Even though it has been only one game, the conference semifinals have been a mixed bag. Both Western Conference semi contests have been terrific while the two Eastern Conference matchups have been decided by double-figures. The big question heading into tonight’s games will be can the home teams even their series? In the first game, Boston hosts Milwaukee at TD Garden with tipoff at 7 p.m. ET. The Warriors vs. Grizzlies game will immediately follow that game in Memphis with tipoff slated for 9:30 p.m. ET. Golden State won the series opener 117-116 despite being without Draymond Green, who was ejected for a flagrant foul just before halftime. Both games will once again be televised by TNT.
This daily NBA article will examine the best betting picks and NBA player prop bets today. With OddsShopper, bettors can maximize their profits and see the best chances with the highest expected return on investment. OddsShopper can find which sportsbooks offer the best prices for these prop bets. The following are the best NBA bets for May 3.
Best NBA Bets and Player Props Today
Bucks Spread (+4.5) Over Celtics; Under 215.5 Points
Milwaukee stole homecourt advantage from Boston with Sunday’s 101-89 victory as the Bucks held the Celtics to just 33.3% shooting from the field while also forcing 18 turnovers. Jrue Holiday led the way for the Bucks with 25 points to go along with nine rebounds, five assists and three steals. Giannis Antetokounmpo produced a triple-double and Bobby Portis contributed a double-double. Meanwhile, Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum and Marcus Smart were just a combined 14-for-42 from the field with 13 turnovers.
Despite entering the playoffs as one of the potent offenses in the league, Milwaukee has been very inefficient through their first six playoff games. The Bucks have produced an offensive rating of just 106.8 as they have been without Khris Middleton for the past four games. The Bucks have shot the ball well overall, making 46.2% of their field goal attempts and 37.6% from the 3-point line. However, they are shooting a playoff-low 69.3% from the free-throw line and committing 15.7 turnovers a game.
Conversely, Milwaukee has been incredible on the defensive end and is the main reason they are 5-1 in the postseason. The Bucks are allowing a playoff-best 94.2 points a game as they are holding their opponents to 39.0% from the field and 29.9% from the 3-point line. They have also done a bang-up job on the defensive glass, collecting nearly 81% of all rebounds on that end.
Sunday’s loss was Boston’s first of the postseason. While the Celtics entered the playoffs as the No. 1 defensive team in the NBA, they have struggled during the playoffs. Their defense is allowing 107.4 points a game on 48% shooting from the field and 11.6 3-pointers at a 40.6% clip. They have also struggled on the defensive glass.
Milwaukee has won the past three meetings against Boston to take a 3-2 lead in the season series. The Bucks have won those three games by an average of 7 points. Moreover, the Celtics have no answer defensively for Antetokounmpo, and Holiday has been sensational against the Celtics. Plus, Brown and Smart have struggled from beyond the arc during the postseason.
Furthermore, Milwaukee is 4-0 against the spread in their last four games. Meanwhile, the under is 6-0 in the Bucks’ last six games and 9-1 in the Celtics’ last 10 semifinals games. Smart is questionable with a quad injury.
Warriors Moneyline (-120) Over Grizzlies
Golden State overcame an 8-point first deficit and the loss of Green before halftime to pick up a 1-point victory in Game 1. Jordan Poole led the way with a career playoff-best 31 points on 12 of 20 shooting from the field. Klay Thompson combined with Steph Curry for 39 points along with eight 3-pointers. Meanwhile, Ja Morant tossed in 34 and Jarren Jackson Jr. had 32 points for the Grizzlies.
Golden State is the more experienced team in the series as well as the more explosive offensive team. The Warriors are also the better defensive team. OddsShopper gives them a 52% chance of winning the game.
The Warriors are 5-1 in the playoffs with a plus-6.8 scoring margin. They average a playoff-best 117.8 points on 50% shooting from the field and 41.3% from the 3-point line. However, defense, free-throw shooting and turnovers are a concern. Andre Iguodala (neck) will miss his second straight game though Thompson (knee) is probable.
Memphis ranks second in the postseason with 114.7 points a game, but they have not shot the ball superbly. The Grizzlies have connected on 45% of their field goal attempts and 37% of their shots from beyond the arc while averaging 12.1 triples a game. Defensively, the Grizzlies have struggled to guard the 3-point line and with turnovers overall. Steven Adams (COVID-19 protocols) will miss his third straight game while Ziaire Williams (knee) and Desmond Bane (back) are questionable.
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Brook Lopez Over 10.5 Points
Lopez can shoot the ball and is pretty efficient in pick-and-roll and pick-and-pop situations. While he got seven shots off on Sunday, he only connected on three of the attempts and finished with 6 points. Lopez has a pretty good opportunity to reach this total despite the Celtics being one of the toughest teams for opposing centers to score on. The Celtics allowed just 19.1 points a game during the regular season to opposing centers and gave up 5.6 free-throw attempts to them. Lopez is an excellent free throw shooter who has reregistered a slash line of .491/.294/.917 during the postseason. He has a history of playing well against Boston and has scored in double figures in three of his last six appearances. The biggest hurdle will be Portis’ offensive involvement as he has been very aggressive since replacing Middleton in the starting lineup. Lopez is projected for 13.34 points tonight. OddsShopper gives the over a 68% chance of hitting with an expected ROI of 22%.
Other Top NBA Bets Today
- Robert Williams Over 7.5 Points
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