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Mavericks Odds: How to bet Friday’s playoff games.

Can Brunson and the Knicks rebound or have the Cas figured them out?

2023 NBA Playoffs - New York Knicks v Cleveland Cavaliers Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images

Let’s all agree to never talk about Game 2 of Sixers/Nets ever again. It was an abomination and an eyesore. Embiid was disaster. The officiating was a disaster. Even my baby boy Spencer Dinwiddie was a disaster. The Sixers won but anyone that watched that game can count themselves amongst the losers. Kings/Warriors played out how we expected. The Kings looked nervous while Curry and the Warriors played with the resolve of a championship team. Game 4 can’t come soon enough. Clippers/Suns was a tease for those of us who enjoy sports hating the Suns. The Clippers may not have the depth to take advantage of Phoenix’s shortcomings, but the Suns are far from favorites to make it out of the West. Their lack of depth and versatility will cost them in round 2 against the Nuggets. Speaking of the Nuggets....

Boston Celtics at ATL Hawks, Celtics lead 2-0

This series is over and there’s a non-zero chance that Trae Young’s career in Atlanta is as well. Initially, I thought Atlanta would win game 3 and ultimately lose in 5. As tip-off approaches, this now has sweep written all over it.

PICK: Celtics -5

Cleveland Cavs at NY Knicks, Series is tied 1-1

Cleveland is built to defend teams like the Knicks. Mobley and Allen crowd the paint and force Julius Randle into contested mid-range jumpers. While neither Donovan Mitchell nor Darius Garland have a snowball’s chance in hell of guarding Brunson, Cleveland is happy to make life hard for him once he gets into the paint and bank on the Knick’s inability to make them pay from 3. Josh Hart was great in game 1 but it is going to take that type of performance for NY keep up with Cleveland. The atmosphere in the MSG will be electric and I think the Knicks jump out to a 1st quarter lead but ultimately get walked down in the second half.

Pick: Cavs +1.5

Denver Nuggets at Minnesota T’Wolves, Nuggets lead 2-0

Is this a case of KAT not being HIM, or Rudy’s presence neutering KAT’s ability to spread his wings on offense. It’s probably both. Minnesota is clearly Anthony Edwards team and every decision moving forward should focus on how to properly build around his strengths. The Gobert trade is already a disaster and Minnesota should cut their losses and move on from him immediately. A KAT move might be premature, but I imagine a conversation will at least be had.

PICK: Nuggets -2