In the opening round of the 2023 NBA playoffs, the No. 4 seed Cleveland Cavaliers (51-31) will take on the No. 5 seed New York Knicks (47-35). With the action starting at Cleveland’s Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse on Saturday at 6 p.m. ET, the Cavs come in favored at DraftKings Sportsbook to win Game 1 (-240 ML) as well as the seven-game series (-200).
Here we’ll take a look at some of our favorite series props for this matchup.
Cavs vs. Knicks series props
Series Exact Games: 6 Games (+215)
Currently reflecting the second-shortest odds of the four available selections in this market, I strongly feel this series will only require six games. The Knicks, who have a long list of playoff woes, may have a tough time against a healthy Cleveland team. This will especially be the case if they are without their best scoring threat Julius Randle, who has an ankle injury. Still, I think the New York has more than enough talent to avoid a sweep. So if I rule out both the sweep and a Game 7 (which I find unlikely in this matchup), I like the play on a six-game series at +215.
Series Correct Score: Cavaliers 4-2 (+475)
Piggybacking off the previous prop, it is difficult for me to see this series going any other way than 4-2 Cavaliers. Basically, the first bet will need to cash for this one to, but by specifying the winning side of the series, you can increase the payout with +475 odds.
Series Total Length Under 5.5 Games (+145)
In sort of a hedging fashion, you can play both props above while then playing under 5.5 games at plus-money on the series total. This would ensure that you cash a plus-money ticket in this series as long as it does not go the full seven games. In the event that the series ends up being an expeditious one (sweep or five games), you’ll get paid out at a +145 rate. If it one game later ends at game six, you’ll cash the first wager on this list for +215 (with the possibility of another at +475 if Cleveland is the series-winning side).
Simply, if all played, these three separate prop bets can leave you profitable so long as Knicks-Cavs does not take all seven games to decide a victor.