The Miami Heat became the first team to clinch a spot in the conference finals with a 99-90 win over the 76ers in Philadelphia. James Harden was non-existent in the second half attempting zero shots with the season on the line. The Mavericks dominated the Suns on their home court in a similar fashion to how Phoenix stomped the Mavericks in Game 5. The home team remains undefeated in the series, and it now heads to Phoenix for Game 7. Friday kicks off the weekend with two more Game 6’s featuring the Celtics vs. Bucks and Grizzlies vs. Warriors. Let’s dive into the best NBA bets today, picks and NBA betting tips for Friday, May 13.
Best NBA Bets Today: Game Tips & Betting Predictions
Celtics vs. Bucks Prediction
The Celtics and Bucks continue their thrilling series tonight in a Game 6 elimination game for Boston. Milwaukee overcame a 14-point fourth-quarter deficit in Boston on Wednesday to sneak by with a 110-107 win and regain the series lead. The reigning NBA champions will have a chance to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals with a win on Friday. The Milwaukee Bucks look to make the conference finals for the third time in the last four years. Boston hopes to get back Robert Williams III after being sidelined for the last two games due to knee soreness. The Bucks are 3-1 at home in head-to-head matchups this season. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.
Game 5 was a major disappointment for Boston. The Celtics led by one when Giannis Antetokounmpo missed a game-tying free throw. Milwaukee’s Bobby Portis tipped in the miss to give the Bucks a one-point lead with 11 seconds and take home the victory. Jayson Tatum led the Celtics with 34 points and Jaylen Brown added 26. The Celtics lost Game 5 despite shooting 51% from the field. They went ice cold when it mattered most in the fourth quarter, scoring only two points in the final two minutes and allowing the Bucks to squeeze out a victory. Ime Udoka elected to go small for a majority of the fourth quarter, which is when Boston suffered the most on the glass. Boston got dominated on the offensive glass, getting outrebounded 17-5 in Game 5. Milwaukee has taken full advantage of the absence of Williams, Boston’s best rebounder and rim protector. His status is still up in the air for Game 6 and will be a huge determining factor for the Celtics’ rotation and defensive presence in the paint.
The Bucks came up with a crucial win in Game 5 thanks to a monster night from Giannis and clutch plays from Portis and Jrue Holiday to close out the game. Antetokounmpo led the team with 40 points and Holiday chipped in 24 points. Portis and Pat Connaughton combined for 27 points off the bench in the come-from-behind win. Milwaukee has been inconsistent on offense throughout the playoffs with Khris Middleton on the sidelines, but Holiday and the bench stepped up its production in Game 5 and hope to carry that momentum into Milwaukee on Friday night. The most surprising aspect of Milwaukee’s game throughout these playoffs has been its defense, which ranks No. 1 in defensive rating, holding opponents to 99.8 points through 10 games and 104.4 points to Boston in this series.
Game 5 ended with a combined total of 217 points. Despite the total going over in the last two games, the line remains at 211.5 points. In their four regular-season matchups, the game total averaged 233.3 points. The over is 10-4 in the last 14 meetings and 7-1 in the last eight meetings in Milwaukee. The Bucks were able to improve from beyond the arc and their bench came through with well-needed production in Game 5. While there are two quality defenses going head-to-head, these two teams rank top-10 in 3-pointers made per game and can get it going on offense. Boston has finished the last two games shooting 50% or better. Milwaukee loves to push the pace and look for Giannis and Holiday to be heavily involved on the offensive end of the floor. Expect Milwaukee’s role players to take the momentum from Game 5 and close this series out tonight. Anticipate another hard-fought battle with the season on the line for the Celtics. Stay away from picking a side and ride the over in tonight’s Eastern Conference showdown.
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Best NBA Bet for Today’s Game: Total Over 211.5 Points