NBA Playoffs Betting: Teams Coming Off Best-of-Seven Series
by Nicholas Tolomeo - 5/3/2010
The NBA Playoff schedule is fan friendly, with games every night. However, this scheduling is far from player friendly. The NBA’s desire to keep its playoffs in the forefront has players playing second round series while first round series are still going on. Game 7s are the highlight of the playoffs, but teams playing in them have a steep hill to climb to continue to move on in the playoffs.
In this year’s playoffs only the Milwaukee Bucks had to fight through seven games to advance to the second round. After a convincing 21-point win over the Bucks on Sunday, the Hawks have little time to relax with a trip to Orlando for Game 1 against the Magic just more than 48 hours after their first-round clinching win.
According to past trends, things are not looking good for Atlanta.
Last year the No. 2-seeded Boston Celtics went through an epic and grueling first-round series with the Bulls that went the distance. In the next round they were upset by the Orlando Magic even though the defending champion Celtics had home-court advantage. The other Eastern Conference series to go the distance had the Hawks advancing over the Miami Heat. The very next round the Hawks were swept by the Cleveland Cavaliers and went 0-4 ATS.
While a best-of-seven series in Round 1 usually has spelled doom for a team in the second round, the trend does not hold up in the later rounds. The past two NBA champions, the Celtics and Lakers, had to get through a seven-game series in Round 2.
The trends over the years since the NBA went to best-of-seven series in the first round has shown that teams are facing extremely steep odds in the second round. Since the NBA went to seven-game series in 2001 no NBA champion has had to play a best-of-seven series in the first round. Only one team in that time has had to go to six games. If you are looking for potential teams to capture the NBA title this year look at teams who made quick work of their first round opponents.
The Cavaliers, Celtics and Magic were the only first-round winners to dispatch of their opponents in five games or less. The Magic were the only team to sweep the opposition. Quick first round series not only give the team added rest, but also confidence and it gives opponents limited looks at the team in playoff action.
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