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Harry’s NBA Best Bets In the Bubble

Los Angeles Clippers Forward Kawhi Leonard (2) goes up for a dunk as Los Angeles Lakers Forward LeBron James (23) looks on.

The NBA is scheduled to restart its season under “the bubble” in Orlando. As we head into the opening two games on July 30 (Utah Jazz vs New Orleans Pelicans and the battle of Los Angeles continuing in Florida with Clippers vs Lakers), there are questions teams face as they get set to play eight games before we begin the first round of the playoffs.

One of the factors to consider is how hard teams will play over the duration of the regular season if they have already secured a playoff spot. Another is that teams will be playing short-handed if players have either decided not to finish the season or are forced into quarantine by a positive COVID-19 test.

Thanks to our friends at BetOnline, we have some wagers on the restart of the NBA, despite the unfortunate uncertainty of practically everything related to sports and sports gambling these days. So I have tried to figure out the outcomes of some of these wagers that I have an angle on.

Odds Shark's Gilles Gallant has also compiled a list of all the key NBA Season Restart Props and some you may not be aware of.

Most Points Scored by a Team During 8 Games

OVER 140.5 Points -115
UNDER 140.5 Points -115

Now I understand this will happen (an OVER) if we have a double- or triple-overtime game, but this might be a situation where teams don’t want to “give everything they have” in this spot. They would love to get through these eight games without a serious injury, which if it happens would be a tremendous shame. To say that teams won’t be trying isn’t true at all, but I just don’t see a game going that high without a ton at stake, with no fans in attendance and with teams trying to conserve their starters as best they can.

Pick: UNDER

Most Points Scored in a Game by a Player During 8 Games

OVER 53.5 Points -115
UNDER 53.5 Points -115

This prop goes hand in hand with the highest-scoring game prop. There is no reason for a player to have to put forth such a great effort unless it’s the eighth game and the playoffs are on the line. Again, you won’t want to put the health of your best players at risk when there are likely more important games down the road.

Pick: UNDER

Teams OVER/UNDER Win Total for the 8 Games

Philadelphia 76ers 39-26

+2500 To Win Championship
OVER 5 Wins -125
UNDER 5 Wins -105

The 76ers will have a rusty Ben Simmons returning and who knows how much Joel Embiid could weigh when he comes back. This team is a lock for the playoffs so their motivation also might not be so high. The Sixers are just 10-24 on the road this season. Before the break, Philadelphia was on pace to have the biggest discrepancy between home and road win percentage since the 1967-68 season.

Pick: UNDER 5 WINS

Toronto Raptors 46-18

+1700 To Win Championship
OVER 4.5 Wins -125
UNDER 4.5 Wins -105

The Raptors were the first team to make it to Orlando. The defending champs realize that all of the pressure is on the Bucks to capture the Eastern Conference. I think the Raps come to Orlando loosey-goosey and play well. Many people may not know this: the Raptors have a better winning percentage (.719) and point differential (+6.5 a game) than last year’s team that had a guy you might have heard of, Kawhi Leonard.

Pick: OVER 4.5 WINS

Indiana Pacers 39-26

+12500 to Win Championship
OVER 4 Wins -115
UNDER 4 Wins -115

It’s official: Pacers guard Victor Oladipo announced a few days ago that he will not be playing in any games in Orlando. They are already a lock for the playoffs, coming into the restart as the fifth seed in the East. Indiana has one of the tougher schedules, among its eight games having to play the Heat twice, the Sixers, the Rockets, and LeBron and the Lakers.

Pick: UNDER 4 WINS

Utah Jazz 41-23

+6000 to Win Championship
OVER 3.5 Wins -135
UNDER 3.5 Wins +105

I feel the Jazz more than any other team will want to play hard and try to win these games. We all know the two best players on the Jazz (Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert) contracted COVID-19, with Gobert being the first player to test positive. Mitchell was averaging 24 a game before this whole delay started and he will be something special to watch, mark my words. The Jazz also get the Spurs twice; win those two games and they just have to go 2-4 in their other six.

Pick: OVER 3.5 WINS

Orlando Magic 30-35

+75000 to Win Championship
OVER 3 Wins -135
UNDER 3 Wins +105

Aaron Gordon is such a hidden talent and is a leader on this team. The Magic on their schedule get the depleted Nets (win total is 2.5) twice, the Kings and a Pacers team that is a playoff lock and is without stud guard Victor Oladipo.

Pick: OVER 3 WINS

If Portland Trail Blazers Make Playoffs, How Many Points Will Damian Lillard Average?

OVER 27.5 PPG -115
UNDER 27.5 PPG -115

The Blazers are chasing Memphis for the eighth seed and get the Grizzlies once during the restart. If they make it, Portland more than likely will be without Trevor Ariza, which means more shots for Lillard. If the Blazers were to pull this off, they would be coming in on a huge high, plus Lillard shows up in big games consistently.

Pick: OVER 27.5 PPG

Harry’s NBA Champion

Los Angeles Clippers +325

It’s very easy to explain why the Clippers will win the championship. Before this unprecedented stop in the season, the Clippers bench averaged a league-best 51.5 points per game. The only NBA team in history to average more bench points was last year’s Clippers team at 53.2.

Harry’s NBA Finals Prediction

Raptors vs Clippers

This would bring in monster ratings — the defending champs going up against the guy (Kawhi Leonard) who gave them their only title in franchise history a year ago. As well, there would be a repeat on the line with the Raptors coming out of the East, where again all the pressure will be not on them but on the Bucks to rebound from last year’s disappointment in the playoffs.

Pick: Clippers in 6 Games