World Cup: Can England Solve Sweden’s Stalwart Defense?

England vs. Sweden, 10 a.m. ET, Fox

  • England -112
  • Sweden +390
  • Draw +225

Bet to Watch:

England To Win By 1 Goal +246 

After England won only their second of eight major tournament penalty shootouts, and first at a World Cup, the English media are starting to believe that anything is possible. “Football’s coming home” as far as fans of the Three Lions  are concerned, but if their team is to lift the trophy for the first time in more than 50 years, there are a few roadblocks still to overcome.

Sweden are, without question, a favorable quarterfinal opponent, but that’s not to say Saturday’s match in Samara will be plain sailing for Gareth Southgate’s men. It never is as far as England are concerned, nor is it when they come to blows with this weekend’s challengers.

England have, after all, won just one of their last eight competitive meetings with the Swedes, who have developed a liking for what has become a familiar underdog status under coach Janne Andersson. Indeed, since exiting Euro 2016 and waving goodbye to their greatest-ever player in Zlatan Ibrahimovic, there has been a realization that without a star name to call upon, the players have needed to accept their limitations and, in a roundabout way, turn that into a strength.

The Scandinavians have shown this summer and well beforehand just how difficult they are to break down, simply by sticking to their rigid positions when out of possession and sitting deep. In the past 18 months, they’ve beaten Portugal, France and Italy, so they aren’t to be underestimated, keeping five clean sheets in their last six matches.

Download The Action Network App to track all of your World Cup bets.

It’s relatively clear how the pattern of this match will play out, with Sweden having had a lower possession share (36%) at this World Cup than any of the remaining teams. Plus, they’re well-aware that England are struggling to create meaningful chances from open play.

England have the tournament’s top scorer in their ranks, and Harry Kane will know that if he can add to his six-goal tally, he may well wrap up the Golden Boot. While there are those who will point to his duties as the penalty-kick taker as the main reason for his success this summer, he’s taken the chances that have come his way. Plus, his performance against Colombia was arguably the Tottenham star’s best all-around display of the tournament.

Sweden may have conceded only twice, but they have allowed their opponents the most shots on goal (61) of the quarterfinalists, and Kane doesn’t need a second invitation to shoot or indeed score. With odds over evens on the striker to do so at any time, that’s a bet that’s well worth considering, but I like the winning margin odds for England in this one.

It’s never straightforward when they are involved, after all, and Southgate’s charges are the only side remaining that are yet to keep a clean sheet. While their quality should win out, you can bank on a tight result, so England to win by exactly one goal would be my tip.

MLB Picks, Odds, Predictions: Best Bets From Thursday’s Slate, Including Brewers vs. Cardinals, Rangers vs. Athletics (May 26)

mlb picks-odds-best bets-brewers vs cardinals-may 26

It’s another getaway day in Major League Baseball, with several series’ wrapping up and others getting started for the weekend.

In all, there are 11 games on the slate, but still plenty of betting value to be found. Our analysts have eyes on five of those 11 games, including moneylines, first fives, team totals and more.

Here are our best bets from Thursday’s MLB slate.

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

MLB Odds & Picks

Click on a game to skip ahead
Cleveland Guardians vs. Detroit Tigers
7:10 p.m. ET
Philadelphia Phillies vs. Atlanta Braves
7:20 p.m. ET
Kansas City Royals vs. MinnesotaTwins
7:40 p.m. ET
Milwaukee Brewers vs. St. Louis Cardinals
7:45 p.m. ET
TexasRangers vs. Oakland Athletics
9:40 p.m. ET

Cleveland Guardians vs. Detroit Tigers

Pick
Under 7 (-105)
Book
BetMGM
Pitchers
Konnor Pilkington vs. Tarik Skubal
First Pitch
7:10 p.m. ET

Jules Posner: The Detroit Tigers and Cleveland Guardians are two teams that have been struggling offensively.

The Tigers’ offense has the fewest runs at home so far this season. Additionally, they are 29th in team wRC+ against LHP at home in May, meaning they not only aren’t scoring, but they are hardly creating scoring opportunities.

Although the Tigers are facing a rookie, Konnor Pilkington, the Guardians’ knack for developing effective starting pitchers may make Thursday night’s matchup more of a challenge for the Tigers than it may seem.

On the other side, the Guards are in the bottom third in runs on road in May. They’ve also steadily cooled off on road in general. Presently, they are in the bottom third in terms of team wRC+ vs LHP on road.

Tigers starter Tarik Skubal has 2.25 home ERA and a 1.18 home FIP in 2022. He’s been the unquestioned leader of the Tigers’ pitching staff and he should continue to shove tonight.

The under has already moved down to 7 runs and it should be taken while it’s still available between the -105 and -110 threshold.

_PromoID=[16477, 16447]


» Return to the table of contents «


Philadelphia Phillies vs. Atlanta Braves

Pick
Braves -110
Book
Caesars
Pitchers
Aaron Nola vs. Kyle Wright
First Pitch
7:20 p.m. ET

William Boor: The Braves have taken two of three from the Phillies and I’m backing them to finish off the series with another win on Thursday night.

The pitching matchup of Kyle Wright and Aaron Nola is a bit closer than a quick glance at the numbers would indicate, however, Wright may have a slight edge pitching at home. Factor in that the Braves have the better bullpen and are facing a Phillies squad that has lost seven of its past 10 games and Atlanta certainly looks like the right side here.

Wright enters the game with a 2.49 ERA through eight starts. His xERA of 3.13 indicates he’s been a bit lucky, but those numbers are still pretty close. What’s even more encouraging is Wright’s recent form. The 26-year-old has yielded just one earned run over 11 1/3 innings in his past two starts and also posted a 3/1 K:BB ratio in that span.

Wright’s ERA, BAA and WHIP are all better at home and the Braves hit better there, too. Atlanta has a .753 OPS at Truist Park compared to a .653 mark on the road.

Conversely, the Phillies hit better on the road (.791 OPS on the road), but the Braves should be able to scratch across enough runs against Nola and a struggling Philadelphia bullpen.

While Wright enters this matchup on a wave of momentum, Nola gave up four runs over 5 2/3 innings in his last start. He’s pitched to a 3.96 ERA this season, though his 2.73 xERA shows he’s thrown better than the numbers indicate.

Nola should start getting better results at some point this season, but it won’t be Thursday night.

I’d play this to -150.

_PromoID=[16457, 16492]


» Return to the table of contents «


Kansas City Royals vs. Minnesota Twins

Pick
Royals Team Total Over 3.5 (+105)
Book
BetMGM
Pitchers
Daniel Lynch vs. Devin Smeltzer
First Pitch
7:40 p.m. ET

Michael Arinze: The Kansas City Royals are on a six-game losing streak and will face the Minnesota Twins for a second-straight weekend. You can almost feel a sense of desperation as the Royals lineup has done its part of late, but the pitching hasn’t been up to par.

Kansas City’s scored at least five runs in three straight games and at least four runs in six of its last seven games. And although the Royals are 21st overall with a below-average wRC+ value of 92, they’re right in the middle of the pack in May with a value of 106.

Thursday’s contest will be a rematch from last week between two dueling lefties. Kansas City’s Daniel Lynch will start against Minnesota’s Devin Smeltzer. Smeltzer has pitched in the majors every year since 2018. However, he’s only made 21 appearances, and at 26 he’s past the point of being considered a prospect. While he limited the Royals to one run in 5 1/3 innings just a week ago, I think the Royals’ hitters will have the edge in this contest, given the quick turnaround.

Smeltzer can be exposed at this level when teams get another look at him. His fastball averages around 89 mph, so he’s unlikely to overpower opposing hitters. Moreover, he’s struck out just two batters in 10 1/3 innings this season.

Hitters will figure him out at some point despite his guile and craftiness as a southpaw. Thus, I think he’ll have a more difficult time facing the Royals for the second time in six days. And with a Kansas City pitching staff that ranks 28th in ERA (4.91), it will likely come down to the Royals’ offense if they plan to snap this losing streak.

Look for the Royals’ offense to do their part and back them to go over their team’s 3.5 runs. After shopping around, I found that BetMGM has the best offering at +105 odds.

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

» Return to the table of contents «


Milwaukee Brewers vs. St. Louis Cardinals

Pick
Brewers First 5 (+100) and Moneyline (+108)
Book
Caesars / BetRivers
Pitchers
Eric Lauer vs. Adam Wainwright
First Pitch
7:45 p.m. ET

Sean Zerillo: The Cardinals have the No. 1 offense against left-handed pitching (147 wRC+) in 2022 by a significant margin after ranking third (115 wRC+) last season. It may seem odd to bet against them with a southpaw starter in Milwaukee’s Eric Lauer.

A former first-round pick, Lauer is in the midst of a breakout campaign (3.39 xERA, 2.65 xFIP, 2.52 SIERA), ranking third among 131 qualified pitchers (min. 30 IP) in strikeout minus walk rate, or K-BB% (28%).

More importantly, he’s effectively a right-handed pitcher for this matchup — carrying reverse splits (.308 wOBA vs. RHH; .348 vs. LHH) throughout his career — with neutral splits in 2022 (.275 vs. RHH; .285 vs. LHH).

This season, Lauer has dialed back his curveball usage against right-handed bats (-7.8%), and he’s throwing his cutter or slider (+11.3%) a combined 47.5% of the time against them, with both pitches baring in on opposite-handed hitters.

As a result, I essentially model Lauer as a righty, and I make the Brewers a road favorite in both halves of this contest, projecting their line at -118 (54% implied) for the first five innings (F5) and -104 (50.9% implied) for the full game.

You can bet those lines down to -108 (F5) and +104 (Game), respectively — with either bet representing a two percent edge.

Milwaukee is one of three teams — alongside the Dodgers and Yankees — who rank in the top five of expected wOBA for batting and pitching. Their offense, in particular, has made substantial improvements since last year, improving from 20th to third in xwOBA.

Despite losing Freddy Peralta for an extended period, adding Lauer alongside Corbin Burnes and Brandon Woodruff makes the Brew Crew a legitimate World Series contender.

_PromoID=[17280, 17281]


» Return to the table of contents «


Texas Rangers vs. Oakland Athletics

Pick
Athletics -115
Book
DraftKings
Pitchers
Martin Pérez vs. Frankie Montas
First Pitch
9:40 p.m. ET

DJ James: The Oakland Athletics have shockingly been elite against southpaws this month at a 123 wRC+ mark, only behind St. Louis and Minnesota. They also have a 11.7% walk rate with a .352 OBP.

Martin Pérez may be having a great season, but his 2.48 xERA is not close to where he has been in his career. Opponents are still hitting the ball off of him at 88.9 mph, which is slightly below average.

Missing Stephen Piscotty hurts this Athletics lineup, especially against southpaws, but they still have two hitters over .400 xwOBA this month: Sean Murphy and Seth Brown, as well as four others over .340. Tony Kemp and Chad Pinder may not have the expected numbers to show it, but they will put up strong plate appearances against Pérez.

Franke Montas, on the other hand, has always been a solid pitcher. Texas only ranks 22nd in MLB at a 97 wRC+ mark, and this should be even lower with a top-of-the-rotation starter on the hill.

Montas only walks 6.5% of hitters and ranks in the 93rd percentile in chase rate, all while being above average in inducing weak contact.

The Rangers will struggle with him starting the game, so the edge lands with Oakland.

Take the A’s at -115. Play to -130.

_PromoID=[16477, 16447]


» Return to the table of contents «


PropBetGuy’s Mavericks vs. Warriors Game 5 Player Prop Pick: Reggie Bullock Will Remain Wide Open (Thursday, May 26)

mavericks vs warriors props-reggie bullock-may 26

PropBetGuy will break down some of his favorite NBA plays of the day, and will track all his bets in The Action Network app.


Reggie Bullock Points

Prop Reggie Bullock Over 10.5 Points (-114)
Matchup Mavericks vs. Warriors
Time 9 p.m. ET
Books Available FanDuel

_PromoID=[18105]

When you’re playing an opponent for the fifth time in a series, even the best coaches will run out of adjustments to make. With the Warriors defensively, we’ve seen them throw the book at Luka Doncic, whether it be in the form of double teams or even a matchup zone defense.

One thing that won’t change is all the attention Doncic commands. And in turn, Reggie Bullock will continue to be left wide open on the perimeter.

Bullock’s offensive game is the 3-pointer. Of his 43 shot attempts this series, 37 have been from beyond the arc. And on every single one of those 3-point attempts this series, Bullock has been open (defined as the closest defender being at least four feet away from him). In fact, he’s been “wide open” on 25 of those attempts (at least a six-foot distance).

We saw the same thing in the regular season against Golden State, where the Warriors left Bullock open on 80% of his 3-pointers. Compared to the 70% of open looks he saw against other opponents, it’s very clear that Golden State is OK with Bullock firing away.

Plus, the volume is there. Bullock’s 9.3 3-point attempts per 40 minutes against the Warriors this season exceeds the 8.3 per 40 he averaged over the regular season.  So he’s not only getting great looks, but the volume as well.

With Bullock set for another monster workload, I have the sharpshooter projected at 13 points tonight.

Pick: Reggie Bullock Over 10.5 Points (-114); playable up to -130. Over 2.5 3-Pointers Made also playable up to -150.

_PromoID=[18113]

Get all of PropBetGuy’s bets instantly in The Action Network app.

Thursday’s NHL PrizePicks Player Props: Value on Johnny Gaudreau, Antti Raanta & More (May 26)

nhl props-prize-picks-antti raanta-may 26

Game 5 is set to get underway in the second round of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs for two different matchups on the Thursday card. Despite the small slate, there are still some great player props to attack.

Below are my five best PrizePicks props for the slate. For those unfamiliar with PrizePicks flex plays, correctly predicting 5-of-5 props registers a 10x payout, 4-of-5 registers a 2x payout and 3-of-5 registers a 0.4x payout.

You can also take these plays and do smaller parlays with just two or three props for lower payouts.

Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

What is PrizePicks? A daily fantasy operator — meaning they’re available in more states (31) than sports betting is! — PrizePicks offers a unique opportunity for action on player props in which you parlay two or more plays together.


NHL PrizePicks Player Props

Adam Fox Under 0.5 Assists

Rangers at Hurricanes, 7 p.m. ET

The New York Rangers travel to Carolina with the series tied at 2-2 following two straight home wins. However, there is good reason to fade New York as the Hurricanes are outstanding when playing at PNC Arena in the playoffs.

This postseason, the Hurricanes are 6-0 at home. This record is a product of the dominant play of goaltender Antti Raanta, who boasts an absurd 0.968 save percentage over that stretch.

On home ice, Raanta has allowed more than one goal on home ice just once. Adam Fox was held without a point in each of the first two road games in this series, and I expect this trend to continue in Game 5.

Artemi Panarin Under 0.5 Assists

Rangers at Hurricanes, 7 p.m. ET

Another Rangers skater I am fading in this matchup is winger Artemi Panarin. Like Fox, Panarin has failed to register a point in each of their two road games in this series.

Not only has Panarin struggled on the road, but he has gone through a tough stretch of hockey regardless of the venue. Only registering two points over his last six games, Panarin should be a good fade candidate until he finds his game again.

_PromoID=[18148]

Ryan Strome Under 0.5 Points

Rangers at Hurricanes, 7 p.m. ET

The last Rangers skater I am fading in this game is Ryan Strome. Playing on the same line as Panarin, we could kill two birds with one stone if the Hurricanes successfully shut down this line once again on home ice.

Like Fox and Panarin, Strome has failed to record a single point in either of their two games at PNC Arena in this series. In fact, Strome only has one point all series as he recorded an assist in Game 4.

Antti Raanta Over 25.5 Saves

Rangers at Hurricanes, 7 p.m. ET

In my final play of this game, It only makes sense to back Carolina’s goaltender if I am fading three Rangers skaters. As I mentioned earlier, Raanta has been outstanding on home ice in this postseason as he has produced a 0.968 save percentage and has allowed more than one goal just once over that stretch.

Raanta has gone over this total in six of his nine playoff games thus far, excluding the game he exited early from due to injury. With how unbeatable Raanta has been at PNC Arena, I expect this trend to continue in Game 5.

I would play this number up to 26.5.

_PromoID=[18150]

Johnny Gaudreau Over 3.5 Shots on Goal

Oilers at Flames, 9:30 p.m. ET

The Calgary Flames will look to force a Game 6 as they now trail 3-1 in this series following Tuesday’s 5-3 loss to the Edmonton Oilers. After successfully hitting this prop on Tuesday, I am going back to the well once again.

Johnny Gaudreau has now gone over this total in six straight and eight of his last nine games. I believe we are still getting a low number on Gaudreau just because four shots on goal is a relatively high total for any skater.

However, Gaudreau has proven that this total is too low for him. As part of the star-studded first line, I expect coach Darryl Sutter to rely heavily on Gaudreau/Lindholm/Tkachuk as the Flames are facing potential elimination in this contest.

I would not play this total at anything higher than 3.5.

Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

French Open Picks, Predictions, Odds: Gauff & Azarenka Overpriced in Third Round (May 27)

Coco Gauff will square off with Kaia Kanepi while Victoria Azarenka will meet Jil Teichmann in the third round at the French Open.

While the red clay of Roland Garros is typically more rewarding to consistent players that are strong tactically and are willing to extend points, this season we’ve seen plenty of power-oriented players move onto the third round.

That holds particularly true in the women’s draw, where some of the aforementioned players fit the criteria.

Let’s look at where the value lies in these two matches.

Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches.

_PromoID=[18179]

Coco Gauff (-215) vs. Kaia Kanepi (+175)

6:30 a.m. ET

The match between American Gauff and veteran power-player Kanepi has the potential to be one of those “popcorn matches.”

Both possess huge serves and groundstrokes, so not even the red dirt should slow down the blistering pace of the rallies in this match.

Where Gauff does have the advantage here, would be in terms of movement. She’s more fleet of foot than her Estonian counterpart, and she should be able to move seamlessly along the baseline to track down Kanepi’s groundstrokes.

The problem for the overwhelming favorite in this match, however, is two-fold. First, while Kanepi may not be a shining example of an incredibly consistent player, Gauff has the tendency to see her groundstrokes go haywire for several games at a time.

Another other flaw that is going to be tough for Gauff to overcome is that she possesses the weakest groundstroke on the court in this match, her forehand.

It’s been well-documented that on the forehand wing, Gauff is known to leak unforced errors.

This has been magnified in the past when she comes up against power players. That’s simply because the more power behind the shots coming at her, the less time she has to set up that forehand, compounding the problem created by an already glaring weakness.

While it’s understandable that the market likes Gauff here, it’s a little too steep of a price, and Kanepi at +175 is worthy of a play.

Pick:  Kanepi ML (+175 via DraftKings)

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Jil Teichmann (-115) vs. Victoria Azarenka (-105)

8:30 a.m. ET

Another player who’s game is predicated on a big serve and follow-up power forehand is Azarenka.

Famous for having won a pair of Grand Slam titles down under, the former world No. 1 has struggled more at Roland Garros than at other events.

Her style and lack of real variety is the reason why. While she did attempt her fair share of drop shots last match against Andrea Petkovic, she doesn’t slice very much and her groundstrokes aren’t hit with much topspin.

Azarenka’s run to this point has been thoroughly uninspiring to boot. She had to break Ana Bogdan just to stay alive in the first round and then in the second round she was a point away from being taken to a decider by Petkovic.

Now, she’s playing an in-form Jil Teichmann, who moves extremely well, plays with variety and is an elite-level returner – negating much of the advantage that Azarenka possesses with that big serve.

Teichmann is also able to move the ball from side-to-side around the court impeccably. That could be a problem for the six-foot Belarusian, whose movement has never been her strong suit.

Finally, the ability to play with some margin for error on groundstrokes also favors the Swiss. Clay is, after all, a surface that rewards consistent play the most.

Pick: Jil Teichmann ML (-115 via FanDuel)

_PromoID=[268]

States That Could Legalize Sports Betting In 2022: California, Massachusetts, North Carolina, South Carolina

states-legalize-sports-betting-california-massachusetts-north-carolina-south-carolina-2022

We’re nearly halfway through 2022, and so far, only Maine and Kansas have legalized sports betting while seven states have come up short.

With most state legislatures adjourned until 2023, we’re now monitoring only four states that could still legalize this year, though each could have a significant impact on the industry in its own way.

States Considering Sports Betting

State Potential Impact
California Most populous state in the U.S., considered crown jewel of the market
Massachusetts Home of DraftKings, largest state in New England, considering most restrictive law in U.S.
North Carolina Home of popular college basketball programs, would be fifth-largest state to legalize online betting
South Carolina Would join Louisiana as only states in the Deep South to offer legal online betting
Click on a state above to skip ahead or here for our projection map for all 50 states

_PromoID=[16830]


California: The Crown Jewel of Sports Betting

Legalizing online sports betting in the Golden State would be the industry’s biggest win since the Supreme Court allowed states to do so.

California is the most populous U.S. state. It’s home to twice as many people as New York, which broke the monthly record for dollars bet earlier this year. Unlike New York, the online betting measure under consideration would impose a very low tax rate in California, another win for the industry.

Online betting in California will come down to which group gets their message across to voters better: The state’s native tribes or out-of-state gaming companies, which have already spent a combined $175 million on ad campaigns for and against sports betting initiatives slated to appear on the November ballot.

The tribes have their own ballot prop, which would limit legal betting to physical wagers on tribal lands. Despite the revenue tribes would see from online betting, they’re wary to let commercial gaming companies into California, where they currently have a monopoly on gaming.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

The tribes have run ads attacking a separate online betting proposition, claiming it exposes minors to increased risks of addiction and problem gambling.

The online initiative is unsurprisingly financed by DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM and a host of other commercial gaming operators eager to bring their business to the state. It would tax online betting at a 10% rate, five times less than New York’s, which has caused operators to scale back promotions and marketing.

They’re promoting it as a way to address California’s homelessness and addiction crises, as 85% of tax revenue would fund those programs.

Each initiative could become law if they get enough votes, though neither could pass just as easily, especially with each group’s message centering on what not to vote for.

Keep your eye on California come November.


Massachusetts: A Torch Bearer for Sports Betting Restrictions?

DraftKings was one of the first online sportsbooks to launch after the Supreme Court struck down the ban on sports betting. Four years later, the sportsbook is live in a quarter of the country, yet still illegal in Massachusetts — DraftKings’ home state.

Six representatives from the state’s House and Senate are currently working through legislation that would change that, but parts of their plan could be extremely problematic for the industry.

The Senate, which killed legalization efforts last year, has been steadfast about imposing far-reaching advertising restrictions and banning college betting.

There’s no exact figure for how much money is bet on college sports, but the American Gaming Association projects about $10 billion is bet on men’s college basketball during March alone. If both chambers come to an agreement, it’s more likely Massachusetts only bans betting on in-state college sports — like several other states do — though ad restrictions could stick around. We’ve seen more and more states consider them lately.

Massachusetts could be a torch bearer on that front, especially with one of the largest operators in the country in its backyard. Depending on what those restrictions end up being, DraftKings and its competitors may have to reroute their entire U.S. marketing strategy, as FanDuel has done in Ontario amid their restrictions.


North Carolina Considering Online Sports Betting Expansion

Sports betting is already legal in North Carolina, but not many people can do it — it’s currently limited to in-person wagers at two tribal casinos near the Tennessee border, which are about a three hour drive from Charlotte.

A week into their session, lawmakers are close to passing a bill that would bring the Tar Heel  state online. If it passes, North Carolina would be fifth-largest state with mobile sportsbooks.

Several states like New York and Rhode Island also started first with limited retail betting, then expanded to online. If North Carolina can do the same, it would be a positive sign for states like Mississippi and Wisconsin, where betting is still limited to casinos.

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

There are no public figures on how much retail sports betting has made North Carolina, but a fiscal note in 2021 projected it would generate around $5 million per year. Online sports betting generated around $10 million in Michigan last year, which is roughly the same population size as North Carolina.

About 85% of the betting market comes from online users in jurisdictions with legal retail and mobile options, according to the American Gaming Association.

A sports betting expansion could also open the door for the state’s big time sports schools — Duke and North Carolina — to get in on the business. The legislation under consideration already has the backing of the NBA, MLB and PGA.


South Carolina Looks to Bring Sports Betting to the Deep South

Out of the many regions in the U.S., the Deep South has been the toughest sell for sports betting.

Currently, online betting is available in only a bulk of Louisiana’s parishes, while retail betting is limited to a few casinos in Mississippi. That could change if South Carolina manages to pass a recently introduced online betting bill.

Both Georgia and Alabama disposed of half-hearted efforts earlier this year while Florida remains in limbo as it deals with a federal lawsuit. Their biggest obstacles have been historic religious resistance to gambling and the lack of current gaming options in their states.

_PromoID=[14312]

Aside from reeling in Georgians traveling across the border for a legal betting option, South Carolina’s legalization could spur the rest of the Deep South to finally make progress on this front. It seems they’ll get there eventually.

Losing out on revenue to another state definitely won’t hurt arguments to legalize.

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster has been resistant to sports betting in the past, but he’s up for reelection in November, and a few of his opponents are for it. If lawmakers can get a bill to his desk before they adjourn on June 15, it would put a considerable amount pressure on McMaster to rethink his stance.

Warriors vs. Mavericks NBA First Basket Props: Pair Jalen Brunson, Andrew Wiggins With Golden State Victory (Thursday, May 26)

mavericks vs warriors props-first basket-andrew wiggins-may 26

NBA First Basket will break down some of his favorite NBA plays of the day here, and will track all his bets in The Action Network app.

Doncic | Brunson | Wiggins

Prop Doncic +1200, +2100, +2900 | Brunson +1100 | Wiggins +850
Matchup Mavericks vs. Warriors
Time 9 p.m. ET
Book  FanDuel

_PromoID=[18105, 18118, 16702]

The Warriors will try to close out the Mavericks on Thursday night. Kevon Looney (34% opening-tip win rate) will be taking on Dwight Powell (28% win rate) in the opening tip-off.  Powell is 5-3 versus Looney in past two seasons on opening tip-offs, but is just 2-2 during this series.  

Dallas scores first 55% of the time on the season. That number is a bit misleading as the Mavericks did really well when Kristaps Porzingis played center. Since the Porzingis trade, Dallas has scored first 43% of the time.  Golden State scores first just 37% of the time. In the eight games between the two teams this season, Dallas scored first in five games.  

We track early possession usage looking at first three shots a team takes. Luka Doncic and Jalen Brunson are combined taking 2.4 of the first three shots over the past 20 games. For that reason, taking Doncic exact methods and pairing Jalen Brunson and Andrew Wiggins with Golden State moneyline gives us good value, as I believe Golden State should win this one. 

Picks: Doncic Exact Method – Other +1200 (0.4u) | Doncic Exact Method – 3-Pointer +2100 (0.2u) | Doncic Exact Method – Free Throw +2900 (0.1u) | Brunson First Basket + Golden State Moneyline +1100 (0.4u) | Wiggins First Basket + Golden State Moneyline +850 (0.4u)

Get NBA First Basket’s bets instantly in The Action Network app.

