The Philadelphia 76ers are hoping to steal one of the top two seeds, despite a grueling schedule. They begin their final leg of the journey tonight in Cleveland. After that game on ESPN, the second of a doubleheader will feature Steph Curry and the reigning champs, the Golden State Warriors vs. the Los Angeles Clippers.
The Eagles landed Rashad Penny, Aaron Rodgers has emerged from the darkness and wants to be a New York Jet, there’s a lot going on in the sports world. What better time to become a bettor, and make a few bucks on DraftKings tonight?
First things first, go place your bets on Joel to win his first ever MVP, as Nikola Jokic is now even money +100, Joel Embiid is +150, and Giannis is +380.
This may be your last chance to get any decent price on Embiid, who leads the NBA in points per game (33.4). If James Harden, Tyrese Maxey and Joel get a huge road victory tonight, you get the sense the odds may shift again.
Sixers at Cavaliers (Philadelphia -2.5, money line -145)
The last time these two teams met, Philly raced out to a huge 28-point lead, only to take their foot off the gas peddle. The Cavs cut it to four points late when Philly couldn’t stop fouling and finally Evan Mobley missed a point-blank hook that could have cut it to two, nearly giving every fan at The Center heart palpitations. But Mobley missed and Doc Rivers crew held on.
It became clear that the Sixers don’t have the perimeter defenders to really slow down Donovan Mitchell or Darius Garland. When head coach Doc Rivers and defensive-minded assistant Dan Burke deploy Embiid in drop coverage (something that makes sense for them to do) it allows the Cavs’ superstar backcourt to really score points in bunches from outside.
On the other end, stalwart big Jarrett Allen has been ruled out, and Donovan Mitchell, who missed last game (the first of a back-to-back) due to “injury management” is questionable.
On the Sixers end, Jalen McDaniels is questionable after suffering a hip contusion recently.
So for a single game parlay, here’s how I’m choosing to play this big road game....
No Allen means we’re likely going to see a fair amount of Evan Mobley trying to defend James Harden on switches. Mobley may have trouble staying out of foul trouble between guarding Joel and James. I’m staying away from Mobley’s lines for this reason, but I could be talked into his rebounding totals. I kinda like Harden as a scorer tonight. But I’m not convinced. We could consider taking Harden’s over 18.5 points (-195). Let’s bookmark that for now.
Joel Embiid, on the other hand, is more of a lock, and he should get a boost without Allen as well. We’ll start by popping on Embiid to drop 29 or more (-190). Seeing the Cavs are home dogs, I’m tempted to buy myself a little wiggle room that the Sixers do not win easily. Let’s bet on the Cavs to cover 8.5 (-250). And now, let’s bet on Garland and Mitchell to get theirs.
Garland’s 19.5 over (-220) and Spida’s 23.5 over (-215) feel in the cards, sadly. The duo combined for 60 points last time around. I think we can get 44 between them this time. Pop on Harden’s over 8.5 dimes (-245) and we’re at +500 on our SGP.
If you do like Harden to torment Mobley on switches, you can basically bet on this game to shoot out a little and James to tally 19 or more (-195). If you’re feeling that frisky, your parlay is up to +750. Adding Tyrese Maxey to drop 17 or more (-190) and you’re all the way up to +1100.
That last one, with all of the bets means your $5 bucks pays out $60. Mix and match a few of your favorites. For example, Embiid has tended to rebound more aggressively in huge games, and lets others do the dirty work vs. easier opponents (see Minnesota). Armed with that bit of #watchthedamngames intel, and you might bet on Embiid to go over 8.5 boards (-275) instead of Harden’s risky point total.
Cleveland played last night, notching an easy win over the Hornets. Hopefully at least one or two of them who played will be fatigued. And hopefully the Sixers get the win, which couldn’t hurt the MVP bet we just placed.
Warriors at Clippers (Clippers -2.5, money line -140)
Andrew Wiggins and Norman Powell are out.
But Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green Kawhi Leonard and Paul George are all in. Neither team played last night. Both of these teams have identical, disappointing 36-33 records. As of today, the Dubs hold the five seed and the Clips are in the six. But if the Clippers, winners of three in a row, secure a monster win, and that will flip flop.
The loser will even have to worry about Anthony Edwards and the Minnesota Timberwolves, sitting in seventh place, just a game back from both star-studded, underachieving titans. They haven’t even had Karl-Anthony Towns. He might change the equation for them, much as LeBron James returning could turbo charge the Lakers, capitalizing on Anthony Davis’ absurd star-level play lately.
So yeah, this is a huge game in L.A. with tons of implications in the standings.
Since returning from an injury that sidelined him since early February, Curry has been scorching. The four-time champ and greatest three point shooter ever has managed to get up a ludicrous 58 triples over his last five outings and he’s made half of them. He’s some sort of alien.
But the Dubs haven’t been winning enough to feel great here. Let’s start by betting on the Clippers to make it four in a row. Their money line on a SGP is -150. Leonard is averaging 29 points over his last four games. So let’s take his over 25.5 points (-185). Curry smashes, we’ll take his over 25.5 also (-200). Paul George averages 21 points, 5.9 rebouds, and 5.4 dimes vs. GS as a member of the Clippers. Let’s bet on PG to tally over 4.5 boards, (-320).
That SGP puts us at +255 and we have a night ahead of us. Play around with Klay Thompson’s points total, if you want to make it spicier.
Good luck to all and bet responsibly.