NBA

NBA Finals Game 3 Betting Guide: Which Squad Takes Command of the Series?

The Golden State Warriors demonstrated their championship heart with a third-quarter surge to take a crucial Game 2 at home. Can the Celtics find more success in Boston?

Betting on the NBA can be tricky, but you can rely on numberFire to help. We have a detailed betting algorithm that projects out games to see how often certain betting lines hit. You can also track spread bet percentages at FanDuel Sportsbook.

Which NBA bets stand out in tonight's games? All odds are from FanDuel Sportsbook.

Celtics ML (-156) - 1 Star

Overall, our model is giving oddsmakers a thumbs up on the spread and moneyline. Per it, there is very little value to be had.

Obviously, as someone backing Boston in the series, this is a key pivot game I expected them to take at home. Therefore, I'm not one to argue with a one-star conviction on the Celtics' moneyline. The model believes they win this game 63.7% of the time versus 60.9% implied odds.

Boston turned the ball over 19 times in Game 2, and that resulted in 33 points for Golden State. Even with the turnovers, Boston was within six at the midway point of the third quarter. An explosion -- including two deep Jordan Poole threes from near halfcourt -- allowed Boston to wave the white flag earlier with the job of taking a game on the road already completed.

I expect the Celtics to control this series at home. Stephen Curry just hasn't been the same player on the road this postseason. Curry has shot 40.7% from deep at Chase Center, but in visiting buildings, it's dropped to 36.4%. That's a huge reason why Golden State has a -6.6 net rating in seven road games during the playoffs.

The Celtics aren't automatic at TD Garden (5-4 this postseason with a +6.7 net rating), but they've played well enough to comfortably be the side here.

Under 212.5 (-110) - 2 Stars

Things have gotten ugly inside Boston's building all postseason, so it's easy to see why the model's more comfortable lean is on the under.

The Celtics have played at just a pace of 95.94 inside TD Garden this postseason. It's really been an ugly grind, and opponents are scoring just 103.9 points per 100 possessions in those contests.

Boston's not shooting the lights out, either. They've managed just 110.6 points per 100 possessions, which is the sixth-worst mark of all teams that participated in the playoffs.

Overall, numberFire's model expects this one to stay south of 213 points a sizable 60.9% of the time. Against the standard 52.5% implied odds on this -110 bet, it gets a two-star rating overall.

Of the 20 most similar games in numberFire's database, 14 of them also fell short of this projected point total.

Swaim-Game Parlay (+1000)

Celtics ML
Jaylen Brown 4+ Assists Recorded
Jaylen Brown 1+ Steals Recorded
Al Horford 1+ Three-Point Makes
Marcus Smart 3+ Three-Point Makes

Just one game a day means it's Same-Game Parlay season now more than ever on FanDuel Sportsbook. For some fun, I drop 0.25 units a day on one to see if it hits. Feel free to tail mine...or create your own!

I've doubled the odds today around our normal +500 threshold just because regression could be our smiling friend. In that case, you can halve your bet for a similar payout.

As mentioned previously, I'm not jumping ship on the Celtics in this series, and this game will go a long way to determining it. The easy choice for today's cornerstone was Celtics ML (-152).

In Game 2, plenty of Celtics had odd drops in performance. Jaylen Brown had a pair of categories that just weren't his usual marks. He only recorded three assists despite at least five in the previous three games. Averaging 6.7 potential assists for the playoffs, I took a chance with Jaylen Brown 4+ Assists Recorded (+100) at even 50% implied odds.

Brown also failed to record a steal, and he's projected for 1.7 of them by numberFire today. The price on Jaylen Brown 1+ Steals Recorded (-330) isn't even very steep, either.

Boston's secondary scorers, Al Horford and Marcus Smart, also had horrendous efforts from deep in Game 2, posting zero makes on just three attempts. Expect both to get back on track.

Horford is projected for nearly two threes made in this one (1.8 per our model), so Al Horford 1+ Three-Point Makes (-700) could cash in the first quarter.

The reason this parlay is such a long shot though is Smart. I'm rolling the dice on this trend continuing -- when Boston wins, Smart has popped off from distance. When he's been available, Smart has hit at least three triples in four of the last five Celtics' wins. Therefore, if this game goes as planned, Marcus Smart 3+ Three-Point Makes (+140) could deliver a 10-to-1 payout as the lay's least likely outcome.