons.
    PORTLAND is 15-4 ATS (+10.6 Units) versus poor defensive teams - allowing 106+ points/game - 2nd half of the season this season.
    PORTLAND is 24-15 ATS (+7.5 Units) versus good offensive teams - scoring 106+ points/game this season.
    PORTLAND is 15-4 ATS (+10.6 Units) versus good offensive teams - scoring 106+ points/game - 2nd half of the season this season.
    NEW ORLEANS is 46-36 ATS (+6.4 Units) in all games this season.
    NEW ORLEANS is 27-15 ATS (+10.5 Units) in road games this season.

    Head-to-Head Series History
    NEW ORLEANS is 7-6 against the spread versus PORTLAND over the last 3 seasons
    NEW ORLEANS is 7-6 straight up against PORTLAND over the last 3 seasons
    7 of 13 games in this series have gone UNDER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------






    NBA
    Armadillo's Write-Up


    Tuesday, April 17



    Wizards vs Raptors (1-0)
    

Washington was -10 in 9:00 Wall was off floor in Raptors’ 114-106 win in Game 1; Wall had 15 assists, but was only 6-20 from floor. Wright had 18 points in 25:00 off bench for Toronto, which made 16-30 on arc for the game. Wizards are 3-8 in last 11 games with Toronto, 3-3 vs spread in last six visits to Canada. Raptors won their last five home games overall (3-1-1 vs spread). Road team won five of last eight series games; under is 7-4 in last 11 series games. Wizards lost six their last seven road games (1-6 vs spread).


    Bucks vs Celtics (1-0)


    Bucks rallied back to force OT after being down 10 with 5:00 left; Antetokounmpo/Middleton combined for 66 points, but other three starters were just 8-22 from floor. Bucks were -17 in 6:00 Middleton was off floor. Milwaukee is 5-4 in its last nine games overall, 4-2 vs spread in last six road games- they’re 3-4 in last seven games with the Celtics. Boston is 3-4 in its last seven games, but covered four of last five home games. Over is 8-2-1 in last 11 series games; six of last seven Celtic games, 8 of last 10 Buck games went over the total.


    Pelicans (1-0) vs Trailblazers


    Lillard/McCollum shot combined 13-41 in Game 1 loss; Portland can’t win when they shoot like that. New Orleans won/covered its last six games overall; Davis had 35 points, 14 boards in Game 1 upset, but Pelican bench was combined minus-22 for game, outscored 27-15 by Portland subs. Pelicans won five of last seven games with Portland; they’re 3-2 vs spread in last five visits to Oregon. Portland won three of its last four home games overall (2-2 vs spread). Neither team did much behind arc in Game 1 (NO was 8-24, Portland 12-39).


    Wizards-Raptors
    Tor 114-106, -7.5, O211


    Heat-76ers
    Phil 130-103, -6.5, O212
    Mia 113-103, +6.5, U217


    Spurs-Warriors
    GState 113-92, -8, U209.5
    
GState 116-101, -9 O205.5


    Pelicans-Blazers
    NO 97-95, +5.5, U216.5


    Bucks-Celtics
    Bos 113-107 OT, -4.5, O199.5


    Pacers-Cavaliers
    Ind 98-80, +7.5, U212.5


    Jazz-Thunder
    OKC 116-108, -4.5, O205


    Wolves-Rockets
    Hst 104-101, -11.5, U215.5








    NBA


    Tuesday, April 17



    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Trend Report
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Washington Wizards
    Washington is 2-5 ATS in its last 7 games
    Washington is 1-6 SU in its last 7 games
    The total has gone OVER in 5 of Washington's last 7 games
    Washington is 1-8 ATS in its last 9 games on the road
    Washington is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games on the road
    The total has gone OVER in 4 of Washington's last 5 games on the road
    Washington is 3-7 ATS in its last 10 games when playing Toronto
    Washington is 3-9 SU in its last 12 games when playing Toronto
    The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Washington's last 12 games when playing Toronto
    Washington is 6-3 ATS in its last 9 games when playing on the road against Toronto
    Washington is 6-13 SU in its last 19 games when playing on the road against Toronto
    The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Washington's last 6 games when playing on the road against Toronto
    Toronto Raptors
    Toronto is 4-1-1 ATS in its last 6 games
    Toronto is 4-10-1 ATS in its last 15 games
    Toronto is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games
    Toronto is 3-5-1 ATS in its last 9 games at home
    Toronto is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games at home
    Toronto is 7-3 ATS in its last 10 games when playing Washington
    Toronto is 9-3 SU in its last 12 games when playing Washington
    The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Toronto's last 12 games when playing Washington
    Toronto is 3-6 ATS in its last 9 games when playing at home against Washington
    Toronto is 13-6 SU in its last 19 games when playing at home against Washington
    The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Toronto's last 6 games when playing at home against Washington




