Submitted by Jim Hurley on Thursday, April 18, 2019 at 12:00 AM
THE NBA PLAYOFFS UPDATE - CAN 76ERS, WARRIORS GRAB BACK THE HOME-COURT "ADVANTAGE" TONIGHT?
OUR NFL DRAFT REPORT: HERE'S THE BEST O-LINEMEN
The NBA Playoffs have been downright chalky so far with Betting Favorites at 11-4-1 (against the spread) for a sizzling .733 winning percentage through Wednesday night's action - even though we witnessed outright upsets by Brooklyn, Orlando and San Antonio (in their Game 1's) and the Los Angeles Clippers (in Game 2).
The bottom line is both Milwaukee - while laying 15 and then 15.5 points and Houston (favs of 6.5 points twice) -- have bagged easy covers so far in these playoffs while Boston's at 1-0-1 spreadwise so far following that wacky finish in Game 2: The C's were down by a deuce in the game's final minute and yet "pushed" as 8-point favorites in a 99-91 win where the Pacers botched up more inbounds plays that you can count on one hand.
Tonight, it's ...
PHILADELPHIA at BROOKLYN -- 8 p.m. ET, TNT / Series tied 1-1
Guess the Philadelphia 76ers put down their cell phones and put on their scoring shoes! Philly's rompalicous 145-123 win in Game 2 of this best-of-seven set against the Brooklyn Nets - an easy "Over" winner for Jim Hurley's clients - evened up this series and there could be some bad blood here after Philly C Joel Embiid (23 points / 10 rebounds in Game 2) threw down Brooklyn's Jarrett Allen in major cheap-shot mode. If this one gets physical, it could be advantage Nets who play 10 men most of the time. For you pointspread demons, take note that Philadelphia has failed to cover five of its last seven road games this year.
Here's the game-by-game results this first-round playoff series between the 76ers and the Nets (home teams in CAPS below):
GOLDEN STATE at LOS ANGELES CLIPPERS - approximately 10:30 p.m. ET, TNT / Series tied 1-1
Imagine being down 94-63 with just a few minutes to go in the third quarter and you're playing the two-time defending NBA champion Golden State Warriors? Time to move on to the next game, right? Well, the Los Angeles Clippers - and who knows why - kept on playing hard and wound up winning Game 2 of this particular playoff series 135-131 and so that sets up this doozy Game 3 in Hollywood and the visiting Warriors are in a feisty mood. The "Dubs" need bust-out games from Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson here - they're averaging just 36.5 points between 'em so far - and it might help if Golden State got in the face of Sixth Man Lou Williams. P.S., the Warriors are 36-47-1 against the odds overall this year and are 5-9 ATS in their last 15 road games.
Here's the game-by-game results this first-round playoff series between the Warriors and the Clippers (home teams in CAPS below):
|4-13||GOLDEN ST||-13.5||LA Clippers||121-104|
|4-15||LA Clippers||+13.5||GOLDEN ST||135-131|
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NFL DRAFT REPORT
The 2019 NFL Draft is set for April 25-thru-27 and today we highlight the top offensive linemen:
JAWAAN TAYLOR, OT, Florida - Best offensive tackle in this man's draft and a veritable cinch top 10 pick, this 6-foot-5, 313-pounder has great lateral quickness and can fend off most edge rushers with meaty hands but word is he'll probably make a living at right tackle, not the more prestigious left tackle. Right now, the whole world says he's going at pick #7 to the Jacksonville Jaguars.
JONAH WILLIAMS, OT, Alabama - Word is this 6-foot-4, 302-pound California native could be better suited to play guard in the NFL though he'll likely get a shot at LT this summer. Williams was a consistent force on Nick Saban's blocking line and rarely is caught out of position or shoved back on his heels. Let's keep 'em down South and plug in Williams at pick #14 with the Atlanta Falcons.
ANDRE DILLARD, OT, Washington State - Most NFL Draft boards have this 6-foot-5, 320-pounder as a top 15 talent but there's some whispers going 'round that say Dillard could climb into the top 10 based on great workouts and a cerebral style. The down side, critics claims, is lack of experience in run blocking. Plug 'em in at pick #15 to the Washington Redskins.
CODY FORD, OT, Oklahoma - The numbers don't lie: Ford's 6-foot-4, 330 pounds and extremely strong but there's some concern he doesn't explode off the O-line and that could knock 'em back into the mid-20s. The 2017 Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles will like him at #25.
GARRETT BRADBURY, C, N.C. State - Top-rated center in this 2019 draft, the 6-foot-3, 306-pound Bradbury is a rock-solid athlete who blocks well on the "second level" but word is NFL folks want to add another 20-or-so pounds onto his frame. Will that push 'em back into Round II? The Los Angeles Rams would be a nice match at pick #31.
DALTON RISNER, OL, Kansas State - Could work out well as either a guard or right tackle (he's 6-foot-5, 313 pounds) and looked at here as one of the better run-blockers in this pass-block heavy draft. Early second-rounder who would look good with the San Francisco 49ers
NOTE: Lots more NBA Playoff News & Note plus NFL Draft goodies too all next week here at Jim Sez – so don’t miss out!