NBA public betting, line movement, sharp money for August 18

Damian Lillard and Anthony Davis will see plenty of each other the next several days, in the Trail Blazers-Lakers playoff series. The Lakers are 5.5-point favorites in Game 1 on Tuesday night.

Patrick Everson
Aug 18, 2020 • 04:54 ET

NBA betting odds are on the board and drawing dollars as four more postseason series take the floor. The marquee matchup on Tuesday’s NBA playoffs schedule is the last one, with the top-seeded L.A. Lakers facing the No. 8 Portland Trail Blazers in the Western Conference quarterfinals.

Circa Sports provided insights on NBA opening lines and early line movement, sharp money and public betting for Tuesday’s matchups. Covers will update this action report with NBA sharp picks vs. public bets and line movement throughout the day.

NBA line movement

UPDATE 8 P.M. ET TUESDAY: The SuperBook at Westgate opened the Lakers -5.5 against the Blazers, and the Lakers briefly touched -7 this afternoon before ticking back to -6.5.

UPDATE 12:50 P.M. ET TUESDAY: The Bucks opened 11.5-point favorites over the Magic at PointsBet USA, and with tipoff looming, that number is up to 13.5.


Portland had to win its way through the NBA regular-season bubble to nab the eighth seed, including a Saturday play-in game against the Memphis Grizzlies. Damian Lillard has been electric, and for the moment, the line is stagnant for a 9 p.m. ET tipoff. Circa Sports risk supervisor Nick Kalikas said the Lakers opened -5.5, where they were Monday night, while the total moved from 228.5 to 229.5.

The Houston Rockets and Oklahoma City Thunder meet in the preceding game, at 6:30 p.m. ET, in the West’s 4-5 matchup. That line is also stable at Circa, with the Thunder -1.5. And in the day’s first game, at 1:30 p.m. ET, the Bucks moved from -11 to -12 against the Magic in the East’s 1-vs.-8 series.


NBA sharp money    

UPDATE 6 P.M. ET TUESDAY: Eric Osterman, manager at The SuperBook at Westgate, said Thunder-Rockets saw some sharp play on Under 225.5, moving the total down to 224.5. But it's currently at 225.


The Orlando Magic-Milwaukee Bucks series got some early professional attention, leading to that 1-point move at Circa Sports.

“Despite the high opening price, we still got hit with early sharp action on the Bucks -11,” Kalikas said.

NBA public betting

UPDATE 8 P.M. ET TUESDAY: "We are getting parlay money on the Lakers -6.5 to the Over 233," SuperBook manager Eric Osterman said. "Big Lakers moneyline play from the public, too. The Blazers will be our biggest need of the night. The liability was lessened a bit with the Bucks losing (to the Magic). That knocked out some parlays, but we still need the Blazers big."

UPDATE 6 P.M. ET TUESDAY: "Parlay money coming in on the Rockets," Osterman said of activity at The SuperBook for Houston's 6:30 p.m. ET tip against the Thunder.

UPDATE 3 P.M. ET TUESDAY: At DraftKings Sportsbook, the Heat-Pacers 4 p.m. ET clash is a coin-flip game for public bettors. The Heat are 3.5-point favorites and landing 51 percent of handle and 48 percent of dollars on the point spread. The total, currently at 216, is drawing 83 percent of tickets on the Over, but money is closer to two-way, at 57 percent on the Over.

UPDATE 12:50 P.M. ET TUESDAY: It's all public and all Bucks in the day's first game at PointsBet USA. "Seventy-eight percent bet count and 81 percent handle on Milwaukee," PointsBet's Patrick Eichner said.


Along with the sharp Milwaukee play, there’s no shortage of Bucks believers among public bettors.

“Our parlay liability is already pretty heavy on the Bucks, as well,” Kalikas said. “It looks like we’ll be hoping for the Magic to play well.”

As for Blazers-Lakers, Kalikas said there’s limited two-way action so far, and while the total is up a point to 229.5, it’s not really a big liability yet. Likewise, action on Rockets-Thunder Game 1 is light so far.

“We’re seeing a little more action on Rockets moneyline early on, so we’ve adjusted our price accordingly a few pennies,” Kalikas said.

Where can I bet NBA odds?

Many online books and casinos offer bets on basketball odds and props. Check out the best sportsbooks available where you live. **video

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