NBA regular season is over and 2019 playoffs are about to start as several teams look like legitimate contenders and a few other stand ready to cause an upset or two. This year’s playoffs could be truly special, with brewing rivalries in both conferences and a lot of accumulated talent on many teams. Of course, every team dreaming about the championship must find a way to dethrone the two-time reigning champions Golden State, which is much easier said than done. NBA Playoffs betting lines are available as matchups are set, and we can provide some good advice for bettors. Here is everything you need to know about NBA playoffs betting odds 2019 and teams that have a chance to win the Larry O’Brian trophy in June.
1. Eastern Conference Predictions
It’s generally accepted that East is weaker than the West, but this year in our NBA Playoffs Predictions 2019 we can see that there are at least four good teams in the ‘junior’ conference and one of them could actually challenge for the title. Milwaukee Bucks sit comfortably at the top of the table, led by MVP candidate Giannis Antetokounmpo, but Toronto Raptors are just as formidable and their best player Kawhi Leonard already has finals experience that could prove invaluable. Meanwhile, Philadelphia Sixers have probably the best starting five in the league, but their bench is quite thin for a team with large ambitions. Boston Celtics were regarded as #1 favorites to win the conference before the season and have a very deep and talented roster, but they are locked into a difficult matchup with Indiana Pacers in the first round and would be at a disadvantage against other favorites as a lower seed. Brooklyn Nets are an overachieving team that is fun to watch, but it would be a major surprise if they won a series. If you are looking for NBA Playoffs series betting odds that carry a minimum of risk, picking one of the favorites in 1-8 or 2-7 matchups in the East is probably a good idea. However, guessing which of the four or five strongest teams will advance to the finals is not easy, and conference finals could easily go to full seven games.
2. Western Conference Predictions
Perhaps the biggest story in the West is the team that won’t appear in the postseason – LeBron James and his Los Angeles Lakers failed to qualify, so this year’s playoffs will not feature the most famous player in the NBA. Of course, there are plenty of storylines to focus on, starting with the Warriors and their quest to win the third title in a row and fourth in five years. Denver Nuggets are the main candidate to foil this plan, but despite all the mastery of Nikola Jokic and his companions, they still lack postseason experience to be taken seriously. Houston Rockets are playing amazing basketball to end the season behind the league’s leading scorer in James Harden, and certainly look capable of winning it all. Portland Blazers and Utah Jazz are borderline contenders, and won’t be easy to eliminate. Lower in the bracket, Oklahoma City Thunder is the true dark horse, sliding to a low seed due to inconsistent play late in the season but still packing a lot of firepower with Russell Westbrook and Paul George. Finally, Los Angeles Clippers and San Antonio Spurs are two well coached teams loaded with proven veteran players, so betting against them carries inherent risk no matter who they face in the first round.
3. NBA Betting Picks
There are several good strategies for those looking to make winning bets on 2019 NBA playoffs. It makes sense to try and guess the eventual winner, as well as its finals opponent. This can pay off handsomely, especially if you pick one of the less heralded teams such as Toronto (10/1 odds at most shops), Houston (12/1), Denver (18/1) or Boston (18/1). On the other hand, you can focus on betting individual games and parlaying several bets into a lucrative ticket. For example, during the first round it’s a solid bet picking higher seeded teams to win at home, as history says the chances for this outcome are very solid, especially for veteran teams like the Warriors. One of the savvier NBA playoffs betting tips 2019 is to pay attention to the first round matchups in the East, where it’s easy to identify clear favorites. Of course, each bettor must follow his own instincts and pick teams that he believes in – with so much great basketball being played around the league, this should be easy enough to do.