NBA Best Bets and DFS Plays: Monday, August 10th
Things are starting to tighten up in the NBA restart seeding rounds.
We still have a battle for the eighth seed in the Western Conference which will likely bring us a play-in game. The middle of the Eastern and Western Conference are also both up for grabs. With five games on the slate today, let's see where the money is.
Toronto Raptors vs Milwaukee Bucks
These are the two teams that I have facing off in the Eastern Conference finals.
The Bucks have the league's best record and have played the best basketball in the league when you look at the season as a whole. Toronto, meanwhile, has also played well this season but they have looked very good in the seeding round.
Milwaukee comes into this contest as six-point favorites despite not playing anywhere near as good as Toronto. The Raptors catching five-and-a-half points will be very attractive to public bettors, but if you dig a little deeper you'll notice that Toronto has secured a 50-win season and locked up the number two seed in the Eastern Conference.
"We have done what we kind of needed to do and went 4-1 to get this thing to where we needed it to be," Nurse said. "I would say you will see a little bit of everything in the last three games as far as lots of guys playing up and down the roster, some guys not playing, some guys playing limited minutes. Really just kind of see how it goes."
This quote coupled with sharp money coming in on Milwaukee has me backing the Bucks.
The Play: Bucks -5.5
Denver Nuggets vs Los Angeles Lakers
It's not often that I back the Lakers, but tonight is the perfect night.
Los Angles has not looked like the favorites in the West through the seeding round. The Lakers are 2-4 in the six games since the season restart.
Los Angeles has struggled to score the basketball consistently with less than 100 points in three of their six games. The Northwest Division-leading Nuggets, on the other hand, have won three of their last four games. Second-year rookie Michael Porter Jr. looks like he may be a bonafide star in the NBA and has been one of the bubble breakout players.
The Lakers opened up this game as 3.5-point favorites, and what do you know... the public has turned on their darling Lakers. Once the public starts to lose bets on teams, they tend to fade them and go in the other direction.
According to numberFire, 74% of the spread bets and 64% of the moneyline bets are backing the Nuggets at FanDuel Sportsbook. Yet the line has moved to Lakers -5. That reverse steam was more than likely was caused by sharp money coming in on the Lakers.
Last week, we ignored the sharp money that came in on Grizzlies and it cost us. Let's not let that happen again.
The Play: Lakers -5
Indiana Pacers moneyline + Los Angeles Lakers moneyline + Milwaukee Bucks moneyline (+420)
PG/SF LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers
I think we will get the best performance from the Lakers thus far in tonight's game. LeBron is a stat monster and I can see a triple-double for the king tonight.
SF/PF T.J. Warren, Indiana Pacers
Warren has been the man in the bubble. If there was a bubble seeding round MVP, Warren would be the winner. Tonight is the much-anticipated matchup vs the Heat and Jimmy Butler. I can see people fading Warren because of Jimmy's defensive reputation, but I will still roster him.
PF/C Deandre Ayton, Phoenix Suns
Ayton has played well in the season restart and is a big reason why Phoenix has gone undefeated in the bubble thus far. He has three double-doubles in the Suns five games, and tonight he gets the 24th ranked defense vs opposing bigs.
PF Khris Middleton, Milwaukee Bucks
Middleton is in a good spot tonight vs a Raptors defense that has struggled vs power forwards similar to how Middleton plays. He has scored at least 45 fantasy points in three out of his last four games.
SG/SF Tim Hardaway Jr, Dallas Mavericks
With Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis both out for the Mavericks today, look for Hardaway Jr to take over more of a scoring role in the offense.