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Betting On NBA Basketball Playoffs – Weekend Picks For The Conference Finals

Posted by Craig Parsons on 2/6/2014 9:41:33 PM

Online betting players will get a break on Friday from the NBA playoffs as we’re down to the conference finals, but the action resumes Saturday in the Western Conference as Oklahoma City welcomes Dallas to town, while in the East, Chicago will take their talents to South Beach to face the Heat on Sunday night.

Mavericks Thunder Betting – Saturday, 9:00 PM ET

These two still have to meet for Game 2 in Dallas on Thursday, and it’ll be interesting to see what the scenario will be coming into this game, because the Thunder will either be trying to avoid an 0-3 hole in the series, or both teams will be looking to take a 2-1 series lead. The Thunder should be the favorites at home, but the Mavericks are 3-2 SU and ATS in their last five trips to Oklahoma City, with four of those games have gone under the posted total. Dallas’ objective is simple in Oklahoma City: reach triple digits on the scoreboard. When they’ve scored 100 points or more against the Thunder on the road, they win, and when they don’t, they lose. This also extends back to the Thunder’s time in Seattle, and Oklahoma City has to figure out a way to slow down the efficient.

Hopefully they would’ve concocted something to slow down Dirk Nowitzki, who slaughtered them in Game 1 with 48 points (including a perfect 24-of-24 at the foul line). But what really hurt the Thunder was a bench that was outscored 53-22 by the Mavericks, led by 45 points for Jason Terry and J.J. Barea. Bench players tend to play better in front out of their home fans, and that will be the difference in Game 3, which is why the Thunder should be our NBA betting pick on Saturday.

Betting Edge: Oklahoma City Thunder

Bulls Heat Betting – Sunday, 8:30 PM ET

The Heat will likely be the NBA betting favorites at home for their Game 3 showdown with the Bulls, who are 1-4 SU and 2-3 ATS in their last five trips to Miami. Three of the games have fallen under the posted total, and with both teams being excellent on the defensive end, it’s likely that this game will also be a low-scoring affair. The Heat bounced back with an 85-75 win in Chicago on Wednesday, and Miami stepped up their intensity on defense, especially in the fourth quarter when they held the Bulls to 10 points, and Chicago shot a miserable 34.1% from the floor. Chicago couldn’t get it going offensively, hitting three of their 20 long-range attempts, and they also struggled from the free-throw line, making 16 of their 26 attempts.

The Bulls have to figure out how to get offense from someone other than Derrick Rose, because if they don’t, they’re going to have a terrible time in Miami. Carlos Boozer has 21 points in the first two games, and Luol Deng struggled in Game 2. When neither of those two can score, the Bulls really turn into a Rose-centric team, and that plays right into the Heat’s hands. Also, Kyle Korver may not be able to play as the Heat look to take advantage of him defensively every time he’s in the game, running various pick-and-roll plays to get him to try and guard either LeBron James or Dwyane Wade, which is the last thing in the world the Bulls want. If he isn’t hitting his three-point shots, Korver is essentially useless. Unless Boozer or Deng step up in Miami, the Bulls are going to behind the eight-ball in your sports betting book.

Betting Edge: Miami Heat

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