We had a nice little 3-1 day on the ice yesterday. Unfortunately, the hardwood was not as kind. But, there's no quit here. We'll get right back at it and turn the tide in the NBA. Speaking of tides, we're apparently getting smacked with a little tropical storm here in the Northeast. That makes it a perfect day to stay inside, and watch/bet hockey and basketball all day long. So let's get our bets in before we lose power or some nonsense like that happens.
Florida Panthers vs. New York Islanders (-115, O/U 5)
This is a strange matchup and will remain so for the entirety of the series. Florida has the scoring and goaltending to be a problem for the Islanders, but the system Barry Trotz has implemented is so damn tough to beat in the playoffs. The Islanders play a defensive oriented style and just muck things up for teams. I'm going to ride with the Isles again here in a close one.
THE PICK: Islanders ML
Arizona Coyotes vs. Nashville Predators (-135, O/U 5)
I made a point of saying before Game One that Arizona was not an offensive juggernaut. They then went put the Preds on their heels by scoring three first period goals. I don't think that outburst will happen again. I think you could make a very convincing case that Nashville played the better game for two periods in that game. I think they'll be better again.
THE PICK: Nashville ML
Phoenix Suns vs. Los Angeles Clippers (-9, O/U 230)
The Clippers are clearly the better team here, no question there. But, man the Suns look good. They're playing loose and hard and with purpose. I don't know that they can win here, but I think they can keep it to single digits. They do have one of the leagues top microwaves in Devin Booker, so anything is possible with the Suns offensively.
THE PICK: Phoenix +9
Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (-150, O/U 5.5)
This game should be the get right game for Toronto, or at least it damn well better be the get right game for the Leafs. If Toronto goes down 0-2 to Columbus….it's a scenario that I really have a hard time seeing. I say that knowing full well the flaws in Toronto's defense. I still think their offense and goal tending will be enough to get them over the proverbial hump tonight.
THE PICK: Toronto ML
Calgary Flames (-150, O/U 5.5) vs. Winnipeg Jets
The Jets took Game Two and looked considerably better than Calgary in doing so. Truthfully I think the Jets have looked better in both games. They also have a veteran led and playoff tested team, including goaltender Connor Hellebuyck. I just can't get enough of the Jets at these prices.
THE PICK: Winnipeg ML (+140)
Houston Rockets (-3.5, O/U 244) vs. Portland Trail Blazers
The Rockets have looked simply outstanding in the NBA bubble re-start. James Harden has been unstoppable, Russell Westbrook has been getting in the paint at will, and they have been chucking three at a wild rate. Portland has been tough. They've played tough games and Damian Lillard has done what Dame does in big spots. Having said that, Portland cannot keep pace with this Rockets team. Not the way they're playing right now. I'll take Clutch City.
THE PICK: Houston -3.5