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Submitted by Jim Hurley on Friday, May 17, 2013 at 10:43 AM

Just thought that you might like to know that prior to last night's Game 6 showdown between the Indiana Pacers at the New York Knicks, the staff here at Jim Sez spent a minute-or-so researching what the odds were to win the NBA's Eastern Conference -and it might surprise you to discover that the Miami Heat (no matter the opponent come) are a stunning 9-to-1 betting favorite to win their next round and than play in the NBA Finals for a third straight season.

Now how about laying $900 to win $100 that Miami will once again capture a conference crown? Hey, who needs it!

You may also note that right here and right now -two days after the mighty Heat disposed of the pesky Chicago Bulls in an at-times rough-and-tumble five-game set -that Miami is a 4-to-1 betting choice to win it all this year (both Memphis and San Antonio are listed at + 300 or 3-to-1 to win this year's NBA crown) and so folks must wonder if there will be any real drama in crowning an NBA king this year or do the odds say it's already a "done deal"?

Better yet, will the Heat have to play in any Game 7 -or maybe even in any Game 6 -the rest of the way? Okay, so that's for another day but that's really how these series bets should go: Will the Heat ever have to play a Game 7 in these playoffs? Or will they ever fall behind in a series the rest of the way. Go think about it.

#2 NEW YORK 85, #3 INDIANA 75
-Pacers lead series 3-2

No reason for the New York Knicks to feel great about themselves even though they've forced a Game 6 tomorrow night in Indiana.

After all, the Knicks shot the ball poorly against a short-handed Pacers club -no PG George Hill (out with a concussion that wasn't announced to the public till 90 minutes before tip-off) as Mike Woodson's crew nailed just 32-of-78 field-goal tries (that's 41 percent) and NYK missed a load of in-close shots that should have blown this thing open way earlier than it did. Carmelo Anthony's 28 points were solid stuff -but not great considering he needed 28 FG attempts and once again he played through silent periods of action while being bothered by a sore left shoulder.

On this night that prolonged the 2012-13 Knicks season, it was key reserve Chris Copeland who gave the home folks a major energy boost with his 13 points and 4 rebounds in 19 game minutes and, boy, the usually raucous Madison Square Garden crowd (minus Spike Lee, for some reason) was not full of vim and vigor as maybe they don't believe the Knicks can make it all the way back from down three games-to-one. Don't let the final score fool you: The Knicks were ripe to be had even with their backs to the wall.

As far as the sloppy Pacers went, Frank Vogel's oft-unfocused team committed 19 turnovers and missed 14-of-33 free throws and big man Roy Hibbert -bogged down with foul woes -was barely visible with his 9 points and 7 boards. If Hibbert doesn't come alive in Game 6 at "The Fieldhouse" than we'll officially claim the Pacers are in some trouble and no doubt the aforementioned Hill is needed back after this backcourt made way too many physical/mental errors without 'em.

As TNT's Reggie Miller has been fond of saying lately, all the pressure's now on the Pacers in Game 6.

Here's how the Pacers-Knicks series has gone so far (note home teams are in CAPS):








+ 5.5





- 6





- 5

New York




- 5

New York




- 5



Take note ... Jim Hurley and his Network of Handicappers and Bloggers continue to bash the Las Vegas books with this year's NBA Playoffs (on a 9-2 run!) and there's lots more Side & Totals Hoop Winners straight ahead this 2013 post-season plus get all the Major-League Baseball Winners too -- so go ahead and sign up today and get it all as that's NBA and MLB winnin' action each and every day! Just be sure to check in with us either right here online or else at our toll-free telephone # of 1-800-323-4453 for all the daily and nightly NBA and MLB winners.

-Spurs win series 4-2

Here's something from the NBA Playoffs Believe-it-or-Not Department: The San Antonio Spurs are heading to their ninth Western Conference Finals during the glorious Tim Duncan Era -while eventually searching for their fifth NBA crown during this time -and yet they got there last night despite the fact the aforementioned Duncan rode the pine for the game's final few minutes (in favor of Tiago Splitter, for crying out loud!) and with mega-stars Tim Parker and Manu Ginobili shooting a combined 4-of-22 from the field.

Okay, so the efficient Splitter did finish with a career playoff-best 14 points and made a slew of smart moves to the hoop where he often was left untouched and Parker did nail a pair of big late-game triples as San Antonio doled out some of the Warriors' own medicine but just how many other NBA teams could win by double digits on the road in a "closeout game" with its three biggest stars all not always functioning at the highest level?

No doubt we questioned San Antonio head coach Gregg Popovich for yanking Duncan (19 points and 6 rebounds) for much of the final frame but the reality is the "smaller" lineup worked wonders with great ball movement against a Golden State team that didn't always hustle on defense or to guard the open man.

On a night when the Warriors needed the three-ball to go down with regularity, instead Mark Jackson's live-by-the-three, die-by-the-three team connected on just 4-of-16 trifectas with the fancy backcourt of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson combining for only 4-of-12 triples -not nearly good enough!

The Spurs showed their true mettle here: They didn't want to go back home for a Game 7 and possibly have Curry and/or Thompson -or maybe even G Jarrett Jack (15 points off the pine in Game 6) -- possibly heat up and beat 'em and so they took care of business with a second road win in this series and now get to chew on Memphis Grizzlies videos for the next 48 hours. Hmm, sounds like fun!

P.S., we'll have a complete and in-depth preview of the Memphis versus San Antonio Western Conference Finals series in tomorrow's edition of Jim Sez... okay?

Here's the game-by-game re-cap of the just-completed Spurs-Warriors series (home teams are in CAPS):

5-6 SAN ANTONIO - 9 Golden State 129-127 (2ot)
5-8 Golden State + 7.5 SAN ANTONIO 100-91
5-10 San Antonio + 2.5 GOLDEN STATE 102-92
5-12 GOLDEN STATE + 2 San Antonio 97-87 (ot)
5-14 SAN ANTONIO - 7 Golden State 109-91
5-16 San Antonio - 2.5 GOLDEN STATE 94-82


(thru Thursday, May 16 -conference semifinal round teams only)

Memphis 10 1 0 .909
Golden State 9 3 0 .750
San Antonio 7 3 0 .700
Miami 6 3 0 .667
Indiana 7 4 0 .636
New York 5 6 0 .454
Chicago 5 7 0 .417
Oklahoma City 3 8 0 .273

Pointspread Note: NBA Playoff Betting Favorites will enter tomorrow's Knicks-Pacers Game 6 with a 36-30 ATS (against the spread) mark good for a .545 winning rate and note that chalk sides in this round of playoff action are now 11-10 vig-wise following dual spread covers by New York (- 5) and San Antonio (- 2 ½) on Thursday night.

NOTE; Catch our weekend sports report in the next edition of Jim Sez.

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