French Open Picks, Odds, Preview: Fernandez & Sasnovich Live as Underdogs (May 27)

french-open-picks-odds-preview-fernandez-sasnovich-live-underdogs-may-27

The second week of the year’s second grand slam nears, as just 32 men and women remain in the French Open.

The third round kicks off on Friday, and the women’s draw will see the bottom half take the courts at Roland Garros.

Let’s dive into a pair of the matches that will determine two of the women that head to the second week of action in Paris!

Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches.

_PromoID=[18179]

Belinda Bencic (-245) vs. Leylah Fernandez (+198)

6 a.m. ET

First up, it’s Belinda Bencic in familiar territory. She’s back on Court Philippe Chatrier playing against a Canadian.

That went fairly swimmingly in the last round – though towards the end, Bianca Andreescu made things interesting – but she’s playing a very different opponent this time around in Leylah Fernandez.

Bencic’s tendency to take the ball really early isn’t something that should particularly bother Fernandez. Between her excellent speed, ability to change directions and propensity to hit with precision – even while on the run – Fernandez is well-equipped to deal with Bencic’s preferred method of attack.

Further, the markets seem to be forgetting that clay is not Bencic’s preferred surface. Not the slow stuff found in Paris, at least.

She’s made a run in altitude in Madrid and won a title on green clay in Charleston, but Rome and and the French Open have never been a strength for her.

Bencic already tied her previous best run with this appearance in the third round. Even then, she beat a weaponless Reka-Luca Jani in the first round and am error-prone Andreescu in the second. Even Andreescu noted that until 1-5 down in the second set she was awful.

While the form and confidence are there for the Swiss, being this big of a favorite in slower clay conditions against a very solid mover and returner is a bit off.

Pick:  Fernandez ML (+198 via FanDuel)

_PromoID=[268]

Angelique Kerber (-115) vs. Aliaksandra Sasnovich (-105)

7 a.m. ET

In the other women’s match, veteran German Angelique Kerber takes on Aliaksandra Sasnovich. There are intriguing prices on this match, likely being influenced by the scorelines from Kerber’s previous two matches. Those, however, are a bit misleading.

Kerber could barely move and was fortunate to get past a borderline ITF Tour player in Magdalena Frech 7-5 in the deciding set of the opening round.

In the second round, she still looked incredibly hampered in terms of movement- a signature part of her game – against young French prospect Elsa Jacquemot. After a 6-1 first set, Jacquemot was much more competitive in the second, as Kerber’s level continued to deteriorate.

The fact is, Kerber has looked really vulnerable and to this point has yet to square off with a player that can really test her. She’ll get just that in the third round via Sasnovich, who has come through matches against Xinyu Wang and Emma Raducanu.

She possesses power off both wings and can play her shots side-to-side to either wear Kerber down or exploit the inability of the German to even get to the shots.

It appears last week’s grueling final continues to wear on Kerber. This is a solid spot to fade her.

Pick:  Sasnovich ML (-110 via DraftKings)

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Thursday MLB Betting Odds, Picks: The 7% ROI Prediction for Red Sox vs. White Sox (May 26)

red-sox-white-sox-odds-prediction-picks-thursday-may-26

Boston Red Sox vs. Chicago White Sox Odds

Red Sox Odds -108
White Sox Odds -108
Over/Under 9 (o -122 / u +100)
Date Thursday, May 26
Time 8:10 p.m. ET
Channel MLB.tv

*Odds are according to FanDuel as of Thursday afternoon

This Thursday night baseball game falls in line with a profitable, proprietary Action Network betting algorithm that reports a return on investment (ROI) of 7% since 2005.

For reference, the annual average return of the S&P 500 — roughly the value of the American stock market — has been about 8% for over a century. Since the start of the new year, that index is down roughly 15%.

Bitcoin is down about 38% year to date.

If you had bet $100 on each game that has fit the betting trend over the last 17 years, you’d be up about $11,000. That’s roughly $650 per year. 

So far this season, this algorithm is up $658.

This system uses wind speeds to determine how you should wager on the total.

There are other factors, too, that you can read about after the paywall.

The 7% ROI MLB Betting System Pick

This betting system utilizes same-day weather data to bet on games in which the wind is blowing in.

When the wind is blowing in toward home plate, home runs and doubles turn into flyouts, and offense is generally stymied.

For tonight’s game between the Blue Jays and Angels, the weather forecast says there will be roughly 6 MPH winds heading toward home plate when first pitch commences at 8:10 p.m. ET.

That wind speed will persist through at least 10 p.m., according to weather reports that are current as of Thursday afternoon.

Since 2005, when the wind is blowing toward home plate at more than five mph at first pitch, the under has hit 56% of the time. As aforementioned, that’s been good enough for a 7% ROI.

And that betting system has applied to the closing under, too, which means the win rate is likely slightly higher, depending on when the bet is placed.

Plus, unders have been hitting at a historic clip this season, perhaps on account of the new baseballs in use.

The best price on the market is at FanDuel at under 9 runs (+100).

This historically profitable algorithm applies to about 115 MLB games per year. This game might be an opportunity to cash in, but keep in mind that this is a long-term investment.

In order to maximize your 7% return on investment, make sure to follow through whenever this PRO system provides picks for the rest of the season.

PRO Picks: Under 9 (+100) or better

_PromoID=[16447, 16477]

Friday French Open Odds & Picks: Best Bets For Trevisan-Saville & Mertens-Gracheva (May 27)

friday-french-open-odds-picks-best-bets-trevisan-saville-mertens-gracheva-may-27

The third round of the French Open is set to begin and there are plenty of exciting, value-filled matches to look forward to!

Read below for two plays to think about from Friday at Roland Garros.

Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches.

_PromoID=[18179]

Martina Trevisan (-165) vs. Daria Saville (+128)

6:20 a.m. ET

Martina Trevisan is in excellent form coming into this third-round match. Trevisan has won seven matches in a row and took down Magda Linette 6-3, 6-2 to reach the third round in Paris.

Against both Linette and her first-round opponent, Harriet Dart, Trevisan won over 50% of her first-serve return points and over 55% of her second-serve return points. Trevisan broke serve 11 times in these two matches while only getting broken twice herself.

The Italian won her first WTA Tour title on the clay of Rabat last week and has won 69% of her career clay-court matches. Trevisan dictates well with her heavy, lefty forehand, getting great depth from that wing.

However, since May 16th, Trevisan has played seven matches and fatigue could set in soon.

Daria Saville has turned her clay season around in Paris. In the second round, Saville defeated Petra Kvitova 6-4, 6-2.

She has returned well in both of her Roland Garros matches so far. Looking at her first-round match against Valentini Grammatikopoulou and her match against the big-serving Kvitova, Saville won a combined 50% of her first-serve returns and 54% of her second-serve returns.

She ramped up her serving efficiency against Kvitova, winning 83% of her first serves.

While Saville was 0-3 on the season on clay and had won just 55% of her professional clay-court matches coming into Roland Garros, she has a lot of potential on the surface. Saville moves very well and counterpunches at a high level. She has the heavy forehand, steady backhand and gets good consistent depth on her groundstrokes. And, Saville rarely tires out on court.

Trevisan has the higher clay-court Elo rating, but Saville has the higher overall Elo. The Italian is in great form and hitting her forehand well. However, given that we just saw Saville neutralize the big Kvitova lefty forehand, I think it will be hard for Trevisan to hit through Saville from the baseline.

Look for Saville to keep this one close.

Pick: Saville +2.5 games (-110 via PointsBet)

_PromoID=[5113]

Elise Mertens (-240) vs. Varvara Gracheva (+180)

6:30 a.m. ET

Elise Mertens was fortunate when Marie Bouzkova gave her a walkover in the second round of Roland Garros.  In the first round, Mertens had defeated Elena Gabriela Ruse 6-3, 6-1.

Against Ruse, Mertens won 78% of the points on her first serve and hit 17 winners compared to 14 unforced errors. On return, Mertens won 63% of her return points, breaking serve six times in eight Ruse service games.

While Mertens had been struggling with her depth and offensive play since coming back from an injury in Istanbul, she found her form against Ruse.

When Mertens is playing well, she hits patiently with depth until she has her opening to strike. Mertens is generally a good player on clay, with a 92-53 career record on clay.

Varvara Gracheva has had a solid clay-court season, going 10-6 so far on the dirt. At Roland Garros, Gracheva has managed to pull off two three-set victories over Astra Sharma and Ajla Tomljanovic.

Neither Sharma nor Tomljanovic were able to win 65% of their first-serve points against Gracheva’s return game.

Despite this, Gracheva didn’t play particularly impressive tennis in either match, winning 61% of her service points and just 41% of her return points. Gracheva’s ability to win key points got her those victories.

Gracheva gets decent depth, moves the ball around the court well and is fairly consistent. This has allowed her to win 70% of her career matches on clay.

However, when opponents attack Gracheva and press her for time, her groundstrokes can break down and she doesn’t have a high level of power.

Mertens does everything at a higher level compared to Gracheva, which helps explain why her overall Elo rating is 155.9 points better than the Russian’s and her clay-court Elo is 207.8 points higher.

The Belgian is more consistent from the baseline, is able to better defuse her opponents’ power and can generate better controlled aggression of her own. Gracheva has done well to take advantage of a weaker draw, but will struggle to hurt Mertens here.

Pick: Mertens -3.5 games (-125 via PointsBet)

_PromoID=[268]

Formula 1 Odds, Picks & Predictions: The Bet to Make Now for Sunday’s Monaco Grand Prix

formula-1-odds-picks-predictions-monaco-grand-prix-driver-matchup-sunday-may-29

Max Verstappen took full advantage of Charles Leclerc’s retirement to claim the 2022 Spanish Grand Prix and move ahead of Leclerc in the world championship standings.

As for our bets, they, like Leclerc, suffered a disappointing ending in Spain.

Only our parlay of Verstappen on the podium & Lewis Hamilton inside the top six came through with our Pierre Gasly points finish and matchup bet of Mick Schumacher over Sebastian Vettel losing.

Those three results move our record this season to 10-8 (+2.65 units).

Now we turn our attention to the marquee grand prix of 2022, Monaco, where we’ll be shifting our betting strategy a touch.

Rather than three pre-race bets, we’ll present one before the action, one after Friday’s practices and one after qualifying Saturday.

Formula 1 Pick for Monaco

*Odds as of Thursday afternoon

Esteban Ocon (-105 at BetMGM) over Kevin Magnussen

Regular readers of the Formula 1 columns will remember our love for Ocon, who I’m shocked is not a favorite in this matchup.

Even setting aside his record on street circuits, Ocon has proven to be a much more consistent driver this season as compared to Magnussen. The Alpine representative has finished inside the points in all but one race this season, including two straight races in Miami and Spain.

As for Magnussen of team Haas, he has steadily gone downhill after a strong opener in Bahrain.

His last five races have seen him finish 9-14-9-DNF-17.

Ocon, on the other hand, has produced finishes of 6-7-14-8-7 across his last five, meaning he has outpaced Magnussen in four of the last five Grand Prixs. Further, Ocon has posted a faster lap than Magnussen in two straight races on street circuits.

Plus, dating back to last season, Ocon has failed to finish in the points in only two of his last 11 races.

Magnussen also doesn’t possess the best historical record in Monaco. In his last four races at this circuit, he has finished 13-14-10-DNF.

Given Ocon’s brilliant historical record on street circuits — no finish worse than P8 in three races this season and an average finish of 6.66 in his last six races on street circuits — I have him rated as a favorite this week and would play him all the way up to -130.

The must-have app for NASCAR bettors

Live odds from top sportsbooks

Free picks from proven experts

Track your own NASCAR bets

NHL Playoffs Odds, Picks, Predictions: Expert Breakdown of 4 Props in Hurricanes vs. Rangers, Flames vs. Oilers (Thursday, May 26)

nhl odds-picks-predictions-props-oilers vs flames-may 26

The NHL postseason rolls on Friday night with a pair of Game 5s. The Carolina Hurricanes meet the New York Rangers with the series knotted up at two games apiece, while the Calgary Flames look to stay alive, down 3-1 to the Edmonton Oilers.

NHL betting analyst Nicholas Martin breaks down his four favorite plays from tonight’s pair of crucial Game 5s.

_PromoID=[14312]

Carolina Hurricanes vs. New York Rangers, 7 p.m. ET

Andrei Svechnikov Over 0.5 Points (+100, Play to -110)

Andrei Svechnikov is one of the more talented players in the entire league, but has had a dismal start to the postseason, managing just four points in 10 games.

Because of that, this will look like a somewhat suspect play. However, just like we saw from Ryan Nugent-Hopkins in the other series, sometimes these buy-low spots hold value with the right indicators in place.

Svechnikov had eight shots on 13 attempts through the two contests in New York, and was notably more involved. He’s still skating on a reasonably talented second line as well as on the Canes’ power-play unit, and I think he will find a way to make a difference tonight.

Even in a low-scoring series, he’s way too talented of a player to remain off the score-sheet and I believe the breakthrough is due to come soon.

_PromoID=[18148]

Edmonton Oilers vs. Calgary Flames, 9:30 p.m. ET

Mikael Backlund Over 0.5 Points (+120, Play to +110)

The battle of Alberta has been a much more natural target for individual player props given the high-scoring, up-tempo nature we have seen consistently throughout the four games.

We saw the Flames score 12 times combined in the two contests in Calgary, and I believe that high offensive output at home continues tonight in this massive do-or-die spot.

Mikael Backlund played a really strong contest in Game 4, and was heavily involved in his 20:31 of ice time, including an important goal. The Flames’ second unit of Backlund, Andrew Mangiapane and Blake Coleman is one I have targeted often in this series, to mixed results.

I continue to believe that Calgary’s second unit is going to skate in a lot of winnable matchups against Edmonton, and getting long numbers for each to record a point holds value.

Andrew Mangiapane Over 0.5 Points (+135, Play to +120)

Andrew Mangiapane features a highly underrated skill-set, as evidenced by his 35-goal, 55-point regular season. Similar to what I mentioned about Backlund, I believe we are going to see the Flames’ second unit make a difference, and targeting these two at long numbers in a game which I believe will remain high-scoring makes sense.

For potential DFS readers, I think a stack involving the two could certainly be an option to consider, especially considering the less chalky nature of the play.

_PromoID=[18150]

Evander Kane Over 3.5 Shots (-110, Play to -120)

After a ridiculous run cashing this number in 10-of-13 games entering this series, Kane has surprisingly missed this number in three of this series’ four games so far. He is still generating a ton where it truly matters, managing five goals and one assist to start the series.

As you would expect while skating alongside Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, Kane has received a ton of chances to shoot, and even in this series is still averaging six attempts on goal per game.

Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

Dodgers vs. Diamondbacks MLB Picks, Odds: Can Arizona’s Offense Keep It Going Against Juggernaut Los Angeles? (Thursday, May 26)

dodgers vs diamondbacks picks-odds-predictions-mlb-may 26

Dodgers vs. Diamondbacks Odds

Dodgers Odds -186
Diamondbacks Odds +156
Over/Under 9.5 (-112 / -108)
Time 9:40 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Dodgers and Diamondbacks will meet for the third series between them this season after Arizona took the first series and Los Angeles the second.

Once again it’s the Diamondbacks who are flashing the better form, but does that mean they can be trusted on Thursday night? Let’s dig into this one.

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Dodgers Driven By Offense

Let’s make no mistake about it, the Dodgers are still winning machines. Though they’ve lost two of four entering this series, they’re still the winners of nine games in their last 11.

They are coming off a shutout loss at the hands of the Washington Nationals, but in the two games prior to Wednesday’s loss they scored a combined 19 runs.

The offense has been the driving force behind the Dodgers’ success. They’re second in wRC+ to only the Red Sox in the past two weeks and have coupled a low 22.1% strikeout rate with a beefy 11.9% walk rate during that time.

For the season, L.A. is eighth in barrel rate, fifth in hard-hit rate and third in xwOBA. While they make a good deal of quality contact, it’s quietly the Dodgers’ ability to get on base via the walk which really puts them into an elite category.

Mitch White will get the ball here, and he’s played the role of opener to this point for the Dodgers. He hasn’t exactly done it well, pitching to a 6.17 ERA in 11 2/3 innings, though his 3.66 ERA from a year ago coupled with a 4.56 xERA would seem to indicate perhaps we need to wait to cast judgment here. White’s strikeout rate sits at 26% this season, up from 24.9% a year ago.

_PromoID=[16478]

Diamondbacks Clicking Offensively

The Diamondbacks , technically speaking, are in better form than the Dodgers. They’ve won five of six entering this weekend series with L.A., and their last series loss actually came a week ago when they were swept in four games by these same defending champions.

The offense has really kicked it into gear for Arizona, producing 6.3 runs per game in the last six. Mimicking the Dodgers, the Diamondbacks have had a walk rate north of 10% over the past week which has been a big factor here.

They rank 21st in contact rate over that period in time but fifth in hard-hit rate. The recipe for success has been getting runners on base and finding solid contact at opportune times.

Humberto Castellanos will be the starter here for Arizona, and while he’s been unspectacular, he’s done some stuff well in 2022. His walk rate has been very good at 6% and while he’s been rather average in the exit velocity department his expected ERA is at a comfortable 3.94.

He has yet to face the Dodgers this season, but he’s only allowed more than three earned runs in one start.

_PromoID=[17284]

Dodgers-Diamondbacks Pick

White has been a big disappointment thus far, and while I think that could easily turn around I’m not sure he’ll take much pleasure in facing the Diamondbacks’ lineup as presently constructed.

I expect Castellanos to continue being a rock for Arizona, and while he may not get through five scoreless he should do enough to keep the Diamondbacks in the game here. Arizona has gotten it done against L.A. before and it can do it again here at home.

Pick: Diamondbacks First Five +0.5 (+110)

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Mavericks vs. Warriors Single Game Parlay Picks: Luka Doncic Over and Third Quarter ML Bet for Game 5 (May 26)

mavericks-vs-warriors-game-5-parlay-nba-western-conference-finals-may-26

Mavericks vs. Warriors Odds

Mavericks Odds +6.5
Warriors Odds -6.5
Moneyline +235/ -190
Over/Under 215.5
Time 9 p.m. ET
TV TNT
Odds via WynnBET. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

The Golden State Warriors were unable to complete the sweep at home against the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday night, so the Warriors will have one more opportunity to put the Mavs away as they return to the Bay. A win for the Warriors would advance them to their sixth NBA Finals over the past eight years.

The Mavericks played well last game as they got out to a quick start and trailed only 16-13 in the first quarter. Although the Warriors made a good late push and even brought back their starters, the Mavs were able to see things through.

By this point, we have all heard that no team has ever rallied from being down 3-0 to win a best-of-seven playoff series in league history. The Mavericks have a steep mountain to climb, but they have proven to be resilient in elimination games. In the three games in which the Mavericks have been fending off elimination thus far, they have outscored their opponents by 70 points.

We’re looking for some more “Luka Magic” in this Game 5 matchup. Together,  the following two plays combine for a same-game parlay with +192 odds (bet $100 to win $192).

Note: Odds for each leg of the following same-game parlay via Bet365.

_PromoID=[18105]

Luke Doncic Over 3.5 Made 3-Point Shots (-130)

Just more than 50% of the Mavericks’ points in Game 4 came from beyond the arc, so of course this number is inflated and much higher than usual, but it is on trend with the Warriors’ regular-season stats in which they ranked 24th in opponent percentage of points from 3-point shots.

Although Golden State ranked just outside of the top five in opponent 3-point percentage, opponents were still taking a big number of attempts from deep.

This is a favorable spot for Luka Doncic, who has taken a big number of attempts from deep in every game this series. Only once has that number been in the single digits, when he went 4-of-9. The volume of attempts will once again be there for the Mavs and Doncic as we expect him to go over his set total.

If he continues with the large number of attempts and can shoot anywhere around the 35.6% he’s averaging this postseason from beyond the arc, this looks like a great play.

_PromoID=[17354]


Warriors 3Q ML 3-Way (-145)

We all know how good the Warriors have been over the past few years coming out of halftime. Steve Kerr is one of the best in the business at making those adjustments on both sides of the ball and the Warriors have had a ton of success in the third quarter.

Through 82 games this season, the Warriors averaged 28.5 points on 48.4% shooting in the fourth quarter. This number has continued into the postseason with Golden State averaging 28.7 and shooting a fantastic 40.2% from beyond the arc.

Not only has Golden State been great offensively in the third quarter of games, the Warriors rank in the top three of opponent third quarter points per game. Taking the last game out of the equation for the Warriors, they have held Dallas to 24, 13 and 21 points, respectively, in this series before the Mavs lit it up in Game 4.

Look for that trend to continue as we see the same third-quarter dominance from the Warriors.

Win $50 if Luka Doncic Scores 1+ Point!

Sign up using code ACTIONNBA

Place a $5+ NBA entry

Live in 31 states!

Champions League Final Betting Odds, Analysis, Preview: Real Madrid Team Profile, Projected Starting XI, Key Stats, More

2022 champions league-betting-odds-analysis-preview-profile-real madrid

Liverpool vs. Real Madrid Odds

Liverpool Odds +105
Real Madrid Odds +250
Draw +260
Over/Under 2.5 (-135 / +105) 
Day | Time Saturday | 3 p.m. ET
How To Watch CBS | Paramount+ | fuboTV
Odds updated as of Thursday afternoon via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute soccer odds here.

Making its 17th appearance in the Champions League final, no club is more decorated in Europe’s top club competition than Real Madrid. However, this season’s route to the final might be the best of the bunch.

The spectacular individual displays from Karim Benzema, Vinícius Jr. and Luka Modrić have carried the Spanish club. Needless to say, they’re hungry to add to their silverware this season with the biggest crown of all.

_PromoID=[17287, 17288]

Real Madrid Profile

How Los Blancos Got Here

Real Madrid dominated Group D with five wins out of its six games against Inter Milan, Shakhtar Donetsk and FC Sheriff, with the only blemish coming against the Moldovan champion.

If the group stage was easy, the knockout rounds have been far from it for Madrid. Manager Carlo Ancelotti’s team used an incredible second-leg comeback to beat Paris Saint-Germain in the Round of 16 before needing extra time to eliminate Chelsea in the quarterfinals.

The dramatics didn’t end there, with the Spanish side able to turnaround a 4-3 defeat in the opening leg at Manchester City with another victory in extra time to secure its place in the UCL final. That win against the Premier League champions included two late goals by Rodrygo in the 90th and 91st minutes to make it happen.

Madrid was fueled by the home crowd and atmosphere of the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium to survive the knockout rounds. However, Los Blancos won’t be able to rely on a home leg if they plan to lift the trophy for the 14th time in their storied history.

_PromoID=[17287, 17288]

Biggest Result on Road to Final

While you could pick any of the knockout matches, this magical run started in the second leg against French champion PSG in my opinion.

Madrid dropped the road game via a 1-0 loss before allowing a first-half goal to Kylian Mbappé in the home match. However, a second-half hat trick by Karim Benzema was the start of what has become a thrilling, sensational run to this final at the Stade de France in Paris.


Projected Starting XI

Lineup notes: Ancelotti will likely opt for the extra man in midfield with Federico Valverde, but you will see on-form striker Rodrygo and Eduardo Camavinga coming off the bench for fresh legs.

Key defender David Alaba is expected to be back at the heart of the defense. If he’s not fit, Nacho has been the recent replacement in previous matches.


Three Key Statistics

  1. Madrid finished Group D with a +5.9 xGDiff, according to fbref.com, but the Spanish club then lost the xG battle in all three knockout rounds for a -1.9 xGDiff overall.
  2. In the six home games in the competition, Los Blancos averaged +0.75 xGDiff per match. Meanwhile, they posted a -0.16 xGDiff per 90 minutes average in the six road fixtures.
  3. Ancelotti’s team has a mark of +6.4 goals minus xG, which is second behind Bayern Munich in the competition.

Two Biggest Strengths

  1. Benzema, who isnhaving the best season of all players on the field, will be relied on to score the goals to win the title as well.
  2. Not many teams can match up to Liverpool’s three in the midfield, but with the experience and class of Casemiro, Toni Kroos and Luka Modrić (plus the added help of Valverde), Madrid’s midfield will be up for the challenge.

_PromoID=[17287, 17288]

Two Areas of Concern

  1. The form of the team away from home.
  2. Shaky Defense. Madrid conceded 1.8 xG per match in the knockout rounds

Biggest ‘X Factor’ on Pitch

The easy answer would be Benzema, but another player who will be very vital in this final is Vinícius Júnior.

Going up against Liverpool’s press and high line, his speed and runs in behind will help Madrid escape pressure and hit on the counterattack.


Final Thoughts

Madrid has only lost three UCL finals, with the last one coming against Liverpool in the 1980-81 finale.

Los Blancos won the last meeting between the clubs in the 2017-18 final. The starters that day included four from this season’s side (Carvajal, Casemiro, Kroos and Modrić).

If Madrid wins, it will be the 14th time the Spanish giant has lifted the trophy, which would be double the amount of the next-closest club in AC Milan.

_PromoID=[17287, 17288]

Champions League Final Betting Odds, Analysis, Preview: Liverpool Team Profile, Projected Starting XI, Key Stats, More

2022 champions league-betting-odds-analysis-preview-profile-liverpool

Liverpool vs. Real Madrid Odds

Liverpool Odds +105
Real Madrid Odds +260
Draw +250
Over/Under 2.5 (-135 / +105) 
Day | Time Saturday | 3 p.m. ET
How To Watch CBS | Paramount+ | fuboTV
Odds updated as of Thursday afternoon via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute soccer odds here.

Liverpool enters the Champions League final having almost pulled off a wild final day Premier League comeback. However, the Reds now look to cap off their season with what would be its third and best piece of hardware for the entire campaign.

Here is everything you need to know about England’s representative in the biggest game of the European club season.

_PromoID=[17287, 17288]

Liverpool Profile

How The Reds Got Here

If you could use one word to describe Liverpool’s road to the Champions League final, “smooth” would be right up at the top of the list.

The Reds got through the group stage with six wins in as many games, with three of those victories coming by two goals or more. Liverpool was pushed by AC Milan in its first game before thrashing Porto in a 5-1 rout. Then, it defeated Atlético Madrid twice in succession and repeated its opening wins.

Once the knockout stage arrived, Liverpool put together an impressive 2-0 victory away at San Siro, but Inter Milan provided the EPL side with its only loss of the season at Anfield. Though Liverpool held a 1.5 expected-goals edge in the home fixture, a Lautaro Martinez golazo gave Inter the 1-0 win.

Liverpool proceeded to handle Benfica comfortably over two legs before its biggest challenge arrived in Villarreal. The Reds subdued the Yellow Submarine to the tune of a 2-0 home win, but it was a different story in Spain.

Villarreal acquired a quick 2-0 lead that lasted until halftime. It appeared Liverpool was in real danger, but in typical fashion, it turned on the jets and nabbed three second-half goals to earn the outright victory.

