We’re down to the final four teams remaining in the NBA playoffs with the Western Conference series going into Game 2 on Tuesday and the Eastern matchup beginning on Wednesday. Here’s a look at the basketball betting for both contests:
Memphis Grizzlies @ San Antonio Spurs
Odds: Spurs -5
The Spurs jumped out to a 31-14 first-quarter lead and never looked back in a 105-83 rout of the Grizzlies in Game 1 as Tony Parker paced the team with 20 points and nine assists. San Antonio’s offense was a well-oiled machine, shooting 52.6% from the field and they were absolutely on fire from three-point land, nailing 14 of their 29 attempts.
Zach Randolph had a rough game with just two points on 1-of-8 shooting, while Quincy Pondexter led the Grizzlies with 17 points off the bench. The Grizzlies shot just 43.2% from the field and could never get going offensively, while their usually-stellar defense also struggled on the road in San Antonio.
The Spurs come into Game 2 as 5-point favorites, and Memphis definitely has to make some adjustments at both ends of the floor. Mike Conley has to play better against Parker, and if the Grizzlies can get the upper hand in that matchup, their fortunes could change drastically. Memphis has now lost nine of their last 10 in San Antonio and they looked unusually nervous against the Spurs, so you can expect that to be gone. Still, the Spurs know what it takes to get to the next level and they’ll show that on Tuesday night to take a 2-0 lead going back to Memphis.
Indiana Pacers @ Miami Heat
Odds: Heat -8
The Pacers and Heat meet in the postseason once again after Miami won last year’s second-round series in six games, and it was in that series where LeBron James really hit another gear as he put up 40 points, 18 rebounds and nine assists in a Game 4 victory that knotted the series up at two after Indiana took a 2-1 lead. The Heat have lost just once in this postseason, which came in Game 1 of their five-game victory over Chicago, and you get the feeling that this team can play even better. A lot of their fate will come down to the health of Dwyane Wade, who has struggled with knee injuries in the playoffs.
The Pacers knocked out New York in six games and they have been fantastic at home, winning all six games there so far in the postseason. Roy Hibbert was a force at both ends of the floor against the Knicks and he’ll need a similar effort against the Heat, while Paul George will draw the likely assignment of guarding James. However, the emergence of Lance Stephenson gives Indiana another player to throw at the four-time MVP.
Miami is favored by eight points at home, where they have won eight of their last 10 against the Pacers. Even though Chicago showed you could beat Miami on the road in Game 1 of their series, that just woke the Heat up and the Pacers have already thrown some verbal shots their way. Expect Miami to retaliate and cover the NBA odds.
Pick: Heat -8