NBA Playoff Betting has Been Wild This Postseason
The 2021 NBA playoff season continues on with the conference semifinals underway. The Brooklyn Nets and Milwaukee Bucks were the first teams to start the next round, with the Atlanta Hawks and Philadelphia 76ers right behind them.
With the Western Conference set to join, let’s take a look around at the NBA betting trends in this NBA playoff betting update.
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Best Teams Against the Spread
As is usually the case, most teams that advanced to the next round were successful against the spread in Round 1. Of the teams still alive, the Nets and Hawks are tied for the best ATS mark:
- Brooklyn Nets (5-1)
- Atlanta Hawks (5-1)
- Utah Jazz (4-1)
- Denver Nuggets (4-2)
- Phoenix Suns (4-2)
- Milwaukee Bucks (3-2)
- LA Clippers (3-3)*
- Philadelphia 76ers (3-3)
Brooklyn covered the spread in Game 1 against Milwaukee, but they may be in jeopardy with an injury to star player James Harden. Harden has already been ruled out of Game 2 with hamstring tightness. The opening line between the Nets and Bucks is set at Brooklyn -1.5.
The Hawks covered the spread and won Game 1 as an underdog against the Sixers. Philly has the worst ATS record among teams still in the playoff race.
Utah will match up against the Clippers in the next round. The Jazz beat the Grizzlies in five games and have the home-court advantage throughout the playoffs as the West’s top-seeded team.
Denver and Phoenix will get their series started on Monday night, both 4-2 ATS in the first round.
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Records Against Over/Unders
Betting total points is one of the most popular ways to bet on NBA action. Each game has a set line of points, and you can either bet the over or the under.
The best marks against overs among teams still in the playoffs:
- Utah Jazz (5-0)
- Denver Nuggets (5-1)
- Philadelphia 76ers (5-1)
- Brooklyn Nets (3-3)
- Milwaukee Bucks (2-3)
- LA Clippers (2-4)
- Atlanta Hawks (2-4)
- Phoenix Suns (1-4-1)
The Jazz successfully exceeded their over in each of their first five games in the playoffs. The perfect mark can be attributed to a strong offense and a vulnerable defense. Utah has the top three-point shooting team in the league, always going to help an over bet. Their defense is one of the worst in the league at stopping points in the paint.
Brooklyn and Milwaukee’s middling marks may be surprising, but it’s a product of higher point totals. The Nets and Bucks have the two best offenses in the NBA, and oddsmakers know this. Their over in Game 1 was set at 240 points, not reaching the mark.
The Nuggets-Suns series and 76ers-Hawks series are two conflicting styles of play. Both the Suns and Hawks rarely hit their overs in Round 1, so it will be interesting to see which style reigns supreme.
The over easily hit in the first game between Atlanta and Philadelphia on Sunday afternoon.
Before you head off, take a look at our last article. We talked about whether or not your sportsbook is offering enough MLB betting variety.