Spoiler alert, but I’m picking the Raptors to be eliminated Wednesday night. I do, however, want to use this space as an ode to one of the greatest title defenses, from a gambling perspective, of all time. Their preseason projected win total was 46. They won 53 games … out of only 72. They went 45-35-1 against the spread and won the Atlantic Division as underdogs in the +600 neighborhood. If you believed in the heart of a champion, congratulations, you’re probably very wealthy right now. 

Their time has come, but hey, never forget the teams that you profited off of. Here are Wednesday’s best bets, including what could be your final chance to make some money off of Toronto. 

All lines via William Hill Sportsbook

Boston Celtics vs. Toronto Raptors: Celtics -3

Toronto’s viability in this series has relied almost entirely on 3-point shooting. The Raptors have made 27.5 percent of their long-range attempts in losses and 35.7 percent in wins. Shooting variance is a natural part of basketball, and it’s entirely possible that they makes half their 3s in Game 6 and forces a Game 7. But if the shots aren’t falling for the Celtics, they can still feed Jayson Tatum for a viable look. Kemba Walker can get a floater or jumper against Toronto’s drop-coverage any time he wants. The Celtics have other ways of scoring. The Raptors don’t. That has been evident all series, and it makes Boston stronger favorites than this line suggests.

Boston Celtics vs. Toronto Raptors: Under 210

No game in this series has had more than 207 points. Why should Game 6 be any different? This series has been a defensive masterclass by both coaches. Nick Nurse is throwing out triangle-and-two zones to contain Kemba Walker and Jayson Tatum. Brad Stevens is weaponizing Marcus Smart against whatever Toronto scorer is bothering the Celtics. Toronto still hasn’t figured out how to score points in a half-court setting. This will be a low-scoring game. 

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The Clippers simply don’t have an answer for Nikola Jokic on their roster right now. He fouled Ivica Zubac out of Game 3. JaMychal Green is too small. Doubles lead to passes into easy shots. The Nuggets won Game 2 and nearly stole Game 3 despite getting very little out of Jamal Murray. If he gets back to even his regular-season production, the version of the Clippers we’ve seen in this postseason is in serious trouble. Game 3 was practically a toss-up. Game 4 should be as well. In that case, take the points. 


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