Written by Rohit Ghosh
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NBA Playoffs: AccuScore Picking Warriors To Win it All
The NBA Playoffs are here - finally. The first round of the playoffs is easily one of the most entertaining two-to-three weeks of hoops all year with multiple series tipping off this Saturday. Let's take a look at some key points to watch for.
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Below the Radar, but Very Important
In the Western Conference, the 4-5 matchup between the Los Angeles Clippers and Utah Jazz is easily one of the least discussed, but most intriguing. The winner of this matchup will end up playing the Golden State Warriors in the second round of the postseason. It's a loss either way.
What's interesting, though, is that both Utah and L.A. have potentially volatile offseasons coming up. Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, Gordon Hayward - all free agents this offseason. A long(er) postseason run should allow for easier decisions in the offseason, right?
Against the Spread & Totals: AccuScore’s NBA Playoffs Picks
Will Cleveland walk through the East?
Although the last six years indicate LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers will once again reach the NBA Finals, a first-round matchup with Indiana along with AccuScore sim data suggests the path to repeating just might not be so easy.
Indiana isn't the scariest of threats in the first round, but their talent on the wing with Paul George and athleticism in the middle with Myles Turner should prove to at least provide the fans with some competitive moments. Here's the thing - the Cavs can sweet the Pacers when playing their best ball.
The problem, though, is that we haven't seen that level of execution from Cleveland in quite some time now. Can the second week of April flip the proverbial switch for Cleveland?
First Round to Win it All
Given how ridiculous this season's MVP race has been, why not have it decided on who wins the first-round matchup between the Houston Rockets and Oklahoma City Thunder?
In that sort of a set-up, AccuScore sim data would give the award to Harden as the Rockets are heavy favorites to win the series, majority of outcomes being decided in six or seven games.
Keep an eye out for prop bet opportunities though in this series, with the lean on the OVER for any total -- individual or team.
Best Bets / Value Picks
In the often predictable NBA offseason, where's the value?
After thousands of simulations, AccuScore sim data leans much more heavily towards the Toronto Raptors winning the Eastern Conference than indicated by Vegas odds.
Toronto upsets Cleveland in the conference semis --- more than likely in 6 games -- to face the Warriors in the NBA Finals.
At 30:1 odds, Toronto in the weaker East offers even more intrinsic value than any team in the West since very few consider the Rockets or Clippers to be 'true' title contenders compared to the Warriors or Spurs.
They added forward Serge Ibaka in the offseason for this exact sort of a run. The Cavs are struggling as a whole, and specifically, have had issues with depth all season.
With all that said, the Golden State Warriors are heavy 88.4 percent favorites over the Raptors in the NBA Finals.
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