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NBA betting preview: 22nd May

NBA expert David Gray is back to tackle this weekend’s £25,000 Point Margin Pick 5 pool. He went very close last week, ultimately landing three out of five legs correctly and coming within a few points of the other two. Check out his NBA betting preview and join his Syndicate.

 

NBA betting preview

 

Miami Heat @ Milwaukee Bucks, Saturday 19:00

Coming into the season I was so high on Miami. They were phenomenal in that NBA bubble and it felt like they could carry that momentum into this season. However, a sluggish start left them with plenty of work to do. They were perhaps one of the most affected teams from COVID but they pulled it back to finish as the sixth seed.

The Bucks have become used to running through the regular season to the one seed. But they have gone a little under the radar this season. Reigning (at least for a few more weeks) two time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo has been great once again and Milwaukee have a top five offence and top ten defence. They will be a tough match up for anybody in these playoffs.

Miami are perhaps one of the few teams that can really match up with Giannis and co. physically. Ultimately, though, I think the Bucks will be too strong. They have added Jrue Holiday since last season’s 4-1 playoff loss to Miami and they just feel like a team better prepared for a playoff run. They can kick that off with a solid game one victory.

Selections: Bucks 5-8, 9-12

 

Dallas Mavericks @ Los Angeles Clippers, Saturday 21:30

No team is more frustrating than the Clippers. On one night they look like the best team in the league, while on others they look like a team that has never played together. Kawhi Leonard and Paul George are a match for any duo in the NBA, but there are still bound to be doubts carrying over from blowing a 3-1 lead in last season’s playoffs.

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The Mavericks are such a fun team. They shoot incredibly well and Luka Doncic is going to be an MVP candidate every season he steps on the court. They are an incredible efficient offence and that gives them a shot in any game. Their record probably doesn’t reflect their true talent as they were one of the teams decimated by COVID. With one of the deepest rosters remaining, they have a real shot to upset some teams over the next couple of months.

This will be a close game but I think the Mavericks can upset the odds in the second leg of our NBA betting preview.

Selections: Mavericks 1-4, 5-8. Clippers 1-4

 

Boston Celtics @ Brooklyn Nets, Sunday 01:00

The Celtics slim chances of making a run in these playoffs went when Jaylen Brown suffered a season ending wrist injury. Jayson Tatum is a superstar, and while he can certainly win some games on his own, winning a series is another matter.

The Nets are arguably the most talented team in the league. Kevin Durant, James Harden and Kyrie Iriving is perhaps the best three in the league. They aren’t bad after those either. They lead the league in field goal percentage and sit second in three point percentage and scoring. The are going to be a handful for anyone.

The Celtics just do not have the team to match up with the Nets and this series should be a comfortable one for the Nets.

Selections: Nets 9-12, 13-16

 

Los Angeles Lakers @ Pheonix Suns, Sunday 20:30

There are not many games where this Lakers team will be underdogs but that is the case here. The Suns have been incredible this season. The addition of Chris Paul has really taken this team to a new level and Devin Booker has been one of the best shooters in the league once again. But defensively is where they have really taken the leap. This team is always going to put up points, but they have the sixth highest rated defence in the league.

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The Lakers have had their injury issues this season. Both Anthony Davis and LeBron James have spent time on the sidleines but, because of an incredible defensive showing when those two were out, they still come into these playoffs with a great shot at making it back-to-back titles. They match up pretty well with the Suns and I think the physicallity that saw them run through last season’s playoffs can be the difference again.

Selections: Lakers 1-4, 5-8

 

Atlanta Hawks @ New York Knicks, Monday 00:00

These two teams have ended a playoff drought this year, but the Knicks first appearance since 2013 has been the story of the league. Nobody could have predicted this but they have got so much out of a group of players that had been written off. Tom Thibodeau has done an incredible job and seems certain to be named Coach of the Year.

Nate McMillan had a similar effect for the Hawks. When he took over in February they were 14-20, but one of the league’s best records since then propelled them into the playoffs and makes them a dangerous match up for anybody. Trae Young is one of the best young players in the league and with the big defensive improvements they have a chance against anybody. This is set to be a close game but they can come out on top and end this fairytale run for the Knicks in the final leg of the NBA betting preview.

Selections: Hawks 1-4, 5-8. Knicks 1-4

 


 

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