NHL and NBA Playoffs Offer Stark Contrasts but Similar Keys

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A clear difference exists between the NBA and NHL Playoffs. NBA postseason action is a “chalky” affair. Top seeds almost always win with lower seeds going home fast. Handicapping the NBA comes down to avoiding overlays. Everyone knows top teams dominate but can be overpriced. Counter to that is the NHL. Even non-hockey fans say that the Stanley Cup Playoffs are the best in pro sports. That is because low seeds can and do often score online betting upsets, according to BetNow.eu. Proof comes this year with 12-seeds Chicago and Montreal winning their qualifiers.  

It is true that the Blackhawks and Canadiens were derided as undeserving. But the NHL was proven wise to invite them. Just one year ago, the Lighting had the best regular-season records in the NHL. Tampa Bay found that meant nothing when the eight-seed Blue Jackets swept them in the first round. Columbus demonstrated that, unlike the NBA, NHL eight seeds could devour the elite.  

NBA Educates Gamblers with Reality Check 

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At the onset of the NBA, the restart was talk about a potential dark horse. Speculation was rampant about how this once in a lifetime season could bring shockers. Counter to that is a stark reality. NBA gravity is far different than what we see on the ice. Toronto’s “upset” of Golden State in the 2019 NBA Finals was actually no upset at all. Golden State was Warriors in name only. Key injuries gave the Raptors an opening that they capitalized on.  

The best example of the difference in the NBA and NHL playoffs is seen in the first round. Does anyone really believe eight-seed Orlando is a threat to top seed Milwaukee? Of course not. Milwaukee opened at a whopping -15000 online betting favorite to win that playoff series. In a similar way, did Toronto open as a -5000 pick against Brooklyn?  

Despite the differences in the NHL and NBA postseasons, there are similarities. Coaching, defense, and a clutch scorer are necessities.  

Strong Coaches Teach Us About Betting Value Difference

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Last year the Lakers offered no betting value and less defense. LeBron James arrival created plenty of hype. Promotions touted Los Angeles as the anointed champion. This created a public fan-boy demand that decimated the Lakers Betting on NBA value. Consistent with that was the lack of gravitas with coach Luke Walton. James considered Walton a joke. He had no respect for the “coach.” As a result, the Lakers players knew that they were playing for a condemned man. Los Angeles took defense off. Lebron later went on the disabled list. A dream season turned into a nightmare.  

Counter to that is the current form of the Lakers. New coach Frank Vogel had the bona fides of past success with the Pacers. Anthony Davis was acquired to complement James. Davis has eased James’ workload. Most important of all, the Lakers other players believe in their championship potential. Vogel has coaxed LA into playing a full-court game. LA ranks as one of the top defenses in the NBA. This is what has transformed the Lakers into Betting on basketball favorites.  

Washington Capitals Learn Hard Lesson on Coaching 

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Barry Trotz did the impossible as head coach of the Capitals. Trotz took over a Washington team that was similar to Luke Walton’s Lakers. To illuminate the Capitals were a run and gun team. They skipped working the back end. Superstar Alex Ovechkin is the greatest goal scorer of the modern era. Before Trotz’s arrival, he was known as a selfish player without a Stanley Cup. Washington had a reputation with gamblers as soft playoff chokers. Yet Trotz transformed the franchise. He led the Capitals to their first Stanley Cup championship in 2018. Washington chose not to rehire Trotz. He went to the Islanders a few days later.  

By reason of Trotz’s departure have the Capitals reverted back to their loose ways. Washington’s defense metrics dropped dramatically, as did their sports betting value. All of a sudden, Caps fans and gamblers had a new appreciation for their old coach. Correspondingly the Islanders embraced Trotz with open arms. New York does not have the skill of the Capitals. However, they were willing to work and follow Trotz’s defensive structure and tactics. This has made the Isles into a valuable wagering asset. Meanwhile, the Capitals have gamblers disgusted with overlay price losses.  

The Lesson of Star Paired with Coach

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Namely, Giannis Antetokounmpo is the new main man on the NBA marquee. Giannis was the 2019 NBA Most Valuable Player. Milwaukee has been Eastern Conference top seed two years in a row. Further, the Bucks have been one of the most profitable teams on the NBA board. Giannis emerged as a dominant player in the 2018-19 campaign. He and the Bucks caught fire that season. Notwithstanding their past failures was a new blueprint. Mike Budenholzer took over as coach in that landmark season. He threaded the needle between freeing up Giannis offensively. While still getting a full buy-in on the back end.  

A Study of How Winning can Portend Losing

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Cause by this partnership between The Greek Freak and coach did Milwaukee become highly profitable. Square gamblers were caught off guard as the Bucks were never a marquee brand. Sharps were able to take advantage of bargain quality prices. As time went on, the public gravitated to Milwaukee. Subsequently, the Bucks betting value went down significantly over time. Oddsmakers had to adjust prices to meet customer demand on the Bucks. The secret was out.  

They were commencing with the NBA Bubble in Orlando. The Lakers strong wagering value imploded. Los Angeles fits the comfort zone of squares to perfection. LA was the ultimate name brand in unique circumstances. In sum, the Lakers covered only one of their seven bubble games. Squares obliterated their value. 

In like manner did the Bucks spill red ink at Orlando. Milwaukee entered the bubble with the NBA’s best record. Accordingly, they covered only three of their eight restart matchups.

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