Caps Return to D.C. to Finish Series

Philadelphia Flyers Washington Capitals NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs

The Philadelphia Flyers are still alive after avoiding a sweep with a 2-1 win in Game 4 Wednesday night, but now things shift back to the Verizon Center in D.C. as the Washington Capitals will look to put the series to bed once and for all.

Shark Bites
  • Road team is 1-5 SU in the last six meetings between the Flyers and Capitals.
  • The Flyers are 12-3 SU in their last 15 games with one day off between games.
  • The Capitals are 23-7 SU in their last 30 games as home favorites.

Online shop Bovada is currently offering the Capitals at -250 in moneyline markets while the Flyers are +210. As far as the total is concerned, OVER 5 goals is -105 while UNDER 5 goals is coming in at -115.

Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby has been lights out despite taking the L in Game 4. The Vezina candidate has allowed just four goals on 118 shots and owns a .966 save percentage in four games in the series.

At the other end of the ice, the switch to Michal Neuvirth looks like a good one as the ex-Caps netminder stopped 31 of 32 shots en route to the Game 4 victory. In three appearances versus his former team, Neuvirth has now gone 2-0-0 with a 1.83 goals against average and .941 save percentage.

Washington defenseman John Carlson has been leading the charge as he has recorded three goals and three assists through the first four games.

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UFC 200: Diaz vs McGregor II Odds

*Update - McGregor has announced that he is "ready to go for UFC 200" and that he is not retired. Below are our latest odds for the fight.

UFC 200 will feature a massive main event rematch between Nate Diaz and Conor McGregor. It was at UFC 196 that the younger Diaz brother shocked the world and derailed McGregor’s hype train by submitting him in the second round.


Bet on What's Next For McGregor

The sports world is buzzing with the recent supposed retirement of UFC star Conor McGregor. Following the Irishman’s cryptic tweet proclaiming that he has retired, the UFC pulled him from his upcoming rematch against Nate Diaz with the company saying that McGregor refused to do the media tour to promote the bout.


Relegation Fight Down to Three Clubs

Ashley Westwood Aston Villa Premier League

Aston Villa’s 1-0 defeat to Manchester United was the final nail in the coffin in what turned out to be a disastrous campaign for the Birmingham club. For the first time in 28 seasons, and the first time since the Premier League as we know it was formed in 1992-93, the Villains will ply their trade in the second tier of English football.

But what of the the other two spots for relegation?


Cubs Have Been Pounding The Reds

It’s probably not much of a shock, but the powerhouse Chicago Cubs have been beating up in the mediocre Cincinnati Reds in recent meetings. The Cubs have won the past six games between the two clubs, which includes three this season, while averaging 6.8 runs per game in those outings.

The red-hot Cubs will also be starting ace Jake Arrieta when they start their weekend series against the Reds Thursday. The reigning NL Cy Young winner has been dominant so far this season, as he has allowed just three earned runs in 22.0 innings of work while posting an absurd 0.77 WHIP.

The Reds will counter with surprisingly solid youngster Brandon Finnegan. The lefty has posted a 2.04 ERA in three starts this season, but has struggled to find the strikezone with 10 walks on the year.

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Raptors are a Fantastic Bet in Indiana

Jonas Valanciunas Monta Ellis

The Toronto Raptors exorcised some postseason demons by topping the Indiana Pacers in Game 2 of their Eastern Conference first-round series, but there’s still plenty of work to be done as action shifts to Indianapolis. The Raptors snapped an ugly seven-game losing streak in the 98-87 victory to even things up at one game apiece.

Shark Bites
  • The total has gone OVER in four of the Raptors' last five games with a closing total of 193.0 or less.
  • The total has gone OVER in eight of the Pacers' last 10 games with a closing total of 193.0 or less.
  • The Raptors are 5-1 SU in their last six games.

More good news for Raps backers: Canada’s lone NBA club is excellent at cashing tickets in Indiana. The Dinos are 8-1 ATS in their past nine meetings with the Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Indy is great at bouncing back, however, as the Pacers are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 coming off a loss.

It’s quite clear which two players have been the MVPs for their respective squads so far. Paul George has combined for 61 points in both contests, while Raptors big man Jonas Valanciunas has been an absolute beast, notching a playoff career-high 23 points and 15 rebounds in Game 2 after pulling down a franchise-best 19 boards in the opener. The Raps are 14-2 this year when Valanciunas has at least 17 points.

Toronto’s All-Stars need to follow JV’s example. Kyle Lowry has shot 7-for-26, with backcourt mate DeMar DeRozan going 10-for-37 from the field. Reserve guard Terrence Ross is uncertain to play tonight after missing most of the second half of Game 2 due to concussion-like symptoms.

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Warriors Have Won 14 of 15 vs Rockets

Draymond Green James Harden

No Stephen Curry? No problem. The Golden State Warriors emerged triumphant in Game 2 of their first-round series with the Houston Rockets without Curry, topping the Rockets 115-106 to grab a 2-0 lead. As of Thursday morning, Curry was listed as questionable for Game 3 with an ankle injury he suffered in the series opener.

