The second round of the NBA playoffs continues with a pair of matchups Monday. In the East, the defending champion Heat set their sights on the battered Bulls while out West, the Spurs prepare for the upstart Warriors.
We talk to Michael Stewart, an oddsmaker for CarbonSports.ag, about Monday’s NBA betting action.
Chicago Bulls at Miami Heat – Open: -11.5, Move: -12
Miami opened as a big double-digit favorite for Game 1, coming off an extended layoff following its series sweep of Milwaukee.
The Heat are just 9-14 ATS as double-digit chalk this season but that hasn’t scared away the betting public, with more than 65 percent of the action on the home favorites. That’s pushed the spread to -12 as of Monday afternoon.
“The Bulls are a scrappy bunch and I think sharps are waiting for this line to get to -12 or -12.5 before they get involved and bet the dog,” Stewart told Covers.
As for the total, the number opened at 186 and has been bet up to as high as 187. These teams went 2-2 over/under in their four meetings during the regular season. According to Stewart about 80 percent of action is coming in on the over.
“With the Bulls missing so many key players, especially Luol Deng and Kirk Hinrich, I'm not sure where they're going to find any scoring tonight,” says Stewart. “I believe sharp money is waiting for this total to keep climbing and will come in on the under as we get closer to game time.”
Golden State Warriors at San Antonio Spurs - Open: -8, Move: -9
Early money bumped this spread up to as high as Spurs -9 at some markets, but books are taking solid two-way action around -8.5. Golden State made a bundle for bettors versus Denver, covering the spread in all six games.
However, the Warriors haven’t won at San Antonio since Tim Duncan was selected No. 1 overall by San Antonio back in 1997 and have gone 4-14 ATS in their last 18 trips to the AT&T Center.
“We've booked great two-way action at that number (Spurs -8.5) and unless sharp action comes in on a team, I doubt we move off this number,” says Stewart.
The total for Game 1 of this Western Conference semifinal has jumped slightly from 201 to 201.5. The Warriors went 3-3 over/under versus the Nuggets while the Spurs went 2-2 over/under in their sweep of the Lakers. The over/under is 1-3-1 in the last five meetings between these teams.
“With 75 percent of the action on the over, we went to 201.5 this morning,” says Stewart. “With the over attracting so much public support, I believe we'll be going to 202 at some point later today.”