I love the warm weather that arrives with the postseason but absolutely hate the allergies that come with it. Please, someone, end my sneezing — I might be dying.
Anyways, here are this week’s picks!
Layups: 2-Unit Plays
Two-Pointers: 1-Unit Plays
Three-Pointers: 0.75-Unit Plays
Half-Court Shot: 0.5-Unit Plays
Record: 77-64-3 (+10.79 units)
Suns ML vs. Mavs (-120) (Thursday): Dallas, your fun is over now. You had a good time winning your two little games at home, taking advantage of hot shooting, but that has cooled down. The Suns are too good of a team to lose this one. Plus, I may have said on the Points in the Paint Podcast that the Suns would win the title, so I’m just trying to avoid showing up on @OldTakesExposed.
With Deandre Ayton finding his offensive rhythm again, and the Suns’ defense adjusting to the Mavs’ barrage of three-point shots, I think the Mavs have thrown everything they can at a versatile Suns team. Sure, it’s very hard to close a series out on the road, but the Suns are built well enough that with the small -120 odds, I’ll take that chance.
Giannis Over 31.5 points (-112): I’m always wary of backing a superstar’s point total over because they’re usually overvalued, but sometimes you just have to ride with them. In a huge Game 5, I’m trusting Giannis to do his thing. He’s gotten over this number his last two games, and I don’t see his volume and scoring chances going down in essentially a must-win game. With no Khris Middleton, the Bucks will rely on the Greek Freak more than ever, and he’s shown he can step up when called upon. Let’s pray he hits his free throws and gets his over by the fourth quarter.
Desmond Bane Under 17.5 (-130): Man, does this seem high. Bane hasn’t hit over 16 points this whole series. The offense will likely run through him and Dillon Brooks again, but Bane’s failed to instill any confidence in his points prop this series. Maybe it’s his lingering back issues or maybe it’s his poor shooting, but Bane hitting 18+ points for the first time all series seems unlikely enough that I’ll bet the under at this number, even with it being a bit juicy.
Bucks-Celtics Under 214.5 (-110): This is the Men at Work game because the total is going (Down) Under. The later this series goes, the more tempted I am to hit the unders. In a crucial Game 5, we’ll certainly see some of Boston’s best defensive effort and a slow pace of play. Plus, the teams really aren’t shooting THAT great from three-point land with a pedestrian 35% combined percentage. The increased intensity, stakes, and defense should help make this the fourth under of the series.
James Harden Under 2.5 threes (-122) (Thursday): Oh, baby, yes. You give me a chance to fade James Harden with very little juice and I’m all in. The only time Harden has hit this over in the series was in Game 4 where he hit six threes to help get 31 points. Other than that, he’s only hit over two threes in ONE other game in the entire postseason! The odds are heavy against three three-pointers from the Bearded One, and with minimal juice on the under, I’m hopping on.