Shark Bites
  • The total has gone UNDER in seven of the Warriors' last 10 games with a closing total of 215.5 or more.
  • The Rockets are 8-3 ATS in their last 11 games with two days off between games.
  • The Warriors are 5-1 SU and ATS in their last six games on the road against the Rockets.

The Rockets have bigger problems than the potential return of Curry, however. Houston limped into the playoffs after suffering an extremely inconsistent season, and the pairing of James Harden and Dwight Howard is clearly not going to thrive if it hasn’t by now.

In light of Monday’s win, the Dubs have now won 14 of their last 15 versus Houston. Golden State is also 9-1 SU in its last 10 with two days off between games.

Howard committed five fouls in Game 1 and fouled out in Game 2, as Golden State’s rotation of Andrew Bogut, Festus Ezeli and Marreese Speights have dominated the 30-year-old.

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Giants Can't Get Past The Diamondbacks

The struggling San Francisco Giants will try to avoid being swept by the Arizona Diamondbacks Thursday. The Giants, who have been outscored in the series 16-8, have lost seven of their past eight games while allowing six runs per game.

Johnny Cueto will hope to continue his solid start when he tries to stave off the elimination for the Giants. The Giants have gotten what they wanted from Cueto after inking the pitcher to a six-year, $130 million contract this offseason, as the righty has held opponents to one earned run in two of his three outings while pitching at least seven complete innings in each start. 

The Diamondbacks will start Shelby Miller, who has been a bust in the desert after the team sent a king’s ransom of prospects to the Braves to obtain the pitcher. Through three starts this season, Miller has an 8.53 ERA while giving up five home runs.

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Blues Can Wrap Up Series Tonight

Chicago Blackhawks St. Louis Blues NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs

The St. Louis Blues used a sensational run that bridged March and April to lock up the No. 2 spot in the ultra-competitive Central Division. Based on that strong run of play, they can dispatch one of those division foes Thursday night as they take a 3-1 series lead over the Chicago Blackhawks back to St. Louis for Game 5.

Shark Bites
  • The Blackhawks are 1-5 SU in their last six games versus the Blues.
  • The Blues are 9-1 SU in their last 10 games versus teams from their division.
  • The Blackhawks are 2-9 SU in their last 11 games versus teams with a winning record.

Online book Bovada currently has the Blues at -130 on home ice while the Blackhawks are +110 in moneyline markets. As far as the total is concerned, OVER 5 goals is -105 while UNDER 5 goals is -115.

The Blues won eight of their final 10 regular season games and have taken three of their four games versus the Blackhawks in their opening round series. Vladimir Tarasenko tallied a pair of goals and an assist in the Blues’ 4-3 victory in Game 4 Tuesday, giving him five points in the series.

Hawks netminder Corey Crawford hasn’t had a huge work load in the series, the Blues are just capitalizing on their chances. Crawford has saved 95 of 105 shots which pales in comparison to the Blues’ Brian Elliott, who has had to face 151 shots, but has stopped 144 of them.

The Blackhawks have been in similar spots versus the Blues in the playoffs, however, and shouldn’t be counted out until they are cleaning out their lockers. Back in the 2014 playoffs, the Blackhawks had dropped the first two games against the Blues in the opening round before winning four straight.

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Andersen Could Be Catalyst Ducks Need

Anaheim Ducks Nashville Predators NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs

Many were stunned when the Nashville Predators won the opening two games of their series with the Ducks in Anaheim, but a goaltending change by head coach Bruce Boudreau got his team right back into it and gives them a chance to pull even in Game 4 Thursday.

Shark Bites
  • The Predators are 2-5 SU in their last seven games with one day off between games.
  • The Ducks are 26-9 SU in their last 35 games versus the Western Conference.
  • The Predators are 2-6 SU in their last eight games versus teams with winning records.

Online shop Bovada is currently offering both the Ducks and Predators at -110 in monyeline markets for Game 4. As for the total, OVER 5 goals is -105 while UNDER 5 goals is presently being offered at -115.

The Ducks switched goaltenders for Game 3 as Frederik Andersen replaced John Gibson, who started the opening two games. Andersen, who entered Game 3 with a 17-1-2 record and 1.89 goals against average in his previous 20 starts, improved his overall record versus Nashville to 5-1 with a 2.36 goals against average and .928 save percentage in six starts.

Andersen stopped 27 shots while Chris Stewart added a goal and an assist as the Ducks skated to a 3-0 victory in Game 3 Tuesday, making it three straight victories for the visitor in this series.

The low score won’t be a surprise to totals bettors as four of the past five Ducks’ games on the road have stayed UNDER the total. Furthermore, Anaheim has won five of their last seven visits to Nashville, adding a little extra value when backing the Ducks tonight.

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