The Dolphins came up huge for sportsbooks and dog bettors on Thursday Night Football, upsetting the Jaguars 31-13. Miami cashed as a + 2.5 dog on the spread and + 125 on the moneyline. The Jaguars opened -2.5 and received a lion's share of the bets, pushing Jacksonville to the key number of -3. In the final hour or so before kickoff, we saw the line drop from 3 to 2.5. This was a signal that pros had scooped up the Dolphins at + 3, causing the line to fall. The under cashed for contrarians as well. Two-thirds of bets steamed the over, causing it to rise from 45 to 49. It landed on 44.
In the NBA playoffs, the Lakers earned a 114-108 victory over the Nuggets to take a commanding 3-1 series lead. In a perfect example of how spot-on oddsmakers are, the line opened at Los Angeles -6 and closed at -6, which resulted in a push. However, some shops briefly reached 6.5. This means savvy bettors who jumped on the Nuggets when they were + 6.5 were able to cash with the hook. The total opened at 215 and got hit with some smart under money, dropping it to 214. However, public bettors got the last night and the total sailed over and landed on 222. Over are now 6-2 in the Conference Finals. Unders still lead in the playoffs overall at 43-30-1.
Today, we have a loaded Friday slate with 1 NBA game, 1 NHL game, 1 College Football game and whipping 18 MLB games. Consider it the calm before the weekend storm. Let's discuss two Friday matchups receiving notable sharp action from respected bettors.
For an updated breakdown of Friday's betting action, be sure to tune in to the VSiN Market Insights Podcast with Josh Appelbaum. It will be posted at noon ET. I'll also be joining Michael Lombardi and Patrick Meagher on The Lombardi Line at 12:25 p.m ET to offer a market update.
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8 p.m. ET: Tampa Bay Lightning vs Dallas Stars
This is Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Finals. The Lightning posted a dominant 5-2 victory as -165 favorites in Game 3 to take a 2-1 series lead. This Game 4 line opened with Tampa Bay listed as a -160 favorite and Dallas a + 140 dog. We've seen value driven sharps buy low on the Stars off a bad loss with an inflated line, dropping the Bolts from -160 to -115 and the Stars from + 140 to + 135. Dallas is the designated home team and will have the advantage of getting the last change. The total is 5 with the over juiced at -130, signaling over liability. Leading 2-1, the Lightning are now -556 favorites (85%) to win the Cup. The Stars are + 440.
8:30 p.m. ET: Miami Heat vs Boston Celtics
This is Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals. The Heat lead the series 3-1. It's do-or-die time for the Celtics, who will see their season end if they lose tonight. This line opened with Boston listed as a 3-point favorite. The public is relatively split and doesn't know which way to go. They love the idea of getting points with the red-hot Heat but also respect a desperate Celtics team with their backs to the wall. Despite an even ticket count, we've seen some back move from Boston -3 to -3.5, signaling some respected money laying the points. We've also seen sharp action hit the under, dropping the total from 214 to 213. The Over is 3-1 in this series. With Miami up 3-1 in the series, the Heat are now -455 favorites (82%) to reach the NBA Finals. Boston is + 350 to come back and win the series.
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