The Heat upset the Celtics 112-109 on Wednesday night to take a commanding 3-1 series lead in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Heat (+ 3.5) came up huge for dog bettors and cashed + 145 on the moneyline. Boston opened as a 2.5-point favorite and got hit with a barrage of action, moving up to -3.5. Miami had value as a contrarian dog with an inflated line in a heavily bet game. Pros also cashed the over. It opened at 210, got steamed up to 212 and landed on 221. The over was an intriguing play for sharps because all three refs historically favored the over and the extra layoff between games led to fresh and rested offensive legs.
With a 3-1 series lead, the Heat are now -455 favorites to advance to the NBA Finals at BetMGM. This translated to an 82% implied probability. The Celtics are + 350 to come back and win the series.
Here are the updated NBA Title odds
Heat + 325
Celtics + 1400
Nuggets + 1400
Here are the most likely NBA Finals series matchups
Celtics-Lakers + 370
Heat-Nuggets + 1200
Celtics-Nuggets + 4000
Today, we have a packed betting slate with Thursday Night Football, 1 NBA game, 1 college football game and 11 MLB games. Let's discuss a pair of big matchups receiving notable sharp action from respected bettors.
For an updated breakdown of Thursday's betting action, be sure to tune in to the VSiN Market Insights Podcast with Josh Appelbaum. It will be posted at noon ET.
8:20 p.m. ET: Miami Dolphins at Jacksonville Jaguars
This Thursday Night showdown features a pair of Florida teams looking to rebound from tough losses last week. The Dolphins (0-2 SU, 1-1 ATS) fell to the Bills 31-28 at home but were able to cover as 5.5-point dogs. Meanwhile, the Jags (1-1 SU, 2-0 ATS) battled hard in a 33-30 loss to the Titans but covered as 7-point dogs. This line opened with Jacksonville listed as a 2.5-point home favorite. We've seen a steady dose of action from both Pros and Joes backing the Jags, pushing the line up from Jags -2.5 to the key number of -3. Pros really targeted the Jags at -2.5, that way a 3-point win would cover. Historically, Thursday Night games have provided an edge to home favorites as the short week benefits the "better" team who didn't have to travel. We've also seen big money hammer this over. The total opened at 45 and has been bet up to 48. The over is 1-1 in Dolphins games this season and 2-0 in Jags games. Overs are 20-12 (62%) across the NFL this season.
9 p.m. ET: Los Angeles Lakers vs Denver Nuggets
This is Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals. The Nuggets are riding the momentum of a huge 114-106 win in Game 3 as 6.5-point dogs, which cut the Lakers series lead to 2-1. This Game 4 line opened with the Lakers listed as 6-point favorites. This is notable because it's the lowest spread of the series (previous games were Lakers -7, -7.5 and -6.5). This means oddsmakers are respecting the Nuggets more. Anytime this line has jumped to Lakers -6.5, we've seen sharp action hit the Nuggets at + 6.5, dropping it down to 6. Keep an eye on this line as we get closer to game-time. If you see it fall to 5.5 that will be a sign that pros are liking the Nuggets even more. The total opened at 215. The public is hammering the over, yet we've seen the total stay the same or fall slightly to 214.5. This signals some under liability.