The week continues to move along at a quick pace in the sports world, with the Conference Semifinals in NBA basketball rushing forward, and the Stanley Cup Conference Finals trading off series every other day. For Thursday, once again sports fans are treated to a pair of NBA showdowns in the Eastern and Western Conferences, with today’s action centered on Game 3 between the Miami Heat and the Indiana Pacers, as well as Game 2 between the San Antonio Spurs and the Los Angeles Clippers. With the series deadlocked between the Pacers and Heat, and all signs pointing to this match-up being dragged out into 6 or 7 games as Indiana managed to eliminate Miami’s home court advantage, Game 3 is a crucial meeting between the two teams as the series shifts to Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana. For the top betting honors today at one of the top reviewed sportsbooks here at Oddsmaker Sportsbook, the first wager being placed will certainly be on this exciting contest, with Miami a slight 2 point favorite to win against the spread, and getting -135 odds straight up on the money line. As an underdog at home getting +115 odds straight up, Indiana could be a nice small sleeper pick for sports bettors today, provided that once again their depth and ability to close out late in the game is in full effect against a Heat team that will be looking to make a statement on the road to put the series back in their control.
With the NBA providing the top betting lines today, make sure to also check out the heightened odds on the San Antonio Spurs v. Los Angeles Clippers, with the Spurs getting -900 odds as favorites to win and getting 11 points to cover against the spread. While Los Angeles showed some signs of life early in Game 1 as expected, catching a rusty Spurs team off guard a bit, San Antonio simply looks to be too much for the Clippers, hence the 11 point disadvantage they have for the second straight game. While we should expect a better performance from the Clippers tonight with added rest time, the Spurs once again look to be too much to handle, with a veteran, rested cast doing damage both inside the paint and around the perimeter. That said, we’re taking the Clippers to pull within 10 points in this second match-up of the series, as they cannot afford to go down 2-0 to a team that has now won 15 straight games. Everything is on the line, and with that, expect some step-up play from all the of the Clippers, to at least make this game interesting for the majority of the night.
Moving on to the lone option for online sportsbook bets on the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs, the Los Angeles Kings get set to host the Phoenix Coyotes for Game 3 of their Western Conference Final series, with LA already holding a commanding 2-0 lead in the 7-game series. Phoenix has been extremely frustrated through two meetings in this series so far, with goalie Mike Smith unable to perform to his usual levels, giving up 4 goals in each game while the Kings have amassed north of 40 shots on goal per night. Los Angeles is simply outmatching the ‘Yotes across the board, with bigger bodies, a more talented offense, and a defense that continues to fluster and dominate Phoenix, however in what is basically the last hurrah for the Staples Center visitors tonight, something has to change in head coach Dave Tippet’s game plan, lest Phoenix go down 3-0 in the series and essentially wait to be eliminated. With the emphasis on better defense, and avoiding the huge penalties that cost them dearly in Game 2, Phoenix will have to have to be much improved at blocking shots, preventing penetration in their zone, and keeping the top Kings scorers from having easy access to the front of the net. The Kings on the other hand, as -200 favorites to win, simply have to keep doing what they’ve been doing, getting excellent contributions on offense from all their lines, and playing shutdown defense especially on the power play. This is a do-or-die game tonight for the Coyotes, and one you won’t want to miss wagering on at Oddsmaker Sportsbook.
Wrapping up the best options for online sportsbook betting on Thursday, cycle through to the wagers on Major League Baseball, as a number of exciting match-ups hit the betting lines. With shortened series this weekend, we have a rare full plate of games around the league today, and a number of great trends to follow. First up, catch the 2nd and final game of the shortened series between the St. Louis Cardinals and the San Francisco Giants, as Matt Cain tries to hold down the St. Louis offense while at the same time getting some run support against Adam Wainwright, who has struggled early in the season on the mound for the Cards. Next, look for a solid pitching duel down in Texas, as the Rangers host the Oakland A’s with Matt Harrison taking on Brandon McCarthy. With two solid pitchers and a pitcher-friendly ballpark at Arlington, this game once again should feature hard-to-come-by runs, giving the nod to under pickers on the spread. Other teams to follow include the Tampa Bay Rays, who seek a 5th straight win in their game against the Boston Red Sox, who continue to spin their wheels behind an awful pitching rotation that is nothing like it used to be. Tampa has dominated at home, posting a 14-3 record at Tropicana Field, and could take outright control of the AL East with a win this evening combined with a Baltimore loss at Kansas City. Make sure to check out other top match-ups in MLB play as the Miami Marlins try to stay hot and get their third win with a road victory against the Atlanta Braves, watch for Philadelphia to get their 5th straight win in a row as Roy Halladay takes the mound against the cellar-dwelling Chicago Cubs, and catch a great pitching showdown in Washington as the Nationals’ Jordan Zimmerman takes on the Pittsburgh Pirates’ James McDonald.
It’s another well-rounded day for online sports betting at the Oddsmaker Sportsbook, so round up a couple of the best-looking picks in today’s betting lines, and get set for a great night of sports action to come!