NBA betting market report: Daily picks, advice for Sunday 5/1

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Welcome to the daily NBA betting market report, your source for analysis on the betting lines for the day in professional hoops. For updates throughout the day follow me on Twitter, or check out The Edge daily at 4 p.m. ET / 1 p.m. PT.

All game lines via VSiN NBA Odds page.

Market Report for Sunday, May 1st

*Lines are opening numbers

Milwaukee Bucks at Boston Celtics (-4.5, 218)

Game 1: Series tied 0-0

Both teams will enter the first game of this series well rested, one more so than the other. Boston has not played since Monday when it ousted Brooklyn via sweep, and Milwaukee last played on Wednesday when it eliminated Chicago. The longer layoff for the Celtics could be seen as either a negative or a positive but given Jaylen Brown’s hamstring got time to recover its hard to view this as anything but good for the favorite. With Brown able to play and the Bucks missing Khris Middleton for the start of the series the advantage goes to the favorite, but I still cannot help but think the market is somewhat high on Boston. The series price of -200 carries an implied probability of 66.7% which is somewhat strong, even for me who rates the Celtics as the better team with Middleton available. It would also lead me to think this opening line is inflated as well. Milwaukee rates as a better team than the Brooklyn Nets as currently constructed, yet the Bucks are catching an even bigger number in Game 1 than the Nets did. Homecourt has not proven to be worth much in the postseason through two weeks, so a bigger number against a better opponent makes little sense here. Boston is an incredible team that is one of the rare few who are suited to battle with Giannis Antetokounmpo, but the market seems to be at a high with them so I’ll grab the points today with the underdog.

Play: Bucks (+ 4.5)

Golden State Warriors (-2.5, 217.5) at Memphis Grizzles

Game 1: Series tied 0-0

Like all the conference semifinal series, this is going to be a hell of a matchup. Memphis took the regular season series 3-1 against Golden State, but those results will not translate to this series. Stephen Curry did play in three of the four games, but Draymond Green appeared in just two and Klay Thompson in one. As we saw in the series against the Nuggets, this version of the Warriors seems to be finding its stride and Steve Kerr has a fancy new lineup that can match the speed and smaller size of Memphis that they used against Minnesota at times. Having said that there are things the Warriors do need to be concerned about in this series. Golden State finished 29th in offensive turnover rate in the regular season (15.2%) and Memphis not only finished fourth in defensive turnover rate (15.0%), but points added per 100 possessions through transition offense off steals (+ 2.3). The Warriors can run somewhat small at times as well, meaning the Grizzlies could thrive on the offensive glass, which is what they did in the regular season, finishing first in offensive rebounding rate (32.7%). Steven Adams not being available today alters that gameplan somewhat.  I believe Memphis to be overvalued by the betting market, but I also do not want to overvalue what transpired between Golden State and an overmatched Denver team. I am going to sit this first game out to see what transpires on the court before getting involved in this series. It is worth noting that the total has jumped three points here to 220.5 which makes sense given the potential up-and-down nature of the series. The number is still a far cry from the average closing total of 234.4 which Memphis just saw in its series with Minnesota, but Golden State is a much better defensive team and four of those final five games went Under the total for the Grizzlies anyway.

Best Bet Summary

Bucks (+ 4.5)

Season Record: 91-71-2

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