NBA Playoffs 2021 - Punters Guide

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by Rae Dover
| 30/05/2021
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NBA Playoffs Preview

Business has picked up in the NBA, as the playoffs have recently got underway and the opening round match-ups are set to reach their conclusion over the next week.  Teams will then be looking to make it through the Conference semi-finals and final to reach the NBA Finals themselves, where the champions will be crowned. Which team could be the outstanding selection when it comes to online basketball betting?

Western Conference Round 1

The playoffs are ongoing at present with the opening rounds of games. The Dallas Mavericks are in the most commanding position, as they hold a 2-0 series lead over the Los Angeles Clippers.  Meanwhile, the top-seeded Utah Jazz will still feel they are in a strong position, as they hold a 1-1 tie ahead of the series moving to Utah. Denver Nuggets and the Los Angeles Lakers will also feel as though they have one foot in the Western Conference semi-finals, as both hold narrow 2-1 leads ahead of game four.

Eastern Conference Round 1

The Eastern Conference opening round of the playoffs looks more straightforward for those looking at online sports betting odds.  All three of the top seeds already look to be on the brink of booking their spot in the semi-finals, as they hold commanding leads. The top-seeded Philadelphia 76ers are 2-0 ahead against the Washington Wizards, while the Milwaukee Bucks need just one more win against the Miami Heat to avenge their heartbreak from last season.  

Many expect the Brooklyn Nets to have a strong run at the championship this season, and they have a comfortable 2-0 lead over the Boston Celtics.  All three should comfortably book their passage. However, the series between the Atlanta Hawks and New York Knicks looks more difficult to call. The series is currently tied at 1-1, but the Hawks should have the quality to make home advantage count in the next two games.

Western Conference Semi-Finals

We expect the Lakers, Nuggets, Mavericks, and Jazz to make up the four teams in the Western Conference semi-finals. The Jazz will come up against the Mavericks, which could be an engaging series. However, the Jazz have been excellent throughout the season to this point, and would be the clear favorites with the best Canadian sportsbooks to make it through to the Western Conference final. Denver will have an excellent chance to join them, as Nikola Jokic has undeniably been one of the standout stars of the season.  However, it will be a tight call to make when they come up against the defending champions. The Lakers haven’t enjoyed the most straightforward of seasons, but their experience of playoff basketball could be telling. It will be a tense series, but the Lakers should edge it.

Eastern Conference Semi-Finals  

The Sixers will likely come up against the Hawks in the semi-final stage of the Eastern Conference. Philadelphia are considered by many as the dark horses in the NBA this season, and the performances of Joel Embiid could ensure that this is a routine semi-final success for the Sixers.  The most difficult semi-final to call will be between the Bucks and Nets. Giannis Antetokounmpo will be looking to lead the Bucks to the finals, but James Harden and Kevin Durant will have other ideas. This could be a thriller, but it looks difficult to bet against the Nets.

Western Conference Finals

We expect the Western Conference final to be between the Jazz and Lakers. Utah have enjoyed a memorable season, and topped the regular season standings in the west. Their experience in playoff basketball could go against them at this stage, especially as they come up against the Lakers, who were in this same position just 12 months ago. With a fully fit Anthony Davis and LeBron James, we would favor a narrow win for the Lakers.

Eastern Conference Finals

It could be a showdown between the top two seeds in the East, as the Sixers could battle against the Nets. Philadelphia are the top seeds, and have been excellent throughout the campaign. However, since the arrival of Harden, the Nets have been preparing for this moment, and it looks as though they could have just enough to get over the line and set up the NBA Finals series that many have been hoping for all season.

NBA Finals

Many were hoping that the NBA Finals would see the Lakers and Nets clash, and that looks like the most likely outcome this season. It could be a finals series for the ages, as the Lakers look to successfully defend their title. However, we would find it hard to bet against the Nets, who have improved immeasurably at both ends of the court throughout the season.

 

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