_PromoID=[17287, 17288]

Biggest Result on Road to Final

It’s hard to pick any fixture except for the Villarreal second leg. That was the only time when it truly felt like Liverpool was in danger in the competition, and Jürgen Klopp’s men were able to prove to the footballing world once again they’re the best of the best.

Not only did Liverpool earn a result that would allow them to progress to the final in Paris, but it truly suffocated Villarreal in the second half, amassing 1.55 xG, while conceding… 0.00 in the process. That is a special half of football.


Projected Starting XI

Lineup notes: Klopp is dealing with a host of injury concerns ahead of this tie. Fabinho is recovering from a hamstring injury he suffered against Aston Villa at the beginning of May, but he’s expected to return ahead of the game.

Thiago limped off the pitch in Liverpool’s final-day victory over Wolves, and he’s a real question mark with an Achilles problem. Divock Origi has already been ruled out with a muscle injury.

Virgil van Dijk and Mohamed Salah are both expected to be ready to go after dealing with respective injuries in recent weeks.


Three Key Statistics

  1. 0.89 xGA/game — Liverpool’s team backbone is its stellar defense, led by van Dijk and accompanied by Ibrahima Konate in the middle, with Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson on the outside.
  2. 2.5 goals per game — The Reds have scored at a relentless pace all season, totalling 2.47 goals/EPL match and 2.5 goals/UCL game.
  3. 1,702 — Total pressures in its opponents’ attacking third, the most of any team in the Premier League by over 100. It’s a reflection of the non-stop pressing that Liverpool does thanks to the approach instilled by Klopp.

Two Biggest Strengths

  1. Liverpool’s attacking three is undoubtedly one of the best in the world. It has featured Salah and Sadio Mane for years, but the additions of Luis Diaz and Diogo Jota have given the Reds even more options.
  2. Virgil van Dijk. Without the best center back in the world last year, Liverpool nearly missed out on this Champions League campaign altogether, but with the “Rolls Royce” center half, there is always an aura of composure amongst this team.

_PromoID=[17287, 17288]

Two Areas of Concern

  1. As noted earlier, there are some big injury questions, plus a combination of an absent Fabinho and Thiago would be a solid problem for the midfield.
  2. There aren’t many issues this team faces, but pressure might be one of them. It helps Liverpool already amassed the domestic double, but a loss here would leave the Reds without their two biggest goals on the season after being within reach of a record quadruple.

Biggest ‘X Factor’ on Pitch

In the latter stages of the season, it has been Luis Díaz who has provided the biggest spark for this team. When creativity and incisiveness are needed in the final third of the pitch, Diaz has been able to provide it in crucial moments.


Final Thoughts

This is a massive game for Liverpool on many levels. Beyond the obvious of this being a Champions League final, the Reds have a shot at revenge after falling to Madrid in the same stage of this competition four years ago.

Then, Liverpool was just turning into a dominant machine, but now it’s the favorite here and arguably the best team in the world.

A win here would affirm the Jürgen Klopp era at Liverpool as one of the most dominant in world football over recent years, but a loss would be a bit devastating for this squad.

Let’s see what happens.

_PromoID=[17287, 17288]

Rafael Nadal vs. Botic van de Zandschulp Odds, Preview Prediction (May 27)

rafael-nadal-botic-van-de-zandschulp-odds-preview-prediction-may-27

Nadal vs. Van de Zandschulp Odds

Nadal Odds -2500
van de Zandschulp Odds +925
Over/Under 28.5
Time 8 a.m. ET
Odds via PointsBet. For tips on how to watch tennis, click here.

World No. 5 Rafael Nadal had no troubles beating Corentin Moutet in the second round of Roland Garros. He’ll have a chance to advance further after a matchup with Botic van de Zandschulp.

Can the 13-time Roland Garros champion continue to dominate his competition in Paris?

Let’s dive into this third round match.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Nadal Cruising Through Draw

Nadal beat up on an underpowered Moutet like he has so many other players at the French Open over the years. He won 72% of his first-serve points and was only broken twice all match. Nadal hit 27 winners compared to 22 unforced errors and won 19-of-25 points at the net.

On return, Nadal was even more dominant. He won 48% of his return points, including 61% of the points on Moutet’s second serve.

Nadal was able to play like this in the first round too. Against Jordan Thompson, Nadal won 75% of his service points, 54% of his return points, broke serve seven times and had a positive winner/unforced error ratio.

He’s so good about using his famous lefty forehand to control the baseline. Nadal makes very few unforced errors and hits with remarkable placement around the court. His backhand is also solid and the Nadal can hit with controlled aggression from that wing.

The Spaniard’s defensive and counterpunching abilities make him one of the toughest players on tour to hit through, and Nadal is still great when in offensive positions on the court.

To even come close to beating Nadal at Roland Garros requires playing with controlled aggression, which neither Thompson nor Moutet have. You have to have the power to redline.

However, Botic van de Zandschulp certainly has more power than Thompson and Moutet.

_PromoID=[18179]

Van de Zandschulp in Good Form

Van de Zandschulp has gone 10-5 in this clay-court season and he’s only dropped one set at Roland Garros so far.

In the second round, van de Zandschulp beat Fabio Fognini 6-4, 7-6(2), 3-2 (retirement), coming back from 1-5 down in the second set.

Against both Fognini and van de Zandschulp’s first round opponent, Pavel Kotov, the Dutchman played all-around good tennis.

In each match, van de Zandschulp won over 70% of his first-serve points and served at least 60% first-serves in. Dominating behind his first serve and getting quick, free points will be so important against Nadal.

In total contrast to Nadal, this is the furthest that van de Zandschulp has ever gone at the French Open. However, van de Zandschulp reached a maiden final on the clay of Munich and has had success both this season and beyond on the dirt.

Beyond his 10-5 record this year, van de Zandschulp has won 64% of his career matches on clay.

The Dutchman has a big first serve and controls the baseline well with his heavy groundstrokes. He can use his forehand to dictate play, while also having the patience to understand the right time in a given point to attack.

_PromoID=[5114]

Betting Value

It’s very clear that Nadal is head-and-shoulders above van de Zandschulp, especially on clay. While there was some uncertainty regarding Nadal’s foot injury, the first two rounds have largely put those concerns to bed.

Despite this, van de Zandschulp is a different type of player than Nadal has faced in the first two rounds. He has power that Thompson and Moutet lack and can get more free points from both his first serve and from the baseline with his big groundstrokes.

Short, easy points are the best way to gain traction against Nadal on clay, and van de Zandschulp has the game to take advantage of this,

With his clay-court patterns, counterpunching and ability to rip through opponents with his forehand, Nadal will ultimately wear his opponent down.

However, van de Zandschulp can absolutely cover this spread with the level of controlled aggression that he brings to the table.

Pick:  van de Zandschulp +9.5 games (-135)

No Run First Inning (NRFI) Bet Emerges As Popular Prop

no-run-first-inning-prop-emerges-as-popular-prop

It is the perfect bet for our time — a quick cash out or loss ideal for our increasingly wandering and multi-tasking minds.

Among the new type of bets that the public has fallen in love with, No Run First Inning (NRFI) has made its way to the top along with same-game parlays and first-basket scorer.

And while sports books have attempted to replicate how much fans are betting for baseball in the NBA and the NHL, it hasn’t come close.

At DraftKings, betting on the first inning in an MLB game has nearly four times the handle of betting on if there will be a goal in an NHL game in the first 10 minutes and nearly 60 times the handle of 3s made in the first three minutes of an NBA game.

Johnny Avello, now the director of sportsbook operations for DraftKings, has spent five decades in the sports gambling world. He says betting on the first inning started years ago, but only during playoffs.

“When I was in Vegas, we didn’t have the staff to do it every day,” Avello said. “At DraftKings, we are putting up things we used to put up only a few times a year, every single day.”

Does it really take that much work to handicap a first inning?

“Obviously the pitchers and the teams matter,” Avello said. “The Orioles, Tigers and Marlins are particularly terrible starting out games. The Angels are actually likely to score a run in the first inning.”

Avello says the money being thrown on the No Run First Inning is not small. On May 9, a bettor threw down $145,000 that there wouldn’t be a run in the first inning of the A’s-Tigers game.

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

The A’s scored one run in the second and third and won 2-0. The bettor netted $100,000.

Perspective: The winning A’s pitcher that day, Paul Blackburn, gets paid $710,000 for the season.

Shayne Trail covers the NRFI space for Action Network. He believes that while some think it’s a degenerate bet, it’s actually one you can use a lot of research.

“If you blindly bet on the under or the over you’ll be right around 50 percent of the time this year,” he said. “But you can study pitchers, how teams do in the first inning, how hitters have done in the last week and how hitters have historically done against that pitcher.”

The saying goes that “Life is too short to bet the under,” but No Run First Inning is an exception. Most usually do bet the under, which is technically 0.5 runs.

The top-five biggest first inning payouts at DraftKings were all for games in which there were no runs in the first inning.

Caesars lead baseball trader Eric Biggio says that while the public likes the under, the sharps like the over.

Odds for the prop vary based on who is playing and who is pitching. Think the Angels and Rangers won’t score a first inning run on Wednesday night? You’ll get +100 odds. Think they will? It’s -130. For the A’s and Mariners, you’ll get +120 for them to score a run and -160 for no runs.

The prop has been so popular that some sportsbooks have now offered first two innings. But the juice is so high on the under that it’s not as appealing.

There’s also the option of taking half innings of stronger pitchers and parlaying them.

“You can take Aaron Nola, Walker Buehler and Stephen Strasburg on a given day, parlay them and actually get plus money,” Trail said.

Entering play on Thursday, the Baltimore Orioles are the ‘best’ NRFI team in baseball, with the bet hitting in 63.6 percent of their games. The Boston Red Sox are second at 61.9 percent.

Meanwhile, the Colorado Rockies are the worst team when it comes to NRFI, hitting just 41.9 percent of the time.

When Major League Baseball first started embracing sports gambling, its commissioner Rob Manfred said that, for the first time, the slower speed of the game would be advantageous to the bettor and the bookmaker.

But the bet that has caught fire is the one that relies on either winning or losing in mere minutes, with 89 percent of the game still left.

At Caesars, Biggio says that the NRFI prop is only behind the book’s “first five innings” market, sometimes surpassing pitcher strikeouts and home runs.

At a recent game, Trail’s first inning under hit, and he disproportionately cheered.

Sign of the times? He wasn’t the only one.

_PromoID=[16477]

FanDuel Promo Code: Place a Risk-Free Bet on Mavs-Warriors Tonight!

fanduel-promo-code-bonus-offer

The Warriors have their second chance to punch a ticket to the NBA Finals tonight. And this time, it’s on their own home court. It’s a perfect game to not only watch, but to throw a little action on. But betting playoff basketball is always a little risky, especially when it’s these playoffs. Things have been way too up and down to feel comfortable betting your own money. That’s why at FanDuel, you don’t have to bet your own money

Not signed up at FanDuel yet? Then you can cash in with their special offer for new users (and you won’t need a promo code): Bet $1,000 Risk-Free on Mavs-Warriors Game 5 (or anything else). That’s literally a free grand to bet however you see fit. Bet the Dubs moneyline. Or Luka’s point total. It does not matter. And even if you lose, no worries! FanDuel has you covered with a full reimbursement.

One thing to keep in mind: You don’t need a promo code for this offer for Action users, but you will have to click on the link below to redeem.

_PromoID=[268]

FanDuel Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, Arizona, Connecticut, Iowa, Indiana, Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming — is giving all new users a risk-free sports bet.

Already have FanDuel? No problem: See offers at more sportsbooks for all sports right here.

Best FanDuel Promo Codes and Bonus Offers for the NBA Playoffs, the NHL, and More

FanDuel, originally a company focused completely around daily fantasy sports (DFS), has now become a gambling giant in the U.S., with the country’s biggest sportsbook and online casino. They’re always on the cutting edge when it comes to their app and product, and you certainly won’t be disappointed with adding them to your sports betting portfolio.

They’re also very generous to both new and existing users. This offer is just for new ones, and here’s how it works: Simply sign up at FanDuel using this link, deposit, and place your risk-free bet. If you win, you keep the profits. If you lose, FanDuel gives you the money you wagered back, up to $1,000.

_PromoID=[268]

If you need a reminder, here is tonight’s Western Conference Finals matchup:

  • Dallas Mavericks at Golden State Warriors, Thursday at 9:00 p.m. ET

And here are the NHL postseason games scheduled for Thursday:

  • New York Rangers at Carolina Hurricanes, Thursday at 7:00 p.m. ET
  • Edmonton Oilers at Calgary Flames, Thursday at 9:30 p.m. ET

_PromoID=[15174, 1251, 5113, 5114]

BetMGM Bonus Code: Bet $1,000 Risk-Free on Warriors-Mavs Game 5!

betmgm sportsbook promo code and bonus offer

We’re at that point in the NBA Playoffs where there’s only one game featured each night, the Eastern or the Western Conference Finals. Tonight is the West’s turn and boy do they have a doozy in store for us. It’s Game 5 in Golden State and the Warriors have a chance to close things out in front of their home crowd. Can they punch their ticket to the Finals? Or will the Mavs battle back and force a Game 6?

Either way, BetMGM Sportsbook is giving you a $1,000 risk-free bet on Warriors-Mavs and NHL Playoff action. That’s right — you can bet any of tonight’s games using only free money. You win and the winnings are yours. You lose and you get reimbursed what you lost. Special promos like this can’t be found just anywhere. To take advantage either use code ACTION or simply click one of the links below.

Get a $1,000 risk-free bet!

Deposit up to $1,000

Get the full value refunded in free bets if it loses!

New users only

BetMGM Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, New Jersey, Indiana, West Virginia, Arizona, Tennessee, Iowa, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Virginia, Wyoming and Washington D.C. — is offering an incredible risk-free offer to new users. This offer is exclusive to The Action Network, so make sure to sign up here and use bonus code ACTION.

Already have BetMGM? No problem: See offers at other top sports betting sites.

Best BetMGM Bonus Codes for the NHL and NBA Playoffs, and More

MGM has been a famous brand for decades, but you’ve probably started to hear about them more in the online betting space. They have a casino on the strip in Las Vegas, and they’ve launched their mobile, online sportsbook in 10+ states over the last few years — now including Illinois!

They’ve consistently been a favorite of users around the country thanks to their fair odds, great app and website, and awesome new-user offers, like the ones you’ll find here. These are no-brainer offers, which means they’re essentially giving you $1,000 to start your BetMGM career. Not bad at all.

Here’s how this one works (there are more below, too): Simply click on a link on this page, sign up using bonus code ACTION, deposit, and bet up to $1,000 on any of today’s NHL or NBA playoff games. At that point, you’ve claimed your new user bonus. If your bet wins, congratulations — you keep the profits. But if it loses, no sweat! BetMGM reimburses you up to $1,000 in free bets.

Remember that these offers are exclusive to the Action audience, so make sure to take advantage while you can.

Get a $1,000 risk-free bet!

Deposit up to $1,000

Get the full value refunded in free bets if it loses!

New users only

 

Not a fan of this offer? Here are some other great options for new BetMGM users:

_PromoID=[5114, 5342]

If you need a reminder, here is tonight’s Western Conference Finals matchup:

  • Dallas Mavericks at Golden State Warriors, Thursday at 9:00 p.m. ET

And here are the NHL postseason games scheduled for Thursday:

  • New York Rangers at Carolina Hurricanes, Thursday at 7:00 p.m. ET
  • Edmonton Oilers at Calgary Flames, Thursday at 9:30 p.m. ET

BetMGM Odds Boosts and Offers for Thursday, May 26

Have you already taken advantage of a new user offer at BetMGM? Well, the awesome bonuses don’t stop there. BetMGM takes care of their existing bettors with new odds boosts every single day! Here’s one available on site now.

  • Rangers and Flames both to win: boosted to +350 odds
  • Many more!

_PromoID=[5113, 1251, 57, 4778]

Phillies vs. Braves MLB Picks, Odds: Aaron Nola Has Edge Over Regressing Kyle Wright (Thursday, May 26)

phillies vs braves picks-odds-predictions-mlb-may 26

Phillies vs. Braves Odds

Phillies Odds -110
Braves Odds -110
Over/Under 8
Time 7:20 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via Caesars. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Philadelphia Phillies and Atlanta Braves meet Thursday in the finale of a four-game set between these division rivals.

The Phillies took the opener but have since dropped back-to-back games. They’ll now turn to their ace to try and salvage a split in the series. However, that is certainly not a done deal as the Braves will hand the ball to their breakout right-hander Kyle Wright.

Wright was tremendous in April; however, he appears to be coming back down to earth slowly, and he could land today against a Phillies lineup that has picked it up of late.

While the Phillies bats may lend support, should we back Aaron Nola even though he has an ERA over 4 in the month of May?

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Phils Set to Pounce on Regressing Wright

Wright was one of the best stories of April as the young right-handers displayed an enhanced arsenal that featured a wicked curveball and a fastball that was coming out of his hand nearly 2 mph harder than ever before.

Overall, he was dominant through his first four starts as he only gave up three runs and punched out 34 guys in just 24 innings. However, since the calendar has flipped to May, the results have differed.

Wright’s ERA in May is 3.91 in the same amount of starts he made in April. The leading cause of Wright’s drop-off is his command. Walks have become an issue over his last four starts as he’s walked more than one batter three times and even walked four against Boston. This actually started in his last start of April as he walked four against the Cubs, too.

He’s gotten away with the command issues in two of his last six starts as they came against the weaker lineups of Miami and Chicago. However, more potent teams like the Mets, Padres and Red Sox have all converted those free passes into runs, and the Phillies are more than capable of doing the same.

After many of their best bats started the season cold, the Phillies have gotten into the swing of things in April. As a team, they have the seventh-highest batting average in the month of May, and they are in the top half of the league in wRC+.

They haven’t seen this new version of Wright, but if they can remain disciplined, they should be able to get the best of him.

_PromoID=[16457]

Nola to Keep Free-Swinging Braves Off-Balance

The defending World Series champions are at full strength, yet they sit two games under .500 and seven games behind the Mets in the NL East. While their offense has a ton of talent and potential, their lack of plate discipline has made them very inconsistent.

The Braves enter this game with the highest strikeout rate in the majors. They’ve struck out at a 26.4 percent rate, which is about four percent higher than the league average.

The issue is the strikeouts do not stem from a couple of guys; it’s from everyone and some of their stars too. Ronald Acuna Jr. leads the team (in terms of everyday players) with a 33.8 percent strikeout rate, but guys like Dansby Swanson and Adam Duvall are not far behind.

Nola is bad news for an undisciplined team like this. He enters this start in the top 15 percent of all qualified pitchers in strikeout rate as his curveball and changeup have been on another level thus far.

However, the Philly ace is much more than a strikeout artist as he’s been a tough nut to crack this season. He sits in the top 20 percent of the league in expected batting average and expected weighted on-base average. All of that makes his expected ERA over a full run lower than his actual ERA.

If Nola has his off-speed stuff working, it will be a long night for the Braves lineup.

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Phillies-Braves Pick

The Wright hype train appears to be coming to a stop, and this Phillies team is ready to heat up. Their big bats have been solid of late; they just aren’t getting the results on the scoreboard.

That’s all going to change here behind their ace, which is the guy you want against a lineup like Atlanta’s. Nola should be sharp and ideally work his way into the sixth to limit the number of outs the Philly bullpen has to get. Regardless, Nola should receive plenty of support in the process. Take the Phils in this series finale.

Pick: Phillies +105 (Play to -110)

_PromoID=[16492, 16481]

Guardians vs. Tigers Odds, Picks, Predictions: Fade Detroit’s Awful Offense (Thursday, May 26)

guardians vs tigers-odds-pick-prediction-mlb-tarik skubal-may 26

Guardians vs. Tigers Odds

Guardians Odds +120
Tigers Odds -145
Over/Under 7 (-120 / +100)
Time 7:10 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

After a hot start to begin this season, the Cleveland Guardians are 3-7 in their last 10 games, which puts them in third place in the American League Central at 18-22.

The Detroit Tigers are having another season to forget. Detroit’s offense is still last in all of baseball in runs by a wide margin entering play Thursday. The Tigers are 15-28 overall this season and sit well behind Cleveland in fourth.

The division title isn’t exactly on the line here, but who will get the job done in this interdivisional matchup?

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Cleveland Needs To Find Its Offense

If the Tigers are going to win this game it’s going to be on the back of starting pitcher Tarik Skubal. The young left-hander has a 2.84 xFIP this season, as well as a 28% strikeout percentage and 4% walk rate.

The Guardians offense was off to a hot start this season but has since cooled off in a big way. Cleveland now finds itself 17th in all of baseball in runs scored entering play Thursday.

The best chance for hitting for power in this lineup will come from Jose Ramirez and Owen Miller, the only two Guardians hitters with ISOs above .200 against left-handed pitching this season. Skubal has allowed a .119 ISO to right-handed hitters this year, compared to just an .033 ISO against left-handed hitters.


Detroit Tigers

The Tigers will face Konnor Pilkington of the Guardians here. Pilkington has appeared in four major-league games this season, and this will be his second start. He threw 3 2/3 innings in his last appearance, which was by far the most he’s thrown this season.

Pilkington was recalled from the minor leagues for this start and it’s possible that he’s stretched out to pitch deeper into the game here. Still, I don’t think we can assume that Pilkington will throw any more than five innings here.

Pilkington has been OK in the majors this season with a 4.19 xFIP, 30% strikeout percentage and 10% walk rate. His chances of having a decent start here are good considering how weak the Tigers lineup is. Only Jeimer Candelario and Willie Castro have ISOs above .200 against left-handed pitching this season.

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Guardians-Tigers Pick

I like the Guardians here.

The Tigers’ best chance in this game is for Skubal to shutdown Cleveland’s offense and outlast the Guardians in a low scoring game. While that’s definitely on the table as Skubal is developing into an ace pitcher, the Tigers offense doesn’t provide much in the way of run support and I expect Cleveland to hang around in the middle of this game.

At that point, the Guardians could have the upper hand late in the game as the Tigers had to use most of their high leverage relievers yesterday in an extra-innings win over Minnesota.

Pick: Guardians +120

_PromoID=[17271]

Yankees vs. Rays Odds, Picks, Predictions: Value On Plus-Money Side of Thursday’s Over/Under (May 26)

yankees-vs-rays-thursday-odds-picks-predictions-mlb-may-26-2022

Yankees vs. Rays Odds

Yankees Odds -120
Rays Odds +100
Over/Under 7.5
Time 6:40 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via WynnBET. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The New York Yankees pull into Tampa Bay to open a four game series against the second-place Rays.

Both teams are 6-4 over their last 10 games and seem to be firing on all cylinders, so this series should have a playoff atmosphere as the Rays look to make up ground in the AL East race.

Two lefties square off in Thursday night’s pitching matchup as Ryan Yarbrough gets the call for the Rays and Nestor Cortes takes the mound for the Yankees.

New York Yankees

The Yankees are one of the MLB’s best road offenses. On the road is actually where they have their stronger offensive split so far in 2022: The Yankees have a 136 team wRC+ on the road this month, good for fourth in the league.

Getting more granular, the Yankees do seem to have more trouble with lefties on the road as they have a 98 team wRC+ against them on the road in May. However, that is still good for 11th in MLB, which puts them ahead of the majority of teams.

Cortes gets the ball in Game 1, and statistically, he’s been the Yankees ace this season. He also brings a 1.64 ERA and a 2.71 FIP across 22 road innings into Thursday’s start. He’s been excellent in all situations this season.


_PromoID=[16483]


Tampa Bay Rays

Speaking of excellence, the Rays have been excellent at home so far this season, but they are especially potent against left-handed pitchers at home. So far, the Rays lead MLB in team wRC+ against lefties at home in May.

However, it’s the Rays bullpen that has been surprisingly leaky over the past two weeks. This could be the reason they are having Yarbrough take the start as opposed to using him as the bulk pitcher. Perhaps a more traditional approach will reset their bullpen.

Yarbrough has experienced quite a variance in terms of numbers at home, therefore it’s hard to pin down exactly what to expect. The one thing that has been consistent is that he does give up runs at home. His career home ERA and 3.94 home FIP are strong indicators he is prone to being scored on at home.


Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Yankees-Rays Pick

Considering the potency of both offenses and Yarbrough’s unreliability in terms of the depth he can give the Rays, the over has the most appeal — especially at 7.5 (+100).

While Cortes has pitched well this season, he may be due for a slight regression, especially against a Rays offense that handles LHP well at home.

The Rays pen has also been struggling while the Yankees offense hammers RHP on the road, especially this month, so 7.5 doesn’t seem too high of a hurdle to clear.

I like the over up to 8.

Pick: Over 7.5 (+100)

_PromoID=[17268]

Caesars Promo Code: Bet Mavericks-Warriors Risk-Free Up to $1,100 (Code ACTIONCZR)!

Will the Warriors cap off a gentlemen’s sweep tonight, or will Luka Doncic and the Mavericks come through with yet another clutch elimination game performance? Regardless of what you’re expecting in Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals tonight, you’ll want to be betting the action at Caesars Sportsbook. You’ll find unique odds boosts, expansive player prop markets and other exclusive bet types that’ll make you feel like you’re a part of the game. Still not positive about signing up at Caesars? This exclusive promo code should change your mind:

New Caesars users can claim a $1,100 risk-free first bet for the NBA Playoffs! That’s right. A four-figure bet, completely risk-free! The only way you don’t get your money back in free bets is if you win (in which case, you’d make it all back and then some!). And this offer isn’t limited to the NBA Conference Finals — it works for the NHL playoffs, MLB and the WNBA as well. Just make sure to use the code ACTIONCZR when you sign up. Then you’ve locked in this special offer for a $1,100 risk-free bet.

Again, be sure to either use the links on this page or use code ACTIONCZR, or else you won’t be eligible for these offers.

_PromoID=[4778]

Caesars Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, Michigan, New Jersey, Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Tennessee, Indiana, West Virginia, and Virginia — is offering new users in all of its states a $1,100 risk-free bet!

Already have Caesars? No problem: See offers at more sportsbooks for all sports right here and New York-specific offers here.

Best Caesars Promo Codes for the NBA Playoffs, NHL Playoffs and More

Caesars is one of the fastest growing brands in the new sports betting industry, and for good reason: They’re one of the most generous sportsbooks to new and existing users, as shown by this offer. Not many places are giving away a $1,100 risk-free first bet!

Here’s how the promotion works: Sign up using the link on this page and with code ACTIONCZR and make a deposit of up to $1,100 (you won’t need a deposit code). That’s all you have to do: Your first bet up to $1,100 will be completely risk-free.

