The 2022 NBA Playoffs are approaching halfway status in the semifinals, with two series tied at 2-2 and the other two standing at 2-1.
The Dallas Mavericks’ combined team effort helped them get past the Phoenix Suns Sunday. The Philadelphia 76ers won their second straight home game to level their tie with the Miami Heat.
Here are the teams to bet on Monday, May 9.
Boston Celtics vs. Milwaukee Bucks
The Bucks won the first and third games in this Eastern Conference semifinal round, leaving Boston to take the middle; the Bucks have relied heavily on Giannis Antetokounmpo, though the Celtics have done an excellent job playing him tightly. C’s fans took issue with the way that game three was officiated, feeling that Giannis was allowed to do anything he pleased on the offensive end.
Jayson Tatum was horrible in Game Three, reminding the world that both he and co-star Jaylen Brown, who had a deplorable Game One, are capable of shrinking in the biggest moments. Tatum will likely rebound in Game Four, but he will need the help of his co-stars to get past a Milwaukee team with some of the best role players in the league.
One of the more underrated matchups to watch will be Brook Lopez and Bobby Portis against Al Horford, as all three big men have taken turns making offensive and defensive contributions in the series. Whichever one can turn in the best performance will go a long way towards helping their team secure a spot in the conference finals.
All in all, the Bucks are the best pick simply because of Giannis’ excellence but don’t be surprised if the Celtics make it hard on him like they have every superstar in these playoffs.
Memphis Grizzlies vs. Golden State Warriors
The Memphis Grizzlies match up well with the Golden State Warriors despite narrowly making it out of the first round. However, they will likely be taking a large hit with Ja Morant likely to miss Game 4 due to injury.
Morant has been everything for the Grizz in this series, averaging 38.3 points, 8.3 assists, 6.7 rebounds, and 45.1% 3PT against one of the most experienced teams in the league. His team went 20-2 without him in the regular season, but in a postseason environment, they are likely to falter.
Klay Thompson and Jordan Poole managed to touch fire at the same time in game three, which is a scary sign heading into the second of two early games in San Francisco. Jonathan Kuminga also came into the starting lineup for the first time and provided great minutes, scoring 18 easy points via the open space and attention to other shooters.
The Grizzlies simply do not have enough defensive intensity and speed to keep up with Golden State’s constant-motion offense, so the Dubs have to get the vote of confidence— if Morant plays, consider the Grizzlies spread, but still go for Golden State to win.