Follow along on Twitter (@julianedlow) for any potential updates — things can always change with potential lineup moves leading up to tipoff. Here’s what jumps out to me for Game 1 of the NBA Finals on DraftKings Sportsbook.
These two teams have been complete opposites in Game 1, and the team that’s performed dramatically better is the team that’s more healthy and had three extra days to rest and prepare for the start of this series.
The Suns are 3-0 in Game 1s this postseason, covering the first half number against the Lakers and Clippers. I expect the combination of rest, preparation, being at home, and the coaching gap to really show early in this game and series. Meanwhile, the Bucks have lost their last two Game 1s, and are 0-3 ATS in Game 1s this postseason. Over the last seven Game 1s the Bucks have played, they are just 1-6 ATS, with the six failed covers by a combined 90 points, per Spread Investor.
I expect the Suns to come out with some great energy at home, while Milwaukee is going to have to really settle into this series. While I still like the play regardless of Giannis Antetokounmpo playing or not, I think his absence is bound to catch up to the Bucks, especially now playing against a fully healthy team.
The Suns have crept all the way up to -200 favorites in this series, obviously with Giannis’ doubtful status playing a huge role in the price. Without laying those odds, I think there are a couple of ways we can still bet this series.
The double result option gets us down to -125 for the Suns to win the series, we just need them to take care of business in Game 1. But as we laid out above, the Suns’ advantage is probably larger the earlier we are in this series — the Bucks will be less prepared and playing without their best player. If you like the Suns in Game 1 and for the series, this is a much better way to get a fair price.
Back on June 14 in NBA Best Bets, we got in a +1200 ticket on Paul to win NBA Finals MVP. Hopefully it’s a play you were able to snag, with tremendous value going into this series. But even at the current price of +160, if you like the Suns, you might as well get some money in on CP. As good as Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton are, we know who the MVP of this team is. Paul finished fifth in NBA MVP voting during the regular season. We saw him drop 37 in the closeout game in Denver and 41 in the closeout game in Los Angeles. We know the narrative going into this series, and Booker or Ayton would have to perform significantly better than Paul to even have a shot at the award.
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All views expressed are my own. I am an employee of DraftKings and am ineligible to play in public DFS or DKSB contests.
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