The best bets from the BetDeluxe NBA Playoffs Preview for Wednesday.
Three huge fixtures on the hardwood of the Eastern and Western Conferences will be played and won as the big dogs look to make their moves.
atlanta @ miami
april 20th 9:30am
Miami takes a one-nil lead into game two of its Eastern Conference playoffs bout with Atlanta at FTX Arena on Wednesday morning.
A 115-91 thumping of the Hawks in game one ensured the Heat took pole position in the series and they are now favoured to get game two out of the way as a -6.5 favourite.
It was the not the usual names of Jimmy Butler, P.J. Tucker, Bam Adebayo or Kyle Lowry who stole the show, despite all of them contributing in their own way in the 24-point drubbing.
Miami might have found an ace up its sleeve in the form of Duncan Robinson who fired 27 points from the pine to leave the Hawks in tatters.
Trae Young was well held by the Heat defence as he could only manage eight points from his 28-minute stint on the hardwood.
The result just showed much of a class gap there is between these teams, especially from three-point range.
Miami shot a lights out 47.4% from beyond the arc on 18/30 shooting.
The ability for Miami to share the ball around via various outlets was highlighted in the assists column as it recorded 35 assists to the Hawks’ tally of 16.
It was a smashing in every sense and there is nothing to suggest to Hawks can bridge such a huge gap on the road – unless Young decides to go atomic.
Have to stick with the home team at the spread.
Suggested Bet: Miami Heat -6.5 at $1.90
minnesota @ memphis
april 20th 10:30am
Memphis will attempt to rectify a shock loss game-one loss when it faces Minnesota at the FedExForum for game two of their playoffs series.
The Timberwolves left the Grizzlies in shock after producing a stunning offensive display to topple the home team 130-117.
It leaves the visitors with some margin for error coming into this second fixture and there is every chance they can go 2-0.
But the NBA world will expecting a big response from Memphis.
Ja Morant put up 32 points in the 13-point defeat, however, it was the defensive lapses and inability to match it with the Timberwolves from three-point territory which hurt.
Karl-Anthony Towns taught veteran centre Steven Adams a lesson with 29 points and 13 rebounds.
Towns will be looking to produce much of the same in this integral clash and he has plenty of mates alongside him in the form of Anthony Edwards and Malik Beasley who were both prolific in the triumph on Sunday.
It might have just been an off night for the Grizzlies, but there seemed to be some real substance to what the Timberwolves showed.
Momentum is such a big thing in the playoffs and the Timberwolves are full of it.
Suggested Bet: Minnesota Timberwolves +6.5 at $1.95
new orleans @ phoenix
april 20th 12:00pm
Phoenix is on the hunt for a commanding position against New Orleans when it meets the Pelicans at Footprint Center come Wednesday afternoon.
It was the vintage form of Chris Paul who helped put the Suns 1-0 up against the Pelicans.
Paul showed no signs of that broken thumb slowing him down as he nailed 30 points to go with 10 assists and seven rebounds in the 110-99 win, while Devin Booker (25 points, eight assists and four rebounds) and Deandre Ayton (21 points and nine rebounds) duly accompanied him.
The Pelicans were always considered rank underdogs in this series, but they did show plenty of ticker in the loss.
Jonas Valanciunas was incredible on the boards and probably got the better of Ayton in their head to head battle.
Valnciunas hauled in 25 rebounds to go with his 18 points, but it was to little avail.
The Pelicans lacked the physicality brought upon them by the Suns and Jaxson Hayes got a big wake-up call.
Phoenix made it a mission to target Hayes early in the contest and it worked immediately with the 21-year-old only played 11 minutes despite being a starter.
It seemed tough enough for New Orleans heading into this series and with Phoenix coming into this with a head full of steam, expect a similar result to game one.
Suns to do this in a canter and go 2-0 up.
Suggested Bet: Phoenix Suns -9.5 at $1.90