Today’s biggest bets and line moves: Public betting Over the total in Warriors-Clippers
It’s a light Monday night in the NBA playoffs, with just a pair of Game 2s in the first round, one on the East Coast and one on the West. Covers checks in on the action and odds movement for both matchups, with insights from Jeff Stoneback, director of trading for MGM Resorts sportsbooks.
Brooklyn is the No. 6 seed in the Eastern Conference, but already stole home-court advantage. In Game 1 Saturday, the Nets (43-40 SU, 46-37 ATS) never trailed after the first quarter en route to a 111-102 victory as 6.5-point road underdogs.
Philadelphia has much more star power than Brooklyn, though that wasn’t enough in the best-of-7 series opener. The third-seeded 76ers (51-32 SU, 38-45 ATS) got 36 points from Jimmy Butler, but were never covering the spread and trailed by double digits several times.
“We need the Nets here, but not much of a decision,” Stoneback said this afternoon from his home base at The Mirage on the Las Vegas Strip. “Someone could come in and make a $10,000 bet on the Nets, and we’d need the 76ers. There are only nine more tickets on the 76ers than the Nets.”
That said, shortly after Stoneback’s update, the Sixers moved to -8.5.
Golden State lived up to its top seed in the Western Conference with a relatively easy Game 1 victory Saturday. The Warriors (58-25 SU, 36-46-1 ATS), paced by Stephen Curry’s 38 points, led by double digits the entire fourth quarter in a 121-104 win as 13.5-point favorites.
Eighth-seeded Los Angeles trailed by nine after the first quarter, then rallied to take a 41-40 lead five minutes into the second quarter. However, the Clippers (48-35 SU, 45-37-1 ATS) fell behind 69-56 at halftime and never got closer than six the rest of the way.
“The side is no decision at all right now,” Stoneback said. “We opened 14.5, we’re down to 13.5, but that was some early sharp money on the ‘dog. But obviously, the public is laying the favorite. There are two times more tickets on the Warriors, but the money is very close.
“We need the Under. The total has gone from 230 to 234. That’s our only decision on this game.”
Patrick Everson is a Las Vegas-based senior writer for Covers. Follow him on Twitter: @Covers_Vegas.