    Milwaukee Bucks
    Milwaukee is 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games
    The total has gone OVER in 8 of Milwaukee's last 9 games
    Milwaukee is 4-2 ATS in its last 6 games on the road
    The total has gone OVER in 5 of Milwaukee's last 5 games on the road
    Milwaukee is 1-5 ATS in its last 6 games when playing Boston
    Milwaukee is 3-7 SU in its last 10 games when playing Boston
    The total has gone OVER in 4 of Milwaukee's last 5 games when playing Boston
    Milwaukee is 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games when playing on the road against Boston
    Milwaukee is 2-5 SU in its last 7 games when playing on the road against Boston
    The total has gone OVER in 9 of Milwaukee's last 11 games when playing on the road against Boston
    Boston Celtics
    Boston is 15-6 ATS in its last 21 games
    Boston is 9-4 SU in its last 13 games
    The total has gone OVER in 5 of Boston's last 5 games
    Boston is 6-1 ATS in its last 7 games at home
    Boston is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games at home
    The total has gone OVER in 5 of Boston's last 5 games at home
    Boston is 5-1 ATS in its last 6 games when playing Milwaukee
    Boston is 7-3 SU in its last 10 games when playing Milwaukee
    The total has gone OVER in 4 of Boston's last 5 games when playing Milwaukee
    Boston is 4-2 ATS in its last 6 games when playing at home against Milwaukee
    Boston is 5-2 SU in its last 7 games when playing at home against Milwaukee
    The total has gone OVER in 9 of Boston's last 11 games when playing at home against Milwaukee




    New Orleans Pelicans
    New Orleans is 5-0 ATS in its last 5 games
    New Orleans is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games
    The total has gone OVER in 4 of New Orleans's last 6 games
    New Orleans is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games on the road
    New Orleans is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games on the road
    The total has gone UNDER in 6 of New Orleans's last 8 games on the road
    New Orleans is 5-2 ATS in its last 7 games when playing Portland
    New Orleans is 5-2 SU in its last 7 games when playing Portland
    New Orleans is 3-6 ATS in its last 9 games when playing on the road against Portland
    New Orleans is 3-12 SU in its last 15 games when playing on the road against Portland
    The total has gone UNDER in 7 of New Orleans's last 10 games when playing on the road against Portland
    Portland Trail Blazers
    Portland is 15-6-2 ATS in its last 23 games
    Portland is 2-4-1 ATS in its last 7 games
    Portland is 17-8 SU in its last 25 games
    Portland is 1-5 SU in its last 6 games
    The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Portland's last 5 games
    Portland is 16-3-2 ATS in its last 21 games at home
    Portland is 2-2-2 ATS in its last 6 games at home
    Portland is 21-4 SU in its last 25 games at home
    Portland is 2-5 ATS in its last 7 games when playing New Orleans
    Portland is 2-5 SU in its last 7 games when playing New Orleans
    Portland is 6-3 ATS in its last 9 games when playing at home against New Orleans
    Portland is 12-3 SU in its last 15 games when playing at home against New Orleans
    The total has gone UNDER in 7 of Portland's last 10 games when playing at home against New Orleans
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  24. #1524  
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    NBA
    Dunkel


    Tuesday, April 17




    Washington @ Toronto


    Game 705-706
    April 17, 2018 @ 7:05 pm


    Dunkel Rating:
    Washington
    121.736
    Toronto
    125.375
    Dunkel Team:
    Dunkel Line:
    Dunkel Total:
    Toronto
    by 3 1/2
    207
    Vegas Team:
    Vegas Line:
    Vegas Total:
    Toronto
    by 7
    215
    Dunkel Pick:
    Washington
    (+7); Under


    Milwaukee @ Boston



    Game 707-708
    April 17, 2018 @ 8:05 pm


    Dunkel Rating:
    Milwaukee
    120.898
    Boston
    119.775
    Dunkel Team:
    Dunkel Line:
    Dunkel Total:
    Milwaukee
    by 1
    209
    Vegas Team:
    Vegas Line:
    Vegas Total:
    Boston
    by 3
    197
    Dunkel Pick:
    Milwaukee
    (+3); Over


    New Orleans @ Portland



    Game 709-710
    April 17, 2018 @ 10:35 pm


    Dunkel Rating:
    New Orleans
    118.273
    Portland
    126.998
    Dunkel Team:
    Dunkel Line:
    Dunkel Total:
    Portland
    by 8 1/2
    218
    Vegas Team:
    Vegas Line:
    Vegas Total:
    Portland
    by 6
    213 1/2
    Dunkel Pick:
    Portland
    (-6); Over
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  25. #1525  
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    TUESDAY, APRIL 17
    GAME TIME(ET) PICK UNITS



    WAS at TOR 07:00 PM
    TOR -6.5
    O 215.0



    MIL at BOS 08:00 PM
    BOS -2.5
    U 197.5



    NO at POR 10:30 PM
    NO +6.5
    O 214.0
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