_PromoID=[4778]

Here is tonight’s West Finals matchup (as if you needed a reminder):

  • Dallas Mavericks at Golden State Warriors, Thursday at 9:00 p.m. ET

And here are tonight’s NHL playoff matchups:

  • New York Rangers at Carolina Hurricanes, Thursday at 7:00 p.m. ET
  • Edmonton Oilers at Calgary Flames, Thursday at 9:30 p.m. ET

Caesars Odds Boosts and Offers for Thursday, May 26

The bonuses keep coming at Caesars, even after you’ve redeemed a new user promo. For example, you can score new boosted odds markets daily! Here’s one available now:

  • Jordan Poole & Reggie Bullock Each Over 2.5 Made 3-pt FG on 5/26: boosted to +360 odds
  • Many more!

_PromoID=[5114, 5113, 1251, 25]

BetMGM Promo Code: Win $200 on Mavericks-Warriors Tonight w/ Code ACTION7!

betmgm sportsbook promo code and bonus offer

Luka and the Mavericks fought hard to keep their NBA Playoff hopes alive in Game 4. Can they do it again in Game 5, or will Curry and the Warriors punch their ticket to their fifth NBA Finals in seven years? No matter how you’re betting on Dallas-Golden State, you should place your wagers at BetMGM Sportsbook. Check out this incredible promo code for new users: Bet $10 on any NBA playoff game, Win $200 if your team scores 1+ point!

Yeah, that’s not a typo. ONE single point! Unless you’re predicting a shutout tonight (in which case, you probably aren’t too familiar with NBA basketball), this is a complete no-brainer. It’ll only take a few trips up and down the court tonight for you to lock in $200.

To take advantage, either use code ACTION7 or simply click one of the links below.

Win $200 if Your NBA Team Scores a Point!

Bet $10+ on an NBA playoff game

Win $200 if the team you bet scores 1+ points

New users only

BetMGM Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, New Jersey, Indiana, West Virginia, Arizona, Tennessee, Iowa, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Virginia, Wyoming and Washington D.C. — is offering an incredible no-brainer promo to new users. This offer is exclusive to The Action Network, so make sure to sign up here and use promo code ACTION7

Already have BetMGM? No problem: See offers at more sportsbooks for all sports right here.

Best BetMGM Promo Codes the NBA Playoffs, NHL Playoffs and More

MGM has been a famous brand for decades, but you’ve probably started to hear about them more in the online betting space. They have a casino on the strip in Las Vegas, and they’ve launched their mobile, online sportsbook in 10+ states over the last few years — now including Illinois!

They’ve consistently been a favorite of users around the country thanks to their fair odds, great app and website, and awesome new-user offers, like the ones you’ll find here. These are no-brainer offers, which means they’re essentially giving you $200 to start your account. Not bad at all.

Here’s how this one works (there are more below, too): Simply click on a link on this page, sign up using promo code ACTION7, deposit, and bet $10 on the playoff game of your choice. At that point, you’ve claimed your new user bonus, and you’ll get credited $200 if your team scores a single point (or more) in the game.

Remember that these offers are exclusive to the Action audience, so make sure to take advantage while you can.

Win $200 if Your NBA Team Scores a Point!

Bet $10+ on an NBA playoff game

Win $200 if the team you bet scores 1+ points

New users only

 

Not a fan of this NBA offer? Here are some other great options for new BetMGM users:

_PromoID=[245, 16447, 5342]

If you need a reminder, here is tonight’s NBA playoff matchup:

  • Dallas Mavericks at Golden State Warriors, Thursday at 9:00 p.m. ET

And here are the NHL postseason games scheduled for Thursday:

  • New York Rangers at Carolina Hurricanes, Thursday at 7:00 p.m. ET
  • Edmonton Oilers at Calgary Flames, Thursday at 9:30 p.m. ET

BetMGM Odds Boosts and Offers for Thursday, May 26

Have you already taken advantage of a new user offer at BetMGM? Well, the awesome bonuses don’t stop there. BetMGM takes care of their existing bettors with new odds boosts every single day! Here’s one available on site now.

  • Rangers and Flames both to win: boosted to +350 odds
  • Many more!

_PromoID=[5113, 1251, 57, 4778]

MLB NRFI Odds & Picks: Back Justin Steele, Hunter Greene For A Scoreless 1st Inning on Thursday (May 26)

mlb-nrfi-odds-picks-hunter-greene-justin-steele-thursday-may-26-2022

Shayne Trail breaks down his favorite NRFI/YRFI bet of the day below, but you can follow all of his bets in the Action Network app.


Cubs-Reds No Runs First Inning (-104)

Matchup Cubs (Justin Steele) vs. Reds (Hunter Greene)
First Pitch 12:35 p.m. ET
Best Line FanDuel

On Thursday, we take an NRFI between two NL Central rivals with their up-and-coming pitchers.

Justin Steele is silently putting together a great NRFI career. Since 2021, he is 15-2 to the NRFI, including his hot 7-1 start to 2022. In his short career, he still managed to be 2-0 to the NRFI against the Reds. Steele has faced 70 first-inning batters, walking only five in his career, and he’s been excellent defending the long ball only allowing one HR.

Steele is also holding teams’ Nos. 1 and 2 hitters below .200 averages, allowing only .167 and .133 averages.

Here is how Steele has fared in his matchup against the Reds:

  • Tyler Naquin: 0-for-1
  • Kyle Farmer: 0-for-6
  • Colin Moran: 0-for-2
  • Joey Votto: 1-for-3

Tommy Pham, who is projected to bat fifth on Thursday, is just 4-for-25 over his last seven days. (It should be noted that Mike Moustakas is 1-for-20 over his last seven days and is projected to bat sixth behind Pham.)

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Meanwhile, with the 100 mph fastball, Hunter Greene is shaping up to be a respectable NRFI pitcher. In 38 first-inning batters faced thus far, Greene has allowed only seven hits paired with 14 strikeouts. That has resulted in a 6-2 NRFI record.

Greene is also holding hitters the first time through the order to a respectable .164 average, striking out 26-of-61 batters.

Hunter has not faced any Cubs hitters in his career yet, leaving the unfamiliarity on his side — but he is catching the Cubs slumping. Over the past seven days, key Cubs hitters are hitting significantly below their averages:

  • Wilson Contreras: 1-for-11
  • Seiya Suzuki: 4-for-24
  • Alfonso Rivas: 4-for-19
  • Rafael Ortega: 5-for-23

With slight rain and the wind blowing in at 14 mph toward home plate, these are non-ideal hitting conditions in Great American Ballpark. Look for both teams to remain in their respective slumps in the first inning.

As always, six outs to glory…



Get all of Shayne Trail’s NRFI/YRFI bets instantly in The Action Network app.

French Open Round 2 Odds, Picks, Predictions: Riske Next Target for Swiatek (May 26)

french-open-round-two-odds-picks-predictions-riske-next-target-swiatek-may-26

Swiatek vs. Riske Odds

Swiatek Odds -7000
Tsurenko Odds +2000
Over/Under 16.5
Time 8:15 a.m. ET
Odds via FanDuel. For tips on how to watch tennis, click here.

World No. 1 Iga Swiatek dominated Lesia Tsurenko in their first round encounter at the French Open. Swiatek won 6-2, 6-0 and never let Tsurenko into the match.

Will there be a similarly-lopsided result in the second round against Alison Riske?

Let’s break down into this second round match.

_PromoID=[18179]

Swiatek On Fire

The first round of Roland Garros against Tsurenko was similar to many of Swiatek’s recent matches.

Swiatek put together a complete performance. She won 72% of her service points and was broken just once all match. On return, she won 70% of her return points and broke Tsurenko’s serve six times in seven service games. She also hit 20 winners compared to 13 unforced errors in the match.

This was the latest in a 29-match winning streak for the Pole. She’s emerged victorious the last five tournaments she’s competed in and won 20 of her last 21 matches in straight sets.

Much of Swiatek’s recent success has occurred on clay. She has gone 10-0 during the clay-court season and only lost one set. This includes titles in Stuttgart and Rome. In Rome, Swiatek only lost 21 games in her five Rome matches.

There are no weaknesses to the Swiatek game. She hits her targets on serve and her forehand is one of the top shots on the WTA Tour. Swiatek’s backhand is solid and she’s increasingly able to use it as a weapon.

Swiatek’s variety allows her to keep opponents off-balance and she does a great job of constructing points. Her movement is also amongst the best on the WTA Tour, which is especially the case on clay.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Riske Enters Off Strong Start to Roland Garros

Riske is not known for her clay-court acumen. However, in the first round of Roland Garros, she defeated Dayana Yastremska 6-3, 6-3 to set up this showdown.

The American returned well against Yastremska, winning 46% of her first-serve return points and 54% of her second-serve return points. This allowed Riske to break five times.

She protected her own serve fairly well, winning 65% of her second serves and only getting broken twice all match. Riske’s entire game was working well against Yastremska.

Riske has played four matches on clay this season, going 2-2 so far. In her career, Riske has won just 43% of her matches on clay. This is in stark comparison to the 56% of hard-court matches she’s won and 69% of grass-court matches. She generally prefers faster, low-bouncing surfaces.

Nonetheless, when Riske is playing well she can be a threat, regardless of the surface she’s playing on. Her forehand can control the baseline fairly well and her backhand can cut through the court very well.

_PromoID=[5342]

Betting Value

There’s very little to say in terms of the head to head analysis other than Swiatek is a much better player in all facets of her game.

Swiatek has the better serve and will be able to dominate from the baseline with her forehand. Yes, Riske’s forehand is a weapon, but Swiatek’s forehand is heavy and has great depth in the court.

She also has the better backhand of the two and is the much better mover. Swiatek will be able to track down Riske’s groundstrokes and turn plenty of points in her favor. She will also make Riske uncomfortable with her variety.

Riske won’t be able to be reliant on unforced errors, as Swiatek almost certainly won’t make the 31 unforced errors that Yastremska made against the American.

While this seems like an extreme line, I have to trust Swiatek to get the job done quickly once again.

Pick:  Swiatek -7.5 games (-138)

NBA Odds, Picks, Predictions: Our Experts’ Best Bets for Mavs vs. Warriors Game 5 on Thursday (May 26)

nba-odds-picks-predictions-experts-bets-mavs-warriors-game-5-thursday-may-26-2022

The Dallas Mavericks staved off a sweep by the Golden State Warriors, pushing the Western Conference Finals to Game 5 (9 p.m. ET on TNT).

With odds positioning the Warriors as 7-point favorites as the series returns to the Bay, our experts break down how they’re betting this showdown on Thursday. (Spoiler: Their picks don’t include the full-game spread.)

NBA Odds, Picks, Predictions

Click on a pick to skip ahead
Mavericks vs. Warriors 3Q Spread
Mavericks vs. Warriors Total
Jalen Brunson Prop

_PromoID=[16830]


Mavs vs. Warriors 3Q Spread

Pick
Warriors -1.5 (-112) | -5.5 (+200)
Book
FanDuel

Brandon Anderson: If you’ve been following our picks this postseason, this one should come as no real surprise.

Take me home, Warriors third quarter.

What did you take away from the Mavs’ win in Game 4? I didn’t take much, other than the Warriors aren’t very good when they’re not focused and locked in — and we already knew that. They didn’t play with their usual intensity, which led to them losing a rebounding battle they’ve dominated this series as well as getting beat repeatedly on defense, which led to a barrage of open 3s for the Mavs that actually fell this time.

Golden State is a totally different team at home — the Warriors have been nearly invincible there all postseason and, really, all year long. And that’s even truer in the third quarter.

Per Pivot Analysis, the Warriors had a +12.6 Net Differential in the third quarter during the regular season, and that was even more dominant at home (+18.3 Net Differential). That has played out in the postseason, too. They’re actually just 5-3 straight up in home third quarters, but when they do win the quarter, the avalanche often hits in a huge way.

In five third -quarter wins this postseason, Golden State isn’t just winning — the Warriors are putting things to bed for good. Their home third-quarter wins have come by nine, 14, 14, 10 and 12 points for an average winning margin of 11.8 points per game. We’ve seen it happen for years, and it can happen in a two-minute stretch: Steph hits a shot, Klay makes another, a steal and a run-out, and suddenly it’s a quick 8-0 run and goodnight for the visitors.

It’s been profitable backing the Warriors at home in the third quarter all year, so why stop now? And while you might be tempted to play it safe with the traditional -1.5 line, remember that when the Warriors do win the quarter, they often win big.

_PromoID=[18105]

I’ll actually play more of my bet at the alternate -5.5 line at +200 — heck I’ll even play a third quarter win of 11 or more points at +500 at PointsBet. Golden State has done three times already in eight home playoff games, and beat Dallas by 10 and 12 in the home third quarters of Games 1 and 2.

One more time — take me home, Warriors home third quarters.


» Return to the table of contents «


Mavs vs. Warriors Total

Pick
Over 215.5
Book
Caesars

Raheem Palmer: The Warriors and Mavericks can light up the scoreboard in different ways.

The Mavericks are taking a ton of 3s and finally saw positive regression from the 3-point line in Game 4, which should carry over into Game 5. Meanwhile, the Warriors continue to shoot above 60% from 2-point range, so running them off the 3-point line doesn’t work because they can get anything they want inside the arc. And, obviously, they have the splash family — Steph Curry, Jordan Poole and Klay Thompson — who have the ability to hit tough 3s.

The Mavs have to put a ton of points to win this game whereas the Warriors haven’t scored fewer than 109 points in this series. The over is 2-2 through four games, but I like this game to over 215.5 (check real-time odds here).


» Return to the table of contents «


Mavs vs. Warriors Prop

Pick
Jalen Brunson Over 3.5 Assists (+105)
Book
BetMGM

Joe Dellera: Brunson has hit this 3.5 assist line in seven of his eight games against the Warriors this season, and in that one miss, he fell short by only one. He’s going to play big minutes for the Mavericks, especially in a potential elimination game — he’s averaged 34.8 minutes per game in this series.

If we look at his overall series, he’s averaging 4.3 assists with 9.3 potential assists, per NBA Advanced Stats. Dallas needs to run its offense through him, and in order for the Mavs to have any success, Brunson needs to have the ball in his hands to set up the rest of his teammates for easier looks.

I like Brunson to go over this 3.5 assist line in a crucial Game 5.

_PromoID=[17354]


» Return to the table of contents «


French Open Odds, Preview, Picks: Madison Keys & Danielle Collins Deserved Favorites (May 26)

french-open-odds-preview-picks-madison-keys-danielle-collins-deserved-favorites-may-26

Off to the top half of the women’s draw we go to wrap up the second round at the French Open.

While not known for their clay court abilities in general, Thursday features a pair of American women that should be able to find a comfortable victory on the red clay courts of Roland Garros.

Let’s delve into which two, and why!

Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches.

_PromoID=[18179]

Danielle Collins (-300) vs. Shelby Rogers (+235)

9 a.m. ET

First up is a matchup featuring not one, but two Americans, in a tilt that should feature some massive ball striking.

Danielle Collins is favored to beat Shelby Rogers, and there’s good reason for it.

While both possess the necessary power to hit through the surface, and each player can serve well, Collins is just the better player. That should set her up for a potential lopsided set or two.

In terms of return of serve, Collins is far superior to her compatriot. She’s far more agile and can move her feet more quickly to get into position to return.

Collins also doesn’t just return effectively to get herself into neutral rallies, she has the ability to be aggressive and seize control of rallies – especially against second serves.

Take a look at the break percentages of the two. Collins leads Rogers in 2022 overall by 15%. On clay over the last 52 weeks? The gulf is 10%.

Another big advantage for Collins is movement. Neither woman is going to blow the other off court, but being able to move around and hit on the run is going to be a difference-maker in this kind of match. Rogers’ foot speed and movement is lacking in a big way compared to Collins.

Finally, Collins is a very redline-like player. When she wins, it’s often by a lot. In her 12 wins this season, she’s covered 4.5 games in eight of them (including against the likes of Iga Swiatek and Ons Jabeur).

With the matchup advantages in this one, it’s tough to see Rogers being the fifth player to keep this one close.

Pick:  Collins -4.5 games (-105 via DraftKings)

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Madison Keys (-270) vs. Caroline Garcia (+215)

9 a.m. ET

The other American that should be able to position herself one step closer to the second week in Paris is Madison Keys.

Taking on Caroline Garcia – who has played one match since her retirement against Anna Bondar in Miami – is a prime opportunity for Keys to reach the third round for the fourth time in five years.

While it doesn’t seem like clay would be her best surface, Keys has the ability to serve and hit through it. Her record may not be anything to write home about over the last few seasons, but consider who has beaten her in her last five losses: Anhelina Kalinina (underrated clay courter), Maria Sakkari, Belinda Bencic (ended up winning that event), Iga Swiatek and Victoria Azarenka. All players well above Garcia’s level.

There’s also the concern around Garcia being 100% fit. Her lone match since March was against Taylor Townsend in the first round. Townsend recently had a kid so she hasn’t played much tennis and she was cramping up in that match as well.

Garcia’s normal strengths of being able to dictate are neutralized by one of the biggest hitters on tour. Keys’ weakness of being error-prone could also be masked by the fact that Garcia is as erratic as they come herself.

This is another match that should see the favorite win in a relatively comfortable fashion.

Pick: Keys -4.5 games (+112 via PointsBet)

_PromoID=[5113]

Cubs vs. Reds Odds, Picks, Predictions: Back Hunter Greene, Justin Steele to Limit Runs Thursday (May 26)

cubs-vs-reds-thursday-odds-picks-predictions-mlb-may-26-2022

Cubs vs. Reds Odds

Cubs Odds -115
Reds Odds -105
Over/Under 8.5 (-120/+100)
Time 12:35 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Cincinnati Reds host the Chicago Cubs in a Thursday matinee. Hunter Greene will go for the Reds, while Justin Steele gets the ball for the Cubs. Greene may struggle with control at times, but he has had three straight outings where he has gone at least five innings and allowed two earned runs or fewer — including one outing where he left a no-hitter on the table due to his pitch count. Steele has been great for the Cubs during this rebuild season. He induces weak contact and owns an xERA of 2.96.

Given that both these teams have had trouble piecing together baserunners off of right-handed pitching in May, taking the under is the correct play with two starting pitchers on the rise.

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Chicago Cubs: Is a Strong Performance Coming from Steele?

Steele ranks in the 71st percentile in Average Exit Velocity and the 98th percentile in Barrel Percentage. These are both strong indicators for an elite performance against an ailing Reds lineup. One gripe with Steele’s performances has been his inability to throw strikes. Although he is striking out 26% of hitters, his walk rate eclipses 11%, which ranks in the bottom 20% of his constituents. Cincinnati has walked at an 7.7% clip off of lefties this month, but negates that with a 22% strikeout rate. After all, the Reds 85 wRC+ ranks 24th in the league.

Five hitters in the Reds’ lineup have a .340 xwOBA off of southpaws this season, but the numbers dramatically drop after those five. This means every inning or so, Steele should have a cakewalk.

One risk to the under play is Cincinnati’s bullpen. They hold a 4.01 xFIP in May, but this is only scratching the surface because a few pitchers are skewing these numbers. The Reds have nine relievers with a sub-4.00 xFIP and should have enough efficient arms to overcome a weak Chicago lineup.

_PromoID=[17289,17283]

Cincinnati Reds: Can Greene Keep Cubs in Check?

Hunter Greene is starting to look like the prospect Reds fans were promised. His average velocity of 99 MPH is almost untouchable and sometimes, with raw, young and lively arms, walks will come. His walk rate is above 12%, but his strikeout rate is at 27.9%. On top of that, Greene has a 4.51 xERA versus a 5.49 ERA. He has been incredibly unlucky and much of his inflated ERA can be attributed to a few brutal outings.

He will face a Cubs lineup that holds a wRC+ of 88 this month off of right-handers. Christopher Morel has been a welcomed addition to the lineup with Jason Heyward on the Injured List. Yan Gomes and Willson Contreras are two of the other six Cubs hitters with a .340+ xwOBA off of righties this month. One of them will likely be sitting, so this leaves about five or six starters who can fare well against a righty. Most starters do not pitch as hard as Greene, so there is a guarantee at least a few of these hitters will be off balance, as well.

Now, the Cubs bullpen has been a strong suit all season. It ranks third in xFIP with a 3.32 mark in May, only trailing the Yankees and Brewers. The Cubs have more than enough relievers to throw at a paltry Reds bottom of the order.

Cubs-Reds Pick

These starters are both skyrocketing in value for their respective teams. If both of them can limit the walks, there is no reason this under should fail to hit. The relief corps in each organization have some solid arms.

Pairing those variables with awful hitting against these types of starting pitchers and the bottom of each order will produce outs consistently.

Take the under at 8.5 (+100), and play to 8 (-110).

Pick: Under 8.5 (+100) | play to 8 (-110)
_PromoID=[16477]

NHL Playoffs Game 5 Odds, Preview, Prediction: Rangers vs. Hurricanes (May 26)

rangers vs hurricanes-odds-pick-prediction-game 5-nhl-igor shesterkin-may 26

Rangers vs. Hurricanes Game 5 Odds

Rangers Odds +125
Hurricanes Odds -155
Over/Under 5.5 (+115 / -140)
Time 7 p.m. ET
TV ESPN
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

Carolina will return home after more thoroughly disappointing road results, as the Rangers tied up the series with back-to-back wins at Madison Square Garden entering a hugely important Game 5 in Raleigh.

The Hurricanes have now gone 0-5 on the road during the postseason but have thrived to a 6-0 record at home. Will Carolina remain unbeaten at home on Thursday night?

_PromoID=[18148]

New York Getting Elite Play From Shesterkin

The home teams have gone 4-0 so far this series. We saw a really solid effort in Game 1 from New York on the road, and I do believe the overall gap in play from Carolina at home vs. on the road is widely exaggerated by the current splits in terms of its record.

The Rangers have played to a 49.61 expected goals share throughout the opening four contests of this series, which in my opinion is much more positive than it sounds, considering New York’s main strength in goaltender Igor Shesterkin.

Head coach Gerard Gallant’s team seems to have an understanding of how far Shesterkin can take it if it prevents defensive breakdowns that lead to the highest quality of scoring chances for Carolina.

I was of the belief we might see New York entirely outplayed at 5-on-5 in this series, and that simply has not been the case throughout four games. Even with Artemi Panarin not playing his best hockey, the Rangers have hung in with the Hurricanes stride for stride thanks to contributions from up and down the lineup.

I don’t expect New York to control play in this game, but I expect it to stay competitive given the importance.

Shesterkin has followed up his brilliant regular season with a strong playoff run. Even early in the Penguins series, I really believed that Shesterkin’s poor results were almost entirely due to the nature of chances Pittsburgh was regularly being offered. Reviewing each of the goals, his form was far less bad than many perceived.

Shesterkin has now played to a +8.0 Goals Saved Above Expected rating (GSAx) with a .925 save percentage in 11 games this postseason.

Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

Carolina’s Offense Struggling vs. Shesterkin

For me, this series has been far more of a disappointment for a Carolina team that seemed well-positioned to use its spectacular core to go on a deep playoff run.

Carolina’s offense looked stale at times in the back half of the regular season, and the Hurricanes have now scored just 1.5 goals per game in this series. The Hurricanes have generated a reasonable output of 3.23 expected goals per game, but we have regularly seen this team widely underachieve what has been expected of them under coach Rod Brind’Amour.

Shesterkin is obviously the main part of the story for why Carolina’s offense is struggling, but it is worth noting that the Hurricanes may have been more than just unlucky against an elite goaltender so far.

The fact that Carolina’s traditionally spectacular defensive play looks true to form is a big reason as to why it may feel far from panicked, but I still have to imagine most Canes fans and players would have imagined they could be controlling somewhat more of the overall play. Carolina has allowed just 31 high-danger chances against at 5-on-5 so far in the series while generating 43 themselves.

Excluding empty netters, Carolina has allowed just 1.75 goals per game in this series, and the tight-checking, low scoring game-play is far from surprising considering each of these teams regular-season strengths. That’s particularly true since New York was significantly better defensively over the final two months.

The must-have app for NHL bettors

The best NHL betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Rangers vs. Hurricanes Pick

We haven’t seen the kind of notable home-and-road splits that the Hurricanes have tallied this postseason in ages. At some point, I feel Carolina’s trend of winning all of its home games while playing so much worse on the road is due to change.

This series is quickly falling into the kind where each game is often going to come down to a bounce or two here and there. Even factoring in how much better Carolina has been at home during this postseason, I still do not see value on the Canes at -160 considering the expected game-play, and definitely lean towards the Rangers moneyline as a side.

A take that I do feel much more confident in is that this should be another low-scoring, tight-checking affair that offers little in the way of complete defensive breakdowns.

We know Carolina will be ready to go at home and is excellent defensively. On the other side, I don’t expect New York to manage a high number of high-danger looks against Antti Raanta.

The Rangers have actually played very respectable defense in front of Shesterkin throughout this series, and it wouldn’t be surprising to see the goaltender thrive again in Game 5.

It’s hard for me to see either side managing much offense again in this contest, and I believe we have the 58% chance needed to make a bet on the under 5.5 a profitable wager long-term.

Pick: Under 5.5 -140 (Play 5.5 to -145)

_PromoID=[18148]

Thursday MLB Player Props & Picks: 2 Bets for Germán Márquez & Hyun Jin Ryu (May 26)

mlb player props-strikeout totals-german marquez-hyun jin ryu-odds-picks-may 26

Two pitchers show value from a strikeout perspective today on Thursday’s MLB slate. I’m looking to back a Colorado stalwart and an unimpressive Toronto left-hander.

Our Action Labs Props Tool grades each prop on a scale from 1-10, and I’ll be sure to include the grade for each of my betting recommendations in my discussions below.

Germán Márquez — Over 4.5 Strikeouts (+110)

Rockies @ Nationals
First Pitch 7:05 p.m. ET
Best Line DraftKings

There are plenty of amazing aces in MLB today. That list extends from Jacob deGrom to Sandy Alcantara.

But Germán Márquez deserves some recognition on that list.

Márquez has been the Rockies’ best pitcher for years now. He’s been struggling this season, but he’s due for plenty of negative regression. Márquez pairs a 6.14 ERA with a 4.57 xERA and 3.58 xFIP, with his lackluster basic stats inflamed by a .360 BABIP.

I trust Márquez to give us length in this matchup against a whimpering Nationals lineup. He also gives his impressive stuff. Márquez ranks above the 75th percentile in both curveball spin rate and chase rate, and he has cashed over this number in six of his eight starts this season as a result.

Moreover, Márquez has cashed over 4.5 Ks in four straight starts. His pitch count has gone up slightly in recent starts, with him eclipsing 90 pitches in three straight starts after being pulled in the five starts beforehand.

The Nationals are an impressively disciplined team, but that didn’t stop Márquez from striking out five Nats in just 77 pitches back on May 3. Márquez is not scared of this lineup, and he has the length and ability to easily cash this ridiculously low number.

Márquez has struck out five or more in 29 of his last 40 starts anyways, a 73% hit rate that implies -264 odds to the over. Our Action Labs Projections mark Márquez for 4.7 Ks today, and I’m too tempted by the plus-money number to stay away.

