NBA betting: 76ers-Raptors line drops a point even with majority of money on Philadelphia

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Bettors aren’t showing much confidence in the Toronto Raptors.

The Raptors lost the first two games of the first-round series with the Philadelphia 76ers by a combined 35 points, but are just 1.5-point underdogs at BetMGM for Game 3.

That point spread opened with the Sixers favored by 2.5 points, but it interestingly has dropped down a point despite a large majority of the action coming in on Philadelphia. According to BetMGM on Wednesday morning, 84% of the bets and 90% of the money on the point spread was on the Sixers. Additionally, 81% of the moneyline handle was on the Sixers.

After two blowouts in Philadelphia, the Raptors could be a bit healthier for Game 3 on their home floor. Scottie Barnes, an NBA rookie of the year finalist, missed Game 2 after suffering a sprained ankle in Game 1. Additionally, Gary Trent Jr. was limited to just 10 minutes in Game 2 due to a non-COVID illness.

Raptors coach Nick Nurse said during Wednesday’s shootaround that Trent is feeling a bit better and will likely be back in the lineup for Game 3. Barnes, who was listed as doubtful on Tuesday’s injury report, was no longer wearing a walking boot and “maybe” could return to action, Nurse said.

On the Philadelphia side, forward Matisse Thybulle is unable to play in Canada due to the nation’s vaccine requirements. Thybulle, an NBA all-defense second team selection in 2021, started for most of the season but has recently been replaced in the starting lineup by veteran Danny Green. Thybulle played 19 minutes in Game 1 and just 10 minutes in Game 2. He had five points and three blocks in Game 2.

Toronto was 4-4 ATS as a home underdog during the regular season.

The total opened at 214.5 but moved up to 216.5. Most of the action — 81% of the bets and 83% of the money — is on the over. Game 1 of the series went over the total. The under hit in Game 2.

Philadelphia 76ers' James Harden, left, tries to get past Toronto Raptors' Pascal Siakam during the second half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Monday, April 18, 2022, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Philadelphia 76ers' James Harden, left, tries to get past Toronto Raptors' Pascal Siakam during the second half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Monday, April 18, 2022, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Bettors siding with Nets as underdog

The Brooklyn Nets lost a last-second heartbreaker in Game 1 of their series with the Boston Celtics, but managed to cover the four-point spread.

The Nets are underdogs again in Game 2. This time, the Celtics are favored by 3.5 points and bettors are eager to put their money on Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and the Nets.

According to BetMGM, 64% of the bets and 68% of the money is on the Nets +3.5. On top of that, 81% of the bets and 80% of the money on the moneyline is on the Brooklyn side. The Nets are +135 on the moneyline.

Game 1 went over the total, but most of the money is on the under for Game 2. The total opened at 227.5 and then dropped to 226.5. According to BetMGM, 55% of the bets but a whopping 88% of the money is on the under.

What about Bucks-Bulls?

The Chicago Bulls were unable to pull off a Game 1 upset of the Milwaukee Bucks, but they did cover the spread as 10.5-point underdogs. Can they do it again? Most bettors don’t believe so.

The Bucks are 9.5-point favorites for Game 2 at BetMGM and 62% of the bets and 75% of the money is on the Milwaukee side.

Game 1 was a low-scoring affair, as the Bucks won 93-86 and put the game a whopping 51 points below the total. Despite that result, more bettors are on the over 224.5 for Game 2. According to BetMGM, 62% of the bets and 91% of the money is on the over.

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