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NBA Online Playoff Betting – Hawks Pushing Bulls, Heat Aiming To Burn Celtics

Posted by Craig Parsons on 2/6/2014 9:38:13 PM

For online betting players, it’s been an interesting beginning to the second round of the NBA playoffs in the Eastern Conference. The top overall seed is being pushing to the limit by a team no one gave much thought to coming into the next round, while the other series is as physical as we thought it would be, complete with ejections and dislocated elbows.

Hawks Bulls Betting

The Hawks head back to Chicago for Game 5 on Tuesday after a 100-88 win at home on Game 4 in a loud Philips Arena, and it seems like, as Joe Johnson goes, Atlanta goes. In their two wins during this series, the Hawks have gotten 29.5 points from Johnson, but in the two losses, Johnson has put up 13.0 points. When Johnson is getting his points, that opens everything else for the rest of the team, and if they’re going to continue to play the Bulls tough, they’ll have to keep putting the ball in the hoop. During the regular season, the Bulls were 4-13 when their opponents reach the 100-point plateau, and 0-2 in the playoffs, and their success this season wasn’t just based on MVP Derrick Rose and his ability to get to the hoop. Tom Thibodeau won the Coach of the Year because he has gotten this team to play defense, and they were near the top of the league in most statistical categories. They have to do this, because outside of Rose, the Bulls don’t have a player who can create their own shot. Carlos Boozer is their No.2 scoring option, but he’s been slowed by a toe injury, although he was more aggressive in Game 4 than he has any point throughout the series.

So now the series is down to a best-of-three, beginning in the United Center on Tuesday, followed by Game 6 in Atlanta on Thursday, and a possible Game 7 in Chicago on Sunday. The Bulls were outscored 56-40 in the paint in Game 4, and besides Johnson, they had no answer for Josh Smith, who had 23 points, 16 boards and eight assists to go with a couple of blocks. The overall No.1 seeds from Chicago have to be more consistent defensively if they want to avoid an NBA betting upset at the hands of the Hawks. 

Celtics Heat Betting

Boston showed why they have been to the NBA Finals in two of the last three seasons with a gutsy performance in a 97-81 win in Game 3 at home. It was personified by Rajon Rondo, who had his elbow dislocated in a collision with Miami’s Dwyane Wade, but came back to urge the Celtics on with 11 assists. That sparked Boston’s Big Three of Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen to outplay their Miami counterparts, Wade, LeBron James and Chris Bosh, outscoring them 70-44, and in particular, Garnett (28 points, 18 rebounds) destroyed Bosh (six points, five rebounds). This was a change from the first two games of the series, when Miami physically and mentally dominated Boston at home, and the Celtics were a completely different team in Boston. Even Bosh acknowledged that he was nervous before going into this game, and the Heat need him to shake those nerves quickly, or else it’s going to be a long Game 4 on Monday night at the TD Banknorth Garden.

The big story for the rest of the series is now the health of Rondo, who said that his arm was much more sore on Sunday, the day after Game 3. Miami’s Big Three is probably going to get the edge in terms of talent and age, but Rondo gives the Celtics a massive advantage at point guard, where Miami has to play the duo of Mario Chalmers and Mike Bibby. Granted, Delonte West gave the Celtics some quality minutes in Game 3, but let’s be honest: Boston can’t win this series without Rajon Rondo. The Heat have to come out of their shell and earn a win in Boston, where they’ve lost all three of their trips so far this season. Monday’s contest is going to be a huge night in this series, and the sports betting odds are forecasting a bitter and close game.

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