Pick: Over 4.5 Ks (+110)

Action Labs Grade: 7/10

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Hyun Jin Ryu — Over 3.5 Strikeouts (-135)

Blue Jays @ Angels
First Pitch 9:38 p.m. ET
Best Line DraftKings

Hyun Jin Ryu has had a tough year. His ERA sits at 6.00 through four lackluster starts, and his strikeout numbers are way down after six productive years in Los Angeles.

There is still hope for Ryu. His xFIP is still hanging around 4.00, although that’s mostly based on a walk rate that’s stayed south of 4%. But despite his horrific average exit velocity, Ryu has kept his xERA below 5.00 as well.

Ryu is due for some level of positive regression, no matter how little that is.

However, from a gambler’s perspective, we may be targeting Ryu at the perfect time. He’s never been as undervalued in his career, as I can’t remember the last time Ryu’s strikeout total was just 3.5.

The Angels are firing on the offensive end, but they are still striking out at a top-10 rate against righties this season (24.9%). This team can be strikeout prone, and it could also be the perfect team for Ryu’s revival.

Our Action Labs Player Props tool projects Ryu for a whopping 5.4 strikeouts on Thursday, making this our top-rated props play of the day.

Pick: Over 3.5 Ks (-135)

Action Labs Grade: 10/10

_PromoID=[16477, 16482]

NBA Playoffs Odds, Predictions: Betting Angle for Mavericks vs. Warriors Game 5

One betting angle, one tactical question and one bet for Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals between the Warriors and Mavericks.


_PromoID=[18105]

The Angle: Warriors Rarely Sweep, Or Let a Series Linger

In 26 playoff series under Steve Kerr, the Warriors have swept a team exactly six times. They have been up 3-0 in 10 of those 26 series and never once has it gone to a Game 6. Golden State is 6-4 in Game 4’s up 3-0 and 4-0 up 3-1 after leading 3-0.

It’s not that the Warriors didn’t try in Game 4. Had the early shots gone down or Dallas missed theirs, the Warriors would have likely stuck with it.

But if you read the comments from Game 3, you get a sense for how the Warriors managed this series. Here’s an excerpt from Draymond Green’s postgame availability after Game 3.

Question: You played almost 40 minutes, Steph played 40, Klay close to 40. Was this the circled game where you have to win this one?

Green: “It’s just a feeling you have in these series. Coming off a win like last game, you know if you can come in and play good basketball, you can essentially put a team away tonight. Now, this team isn’t going to quit. They are led by a Hall-of-Fame coach, Hall-of-Fame player, but he’s in the Hall of Fame, and a future Hall-of-Fame player in Luka Doncic, so they won’t quit.

But you can instill a lot of doubt with coming out and winning this game and we knew that. We came out with a certain intensely level and focus level that it would take to come on the road and still win. We did that tonight and now the mindset changes to coming out and taking care of our business this next game. But we kind of wanted to go all in on this one for sure because we felt like it was a game that if we come out and play our game, we should win.”

In 2015 vs. the Rockets, the Warriors had a similar approach. They were in tough games in the first two games in Oakland, then came out and just walloped the Rockets in Game 3. Houston was expecting a tough, long series, and wasn’t prepared for what the Warriors brought in that game.

But bringing that twice, vs. a team at home facing elimination, is difficult.

I’m not saying the Warriors eased off the throttle. I’m saying they didn’t throttle down like they did in Game 4.

A light night of work allows them time to respond in Game 5.

History says they will.

_PromoID=[18105]

The Question: Have the Mavericks Figured Out the Warriors’ Defense?

Golden State takes some getting used to on both ends of the floor. The Warriors’ offense is more driven by off-ball screens and movement, less by pick and roll. Their defense is switch-heavy and more complex.

On top of that, the Warriors have constantly mixed up their coverages on Luka Doncic. They’ve run switch, drop, ice, blitz, hedge, 2-3 and box-and-1 against him among some hybrids. If you don’t know what those are, that’s fine — the important part is they are throwing the kitchen sink at Doncic.

But the Mavericks have slowly gotten better. Expected field goal percentage factors who the shooter is, their shot location and the level of contest from the defense.

eFG% Expected eFG% Differential
Game 1 42.4 53.1 -10.6
Game 2 60.9 55.4 5.5
Game 3 48.7 56.5 -7.8
Game 4 62.2 58.5 3.7

The Mavericks have improved their expected eFG% with every game in this series. They’ve shot better than that expected mark twice and the improvement from Game 1 to Game 4 being over 5.4 percentage points is significant.

Some of this can be attributed to the Mavericks being at home, and in Game 4, the Warriors’ lackluster effort noted above.

But Dallas has also found some counters. The Mavericks are running tons of screens with their wings, Reggie Bullock and Dorian Finney-Smith, to apply pressure on the perimeter and punish the Warriors for doubling Doncic.

But if the Warriors throw another wrinkle, can the Mavericks adjust with so little room for error?

_PromoID=[17354]

The Bet to Make in Game 5 

The SGP’s always have brutal holds, which is why the books offer them, but I don’t want to lay the -260 for the alternate line. I don’t want to lay the 7.5 and I don’t want to just play the third quarter. So here we are.

When the Warriors win the third quarter of a Game 5 at home under Steve Kerr, they are 9-0, undefeated. The Warriors have won 9-of-12 third quarters in home Game 5’s. It’s always been their go-to and the strategy of emphasizing it can be traced back to Phil Jackson, who always had dynamite thirds with the Bulls and Lakers.

Now, for the line. Teams at home up 3-1 in Game 5 are 33-36-3 ATS (47.1%) since 2003. Steve Kerr teams in that exact spot are just 2-7 ATS.

It’s a spot you can easily identify as market inflation, especially considering that home teams’ straight-up record is 58-13 (81.7%).

So the spread is not the bet to play. However, four-point teasers are good for 51-19 ATS (73%) on that leg, home teams up 3-1 in Game 5. Instead of taking a different game with a non-correlated outcome, we take the Warriors to win the third quarter and when they win the third quarter they win the game and when they win the game they cover a number that historically teams have covered 73% of the time.

At 73% of the time for the cover -2.5 and -160 on the moneyline for the third, I should get +122. I’m paying 15 cents for the same-game, but given that the two plays are correlated, I like my EV enough to pay the 15 cents.

This avoids having to lay the 7.5, avoids having to pay the -300 on the moneyline and puts two high-probability outcomes that are correlated together for a slightly-better-than-even payout.

The Bet: Warriors -2.5 (alternate line) + Warriors 3Q Moneyline Parlay (+107)

Win $50 if Stephen Curry Scores 1+ Point!

Sign up using code ACTIONNBA

Place a $5+ NBA entry

Live in 31 states!

Blue Jays vs. Angels Odds, Picks, Predictions: Can Ohtani Silence Toronto’s Offense? (Thursday, May 26)

blue-jays-vs-angels-thursday-odds-picks-predictions-mlb-may-26-2022

Blue Jays vs. Angels Odds

Blue Jays Odds +125
Angels Odds -155
Over/Under 7.5 (-110/-110)
Time 9:38 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

Los Angeles is on pace to increase its win total by more than 22 wins this season. The Halos are neck and neck with Houston in the race for the AL West division title.

Toronto sits in third in the AL East and has been a little underwhelming to start the year. At just 23-30, the Blue Jays are 9-12 in May and slipping behind the Yankees and Rays once again.

Toronto will head to Los Angeles for a four-game series with the Angels this weekend and they’ll need to start playing up to expectations if they want to stay in the competitive AL East race.

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Toronto Blue Jays: Can Bats Find Their Groove?

After just two starts, Hyun-jin Ryu (LHP) was put on the Injured List with forearm inflammation. Whatever he did to get healed looks like it surely has worked. In his first two outings, Ryu allowed 11 runs over 7 1/3 innings for a 13.50 ERA.

In the two games since his return from the IL, he has surrendered just one run over 10 2/3 innings, an 0.84 ERA. Despite the improved numbers, Ryu allowed 18 hard hit balls in his past two starts, compared to 12 prior to his IL stint. He also had an xFIP over 3.86 over the past two starts.

Expected to be one of the league’s most high-powered offenses, Toronto ranks just 25th in runs scored this year. The Jays are 20th in wOBA and 18th in wRC+. During the month of May, the Blue Jays rank in the bottom three of the league in both.

For such a deep lineup, George Springer and Vlad Guerrero Jr. are the only two players on the Jays with a wRC+ above 120. They are also the only two players with more than six home runs.

_PromoID=[16477]

Los Angeles Angels: Trout, Ohtani … and Ward?

The reigning AL MVP has gotten off to a slow start at the plate, but Shohei Ohtani (RHP) has been stellar on the mound. In seven starts, he has a 2.82 ERA and a 2.46 xFIP. His BB/9 of 2.11 is down from 3.04 a year ago and his K/9 rate is up from 10.77 to 12.44.

Ohtani’s velocity has continued to tick up each year. After averaging 93.8 miles per hour with his fastball in 2020, he ticked up to 95.6 in 2021 and has been sitting at 97.2 mph this year — the fourth highest average fastball velocity among all starting pitchers. He couples that with a slider that has been nearly unhittable and generates a 48.9% whiff rate.

I hope the fountains at Angel Stadium don’t have fish in them because there sure has been a lot of action out there this year. Los Angeles has crushed the second most home runs and sits fourth in runs scored.  The Halos lead the entire league in wRC+.

Mike Trout and Ohtani have combined for four AL MVP awards., yet it is Taylor Ward who leads the team with a 244 wRC+ and .506 wOBA. In fact, Ward leads the entire league in both categories for all players with at least 100 plate appearances. Trout ranks second.

Blue Jays-Angels Pick

As strong as Ryu looked in his past two outings, he was still hit hard and struggled to miss bats. Ryu ranks in the bottom 10% of the league in xBA, Hard-Hit%, average exit velocity and K% this year. The 35-year-old has been on a steady decline over the past four years.

Despite the names in the lineup, Toronto has really struggled at the plate this month. The Angels on the other hand, lead the league in wRC+ and have six players with a wRC+ over 120.

I’m not somebody who backs Ohtani often given the steep price typically associated with him. However, with the big names in the Blue Jays lineup we actually have a reasonable number at -150. While I do like the moneyline up to that point, I’ll instead back the sizeable starting pitching advantage and play the Angels to lead after five innings down to -110.

Pick: Los Angeles Angels F5 -0.5 (-105)
_PromoID=[16477]

Heat vs. Celtics Series Odds & Schedule: Boston Favored After Game 5 Win

Heat vs. Celtics Series Odds

Heat Celtics
Series Winner +750 -1250
Win in 4 +900 +800
Win in 5 +470 +450
Win in 6 +460 -450
Win in 7 +750 +600
Odds as of Monday and via FanDuel.

After Game 5

The Celtics asserted their dominance in the third quarter, outscoring the Heat 32-16 en route to a 93-80 victory in Miami. Neither team shot the ball well as Boston finished 46.5% from the field and Miami shot 31.9%, yet the Celtics did enough to get the win on the road. Jaylen Brown led all scorers with 25 points and Jayson Tatum was right behind him with 22. The win moved the Celtics from -155 to -1250 to win the series while the Heat moved from +130 to +750.

After Game 4

Despite not having the services of Marcus Smart, the Celtics jumped out to an 18-point lead at the end of the first quarter and were never threatened.

After struggling in Game 3, Jayson Tatum found his form again, dropping 31 points on 8-of-16 shooting.

Meanwhile, on the Heat side, they didn’t have a single starter score in double figures, including Jimmy Butler, who put up just six points on a poor 3-of-14 shooting.

After Game 3

The Celtics staged a late comeback, but it ultimately fell short as Boston was unable to recover from a poor first half. Miami got off to a fast start and led the Celtics 62-47 at the half. Jimmy Butler, who finished with eight points in 20 minutes, left the game with a knee injury, so that will certainly be something to monitor moving forward. However, as far as Game 3 was concerned, Bam Adebayo (31 points, 10 rebounds), P.J. Tucker (17 points) and Max Strus (16 points) carried the Heat to a pivotal road win. Miami has guaranteed itself at least a split in this two-game trip to Boston and moved from +170 to -145 to win the series. The Celtics entered the game as -200 favorites to win the series, but are now listed at +115.

After Game 2

The return of both Marcus Smart and Al Horford paid big dividends for the Celtics as Boston cruised to a 127-102 victory in Game 2. Smart nearly finished with a triple-double as he totaled 24 points, 12 rebounds and nine assists.

Horford grabbed three rebounds and finished with 10 points. Jimmy Butler led Miami with 29 points, but the Heat turned the ball over 14 times and shot just 30.4% from beyond the arc.

The series now shifts to Boston for Game 3 and the Celtics have moved to the favorites to win the series. Boston is priced at -200, while the Heat are +170.


After Game 1

The Heat took Game 1 of the East finals behind a dominant third-quarter performance in which they outscored the Celtics by 25 points. Both teams were playing shorthanded, but the Celtics were down two starters compared to one for the Heat.

Al Horford is expected to miss Game 2 as well after entering health and safety protocols Tuesday, and there hasn’t been any word on if Smart will be ready by Thursday.

As for the series, the Heat went from +150 underdogs to -125 favorites after Game 1. Their odds to win the series in five games dropped from +800 before the series to +375 after the win.


Miami Heat

The Miami Heat are back in the Eastern Conference finals for the second time in three seasons. They face the same opponent they beat to in Orlando to advance to the 2020 NBA Finals, but things are bit different this time around.

The Heat are the top seed this time around and not the scrappy underdog no one saw coming, even if they still carry themselves as such. The Heat dispatched the Philadelphia 76ers with relative ease in six games and will have five days of rest when Game 1 of the conference finals tips. Unfortunately, the extra time won’t help them on the injury front. Starting point guard Kyle Lowry is expected to miss Game 1 with a hamstring injury and his status for the rest of the series is unclear.

The Heat will need to rely on their role players and their star Jimmy Butler whose offensive game has been exceptional in the playoffs — he’s the second-leading scorer left in the postseason (29.7 PPG) behind Luka Doncic.

BetSync with BetMGM for easy bet tracking

Automatically import all your bets

Track your bet win probability

Available in NJ, PA, CO, IN, TN and WV

Boston Celtics

The Celtics had to knock off two of the most dangerous teams in the East just to make the Eastern Conference finals and did it in impressive fashion. The went on the road in a must-win Game 6 and Jayson Tatum out-dueled Giannis Antetokounmpo. Then in Boston, they got a career game in from Grant Williams to put the Bucks away in Game 7.

The Celtics actually had the best Net Rating (+9.1) of any team in the playoffs despite going the full seven games, and their defense was suffocating, holding the Bucks to 99.7 points per 100 possessions for the series.

BetMGM has the Celtics listed as the favorites in this series at -185, which translates to about 62% implied odds, and their odds to win in six are the lowest on the board at +280.

Celtics vs. Heat Game 6 Odds

Celtics Odds -9
Heat Odds +9
Moneyline -405 / +320
Over/Under 201
Time Wednesday, 8:30 p.m. ET
TV ESPN
Odds as of Wednesday and via FanDuel.

_PromoID=[16830]

Heat vs. Celtics Conference Finals Schedule

Game 1: Heat 118, Celtics 107
Game 2: Celtics 127, Heat 102
Game 3: Heat 109, Celtics 103
Game 4: Celtics 102, Heat 82
Game 5: Celtics 93, Heat 80
Game 7: Sunday, May 29 | 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN (If Nec.)

NBA PrizePicks Player Prop Picks: Parlay Luka Doncic & Draymond Green in Mavericks vs. Warriors Game 5 (May 26)

Player props have become among the most popular bets in the industry, but while the amount of states with legalized gambling is growing, some may feel left out.

Enter: PrizePicks.

With PrizePicks, you get the opportunity to essentially parlay game prop over/unders with cash payouts depending on how many you get correct on that day’s slate.

You can do a Flex Play or a Power Play. A Flex Play gives you lesser odds, but you can win money even if you don’t nail every pick. Meanwhile, a Power Play is similar to a parlay — it’s all or nothing.

Here’s how I would approach Thursday’s Game 5 of the NBA’s Western Conference Finals.


What is PrizePicks? A daily fantasy operator — meaning they’re available in more states (30) than sports betting is! — PrizePicks offers a unique opportunity for action on player props in which you parlay two or more plays together.

Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

Luka Doncic Under 8 Assists

If you think the Mavs pull out another win and keep their series alive, then this may not be the play for you. But if you expect the Warriors to finish the job, get the win and head to the NBA Finals, then this is your play.

Luka Doncic has played in seven Mavs losses this postseason and he hasn’t gone over eight assists in any of them. He’s under that number in 5-of-7 and pushed the other two teams. In fact, he’s only gone over eight assists three times in the playoffs.

It’s not even necessarily Doncic’s fault. Remember, assists take two players. Doncic is always going to get his, but he can’t control whether his teammates hit the barrage of 3s they take every game.

When Dallas doesn’t make its shots, the Mavs lose — and Doncic doesn’t get his assists. He’s averaging only 5.1 APG in Mavericks losses this postseason.

Draymond Green Under 6 Assists

Draymond Green is the heart and soul of the Warriors and certainly one of their most important players, but other Golden State players have made a big impact this series.

Kevon Looney has dominated the glass and filled up the box score and Andrew Wiggins has been a two-way star, defending Luka Doncic on one end and and giving him all he can handle at the other.

All of that has left Green’s numbers a bit muted, even in victory. Green’s rebounding and assist numbers are both down this series as he’s averaging only 4.8 APG and hasn’t gone over six assists in any game. He’s gone under thrice and pushed this line once.

At 10.3 Potential Assists per game, this line is a bit too high. Green has yet to go over six assists in any of his five games against Dallas all season. Why start now?

Win $50 if Luka Doncic Scores 1+ Point!

Sign up using code ACTIONNBA

Place a $5+ NBA entry

Live in 31 states!

NBA Player Props & Picks: Bet Luka Doncic, Draymond Green in Game 5 (May 26)

mavericks-vs-warriors-game-5-parlay-nba-western-conference-finals-may-26

The Warriors didn’t really show up for a potential closeout Game 4, so we’re headed back to San Francisco for Game 5 as Dallas fights to extend its season once again.

Golden State has been untouchable at home and the Warriors are a huge favorite, so how do we take that into account for our props plays?

Below, I have laid out two prop bets that I’m playing using the Action Labs Player Prop tool. Let’s dig into where to find value for Game 5 of the Western Conference finals.

_PromoID=[18090]

NBA Player Props & Picks

Luka Doncic, Under 8.5 Assists (-124)

Mavericks vs. Warriors Warriors -7
Time | TV 9 p.m. ET | TNT
Best Book FanDuel

What a game Luka Doncic had to help keep the Dallas Mavericks season alive in Game 4! Doncic racked up 30 points, 14 rebounds and nine assists. He finished a single dime away from a 30-point triple double in an elimination game and continues to post huge numbers with his back against the wall and everything on the line.

Life won’t come as easy on the road, though. Golden State is a veteran, battle-tested team and the Warriors will surely come out more locked-in defensively and ready to give a full 48 minutes of effort — something the team clearly didn’t do in Game 4.

The Warriors played Game 4 like they’d take the win if it presented itself, but Dallas hit its shots early and it felt like Golden State let go of the rope a little bit.

This is a home closeout spot for the Warriors. Golden State has gone up 3-0 in a series 11 times since 2015. The Warriors have only gone 6-5 in potential closeout Game 4s, but each one of those Game 4 losses was followed by a Game 5 victory.

So why does that matter? It matters because Doncic has gone under 8.5 assists in all seven Mavs losses in this postseason, averaging just 5.1 APG in those losses. That’s a 100% hit rate on this prop and it’s even better if you parlay the assists under with a Warriors moneyline win at +126 combined.

It’s not that Doncic isn’t passing in losses — it’s that his teammates simply aren’t hitting shots. We know this about the Mavericks by now. When the shots fall for Reggie Bullock, Dorian Finney-Smith, Maxi Kleber and the rest of the squad, the Mavs can roll up points and look unbeatable. When the shots don’t fall, Dallas can get buried.

Hey, maybe the shots will fall and Dallas will squeeze another win out of this series. But if they don’t, it probably won’t be because Doncic didn’t score but rather because his teammates didn’t convert and that’s why we’re playing this assists under.

_PromoID=[18105]

Draymond Green, Under 6.5 Assists (-144)

Best Book FanDuel

Before this series, I said on the Buckets podcast that Draymond Green would be the most important player in the series. I expected Green to be a huge factor on both ends. His defense would need to be elite against this potent Mavs offense and I figured the Warriors would need him to be aggressive on offense, penetrating the defense with his dribbling and slicing them apart with his passing.

That’s really not what we’ve seen though. Green has been fine, good mostly, but it’s been a couple of the other Warriors starters who have really come through for the team. Kevon Looney has dominated the glass and filled up the box score as a huge factor and Andrew Wiggins has been outstanding at both ends — defending Doncic and giving him the business on the offensive end, too. The Warriors have found a familiar strength in numbers.

And you know, I think Green is just fine with that. Green’s numbers have been a bit muted this series, but nobody has ever mistaken Green as a guy who cares about his numbers. If the Warriors are winning, Green is happy. And they’re winning right now without him dominating the boards or racking up assists.

Green has gone under 6.5 assists in all four games of the series and he was under 6.5 in the one regular season game he played against Dallas, too. That’s a perfect 5-for-5 hit rate to this under. Green is averaging 4.8 APG for the series, and that’s about in line with expectation to his 10.3 Potential Assists per game since typically about half of those convert. That makes this line too high and it means we have to fade Green here.

I’ll play the assists under — I just don’t think the numbers will be there. But Green will be happy if he gets the only number that matters … a No. 4 in the win column for the series.

_PromoID=[18105]

NHL Playoffs Game 5 Odds, Preview, Prediction: Oilers vs. Flames (May 26)

nhl-playoffs-game-5-odds-preview-prediction-oilers-vs-flames-may-26

Oilers vs. Flames Game 5 Odds

Oilers Odds +135
Flames Odds -160
Over/Under 6.5 (-115/-105)
Time 9:30 p.m. ET
TV ESPN
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

Can the Calgary Flames extend the Battle of Alberta?

After dropping a pair of games in Edmonton, the Flames return to the Scotiabank Saddledome on Thursday with their season on the line, down 3-1 and hoping to earn a win to extend the series.

But the Oilers won’t make it easy as they’ve ridden historic performances from Connor McDavid and Evander Kane to three straight wins. One more victory will put them into the Western Conference Finals for the first time since 2006.

Where does the smart money lie? Here’s the latest on both teams and your best bet for the game.

The must-have app for NHL bettors

The best NHL betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Edmonton Oilers

Let’s start with Edmonton’s top line. With 11 points in four games against Calgary so far, Connor McDavid leads the playoff scoring race with 25 points in 11 games. Last season, Nikita Kucherov of Tampa Bay was the only player to beat that total in the entire postseason — he had 32 points in 23 games.

McDavid is averaging 2.27 points per game and there’s only one player in NHL history who has produced at a higher rate over a sample of more than five games in a playoff year. Another Oiler, Wayne Gretzky, did it four times — peaking with 47 points in 18 games in 1985, the year the Oilers won their second Stanley Cup.

Then, you’ve got Kane — a mid-season addition who has taken full advantage of his spot on McDavid’s line. With five goals in his past two games against Calgary, he’s now up to 12 goals in 11 postseason games. The all-time record belongs to yet another Oiler, Jari Kurri, who had 19 goals in 18 playoff games in 1985.

The Oilers are producing at a historic pace, but if you look under the hood, they’re losing the possession game at 5-on-5 in this series. They’re being outshot by an average of five shots per game and their special teams results are weaker than Calgary’s. They’re also getting killed in the faceoff circle, winning only 43.9% of their draws.

But Edmonton is winning the battle in net. At 40 years old, Mike Smith ranks second among goalies still alive in the playoffs with 10.1 goals saved above expected to go along with his .931 save percentage. Against Calgary, he’s at -1.00 goals saved above expected and has served up some monster gaffes. But that has been good enough. Smith hasn’t dwelt on his mistakes and his tough moments haven’t shaken the overall confidence of his team.

_PromoID=[18150]

Calgary Flames

The Flames came into this series as prohibitive favorites. But their only victory so far was that tumultuous 9-6 win in Game 1 where they squandered a 6-1 lead before finally putting the Oilers away.

Back in front of their home fans on Thursday, with their season on the line, the Flames and coach Darryl Sutter would love to play to the identity that served them so well during the regular season — structured and disciplined, limiting chances and relying on great goaltending.

Whether it’s due to fatigue at the end of a long season, an undisclosed injury issue or succumbing to the pressure of the big playoff stage, first-time Vezina Trophy nominee Jacob Markstrom has not played up to his standards in this series — a sudden twist of fate after he was able to outduel Dallas’ Jake Oettinger in Round 1.

Over the past four games, Markstrom has a 5.28 goals-against average, .850 save percentage and -9.02 goals saved above expected in all situations.

Calgary’s goaltending has undone what has been some solid 5-on-5 play. And the Flames’ offensive stars, led by Johnny Gaudreau, haven’t been able to keep pace with McDavid and company.

Calgary is dominating every metric except the one that matters most: 11 goals for, 15 goals against.

Oilers vs. Flames Pick

Despite the Flames’ issues over the past three games, the oddsmakers are firmly in their corner for Game 5. At -150 on the moneyline as of Wednesday night, they’re being assigned a 60% chance of picking up the win and extending the series to at least a Game 6.

If you’re looking strictly at advanced stats and juicing the odds a bit with home-ice advantage, that’s a fair assumption.

But McDavid is doing something for the Oilers right now that hasn’t been done in nearly 40 years. Analysts really don’t have pre-existing data that aligns with his next-level play. To make matters worse for Flames fans, we haven’t seen anything in this series to suggest Markstrom can suddenly find his groove with his team backed up against the wall.

Edmonton has won the past three games by multi-goal margins, so it wouldn’t be excessive to play the Oilers on the puck line on Thursday.

However, there’s very good value to be had on the moneyline, backing the squad with all the momentum to finish the job and punch its ticket to Round 3.

Pick: Oilers moneyline (+135); play down to +110
_PromoID=[18150]

Mavericks vs. Warriors Odds, Game 5 Preview, Prediction: Will Golden State Close it Out at Home? (May 26)

mavericks-vs-warriors-odds-game-5-preview-prediction-pick-nba-may-26-2022

Mavericks vs. Warriors Odds

Mavericks Odds +6.5
Warriors Odds -6.5
Over/Under 215.5
Time 9 p.m. ET
TV TNT
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

The Dallas Mavericks have it all to do on Thursday night. Down 3-1 in the Western Conference Finals, they’ll need three straight wins to complete the first comeback from 3-0 down in NBA history.

Standing in their way will be the mighty Golden State Warriors, who nearly erased a 29-point deficit at the end of a Game 4 loss.

Will Golden State pick right up where it left off? Let’s break this one down and find some betting value.

