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With a Game 7 on the schedule and a potential closeout game out West, NBA expert Eytan Shander gives us his picks for tonight's NBA games

We have a huge game 7 tonight – amazing as that sounds with Boston and Toronto – plus an early game with a close-out scenario. Let’s dive in both games and see where the value is, especially with desperation in the air! The bubble has been a tough one with no homecourt, but we make it work for two big ones today.

Boston Celtics vs. Toronto Raptors

BET: Raptors ML @ +115

I really loved Boston to walk away with this series, not just because they were up 2-0. The Celtics lost everything last game in double OT, including whatever gas they have left. I don’t anticipate a blowout, but I do think Toronto pulls away late. It’s just too much to overcome for a Boston team that’s still new to this versus a Raptors team that’s fought to win a championship last year. The biggest factor we have to count on is Kemba Walker. His poor play last game nullified great performances by teammates, including another one by Jason Tatum. If Walker is going to get the clamps on him once again by Toronto, the Raptors are going to walk into the ECF. The best value on the board that is most likely to pay off would be the Raptors winning this game outright. No need to take the points in such a close line, especially laying any juice. So let’s roll with the defending champs as they will advance to a second straight conference finals.

BET: Over 204.5 @-105

These have been some low scoring affairs between the two teams in this series, and expectations remain similar heading into tonight. Not for me. At least not with this game being so important and seasons on the line. Instead of it being tight and a lot of clock taken off to set up shots, this game should be wide open. Expect both teams – Boston more so – to fire early and often. Here’s where Walker playing well is truly important. All we need is a double-digit effort from Walker and the rest will fall in place. It’s enough to push the total over as Toronto will keep up the entire time. I like a close game that hits this over halfway through the 4th quarter. Watch for a big swing early on too. A big first quarter by one team followed up by a run on the other side. It might be the theme of the night so let’s jump in and take the best value we can!  

Los Angeles Clippers vs. Denver Nuggets

BET: Clippers -8 @ -109

Denver could only muster up 12 first quarter points in game 4, en route to losing another big game against the Clippers. There is a ton of desperation for a Nuggets team who battled back in a similar case against Utah. Don’t expect any magic from Denver this time around as Jamal Murray struggled once again against LA. It’s a big line here but the Clippers are in close-out mode. One that should provide enough motivation to just put out Denver and get some rest before the Lakers series. Kawhi Leonard is completely focused and should be good enough to beat the Nuggets alone. But he will get plenty of help, especially on defense. The Nuggets just don’t have any answers when Murray isn’t leading the charge. It’s a terrible position for Denver heading into tonight, knowing they need everything from their young star yet getting the exact opposite.

If Paul George and the rest of the supporting cast just show up this game is a blowout. I’d feel confident taking the number up to 9.5 but I’ll happily lay the 8 and get a good return. Unlike the next game, there’s no more fight in the team that’s down and they don’t have the same mojo from the first series.

Article Author


Brian is a sports journalist with close to ten years of experience in the business. A lifelong Philadelphia sports fan with a passion for all things sports gambling.


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