Morning Coffee: Will Lakers Take Game 2 In Denver?
Nikola Jokic is the first player in NBA postseason history to record a 30-point triple-double and shoot 70 per cent or better from the field in consecutive games.
Look out though, because tonight he has to face Rui Hachimura.
The hyperbole has reached a fever pitch ahead of tonight’s Game 2 between the Denver Nuggets and Los Angeles Lakers.
The Lakers will be looking for the all-important road split as a +176 money line underdog at FanDuel.
In order to pull off the upset, they will need to hand Denver its first loss at Ball Arena this postseason.
Meanwhile, the Nuggets have emerged as the favourite to win the NBA championship at FanDuel after the Miami Heat upset the Boston Celtics as a +310 money line underdog in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals last night.
There were a lot of people who told me they thought the Celtics would cruise to the NBA Finals.
I’ll have to make sure I follow up with them later today and get their thoughts on Game 1.
This is the Morning Coffee for Thursday May 18th, 2023.
Butler, Heat Upset Celtics In Game 1
The Heat trailed by as many as 13 points early in the third quarter of Game 1 last night.
However, the Heat rallied with a franchise playoff record 46 points in the frame to take the lead.
Miami has now recorded six straight Game 1 wins.
Jimmy Butler stayed hot with 35 points, seven assists, six steals and five rebounds in the win.
Bam Adebayo finished with 20 points, eight rebounds and five assists.
While the Celtics were a heavy favourite to win the series, it’s important to keep in mind that this is the same team that needed six games to advance past the Atlanta Hawks and seven games to overcome the Philadelphia 76ers.
It's also the same team whose head coach didn’t call a single timeout when his team gave up 46 points in a quarter.
Regardless of what happens next, Miami will be a tough out.
Boston is currently a nine-point favourite for Game 2 on Friday night.
In terms of adjusted series prices, the Celtics went from -500 to -220 at FanDuel.
The Heat went from +390 to +170 to win the series.
Will Lakers Steal Game 2 In Denver?
The Nuggets will look to stay perfect at home and take a 2-0 series lead in the Western Conference Final as a 5.5-point favourite against LA tonight.
Denver is a perfect 7-0 at Ball Arena this postseason.
While a lot has been made about the second-half adjustments that Lakers’ head coach Darvin Ham made in Game 1 and the potential impact they will have on Game 2, I’m not sold on the idea that they can bounce back tonight.
Los Angeles is a perfect 4-0 following a loss this postseason.
LA won each of those four games by double digits.
While I still lean towards the Nuggets to win the game, there’s no doubt that the Lakers will throw everything they have at them tonight in order to try to earn the road split, and I’m looking forward to the fireworks.
Rather than bet a side, there’s one player prop I like for tonight’s Game 2.
LA is 7-0 when D’Angelo Russell scores 16 points or more this postseason.
When he scores 15 or less, they are 1-5.
In Game 1, Russell went 4-of-11 from the field and finished with eight points.
The Lakers won’t have a chance tonight unless they get more out of Russell in Game 2.
I’m going to try to build up my bankroll and add a little more entertainment value to tonight’s game with an NBA Same Game Parlay that features Russell 12+ points, Jokic 20+ points, and LeBron James to get 6+ rebounds at even money as tonight’s NBA bet.
A FanDuel Best Bet For Thursday’s MLB Slate
There’s nothing better in this business than giving out winners on this platform.
After a 4-0 start to the week for +4.4 units, I’m going to stick with what has worked for me to this point with another MLB NRFI target.
20-year-old Eury Perez pitched three scoreless innings for the Miami Marlins before giving up two earned runs in 4.2 innings of work against the Cincinnati Reds in his first start of the season last Friday.
Tonight, he’ll face a Washington Nationals’ offence that has scored the third-fewest runs in the National League this season.
Who has scored the fewest runs in the NL?
That distinction belongs to the team that Perez will start for this afternoon in the Marlins.
Washington starter Trevor Williams has held his opponents without a run in the first inning in seven of his eight starts this season.
I believe that trend will continue against Miami.
I’ll take the NRFI in the afternoon game between the Nationals and Marlins at -108 as my FanDuel Best Bet.
Good luck to everyone who tails!
Hopefully, we can get the six outs we need without a sweat.