_PromoID=[18105]

Mavericks Surviving in Series With 3-Pointers

The story remains the same for the Mavericks. When they can shoot well from behind the arc, they are virtually impossible to stop. When they go cold from the field, they aren’t a competitive offense and almost always get taken to the woodshed.

Dallas managed to knock down 46.5% of its looks in a big home win to stave off elimination in Game 4. A whopping 43 of the Mavericks’ 82 field goal attempts came from behind the arc, so to update Joe Dellera’s note on the Mavericks from his Game 4 guide, the Mavericks are still taking well over 50% of their attempts from deep in this series.

While the Warriors found ways to force the Mavericks into tough shots in Games 1 and 3, they’ve still managed to have two games in the series in which they shot 46% or better from deep — including one on the road. They’ve also shot 28.9% or worse in two games.

To translate that into scoring output, the two hot shooting nights for Dallas resulted in a 118 offensive rating or better — shockingly high numbers against one of the better defensive teams in the league. When the Mavericks opened the series in Game 1 with just 11 3s, they scored 90.6 points per 100 possessions. In Game 3’s rough shooting night, that number was 109.9.

Dallas has lost the battle on the glass in every game this series due to its undersized small-ball lineups, though it’s worth noting that the Mavericks were able to get their rebounding rate up to 48.4% in Game 4.

Still, their offensive-rebounding rate was a series-low 9.1%, which pretty much nullifies that number. As a team that shoots at such a high volume and one that can shoot the deep well, second chances are vital.

Win $50 if Luka Doncic Scores 1+ Point!

Sign up using code ACTIONNBA

Place a $5+ NBA entry

Live in 31 states!

Injuries Are Taking a Toll on the Warriors

The Warriors really never got it going in Game 4. They came out of the gates slow, falling behind by four points after the first quarter and playing sloppy basketball in the second to trail 15 at halftime.

Golden State made just 3-of-16 looks from 3 and turned the ball over five times in the process. On the other side of the coin, Dallas was 11-for-23 from deep in the first half, which gave the Mavericks the lead for good.

Now, the shooting numbers against Golden State will likely vary from game to game. There was really no difference in the way the Warriors played defense from Game 3 to Game 4, aside from perhaps a missed rotation or two.

With that said, it’s fair to wonder if the Warriors’ defense was impacted by the loss of Otto Porter, Jr. The wing missed the contest with left foot soreness and is currently listed as questionable for Game 5.

With Porter on the floor during the playoffs, the Warriors are posting a 103.4 defensive rating. Without him? That number balloons to 112.4.

While those numbers are going to be slightly skewed based on the Mavericks’ blowout win Tuesday and the small sample size, there is still a decided difference between the Warriors with Porter and the Warriors without Porter. He can help limit easy looks on the outside with his length and, on the other side of the ball, he’s a capable shooter.

Porter’s status probably isn’t going to make or break this game, but should he return the Warriors would have to be considered bigger favorites.

_PromoID=[17354]

Mavericks-Warriors Pick

The Warriors have closed every playoff series out at home this season and there is little reason to believe they won’t do the same thing Thursday. Dallas was 2.8% better from deep at home during the regular season and although the playoffs have seen the Mavs pull out some great shooting nights, there are also nights like Game 1 in San Francisco where Dallas couldn’t hit nearly enough triples to keep up.

Golden State’s offense lacked inspiration for most of Game 4 and it was a shock to the Mavericks’ system when the Warriors’ bench entered the game toward the end, competed for rebounds, knocked down shots and took the ball to the rim with conviction. These are things the Warriors are known to do, but for whatever reason the shot selection from the starters wasn’t the best early in the contest.

Dallas has always been faced with a tough task when asked to keep up with some of the league’s most efficient offenses, considering its own brand of offense can be incredibly volatile and its defense was in the middle of the pack after the All-Star break.

The Warriors have a decided edge on the glass, they’ve shown they have a sustainable offensive attack and they’ve twice in four games been able to influence enough Mavericks shots to help lead to a cold shooting night. I’m comfortable laying the points.

Pick: Warriors -6.5 (-110)

_PromoID=[18105]

Thursday French Open Picks, Predictions: Our Team’s Best Second Round Bets (May 26)

thursday-french-open-picks-predictions-best-second-round-bets-may-26

Thursday’s slate of tennis at the French Open includes matches from each singles and doubles draw that the tournament has to offer.

That means there’s a number of quality matches to evaluate, and our analysts have found a dozen matches where they believe there is a betting market to exploit.

Read on for our best bets from Thursday’s batch of matches at Roland Garros.

Matches are listed in chronological order. Match times are subject to change and many will be played after their projected start time. Read here for advice on watching the French Open.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Casper Ruud vs. Emil Ruusuvuori

5 a.m. ET

Casper Ruud hasn’t been at his best throughout this clay season, and Kenny Ducey believes this is a chance for Emil Ruusuvuori to push the Norwegian.

Read on to see how he’s betting the early-morning match.

Veronika Kudermetova vs. Aleksandra Krunic

5 a.m. ET

This is a classic battle of in-form versus out-of-form, says David Gertler, who is backing Aleksandra Krunic to keep things close in this match.

Daniil Medvedev vs. Laslo Djere

6 a.m. ET

The world No. 2 faces a difficult task in the form of clay-courter Laslo Djere, and Luke Holmberg doesn’t love the stylistic battle he faces.

See which bet he’s targeting to try and take advantage of Medvedev’s possible struggles.

Hugo Gaston vs. Pedro Cachin

6:15 a.m. ET

Hugo Gaston in front of a Parisian crowd? That’s a free bit of value against any projected line, says Avery Zimmerman.

Read on to see why he feels the edge is still with the charismatic Frenchman.

Danka Kovinic vs. Anna Karolina Schmiedlova

6:30 a.m. ET

Danka Kovinic is a quality clay-courter who is extremely tough to break down when she’s playing well.

Gertler looks at her second round matchup in this position and evaluates how he wants to play the match.

Miomir Kecmanovic vs. Alexander Bublik

6:30 a.m. ET

Alexander Bublik is known for his distaste for clay, but that doesn’t mean you should stay away from backing the big server.

Ducey explains why the value in this match lies with Bublik.

Elena Rybakina vs. Katie Volynets

7 a.m. ET

It took a unique path for Katie Volynets to reach the French Open, but she’s looking to take full advantage of the opportunity.

Zimmerman looks at her matchup with the big-hitting Elena Rybakina and delivers his best bet.

Danielle Collins vs. Shelby Rogers

8 a.m. ET

The Australian Open finalist will take on her fellow American on neither player’s preferred surface, but she should be a bigger favorite, says Jon Reid.

Look for Danielle Collins to exploit Shelby Rogers’ game in a few ways on Thursday.

Madison Keys vs. Caroline Garcia

8 a.m. ET

Another American will take the court in Madison Keys, and she’ll be facing an opponent that has played just one match in the last two months.

Reid discusses why you should be backing Keys to reach the third round with ease.

Cristian Garin vs. Ilya Ivashka

8:15 a.m. ET

Cristian Garin is far better known for his clay-court abilities than his opponent Ilya Ivashka, but does that mean he’ll rout the Belarusian?

Not so fast, says Reid, who is targeting the total of this match.

Iga Swiatek vs. Alison Riske

8:15 a.m. ET

Is there any point in fading the hottest player in tennis right now?

Gertler has no interest in doing so, and he discusses why Iga Swiatek is primed for another dominant victory, this time against Alison Riske.

Daniel Evans vs. Mikael Ymer

9:30 a.m. ET

Daniel Evans and Mikael Ymer both cruised through the first round of the French Open with ease, so where does the value lie?

Holmberg thinks the underdog should be receiving far more credit, and he’s looking at a possible upset.

Stefanos Tsitsipas vs. Zdenek Kolar 

10 a.m. ET

Zdenek Kolar picked up a massive win in his first round match with Lucas Pouille, but don’t expect him to build a fairytale run, says Reid.

He’s backing Stefanos Tsitsipas to cruise to victory in this one.

Miomir Kecmanovic vs. Alexander Bublik French Open Odds, Prediction (May 26)

miomir-kecmanovic-vs-alexander-bublik-french-open-odds-prediction-may-26

Miomir Kecmanovic vs. Alexander Bublik Odds

Kecmanovic Odds -525
Bublik Odds +380
Total 34.5 (-120 / -105)
Time 6:30 a.m. ET
Odds via DraftKings. For tips on watching tennis matches, click here.

Miomir Kecmanovic is enjoying a career year at the age of 22 and seems to finally be tapping into the wealth of potential he’s always had ever since he was a junior.  He’s into the second round of the French Open for the third time in his career and can put together his best result to date at Roland Garros with a win over Alexander Bublik on Thursday.

While the odds would indicate this one should be rather straightforward, it could get a little complicated for the young Serb. Let’s break this one down.

_PromoID=[18179]

Miomir Kecmanovic

Much has been expected of Kecmanovic after he reached No. 1 in the ITF World Junior rankings and won the Orange Bowl. For years, he tore through the lower levels of tennis and eventually made it as a mainstay on the ATP Tour in 2019 with his first title coming on the clay in Kitzbuhel the following season.

What followed through the pandemic and in the re-start was a lack of results. The 22-year-old Serb finished his 2021 season with a 17-27 record at all levels and, while seeking answers, he hired David Nalbandian has his coach. The partnership instantly paid off with Kecmanovic flashing a bigger serve and bigger forehand in a run to the fourth round of the Australian Open.

Since then, Kecmanovic has produced the results that were missing before. He went to the quarters in Rio de Janeiro and the quarters of each leg of the Sunshine Double. He was able to take out some dangerous names along the way like Matteo Berrettini, Felix Auger-Aliassime and Taylor Fritz.

With all that said, it’s hard to say Kecmanovic has impressed this clay-court season after some solid results during the early year Golden Swing on the dirt. He entered Roland Garros 6-4 since clay season started, though two of those losses came to Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal.

Alexander Bublik

Bublik is one of the most talented tennis players in the world, but the one thing holding him back has always been his attitude toward the game. While he has a massive serve and special feel around the net, his nonchalant play and lack of consistent focus have made him a hard player to read and one who’s still in search of his first meaningful result.

The 24-year-old Kazakh has also openly admitted to hating clay-court tennis, which would seem to be the truth considering his record through the years. Perhaps in an effort to avoid playing too many matches on the dreaded dirt, Bublik was bounced in his first matches in Barcelona, Madrid, Rome and Geneva — though it should be said that in the two Masters 1000 tournaments, he was able to play very competitive tennis.

The lack of focus, coupled with the hatred for clay, have brought us to this moment. Bublik, who would be no longer than a +150 underdog in my eyes on a hardcourt against Kecmanovic, is nearly +400 to win this match.

While it’s not the his preferred surface, it should be noted that Bublik has had a decent amount of success on clay. He reached the quarterfinals of the ATP 250 event in Hamburg in 2020 with some impressive wins over Albert Ramos-Vinolas and Felix Auger-Aliassime and the quarterfinals last year in Madrid, where he was ousted by the dangerous Casper Ruud. His great feel around the net and the way he can shape his forehand certainly plays well on dirt.

While this clay season hasn’t been as kind, Bublik did well to quiet concerns with a commanding straight-set win over Arthur Rinderknech in the first round.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Betting Value

Make no mistake: Bublik can absolutely win this match. He has arguably more talent than Kecmanovic and while this hasn’t been his year on the dirt, the past two seasons are proof he can pick up wins on the surface.

We also know that while Bublik doesn’t like clay, he does like money and ranking points. Because of this, he’s always put forth a great effort in Grand Slam matches and we should expect nothing less here.

Bublik beat Kecmanovic on a hardcourt in 2021 and just a few weeks ago fell to the Serb on the clay 6-4, 7-5 in a very close match. With a booming serve and some renewed focus and energy here in Paris, I think Bublik should repeat his performance from Madrid and keep this match close. I also will have some exposure to the moneyline with the thought that Bublik may just be hustling the rest of the tour right now, making them think he doesn’t want to be playing this match.

Pick: Bublik +6.5 Games (-105)

_PromoID=[18179]

2022 Charles Schwab Challenge Market Report: Public Backing Spieth, Morikawa at Colonial

2022-charles-schwab-challenge-market-report-public-backing-spieth-and-morikawa-at-colonial

There is a chance some finance bros stumbled upon this article and think it’s about the stock market.

However, we are here to talk golf as the PGA Tour heads to Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth for the Charles Schwab Challenge.

Colonial has been a regular stop on Tour since 1946 and golf bettors have a lot of familiarity with the course.

Jordan Spieth, Scottie Scheffler, Justin Thomas, Viktor Hovland and Collin Morikawa headline the field as the only players ranked inside the top 10 of the Official World Golf Rankings.

The must-have app for golf bettors

Custom scoreboard for your bets

Free picks from experts

Live odds for every golfer

On a course that puts a premium on driving the ball straight and hitting greens, Morikawa has been getting the most action at BetMGM. Morikawa accounts for 6.7% of the bets and 15.6% of the handle at BetMGM. His odds have held steady throughout the week at +2000.

Spieth is also getting lots of love back in his home state. He’s getting 8.3% of the tickets and 12.8% of the money as the second-biggest liability for BetMGM this week. Spieth is one of the favorites at +1200, along with Scheffler and Thomas.

Hovland is the third-biggest liability for BetMGM at +2000. He’s currently garnering 6% of the tickets and 10.4% of the handle.

Scheffler and Thomas are both getting less than 5% of the bets this week. Scheffler is coming off a missed cut, while Thomas is coming off a win at the PGA Championship.

Kevin Kisner has moved from 125-1 to 100-1 as he’s getting 2.8% of the bets and 2.2% of the money at BetMGM. He’s the only player with 100-1 odds or greater who’s getting over 1% of the bets and handle.

Kevin Na has moved from 50-1 to 40-1 as one of the biggest risers of the week. Tom Hoge has moved from 66-1 to 50-1.

Bet the Charles Schwab Challenge, Win $200 (No Matter What!)

Casper Ruud vs. Emil Ruusuvuori French Open Odds, Prediction (May 26)

casper-ruud-vs-emil-ruusuvuori-french-open-odds-prediction-may-26

Casper Ruud vs. Emil Ruusuvuori Odds

Ruud Odds -715
Ruusuvuori Odds +460
Total 34.5 (-120 / +100)
Time 5:00 a.m. ET
Odds via PointsBet. For tips on watching tennis matches, click here.

After a four-set escape against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the Frenchman’s farewell match, life won’t get much easier for Casper Ruud with upstart Emil Ruusuvuori up next. Can the Fin find a way into this match with the World No. 8? Let’s have a closer look at the matchup.

_PromoID=[18179]

Casper Ruud

From a young age, it was clear Ruud’s game was built for the clay. The son of former ATP pro Christian Ruud burst on the scene in 2017 with a 46-13 clay-court record on the ITF and Challenger levels. From there he’d continue skyrocketing. Ruud did a ton of winning in the Challengers and soon after picked up his maiden title on the dirt at Buenos Aires in 2020. He’d follow that by collecting four more in 2021 in Geneva, Bastad, Gstaad and Kitzbuhel.

All four of those titles, though, came at small ATP 250 tournaments which seldom feature great competition. That drew widespread skepticism over Ruud’s ranking, which seemed to be inflated. All the while, the young Norwegian wasn’t even working on his hardcourt game and simply focused on throwing ATP 250 trophies on his mantle.

Well, the end of last season seemed to confirm Ruud is a very good player. He finished 57-17 and while he picked up a few big wins on clay, the interesting number was his 16-6 hardcourt record, which came with a title in San Diego (also a 250). Ruud and his team clearly did plenty of work on his serve and forehand, adding velocity and flattening it out to increase its effectiveness away from clay.

Things seemed to be working out perfectly for Ruud, but his clay-court season has featured some uncharacteristic losses and contentious matches. The latest of which was in the first round of Roland-Garros, when Ruud dropped the first set against an over-the-hill Tsonga and went down a break at 5-4 in the fourth before the Frenchman injured his shoulder and effectively threw the last three games of the match.

Ruud’s already lost as many times on clay as he did last season and his wins certainly haven’t been as convincing. It’s likely due to the fact that he worked tirelessly on his hardcourt game and it remains to be seen if he can find his form again here in Paris.

Emil Ruusuvuori

Ruusuvuori is a young Finnish player who, simply put, is one of the most solid players on tour. He gives little away, hitting you with a relentless attack of high-percentage groundstrokes on every point. In many ways, I liken him to a Spanish clay-court player with the way he will consistently play the high-percentage shot.

The 23-year-old does have some put-away power as well and makes for an interesting player on the dirt. While he’s never been great on the surface and earned his way to the top 100 on the back of his hardcourt wins, Ruusuvuori has seemed to figure out the surface with a 9-6 record this year after going 2-6 last season.

After getting bounced in the first round of Roland Garros in each of the past two seasons, Ruusuvuori was finally able to get a win in the first round this year — a hard-fought victory over Ugo Humbert. While Humbert has a bad clay-court record and lacked any sort of form entering this tournament, I’d argue he played the best match of his season against Ruusuvuori. With that, I rate the Fin’s win pretty highly.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Betting Value

As we have learned through the years, sometimes young players who don’t grow up playing clay-court tennis and lack wins there take a few years to figure it out. It doesn’t mean their games don’t work on the dirt, rather they just need some time to learn how to best use the surface.

Last year we saw Cam Norrie become a clay-court menace after he had played few matches on the surface. This year, it was the Aussie Alex De Minaur who captured our eyes. We can’t forget about Ruusuvuori in all of this. He has been one of the hardest outs on a hardcourt for a few years now and seems to be translating that success onto the dirt.

These two met in Barcelona just a month and a half ago and the match was not close. Ruusuvuori hung around for a little while in the first before he was broken twice on the tail end in quick succession and went down an early break in the second. After challenging for the break back at 2-4, he was broken for the match.

The margins weren’t as great as the scoreline would indicate and I think Ruusuvuori has only gotten better over the past month on the clay. He should be able to keep this one close and capitalize on Ruud’s dip in level on the clay.

Pick: Ruusuvuori +6.5 Games (-106)

_PromoID=[18179]

Brewers vs. Cardinals Odds, Picks, Predictions: Why Both Teams’ Bats Have the Upper Hand (Thursday, May 26)

Brewers vs. Cardinals Odds

Brewers Odds +105
Cardinals Odds -125
Over/Under 7.5 (-115/-105)
Time 7:45 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Cardinals host the Brewers on Thursday in the first of a four-game NL Central intradivisional series. Two of the last three meetings between these teams have seen 11 total runs scored.

Will we get another high-scoring affair, or can the pitching limit the scoring this time around?

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Brewers Bats Thrive Against Righties

The Milwaukee Brewers travel to St. Louis following a three-game set against the San Diego Padres. Prior to Wednesday, the total has tended to go over in their games as it is 12-8 (60%) over their last 20 contests.

I believe this is a trend that will continue as left-hander Eric Lauer is projected to take the mound for the Brewers. Lauer has had a great start to the season as he is 4-1 with a 2.16 ERA and 0.936 WHIP through seven starts.

That being said, Lauer’s metrics suggest that we could see some regression soon. This season, Lauer possesses a .313 xwOBA, .244 xBA, and .452 xSLG.

While those metrics are still good, they do not match up with his surface-level stats. Additionally, Lauer’s numbers take a dip on the road as he possesses a 3.32 ERA and 1.015 WHIP.

Over his seven starts this season, the total runs scored have gone over 7.5 in four outings (57%). Lauer should get some good run support as the Brewers are slated to go against right-hander Adam Wainwright.

When facing right-handed pitchers this season, the Brewers rank 11th in the league in BA, fourth in SLG, fourth in OPS, and fourth in wOBA. Over 267 career plate appearances against Wainwright, this current Brewers roster boasts a .283 BA and .356 wOBA.

_PromoID=[17280]


The Cardinals Should Continue to Hammer Lefty Pitching

The St. Louis Cardinals enter this contest following Tuesday’s 8-1 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays. Tuesday’s game was yet another high-scoring affair for the Cardinals as there have been eight or more total runs scored in seven straight and 14 of their last 20 games (70%).

As I mentioned above, right-hander Adam Wainwright is slated to take the mound for the Cardinals. Like Lauer, Wainwright’s metrics are good but do not match up with his surface-level stats.

This season, Wainwright boasts a 2.87 ERA and 1.191 WHIP through eight starts. However, he possesses a .332 xwOBA, .258 xBA, and .439 xSLG.

In his one start against the Brewers this season, Wainwright allowed four runs on eight hits in four and one-third innings pitched. Over his eight starts this season, the total runs scored have gone over 7.5 in five outings (63%).

Wainwright should get some good run support as the Cardinals are slated to go against left-hander Eric Lauer. When going against left-handed pitchers this season, the Cardinals rank second in the league in BA, first in SLG, first in OPS, and first in wOBA.

_PromoID=[16447]

Brewers-Cardinals Pick

This total is set too low based on the surface-level numbers for each starting pitcher. I like this total to go over 7.5 after taking a deeper dive into each guy’s metrics, the hitting matchups, and the trends.

We could see some regression from each starting pitcher, especially with how well the Brewers hit righties and the Cardinals hit lefties. The weather could also give us a small boost in this game as the forecast calls for 7-9 MPH winds blowing directly out to center field.

Pick: Over 7.5 (-115) | Play up to (-125)

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Thursday French Open Odds, Picks, Previews: Hugo Gaston to Stay Hot in Round 2 (May 26)

thursday-french-open-odds-picks-previews-hugo-gaston-ride-form-round-2-may-26

There are a host of entertaining matchups to choose from on Thursday’s slate at the French Open and in this piece we’ll be looking at one match from the men’s draw and one from the women’s.

Countryman Hugo Gaston will go to battle with Pedro Cachin, while American Katie Volynets will look to play spoiler against Elena Rybakina.

Here is how I’ll be betting each second-round matchup.

Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches.

_PromoID=[18179]

Hugo Gaston (-110) vs. Pedro Cachin (-110)

6:15 a.m. ET

There’s no question Hugo Gaston is simply a different player in Paris than he is everywhere else. The Frenchman feeds off of the crowd to elevate his game and frustrate his opponents as much as anyone and that’s what he did against Alex de Minaur in the first round.

Gaston uses an extremely unique style of play, dispatching consistent drop shots and aiming to move his opponents around as much as possible.

Interestingly, over the past three years Gaston actually has more wins in the two ATP events held in Paris than he does anywhere else. He’s picked up 12 wins in Paris and 10 wins everywhere else. That doesn’t account for the Challenger level, but it gives a good picture of how Gaston’s level changes based on location.

Pedro Cachin dropped his final qualifying round match against Pavel Kotov, but a lucky loser berth revived his French Open hopes and he took full advantage in round one.

The Argentine beat Norbert Gombos in four sets to reach the second round. He excelled behind his serve as he won 80% of his first-serve points and 50% of his second-serve points. However, Cachin made an excellent 69% of his first serves, alleviating the pressure on him.

Of course, Gaston is a completely different opponent than Gombos. While Gombos is a ball-basher who looks to take the initiative in points with power and offensive hitting, Gaston looks to counter-punch and take the initiative in creative ways.

As an opponent, Cachin should suit Gaston’s preferred style, hitting into his groundstrokes and leaving himself vulnerable to counter-striking.

Expect a number of breaks and long rallies in this match, but Gaston is deserving of a far stronger price.

Pick: Gaston -110 via DraftKings

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Elena Rybakina (-500) vs. Katie Volynets (+370)

7 a.m. ET

Elena Rybakina fought past Aranxta Rus in three sets to secure a second-round berth in Paris, but it’s been an up-and-down clay season for the world No. 16.

Rybakina lost two of her first three matches of the season in Charleston and Stuttgart before winning two in Madrid and Rome, respectively. A majority of clay tournaments were strategically played in faster conditions and that allowed Rybakina to use her strengths more.

In the lone tournament Rybakina played in conditions that resemble that of Roland Garros, Rome, she did well. Rybakina beat Lauren Davis and Elina Avanesyan before falling to Jil Teichmann in a tough three-setter.

Katie Volynets took a unique path to qualifying for the French Open as she earned a Wild Card via the USTA’s reciprocal deal with the French Tennis Federation. Volynets competed across a host of American clay events and secured enough points to be the USTA’s representative in Paris.

The American is most comfortable on clay, a rare trait for an American player, but her 1599 Elo Rating on clay is over 150 points better than her hard-court Elo.

Volynets advanced past Viktorija Golubic in the first round after limiting the Swiss to 56% of her first-serve points and 29% of her second-round points.

While Rybakina is the stronger player, Volynets is solid enough on clay to control the play for periods of time when Rybakina struggles to string quality points together.

At 5.5 games, this spread is too heavy and a sound performance from Volynets should secure her a cover.

Pick: Volynets +5.5 games (-120 via DraftKings)

_PromoID=[18179]

Celtics vs. Heat Game 5 Betting Trends: Miami in Rare Spot as Home Underdog

celtics-vs-heat-game-5-betting-trends-miami-in-rare-spot-as-home-underdog

The Miami Heat are catching points at home in Wednesday’s Game 5 against the Boston Celtics, with the series tied 2-2.

If it sounds odd for Miami to be the underdog this late in the series — much less during the postseason in general — that’s because it is.

_PromoID=[18090]

The Heat are the third No. 1 seed since 2005 — and the first in four years — to be listed a home underdog in Game 5, 6 or 7 of a postseason series.

The other two clubs were the 2018 Rockets in Game 5 against the Warriors (win) and the 2017 Celtics in Game 5 against the Cavaliers (loss).

Boston’s painted -2.5 across the board after opening as a short one-point favorite.

Both Miami and Boston have been excellent bets against the spread all season long.

The Heat and Celtics rank fourth and fifth respectively in cover rate, entering Game 5 at 57.3% and 56.4%.

The two clubs have alternated wins, both straight-up and against the spread, in all four Eastern Conference Finals matchups.

Wednesday’s clash marks the eighth between the two storied franchises in 2021-22, regular and postseason included.

The team that wins against the spread has provided a sweat-free victory in virtually every contest, covering by an average margin of 16.8 points per game.

After Boston took care of business in a 102-82 Game 4 rout, the public‘s back on the bandwagon, with two of every three betting tickets riding the Celtics minus the points tonight (you can check out all the public betting data here).

The must-have app for NBA bettors

The best NBA betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Red Sox vs. White Sox Odds, Picks, Predictions: Bet Total With Giolito Starting (Wednesday, May 25)

red sox vs white sox-odds-picks-predictions-lucas giolito-rich hill-mlb-may 25

Red Sox vs. White Sox Odds

Red Sox Odds +145
White Sox Odds -175
Over/Under 7.5 (-110 / -110)
Time 8:10 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

After a comically lopsided win over the White Sox on Tuesday night, the Red Sox will look to continue their hot play with a second game against Chicago on Wednesday. Can the White Sox recover from this big loss?

Let’s take a look at where the value lies here.

_PromoID=[17266]

Boston’s Lineup Is MLB’s Hottest

The Red Sox scored 16 runs on Tuesday in what was a ridiculously lopsided game. Everyone — even the slumping Enrique Hernandez — got in on the fun as Boston recorded 19 hits.

