With the NBA Conference Finals now upon us, with the Golden State Warriors having cemented their favourites tag by racing to a 2-0 series lead over the San Antonio Spurs, the Cleveland Cavaliers will be looking to kick start their bid for the NBA Finals this week, as Lebron James and Co take on the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference. Despite finishing at the top of the standings at the end of the regular season, the Celtics are the undoubted underdogs against the reigning NBA champions, with Thursday morning’s encounter at TD Garden potentially proving crucial.
Boston Celtics vs Cleveland Cavaliers – Game 1 – 18th May – 01:30am (UK Time)
With the Cavs having made it through to the Eastern Conference Finals without a playoff loss for the second successive season, the signs are ominous for the Celtics. Coupled with the form of 13x NBA All-Star James, many are predicting another whitewash. Having also earned an eight-day rest before Game 4 against the Toronto Raptors, Cleveland should be fully rested in their attempts to reach a third consecutive final. As for the Celtics, the No.1 seed made it through to the Conference Finals despite finding themselves 2-0 down against the Chicago Bulls in the first round. They then made hard work of despatching of the Washington Wizards, with Isaiah Thomas one of the few players to shine. After a gruelling postseason so far, it remains to be seen just how much the likes of John Wall and Bradley Beal have left in the tank. Despite missing his final 11 shots against the Wizards, Wall has the potential to be a game winner for Brad Stevens’ team. With Game 2 also taking place in Boston on Saturday, the Celtics will be hoping to at least be on level terms with Cleveland come the time when the duo head to the Quicken Loans Arena.
Cleveland Cavaliers to win against the Boston Celtics @ 1/2 (SkyBet, Bet365)
San Antonio Spurs vs Golden State Warriors – Game 3 – 21st May – 03:00am
Heading into Game 3 of the Western Conference with a 2-0 lead over the Spurs following two wins at the Oracle Center, San Antonio know that they must record an opening win at the AT&T Center, if they are to have any hope of reaching a first NBA Finals since 2014. The fitness of Kawhi Leonard dominated the build up to Game 2, with the small forward still a doubt for Sunday morning’s match. With the Warriors having romped to a 136-100 victory last time around, Spurs fans will certainly be hoping that their star man returns to the court, with Golden State having outscored San Antonio by 130-77 since Leonard left Game 1 with an ankle injury. Spurs Head Coach Gregg Popovich remained upbeat after the defeat, however it is going to take an unbelievable turnaround to prevent the Warriors from once again competing for the NBA title.
NBA Title Odds
Golden State Warriors @ 30/100
Cleveland Cavaliers @ 11/4
Boston Celtics @ 25/1
San Antonio Spurs @ 25/1