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The NBA Playoffs were completely altered by two major bombshells today: Suns point guard Chris Paul is out indefinitely after entering the league’s COVID-19 health and safety protocols, followed by Kawhi Leonard being out indefinitely after suffering a right knee sprain.
As a result, the prices on William Hill Nevada’s NBA championship and Western Conference futures experienced some big changes. For title futures, the Jazz went from +450 to now at +280 (only behind the Nets at +180), the Suns moved from +350 to +375 and the Clippers shifted from +550 to +900. For Western Conference, the Suns’ odds actually improved from +130 to +110, the Jazz are at +140 from +210 and the Clippers reside at the bottom at +450 from +230.
“This is the toughest postseason I’ve ever dealt with for setting odds,” said Nick Bogdanovich, Director of Trading for William Hill US. “It just seems like every star is injured. It hasn’t just been the playoffs, it’s been all year long. These injuries to stars actually mean something in the NBA, only star quarterbacks have that same type of impact to the lines. The  bubble playoffs were a piece of cake compared to this.”
Oh yeah, and there are two Game 5s in the NBA Playoffs tonight with each series tied at two.
The first clash is between the Hawks and 76ers in Philadelphia at 7:30 p.m. ET/4:30 p.m. PT on TNT. The 76ers seemed primed for a 3-1 series lead after building an 18-point lead in Atlanta, however the Hawks pulled off the 103-100 comeback victory.
The 76ers opened as 7-point favorites, but quickly got bet down to -6. The line has risen once again, though, as Philadelphia (-280 on the moneyline) is back to -7 against Atlanta (+240 ML). The total has dropped slightly, decreasing from its original number of 224.5 to 224.
Yet, the majority of the tickets and dollars are on opposite sides for both spread and moneyline. The 76ers have seized 66% of the total number of tickets for all spread bets, whereas the Hawks have attracted 70% of the total dollars wagered. For moneyline, the 76ers have the advantage with 76% of the total number of tickets while the Hawks have the edge with 62% of the total dollars wagered.
There’s more alignment on the total, as the over has brought in 53% of the total number of tickets and 80% of the total dollars wagered.
In the later matchup, the Kawhi-less Clippers head to Salt Lake City to take on the Jazz at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT on TNT.
“It was Jazz -2.5 before the news, and now it’s at -7.5,” Bogdanovich said. “I’d say Kawhi is worth the same as [Joel] Embiid, [Kevin] Durant and Giannis [Antetokounmpo]. All of those players are worth around 5 points for sure.”
Utah’s moneyline price to take Game 5 at home is -330, with the Clippers listed at +270 to notch the outright upset. The total has dropped quite a bit, shifting from 223.5 to 220.5.
The Jazz has collected 68% of the total number of tickets for all spread bets, yet it’s actually the Clippers with 54% of the total dollars wagered to cover the number. Many William Hill bettors are on the Jazz for moneyline, as Utah has accumulated 68% of the total number of tickets and 75% of the total dollars wagered.
This over has gotten the majority of the action too, with it securing 69% of the total number of tickets and 55% of the total dollars wagered.
Check out William Hill’s latest odds and trends for tonight’s Game 5s in the NBA Playoffs below.