Now, this win certainly skews the numbers a little bit for Boston, but even so it is the top offense in baseball over the last two weeks judging by wRC+, beating out even the Astros. For the season now, the Red Sox rank second in barrel rate and have certainly made more than enough quality contact to instill some belief in this kind of form.

The most impressive thing about this run, though, could be the fact that the Red Sox have struck out in just 19.8% of plate appearances, an elite number. Boston had previously struggled with punchouts for most of the first couple of months.

Hurting the Red Sox here will be the fact that Rich Hill is getting ready to start. He’s done well enough here to pitch to a 3.90 ERA, but he’s nowhere near the level he was at even just a few years ago. The lefty has struck out just 18.3% of batters he’s faced and has been worse than the league average with a hard-hit rate of 36.2%.

_PromoID=[16474]

Chicago’s Lineup Still Mashing vs. Lefties

The White Sox have the right-handed power bats to be a serious issue for Hill. They currently sit second with a 126 wRC+ against southpaws and that’s very unsurprising considering the likes of Eloy Jimenez, Jose Abreu and Luis Robert feast on lefties consistently.

Chicago also makes a good deal of quality contact. It is seventh in barrels per plate appearance and third in hard-hit balls per swing. Unless you are missing bats, you are going to be up against it when it comes to getting these guys out. Though the White Sox have yet to produce the eye-popping numbers we’re expecting, the difference between their wOBA and xwOBA is the second-biggest in the league.

Lucas Giolito has been a flawed pitcher this year. He’s always given up a good amount of hard-hit balls, but his barrel rate has never reached double digits like it has this year with a mark of 11.1%. Like many of the great pitchers these days, it doesn’t matter that he allows some occasional rockets with an elite strikeout rate (34.6%).

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Red Sox-White Sox Pick

Giolito is pretty strikeout dependent and while that isn’t really a bad thing it might give the Red Sox a way into this match. Boston is hardly striking out these days and putting a bat on everything, and those skills will go a long way against Giolito.

On the other hand, I really hate this matchup for Rich Hill who isn’t missing many bats. I think together, these two teams will combine for another night of high-scoring baseball.

Pick: Over 7.5 (-110)

_PromoID=[17270]

Wednesday MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Smart Money Headed for 3 Games, Including Phillies vs. Braves

phillies-braves-predictions-wednesday-mlb-odds-picks-predictions-smart-money

There are three baseball games that have smart bettors wagering in droves on Wednesday.

The Action Network’s proprietary tracking data has discerned that all of these picks fade the public — but still have the majority of the smart money on their moneyline.

That means a small group of sharp bettors are slapping big money on these teams to win.

The three games in question are the Philadelphia Phillies vs. Atlanta Braves, Miami Marlins vs. Tampa Bay Rays, and Chicago Cubs vs. Cincinnati Reds.

Each of these picks targets the total.

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

MLB Smart Money Predictions for Wednesday

Odds and betting data last updated at 2 p.m. ET on MLB.

_PromoID=[12935, 12933, 12932, 12940]

Phillies vs. Braves

The smart money bettors are targeting the under at a market-best price of +100 for this game to score eight runs or fewer.

While only 41% of retail bettors are hammering the under — meaning 59% of the public love the over.

Meanwhile, 51% of the smart money is on the under.

Smart Money Pick: Under 8.5 (+100)

Marlins vs. Rays

The smart money bettors are also solidly backing this under at a market-best price of 7 (-108).

There is 80% of the money on that line, despite the fact that the under only has 45% of the individual bettors.

Smart Money Pick: Under 7 (-108)

Cubs vs. Reds

Sharp and big moneyed bettors are fading the public with the under on this contest, as well.

The retail bettors are all on the over.

The best price on the market is at u8.5 (+100).

Smart Money Pick: Under 8.5 (+100)

MLB Odds, Picks & Betting System Predictions for 3 Games, Including Orioles vs. Yankees (Wednesday, May 25)

angels vs. orioles-odds-preview-prediction-mlb-wednesday-august 25-2021

Three MLB games on Wednesday night fit a historically-profitable Action Network betting system that reports a return on investment (ROI) of 11%.

If you had bet $100 on each game that has fit the betting trend, you’d be up over $14,000 since 2005 — that’s about $875 per year.

For reference, the annual average return of the S&P 500 — roughly the value of the American stock market — has been 8% for about a century. Since the start of the New Year, that index is down roughly 17%.

Bitcoin is down about 38% since the New Year.

And so far this year, this system has netted a profit of $1,266 through the first month and a half of the season.

Wednesday’s MLB betting system involves contrarian betting — finding value by going against the public’s prevailing notions. Today’s games include:

  • Baltimore Orioles vs. New York Yankees
  • Texas Rangers vs. Los Angeles Angels
  • Cleveland Guardians vs. Houston Astros

MLB Betting System Picks for Wednesday

This betting system fades the public when they bet on good home teams.

The team you’d bet on has to have a one- to three-game losing streak because the market tends to undervalue teams on a downward trajectory.

The team you’d fade needs to have at least a 60% win percentage and also have at least 65% of the retail bettors’ bets.

Your team also needs to be the visitor.

All these parameters fit the two aforementioned games. The best lines on the market are:

  • Orioles +136
  • Rangers +149
  • Guardians +155

While today might be the day to cash in, keep in mind that this system applies to about 85 MLB games per year.

It also only wins 41% of the time — it has a positive ROI because the system only targets underdogs.

It isn’t a get-rich scheme — unless you follow through on each system pick.

So, ensure that you’re betting every game that fits this system for the rest of the season in order to maximize that 11% return on investment.

PRO Picks: Orioles +136 or better | Rangers +149 or better | Guardians +155 or better

_PromoID=[16447,16477]

Thursday French Open Odds, Preview, Picks: Medvedev to Be Challenged By Djere (May 26)

It’s time for second round action at the French Open, and a few big players will be taking the court.

The good news is that there are some great opportunities to exploit mis-priced lines.

Read on to see how I’ll be betting two of the premier matches from the slate of tennis at Roland Garros on Thursday.

Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches.

_PromoID=[18179]

Daniil Medvedev (-265) vs. Laslo Djere (+215)

6 a.m. ET

After falling in straight sets to Gasquet in Geneva, Medvedev returned to the courts with a 6-2 6-2 6-2 thrashing of Facundo Bagnis.

Before his run to the Roland Garros quarterfinals last year, Medvedev had yet to win a main draw match at this tournament. Even though he has continued to improve on the surface over the years, Medvedev is nowhere near the threat he is on hard courts.

Coming in with a 10-6 record on the surface this year, Laslo Djere will be looking to make a run on the surface that he strongly prefers.

This will be Djere’s second chance to dethrone a top ranked player this year as they return from an absence on the courts. Djere battled with Novak Djokovic before losing in a third set tiebreaker at a time when Djokovic was still trying to find his previous form.

Using his excellent movement and knowledge of game play on the clay, Djere was able to push the world No. 1 to the brink.

I expect the underdog Djere to hang around in this match and make life difficult for Medvedev. The Russian is the better player, but with his game in unstable form returning from injury, he may experience an uptick in errors while Djere will use his clay court experience to draw those errors out.

Medvedev is known for his remarkable defensive skills but surprisingly has yet to bring that success to these clay courts. Neither player will go down without a fight and both should have periods where they are more error prone than the other.

I’ll take this match to go over, with players riding hot and cold streaks.

Pick: Over 35.5 Games (-120 via DraftKings)

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Daniel Evans (-230) vs. Mikael Ymer (+188)

9:30 a.m. ET

Dan Evans takes on Mikael Ymer after both players ran through the first round with ease.

Evans has struggled on the clay like usual this year coming into the French Open with a 3-6 record on the surface.

However, his win over Francisco Cerundolo in straight sets was an impressive opening round showing. The Brit’s triumph in the previous round was his first victory at the French Open, falling in four consecutive main draw matches before this year.

Mikael Ymer arrived in terrible form, having not won a match on clay (0-4) while losing to three players ranked outside of the top 100. In past years he has earned respectable results on clay with a 3-3 main draw record at Roland Garros.

Although he sits at only 0.500 here, his losses came to Zverev, Djokovic and Sinner, and he took care of his more winnable matches.

Evans plays a counter-punching style while Ymer plays with much more topspin and better movement. Despite Ymer’s poor form, looking to back the comfortable clay-courter is the best bet.

Ymer will have the chance to expose Evans on the slower court at Roland Garros and I expect him to have a good look to win this match.

Picks: Ymer +4.5 Games (-112 via FanDuel) | Ymer ML (+188 via FanDuel)

_PromoID=[268]

Celtics vs. Heat Eastern Conference Finals Game 5 Odds, Predictions: 19% ROI Pick for Wednesday

celtics-heat-predictions-odds-nba-eastern-conference-finals-game-5-wednesday

Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat Odds

Celtics Odds -2.5
Heat Odds +2.5
Over/Under 203.5
Date Wednesday, May 25
Time 8:30 p.m. ET
Channel TNT

*Odds as of Wednesday morning, according to FanDuel

Game 5 of this Eastern Conference Finals fits a historically profitable, against the spread betting algorithm that boasts an impressive 19% return on investment (ROI) since 2005.

Over the last 17 years, if you had wagered $100 per game on the roughly 25 NBA playoff games per year that have fit this system, then you’d be up over $5,500 today. That’s about $325 per playoffs, good for a solid 61% win rate over a lengthy sample size.

For reference, a success rate of 52.5% is enough to break even.

This PRO system targets what sharp and big money bettors are wagering on. The Action Network’s proprietary tracking data contributes to these analyses by providing up-to-the-minute data regarding where the whales are dropping down their cash.

This betting trend is exclusively designed for ATS wagers on playoff games.

Heat vs. Celtics Pick

This PRO system targets playoff favorites that have a ton of sharp and big-money bettors on their spread line.

That’s best indicated by fewer individual tickets than total money on a specific spread. This means that a small group of bettors is betting a massive amount of dollars on the favorite to cover.

This phenomenon is, interestingly, true for the Celtics at a market-best price of -2.5 despite being on the road.

This historically profitable algorithm applies to about 25 NBA playoff games per year. Tonight might be an opportunity to cash in, but keep in mind that this is a long-term investment.

In order to maximize your 19% return on investment, make sure to follow through whenever this PRO system provides picks for the rest of the playoffs.

PRO Report Pick: Celtics -2.5 or better

_PromoID=[17487]

French Open Odds, Picks, Preview: Tsitsipas to Recover For Easy Second Round Win (May 26)

After a day of much-needed rest, the bottom half of the men’s draw gets back to it on Thursday as they’ll play out the second round of the French Open.

Of the players mentioned in this article, not one of them was able to get off court in under two and a half hours in the first round,  averaging about 3h02m of court time between them.

Let’s dive into a pair of second round matches from the men’s draw.

Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Cristian Garin (-190) vs. Ilya Ivashka (+155)

8:30 a.m. ET

One excellent clay courter and one player who really came into his own on the surface during the 2021 season, each of these two bring something to the table.

Ilya Ivashka has an impressive combination of movement, power and decent control off both wings from the baseline.

At his peak, Garin is super steady, with great consistency and the ability to open up on the forehand wing if a ball is left short and he sees space to hit a winner.

This match has all the makings of at least a four-set contest, with the Chilean getting a touch more respect in the markets than he may deserve. Ivashka began his campaign on the red dirt in sluggish fashion, which could be depressing his price a tad.

It’s important to put that start into context, though. Ivashka’s first match on clay was his first in two months, and he played a clay-court specialist in Lorenzo Sonego. His next loss was to Stefanos Tsitsipas. Nikoloz Basilashvili, Lorenzo Musetti and Alejandro Davidovich Fokina are no slouches either.

The fact is, Ivashka has had a tough schedule this clay season. You could make the case almost all of the players he lost to are better than Garin and he took a set off of each of them other than Sonego. Even his loss in straight sets last week in Geneva (played in altitude) went 24 games.

Backing Ivashka to stretch this match out into a four or five-set affair on the game total is a good look.

Pick: Over 37.5 games (-115 via PointsBet)

_PromoID=[5113]

Stefanos Tsitsipas (-10000) vs. Zdenek Kolar (+1700)

10 a.m. ET

While Stefanos Tsitsipas had what could be argued as the worst draw of the opening round, he now gets a Challenger Tour journeyman in the second round.

Zdenek Kolar, on the other hand, goes from Lucas Pouille – a player past his prime who hasn’t recovered from injury and is poor on clay – to one of the top clay courters on the planet.

While the gulf in ability in this one goes without saying, there is a market that is exploitable in this matchup.

The total has been set at 28.5 games. That may seem very low for a best-of-five set match, but considering a scoreline of 6-4, 6-3, 6-3 gets the job done, I still see the number as a bit off.

Oddsmakers know how much better Tsitsipas is than Kolar. That’s how the low total comes to fruition. The key here is how much of an edge Tsitsipas has when it comes to the serve-forehand combo, and how his weaker one-handed backhand will be masked against the serving of Kolar.

In the first round, Kolar looked like the better player from start to finish against Pouille. That was expected, but he still ran into trouble throughout trying to keep his break leads. Now he’s playing a better returner in Tsitsipas, who he’ll be lucky to break more than once himself.

Factor in Tsitsipas surely not wanting to spend more than three sets on court again in the second round, and this total looks to be valuable at 28.5 games.

Pick:  Under 28.5 games (-105 via PointsBet)

_PromoID=[18179]

Celtics vs. Heat NBA Single Game Parlay & Picks: Bets for Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals (May 25)

Celtics vs. Heat Odds

Celtics Odds -2.5
Heat Odds +2.5
Moneyline -142 / +120
Over/Under 204
Time 8:30 p.m. ET
TV ESPN
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

It’s no surprise that the Eastern Conference finals between the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics has been a back-and-forth affair. We are all tied up at 2-2 and with that, it becomes a best-of-three to decide the East.

Game 4 saw the Celtics get out to a commanding lead early on, and even without Marcus Smart, who was sidelined with a sprained ankle, they showed dominance.

The real takeaway from Game 4 as a whole was the play from the Heat starters who combined for 18 total points. Although Miami was without Tyler Herro, this was a return game of Kyle Lowry who went 1-of-16 through 21 minutes and fellow guard Max Strus held scoreless.

With few lead changes throughout this series as a whole, getting out to a quick start is imperative. We will rely on this Miami team to do just that. Let’s get into our Game 5 parlay.

_PromoID=[16830]

Kyle Lowry Over 10.5 points (-115)

Kyle Lowry has been a key part to the Heat’s success all year long. Since returning, his impact has not been felt as much in the stats sheet, but I think that changes tonight.

His most impactful game as a Heat player against the Celtics came at the end of March on the road where he shot 8-of-16 from the floor and connected on six made 3s.

The Heat are going to need Lowry’s playmaking to turn the tables on Boston, and getting him going from beyond the arc really helps their chances. I like him to go over in a key game at home.



Miami Heat First Quarter Winner (+100)

This postseason, the Heat have gotten out to good starts at home. In the month of May, or since the start of the second round series, they have scored 25 or more points, or gone over this set total in four of five home games. Only one time in game two of the series did they fail to eclipse that mark, putting up one point shy at 24.

There has not been a lead change since the first quarter of Game 2, which places even more of an emphasis on a quick start. In an article on NBA.com Jimmy Butler was quoted saying, “I think we have to be more of a forceful-type team, getting into the paint, not shying away from contact and playing from the inside out”.

We expect to see this Heat squad more aggressive early on and Miami coming out with much more offensive intensity. Unfortunately, we cannot play it safe and take simply the Miami Heat first quarter total Over 24.5 in a same game parlay, so we will take them to win the first quarter, which offers much more value anyway.

Parlay: Miami Heat First Quarter Winner + Kyle Lowry Over 10.5 points (+266)

_PromoID=[17354]

French Open News: Carlos Alcaraz Survives Match Point Against Albert Ramos-Vinolas, Advances to Round 3 (May 25)

french-open-news-carlos-alcaraz-survives-match-point-against-albert-ramos-vinolas-advances-to-round-3-may-25

The French Open almost had one of the biggest upsets in recent Grand Slam history Wednesday afternoon when Carlos Alcaraz had to save a match point in the fourth set and a break deficit in the fifth set before rallying to take out Albert Ramos-Vinolas.

Alcaraz entered the match as a consensus -3000 market favorite, while Ramos-Vinolas was one of the biggest underdogs on the entire board.

_PromoID=[18179]

The favored Alcaraz took the first set in quick fashion, winning 6-1 before the veteran Ramos-Vinolas began to gather some footing. Ramos-Vinolas took the second set in a tiebreak before picking up a 7-5 third set victory.

Ramos-Vinolas then overcame a break deficit in the fourth set to ultimately serve for the match, where he earned a match point. He netted a forehand before dropping the game, losing the fourth-set tiebreak and falling in the fifth set.

The break points that Alcaraz converted in the fifth set were truly unbelievable.

The 19-year old superstar has been on a tear in 2022, and he came into Roland Garros as one of the favorites to take home the title.

Listed only behind world No. 1 Novak Djokovic, Alcaraz entered the tournament at +200 to win his first Slam title.

If you can believe it, a French Open title in two weeks’ time would only make Alcaraz the ninth-youngest male Slam champion of all time. Michael Chang won the 1989 French Open crown at just 17 years and three months of age.

Martina Hingis is the youngest slam champion of all time, winning the 1997 Australian Open at 16 years and three months old.

Poker Player Cory Zeidman Indicted for Sports Betting Fraud Scheme of $25 Million

poker-player-cory-zeidman-indicted-sports-betting-scheme-fraud

Cory Zeidman is a World Series of Poker bracelet winner with nearly $700,000 in career earnings, but away from the table he was allegedly running an illegal sports betting scheme that brought in $25 million.

The United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York charged Zeidman with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, mail fraud and money laundering conspiracy in connection with a sports betting fraud scheme he organized between Long Island and Florida.

Zeidman was arrested on Wednesday in Miami.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

According to the indictment, Zeidman used a business name of The Phoenix Organization to run advertisements to lure sports bettors into his business. Zeidman allegedly claimed he knew which sporting events would be “fixed” and charged clients for the information. Zeidman guaranteed wins to those who paid for the information, but the information was not accurate.

The scheme ran from January 2004 to March of 2020. Officials say Zeidman took $25 million from customers in his scheme.

“As alleged, Zeidman defrauded his victims, stole their life savings and persuaded them to drain their retirement accounts to invest in his bogus sports betting group, all so he could spend it on international vacations, a multi-million dollar residence and poker tournaments,” said United States Attorney Breon Peace. “Today’s indictment serves as a reminder to all of us to be wary of so-called investment opportunities that purport to have inside information, as they are really a gamble not worth taking.”

Born in New York but living in Florida, Zeidman used multiple aliases and business names to collect the money.

But at the poker tables, he was Cory Zeidman. In the middle of the alleged operation, Zeidman won a WSOP bracelet, winning over $200,000 in a Seven-Card Stud event with a $1,500 buy-in. According to Card Player, Zeidman has four tournament wins with 42 cashes for over $690,000.

His most recent record cash was on May 22 for $1,105.

PropBetGuy’s Celtics vs. Heat Game 5 Player Prop Pick: Keep Betting Jaylen Brown’s Rebounds (May 25)

nba player props-propbetguy-celtics vs heat-game 5-odds-picks-predictions-may 25

PropBetGuy will break down some of his favorite NBA plays of the day, and will track all his bets in The Action Network app.


Jaylen Brown — Over 6.5 Rebounds (-118)

Prop Jaylen Brown Over 6.5 Rebounds (-118)
Matchup Celtics vs. Heat
Time 8:30 p.m. ET
Books Available FanDuel

_PromoID=[18090]

As with any NBA playoff series, it’s always interesting to see how sportsbooks adjust player prop lines from game to game. In most instances, the books will overcorrect to prevent instances where a player consistently goes over or stays under a specific line.

However, that’s not the case with my favorite prop of the day.

So far in the first four games of the Eastern Conference Finals, Jaylen Brown has grabbed 10, eight, nine and seven rebounds. Throughout the playoffs, he’s averaging 7.1 rebounds per 37.5 minutes, eclipsing this line in nine of the last 12 games.

But this is more than just a “He’s hitting this line at a high rate” play. He’s second on the Celtics in rebound chances per game this series at 14.5. Despite bringing in the fewest rebounds of all Boston’s starters in Game 4, he did rank second in rebound chances with 17. Basically, he’s not just lucking into rebounds.

And it makes sense, given Brown’s defensive assignments. The Cal product has typically been tasked with guarding lower-usage Heat players (Max Strus, Kyle Lowry or Gabe Vincent). Usage rate measures how often a possession ends with a player. So, with Brown’s matchups not finishing Heat possessions, it leaves him free to grab rebounds.

I have Brown, once again, projected at eight rebounds tonight. I’d play this prop up to -135.

Pick: Jaylen Brown Over 6.5 rebounds (-118); bet to -135

_PromoID=[17354]

Get all of PropBetGuy’s bets instantly in The Action Network app.

Wednesday’s Top 5 Most Bet Games: Celtics vs. Heat, Orioles vs. Yankees, Cubs vs. Reds, More (May 25)

wednesdays-most-bet-games-may-25

The Heat and Celtics play a pivotal Game 5 on Wednesday. The Blues and Avalanche clash in Colorado and the 13-game MLB slate is running all day.

What more could you ask for on this glorious day?

The Miami-Boston series is naturally attracting the most action in our database. However, bettors are also dialed in on a couple sides on the diamond, including divisional clashes in Orioles vs. Yankees and Cubs vs. Reds.

Overall, these five games are pulling in the most betting tickets.

Wedneday’s 5 Most Bet Games

*Odds and public betting trends data as of Wednesday afternoon. Find real-time odds here.

_PromoID=[16830]

1. Celtics (-2.5) vs. Heat

8:30 p.m. ET

Celtics-Heat Game 5 is the only matchup on the board with more 18,000 wagers at the time of writing. 

Bettors don’t mind laying the chalk, either, with roughly two of every three tickets on the Celtics as short road favorites (you can check out all the public betting data here).

2. Dodgers (-210) vs. Nationals

4:05 p.m. ET

The Dodgers pasted the Nationals, 9-4, on Tuesday. The public is going back to the well yet again.

We’ve logged 90% of the 15,000+ moneyline tickets on L.A., which has won seven of the last 10 as a road favorite.

3. Padres (-135) vs. Brewers 

4:05 p.m. ET

Another MLB favorite in the afternoon window pulling in a generous ticket count is San Diego, looking for a win in the rubber match against Milwaukee.

Roughly 75% of the tickets are backing the Padres, who have won the last six games started by right-hander Yu Darvish.

Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

4. Yankees (-160) vs. Orioles

7:05 p.m. ET

The Yankees’ 30-13 clip entering Wednesday is the best in the majors. The public wants another bite out of the apple, as we’ve tracked 67% of the moneylines bets on New York.

5. Cubs (+130) vs. Reds

6:40 p.m. ET

OK, so it’s not all chalk for Wednesday.

One underdog in particular generating a lopsided ticket count are the Cubs, who have outscored the Reds 15-5 over the first two games of the series.

Chicago’s attracting 63% of the 10,000 bets and counting behind righty Kyle Hendricks.

Orioles vs. Yankees Odds, Picks, Predictions: Tyler Wells Can Keep Baltimore Competitive With New York (Wednesday, May 25)

orioles vs yankees-odds-pick-prediction-tyler wells-jp sears-may 25

Orioles vs. Yankees Odds

Orioles Odds +140
Yankees Odds -165
Over/Under 7.5
Time 7:05 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

After a walk-off win on Tuesday, the Yankees go for another series win over the Orioles tonight.

Lefty JP Sears will make his first major league start for New York after an excellent start to his 2022 in Triple-A. Baltimore will counter with Tyler Wells, who has continued to show promise in 2022 after a solid rookie campaign last year.

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Orioles Turn To Reliable Wells

Adley Rutschman has hit just .188 through his first 18 plate appearances with a .278 OBP and 33.3% hard-hit rate, but he has looked competent at the plate and it’s obvious that having him up with the club is beneficial for the O’s.

This season, Baltimore has a 23rd-ranked .413 xSLG and .317 xwOBA. Those aren’t impressive numbers, but they may be more competent than some might have expected entering the campaign.

The Orioles have struggled against left-handed pitching, which is a concern for this game. Baltimore has hit to a 78 wRC+ rating with a .271 wOBA this season against southpaws.

On the mound, the 27-year-old Wells has continued to show lots of upside in the early going of this campaign. He has pitched to a 3.44 xERA, and has continued to find more success since adding a changeup last season. Wells features excellent spin rates and has a tremendous 5.26 QOPA, including excellent marks on both his changeup and sinker.

Sears Set for First MLB Start

Tuesday night’s win came at a cost for the Yankees. Giancarlo Stanton left with a calf injury and is likely to miss a little time. Stanton joins DJ LeMahieu, Josh Donaldson and Joey Gallo on the injured list, which means this powerhouse Yankees lineup is limping into this affair without some key names.

Sears has clearly earned the right to his first big-league start with his excellent numbers in Triple-A this season. He has a 0.83 ERA and 1.11 FIP through 21 2/3 innings this season, and the 26-year-old threw a couple of scoreless innings when rosters were expanded in April. Sears has allowed just two walks compared to 30 strikeouts this year in the minors.

There’s a lot of anticipation to see whether Sears’ stuff can play in the majors moving forward.

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Orioles-Yankees Pick

Wells offers a ton of promise moving forward this season, and I do not see any value on the Yankees as a big underdog with a pitcher making his first career start backed by a depleted lineup.

Wells is certainly not a pitcher I will be looking to fade too often moving forward at similar lines given his strong results.

Getting almost even money on the Orioles to hang around with a pitcher of Wells’ quality on the mound through five innings looks to be a sound proposition considering the Yankees expected lineup.

I see value backing the Orioles at +0.5 in the first five innings, and would play that down to -120.

Pick: Orioles +0.5 First 5 Innings (-110, play to -115)

_PromoID=[16483, 17269]

2022 Charles Schwab Challenge First Round PrizePicks Plays: Collin Morikawa Among 5 Thursday Picks

charles schwab challenge-prizepicks-picks-collin morikawa-2022

With the PGA Championship now in the rearview mirror, we move onto the 2022 Charles Schwab Challenge.

While this tournament has undergone many name and sponsorship changes over the last few decades, the one constant has been the host track. For the 77th time, this tournament will take place at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas.

Colonial Country Club is a par-70, 7,209-yard track that should offer a nice change of pace from the difficult Southern Hills course that many golfers in this field played last weekend. With an average winning score of 14-under par over the past five years, we could see some low scores this week.

While It is still early in the week, the weather forecast in the area is supposed to be sunny and warm for the first two rounds while the weekend could see big winds play a factor.

Looking at the five previous winners, this course will benefit accuracy, iron play, and putting. The long-hitters and scramblers will most likely not find as much success as those who excel in the aforementioned categories.

Relative to the rest of the field, the five previous winners have finished at an average of ninth place in Strokes Gained (SG): Approach the Green, 10th in SG Putting, third in SG Tee to Green and 15th in Driving Accuracy. We will utilize these four metrics, along with recent form and previous success at Colonial Country Club, to narrow down the best bets to make in this tournament.

Below, I give out my five Round 1 PrizePicks flex plays for the 2022 Charles Schwab Challenge. For those unfamiliar with PrizePicks flex plays in golf, different combinations of overs/unders generate different payouts.

Using the five plays below, getting five-of-five correct registers a 10x payout, four-of-five correct registers a 2x payout, and three-of-five correct registers a 0.4x payout.

Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

Charles Schwab Challenge PrizePicks Plays

Collin Morikawa: Round 1 Under 67.5 Strokes

One of the top-five favorites to win this tournament, Collin Morikawa should be a good play this week. Morikawa has fared very well in his two career appearances at Colonial Country Club as he finished in 14th place last year and second place the year prior.

Over those eight rounds, Morikawa shot a 67 or better in five of them. Despite not having a win yet this season, Morikawa has been as sharp as ever as he has made the cut in 10 of 11 tournaments this season with six top-10 and four top-five finishes.

This course should play into Morikawa’s strengths as he currently ranks 20th on TOUR in SG Tee to Green, ninth in SG Approach the Green, and 16th in Driving Accuracy.

I would not play this total at anything lower than 67.5.

Talor Gooch: Round 1 Under 68.5 Strokes

Another golfer I am backing not only in Round 1 but for the entire tournament is Talor Gooch. Currently 11th in the FedEx Cup standings, Gooch has flown under the radar all season as he has made five of his last seven cuts with all five of those finishes coming inside the top-25.

Gooch has fared well at Colonial Country Club as he has made the cut in three straight years, including a 14th place finish last year. Shooting a 68 or lower in the first round each of the last two years at Colonial Country Club, I am backing Gooch to do so once again.

An excellent iron player this season, Gooch ranks 28th on TOUR in SG Tee to Green and 20th in SG Approach the Green.

I would not play this number any lower than 68.5.

Abraham Ancer: Round 1 Over 9.5 Fairways Hit

Going over this total in three of the four rounds at Southern Hills last week, I am backing Abraham Ancer’s driver once again this week at an easier course. This season, Ancer ranks 42nd on TOUR in SG Off the Tee and third in Driving Accuracy.

Last year at Colonial Country Club, Ancer went over this total in three of the four rounds.

I would not play this total at anything higher than 9.5.

Kevin Kisner: Round 1 Over 9.5 Fairways Hit

Another guy I am backing to find plenty of fairways in Round 1 is Kevin Kisner. On TOUR this season, Kisner ranks 13th in Driving Accuracy.

Last year at Colonial Country Club, Kisner went over this total in all four rounds. Before missing the cut last week at Southern Hills, Kisner went over this number in each of the first two rounds.

I would play this number up to 10.

Daniel Berger: Round 1 Over 8.5 Fairways Hit

The last guy I am backing out of the tee box is Daniel Berger. This season, Berger ranks 37th in SG Off the Tee and 15th in Driving Accuracy.

Like Kisner, Berger went over this total in each of the first two rounds last week at the PGA Championship before missing the cut. It is worth noting that Berger only went over this total once over the four rounds at Colonial Country Club last year.

That being said, I still like this number we are getting as Berger is much stronger with his driver now than he was at that time.

I would not play this total at anything higher than 8.5.

The must-have app for golf bettors

Custom scoreboard for your bets

Free picks from experts

Live odds for every golfer

Wednesday NCAA Betting Odds, Picks, Preview, Predictions: Our 3 Best Bets, Including Florida, More (May 25)

The NCAA baseball postseason is here.

It’s conference-tournament week, and with 33 bids at-large bids on the line, there is a ton of baseball to be played.

These competitions are a bit tricky to forecast, as motivation plays a big factor. Some teams are fighting to get into the field of 64; some clubs are fighting for regional seeding; and, others are looking to rest their guys for next week.

That said, there are plenty of games to target and I’ll break down a few of my favorites on the slate.

_PromoID=[5114]

Kansas State vs. Texas Tech

Time: 5 p.m. ET

The eighth-ranked Red Raiders have one of the most potent lineups in the country behind star second baseman Jace Jung. They hit .299 as a team and slugged 82 homers, leading them to average nearly nine runs per game. Offense was the story when these two teams met in the regular season, as Texas Tech swept the series and outscored the Wildcats 27-9 in the process.

Kansas State has yet to announce a starter, but whoever it is won’t be able to contain the Red Raiders. As a staff, the Wildcats had a 5.97 ERA and have allowed opposing batters to hit .273 this season.

Texas Tech should be a much heavier favorite, as its in line to pummel Kansas State again.

Pick: Texas Tech ML (-165)

_PromoID=[5113]

Florida vs. Texas A&M

Time: 5:30 p.m. ET

The Gators walked off the Gamecocks on Tuesday to earn a date with the fifth-ranked team in the country. The Aggies have been one of the hottest teams in the country entering tournament play. They went on an absolute tear in SEC play to end the season as they took series from Vanderbilt, Georgia, Arkansas and Ole Miss to finish out the campaign.

However, the Gators are on quite a roll themselves, as with Tuesday’s victory, they have won 13 of their last 16 games.

Pitching matchups are hard to find in tournament play. However, the Aggies announced that Micah Dallas will be on the bump. Dallas has not been great this season. In 12 starts, he pitched to a 6.10 ERA and has a .300 BAA. While the Gators’ starter is unknown at the time of writing this, their staff has been solid in the wake of Hunter Barco’s injury.

The Florida bats are in line to chomp upDallas after a quiet game. Florida has been one of the most potent teams in the country, hitting 102 homers this season, while maintaining an excellent .273 team batting average.

Lastly, these teams are neck and neck with each other in RPI, which shows just how even they are. So, take Florida to bash its way past the Texas A&M.

Pick: Florida ML (-105)

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

West Virginia vs. Oklahoma

Time: 8:30 p.m. ET

The Sooners are another team that finished the season scorching hot. They’ll enter the Big 12 tournament winners of their last four series, which includes Texas Tech, TCU and West Virginia.

Their end-of-season run was so impressive it vaulted them into the top 25, and they are also ranked 31st in RPI. Oklahoma’s lineup was tremendous, as it slashed .298/.418/.460 as a team.

The pitching matchup is nothing to write home about, as the Sooners will give Carson Atwood the ball to make his first start of the season. Atwoood had his fair share of struggles, pitching to a 5.79 ERA and had a .293 BAA this season.

However, Jacob Watters has not been much better for the Mountaineers. Watters made 10 starts and has a 5.65 ERA. He also faced this Oklahoma team just 12 days ago, allowing five runs on six hits in just three innings.

This game may be a slugfest, but the Sooners have the artillery to win get past the Mountaineers.

Pick: Oklahoma ML (-160)

_PromoID=[4778]

NASCAR Odds, Picks & Predictions for Charlotte: 2 Early Bets for Sunday’s Coca-Cola 600

nascar-odds-picks-predictions-charlotte-sunday-coca-cola-600-may-29-2022

The longest race of the NASCAR season takes place this Sunday at Charlotte Motor Speedway for the Coca-Cola 600 (6 p.m. ET, FOX).

When breaking down this race, it’s important to note that the series has run at three other 1.5-mile, non-drafting ovals in the Next Gen car. These races at Las Vegas, Kansas, and Texas all used the same right-side tire that will be on the cars this weekend.

In addition, the race at Darlington not only used the same right-side tire, but also the same left-side tire. That means we can even use the 1.336-mile Darlington as a way to gauge performance at Charlotte.

With that in mind, I’ve made two early week bets for the Memorial Day Weekend event.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

NASCAR at Charlotte Picks

*Odds as of Wednesday afternoon

Denny Hamlin to Win (+1200)

If you just look at finishing results, this Hamlin bet may look like a bad one. But there’s much more to the story here.

Hamlin had a fast car at Las Vegas, driving up from 11th to fourth by the end of Stage 1 before missing a shift, causing drivetrain issues to ruin his day.

It’s unlikely that Hamlin will make that mistake again. That’s because he was still used to the Gen-6 car’s H-pattern shifter, but with nearly a half-season under his belt in the Next Gen car, enough muscle memory should be built up.

Hamlin finished fourth at Kansas, and likely had a car to contend with the top three of Kurt Busch, Kyle Busch and Kyle Larson had he not lost track position multiple times.

Hamlin also led Darlington for 42 laps before issues again plagued him.

With 600 miles on the docket, there will be plenty of time for Hamlin to overcome any early-to-mid race issues.

My model give Hamlin an 8.3% chance to win, which outpaces his 7.7% implied odds that DraftKings gives him at 12-1.

The Bet: Denny Hamlin to win +1200 | Bet to: +1200

Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

Christopher Bell Top-3 Finish (+750)

The Toyotas have been the class of the field at 1.5-mile tracks in 2022 despite claiming only one win.

All four Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) Toyotas were strong at Las Vegas and Kansas, in addition to the strength the 23XI Racing Toyotas showed at Kansas.

Bell won the pole at both Las Vegas and Kansas, pulling in 10th- and fifth-place finishes, respectively. That’s despite a spin at Las Vegas setting him back in the early going.

At Darlington, Bell came home in sixth place despite the track giving him fits in the first two years of his Cup career.

That all bodes well for the youngest member of the JGR stable.

Even though my model shows value on a 25-1 outright bet, it’s a bit of a tall ask for a driver whose best finish at an intermediate track is third (twice). Instead, a top-three bet like FanDuel is offering at +750 is more palatable.

My model actually gives an even bigger edge to the top-three bet than the outright. It says Bell finishes third or better 16% of the time compared to 11.8% implied odds.

The Bet: Christopher Bell Top-3 Finish +750 | Bet to: +600

Wednesday MLB Betting Odds & Picks: Our 4 Best Bets for Athletics vs. Mariners & Red Sox vs. White Sox (May 25)

mlb betting picks-best bets-picks-odds-athletics vs mariners-red sox vs white sox-may 25

All day, all night, we’re going to be betting on baseball.

On Wednesday, we have full slates of games in the afternoon on each coast, and then there are games throughout the night. It’s a baseball bettor’s paradise.

For our favorite picks on Wednesday, four betting analysts have highlighted a pair of games. One is on the West Coast in the afternoon, and the other is a matchup of playoff hopefuls in Chicago.

Check out our four best bets for today, which offer a great variety.

MLB Odds & Picks

Click on a game to skip ahead
Athletics vs. Mariners — Total
4:10 p.m. ET
Athletics vs. Mariners — Player Prop
4:10 p.m. ET
Red Sox vs. White Sox — Moneyline
8:10 p.m. ET
Red Sox vs. White Sox — Team Total
8:10 p.m. ET

_PromoID=[16477]

Athletics vs. Mariners — Total

Pick
Over 7 (+100)
Book
DraftKings
Pitchers
Paul Blackburn vs. Robbie Ray
First Pitch
4:10 p.m. ET

Kenny Ducey: Let’s just be honest with ourselves for a second here. Seven runs is a rather insane number to hang on a game pitched by Robbie Ray and Paul Blackburn. Sure, both offenses have had their issues in the first couple of months, but both pitchers have offered some hope to opposing lineups.

Let’s start with Ray, who is looking more like Robbie Ray these days. No, I don’t mean he looks like the Cy Young Award winner he was a year ago, I mean he looks like the guy we’ve watched struggle with consistency for the last five or six years. His strikeout rate is back down to 25.8% which is trouble because he’s never stopped giving up an abundance of hard-hit balls.

If you can make contact off of Ray, good things will generally happen for you. The A’s should be able to, considering they rank 11th in contact rate over the last two weeks. They’re also sporting a 98 wRC+ against lefties, which is pretty good when compared to their 81 wRC+ in general this year.

Not only are the A’s presented a good matchup here, they’ve also scored 13 runs in the last two games. I don’t know if they’ll win, though, considering Blackburn’s expected .261 batting average against his sinker and .392 xBA on his changeup suggest regression is ready to set in. Seattle has also scored 12 runs in its last two and is heating up at the dish. I’ll take the bait here.

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

» Return to the table of contents «


Athletics vs. Mariners — Player Prop

Pick
Kevin Smith — Over 0.5 Hits (+100)
Book
DraftKings
Pitchers
Paul Blackburn vs. Robbie Ray
First Pitch
4:10 p.m. ET

Jules Posner: Although he did not receive any hype, the argument can be made that Kevin Smith was the headlining prospect of the Matt Chapman trade. In terms of offensive productivity, Smith hasn’t been much worse than Chapman. Smith has posted a 79 wRC+ so far this season compared to Chapman’s 86 wRC+.

One thing Smith has excelled at is hitting LHP on the road. So far this season Smith is hitting .409 against LHP on the road and .636 on the road vs LHP in May.

Tonight he’s facing Robbie Ray who is stronger at home this season allowing only a .216 batting average against RHH at home, he’s given up 5 or more hits to teams that have a more RH dominant line up.

Considering how hot Smith is, and how much better the A’s offense is overall on the road- especially against LHP- Robbie Ray is going to be up for a challenge against a gritty Oakland road offense.

Smith’s overall numbers are not particularly impressive, but he seems to have a very clear platoon advantage against LHP. Most books have him at +100 to record at least one hit, so if you can get his hits or total bases at 0.5 in plus money, jump on it.


Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

» Return to the table of contents «


Red Sox vs. White Sox — Moneyline

Pick
Red Sox +152
Book
WynnBet
Pitchers
Rich Hill vs. Lucas Giolito
First Pitch
8:10 p.m. ET

Tanner McGrath: Lucas Giolito is a firecracker. He’s striking out over 12.50 batters per nine innings through his six limited starts this season, and that’d be a career high if he keeps up.

But the Red Sox have a firecracker lineup too. No team in MLB has a higher wRC+ (145), OPS (.860) or ISO (.232) over the past two weeks than Boston. Trevor Story has been the star, but don’t forget about JD Martinez (1.005 OPS), Rafael Devers (10 home runs) or Xander Bogaerts (.323 batting average).

Even the bottom of the order is rebounding, with guys like Franchy Cordero and Jackie Bradley Jr. saving games in the late innings over the last week.

Meanwhile, the White Sox bats are also rebounding after a brutal start. But, less so. Chicago has posted a league-average wRC+ since the start of May (103) and hasn’t improved too much on its bottom-of-the-barrel launch angle (its 10.4-degree average is fifth worst in MLB).

I think the ancient Rich Hill could keep the White Sox at bay enough for the Red Sox to stay competitive in this one. Obviously, the 42-year-old Hill will never be the same pitcher he once was, but he’s shifted to a curveball-heavy approach and it’s kept him in games. His 87 mph average exit velocity allowed ranks above the 75th percentile of qualified pitchers.

You may think the bullpen advantage is with Chicago, but these two relief corps have posted nearly identical xFIPs so far this season (Boston 3.81, Chicago 3.85).

Add in that we’re getting north of +150 with Boston, and I’ll happily play the Red Sox on Thursday evening. At anything better than about +145, Boston is a buy from me.

_PromoID=[17266]


» Return to the table of contents «


Red Sox vs. White Sox — Team Total

Pick
White Sox Team Total — Over 4.5 Runs
Book
BetMGM
Pitchers
Rich Hill vs. Lucas Giolito
First Pitch
8:10 p.m. ET

DJ James: The White Sox can still hammer left-handed pitchers. This has been a trend for multiple years now. Yes, Luis Robert has landed on the COVID-19 List, but there are still plenty of bats who will be able to hit Rich Hill and the Red Sox pitching staff.

This team owns a 110 wRC+ off of southpaws in May, and they have not quite fully hit their stride yet, even if they stole two of three in Yankee Stadium over the weekend.

Now, Rich Hill may induce weak contact regularly, but this is likely due to how often he throws his curveball. His Barrel Percentage still sits in the 37th percentile of the MLB, so this is concerning considering the batters he will face on Wednesday evening.

In 2022, Tim Anderson, Yoán Moncada, and Andrew Vaughn all hold a .400+ xwOBA. Yasmani Grandal, José Abreu, Jake Burger (who was recalled to fill in for Robert), Adam Engel and A.J. Pollock also are all above the .330 mark. This should be more than enough, considering Abreu and Pollock look far better than they did to start the season.

Lucas Giolito is on the bump for the White Sox, so the moneyline is a steep price. Take the White Sox team total at 4.5 (+100), and play to 5 (-110).

_PromoID=[16476]


» Return to the table of contents «


French Open Thursday Odds & Picks: Krunic Will Take Kudermetova Out of Her Comfort Zone (May 26)

The second round of Roland Garros has featured incredible tennis so far and I’ve found a couple matches on Thursday’s order of play with plenty of value.

Read below to see how I’ll be betting two of Thursday’s matches at Roland Garros.

Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches.

_PromoID=[18179]

Veronika Kudermetova (-350) vs. Aleksandra Krunic (+260)

5 a.m. ET

Veronika Kudermetova snapped a three-match losing streak in her Roland Garros opener. Kudermetova defeated Lin Zhu 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 to advance to the second round.

She returned well against Zhu, winning 52% of her second-serve return points and 47% of her return points overall. Kudermetova also broke Zhu’s serve six times.

Kudermetova needed to be this good on return, as she only won 55% of her own service points.

She got off to a hot start on clay this season, reaching the Istanbul final. However, Kudermetova lost that final and couldn’t pick up a victory in Madrid nor Rome. Additionally, the fact that Kudermetova couldn’t pull away from Zhu, who has won under 55% of her career matches on clay, is not encouraging.

Aleksandra Krunic added to her qualifying campaign in the first round of Roland Garros. Krunic comfortably beat Kamilla Rakhimova 6-4, 6-3 to set up this showdown with Kudermetova.

Krunic’s first serve played a huge role in her success against Rakhimova. The Serb won 74% of her first-serve points and this helped her only get broken twice all match.

On return, Krunic was all over the Rakhimova second serve. She won 69% of her second-serve returns and 51% of her return points overall.

Krunic has won her last six sets (dating back to qualifying) and  63% of her professional matches on clay overall. She has a high level of rally tolerance, great foot speed and an all-court game.

Kudermetova is the better player, but she is not playing like herself in recent matches. The Russian goes big on her groundstrokes, but Krunic should frustrate Kudermetova with her consistency.

Krunic is in-form and playing confident clay-court tennis. She did a great job of hitting her spots on her first serve against Rakhimova, while Kudermetova struggled more than I expected her to in her service games against Zhu.

Don’t expect Kudermetova to run away with this match.

Pick: Over 20.5 games (-110 via BetMGM)

BetSync with BetMGM for easy bet tracking

Automatically import all your bets

Track your bet win probability

Available in NJ, PA, CO, IN, TN and WV

Danka Kovinic (-175) vs. Anna Karolina Schmiedlova (+135)

6:30 a.m. ET

Danka Kovinic got her Roland Garros campaign off to a strong start. She defeated Liudmilla Samsonova 2-6, 6-2, 6-1 to reach the second round.

Kovinic broke Samsonova’s serve five times, winning 58% of the points on her second delivery. And, after a rough first set, Kovinic steadier herself on her own serve. She won 72% of her service points and was only broken once in the second and third sets combined.

Anna Karolina Schmiedlova was one point away from losing in the first round of Roland Garros. However, Schmiedlova came back to beat Kristina Kucova 4-6, 7-6(1), 6-2.

Schmiedlova got past Kucova on the back of her return game. She won 49% of her return points and broke Kucova’s serve seven times. Schmiedlova did a great job of getting the return into play and then playing with great consistency from the baseline.

For a player who has won 65% of her professional clay-court matches, Schmiedlova will be disappointed with her 6-6 record on clay this year.

In too many matches, Schmiedlova’s rally tolerance has dipped. Her game is reliant on heavy forehands deep in the court and limiting unforced errors, so when the Slovak loses her rally tolerance, she loses the foundation of her game.

Kovinic is much more comfortable in attacking areas of the court and she is playing with the patience necessary to rally with Schmiedlova until there’s an opening to hit a winner.

Unlike against Kucova, putting a bunch of balls in play while waiting for Kovinic to get nervous and physically implode won’t work in this match.

Kovinic is an experienced clay-courter who will make Schmiedlova do more with her shots and force Schmiedlova to try to trade blows with her from the baseline.

Pick: Kovinic -2.5 games (-135 via BetMGM)

_PromoID=[16447]

Thursday Europa Conference League Final Betting Odds, Picks, Preview, Predictions, Best Bets: Can Jose Mourinho, Roma Down Feyenoord Rotterdam In Title Match?

Roma vs. Feyenoord Odds

Roma Odds +130
Feyenoord Odds +205
Draw +225
Over/Under 2.5 (-110 / -120)
Day | Time Wednesday |  3 p.m. ET
How To Watch Paramount+
Odds updated via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute soccer odds here.

Roma has a chance at silverware in its first season with manager Jose Mourinho in charge. The Serie A power could become the first-ever champion of the Europa Conference League in the competition’s first year with a victory in Wednesday’s title match.

However, standing in its way Dutch stalwart Feyenoord Rotterdam, which finished third in the Eredivisie this season.

UEFA launched the conference league as a third-tier European competition to help more teams play in Europe. Even though both have already qualified for next year’s Europa League via their league finishes, a European trophy is still on the line.

Feyenoord and Roma had to win three consecutive, two-legged aggregate playoffs to get here. Feyenoord’s stellar attack powered them into the final with eight goals in two legs against Partizan Belgrade; six versus Slavia Prague; and, three in the first leg in its clash with Marseille.

On the other side, Roma was a much more defensive through the knockout stages, beating Vitesse by a 2-1 aggregate scoreline; a come-from-behind triumph to knock out Bodo/Glimt; and, then taking care of Premier League side Leicester City via a 2-1 aggregate margin in the semifinal round.

The clashing styles of the defensive-minded Mourinho — at least in knockout stage — and the stellar attack of Feyenoord make for a compelling European final and a great appetizer for Saturday’s Champions League title match.

_PromoID=[17288, 17287]

Roma Seeking Tittle to Cap Stellar Run

Roma might not have qualified for the Champions League next season, but by team strength and expected goals difference, Mourinho’s side was one of the four best in Italy. Only AC Milan, Inter Milan and Napoli finished higher in the xG table. And actually, Roma was a bit unfortunate when you look at how it ran cold early in the season in terms of finishing variance.

The biggest question is how good Italy actually was , relative to the rest of Europe. Take a look:

  • Milan and Atalanta crashed out in the UCL group stage
  • Barcelona smashed Napoli
  • Juventus suffered a 3-0 home loss against Villarreal to get knocked out
  • Lazio went out early in the Europa League knockouts

That said, it seems pretty clear that the league is down based on performances and results in Europe the last couple seasons.

Roma excels on set pieces, where they produced the most goals and second most expected goals in all of Italy. If you take set pieces out of the equation, though, Mourinho’s side looks a bit more like the sixth placed team in both attack and defense.

They exploited a huge set piece edge to find the winner against Leicester City in the semifinal. Feyenoord does grade out better defensively than the Foxes did in dead ball situations. Although that comes with the caveat that it’s hard to have reliable data from the Eredivisie given the lack of real competition beyond PSV Eindhoven, AZ Alkmaar and Ajax.

The must-have app for Soccer bettors

The best soccer betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Feyenoord Not Getting Deserved Respect

Feyenoord has been undervalued in the market for most of its run and that remains true. Most of that is due to its attack.

Ajax is widely regarded as the dominant team in the Netherlands by a wide margin. However, Feyenoord’s attack was so good that the gap in xG per match wasn’t actually that big. Ajax averaged 2.6 xG and Feyenoord produced 2.35 xG per match. That was better than PSV, which finished second in the league, yet was really the third best team.

FiveThirtyEight’s soccer power index rates the attack as the 14th best in the world. There’s plenty of noise in the SPI data, but there’s also a clear signal being picked up there. If that attack was dropped into Italy, the site believes only Inter would produce more.

The attack rates out better than Milan, Napoli, Juventus and Atalanta, which are teams Roma played against and struggled to defend for most of the season. Feyenoord proved in its home leg against Marseille, which features one of the four best defenses in France, that it can score goals on anyone.

What’s most to like about Feyenoord’s attacking talent is the age profile and depth. The club produced four players with at least nine goals, with 22-year-old Colombian Luis Sinisterra being one of the more promising young attackers in Europe.  He’s taken a real leap this year and can cause problems for a Roma backline that has been prone to mistakes in and out of possession.

BJ Cunningham’s ECL Projections



Betting Analysis & Pick

Roma clearly has the better defense and the experience of Mourinho definitely carries some weight in a European final. You can expect some nerves early on and likely a tentative start, but the best unit is Feyenoord’s attack. It has the firepower to hurt Roma if Mourinho is too conservative in his approach.

The Dutch side proved it can win in different ways when it kept a clean sheet in Marseille in the second leg as well, so I really don’t see much of a gap between the title hopefuls.

Roma will be the more public side because of its league and manager, but Feyenoord is once again not receiving enough respect. This is a toss-up final for me, as I don’t see much between the two clubs.

That said, I’ll take the quarter goal Feyenoord is getting via the Asian Handicap at -125 odds or better as my top pick.

From a total perspective, the narrative is always to play toward the under in a cup final. Yet, that seems priced in given the total is lower than you’d expect for Feyenoord.  I’m passing there,  but would lean to the over if anything.

Pick: Feyenoord +0.25 (-125 or better)

_PromoID=[17288, 17287]

2022 Charles Schwab Challenge OAD Picks: Target Kevin Kisner, Justin Rose, More in Pools

charles schwab challenge-oad-picks-pools-kevin kisner-justin rose-2022

For Sobel’s complete Charles Schwab Challenge preview, click here.


Other OADers

Potential selections for one-and-done options

Kevin Na (+5000)

The winner at Colonial three years ago, Na owns five top-10s in 15 starts. He’s a consistent high-floor play, which means he’s more valuable in OADs for those who might only need to tread water at the top, though he (obviously) has some win equity, too.

The must-have app for golf bettors

Custom scoreboard for your bets

Free picks from experts

Live odds for every golfer

Kevin Kisner (+8000)

Here’s your presumed OAD chalk, assuming teams have either used Jordan Spieth elsewhere or are saving him for a big one. Kisner won here in 2017 on the heels of top-10 results the previous two years, but he should come with a bit of a warning label, considering he hasn’t finished better than 29th here in his past four starts.

Gary Woodland (+4500)

Due to the course yardage, we’ll often look to use only the short, accurate types at Colonial, but don’t forget about the big hitters, either. Case in point: Jason Kokrak won last year and Tony Finau was runner-up three years ago.

Woodland falls into the same category, a guy who can employ something less than a driver on many of the par-4s, simply angling for a good position with his second shot. With results of ninth and 14th in the past two years, don’t be scared to use him.

Justin Rose (+4500)

Talk about a forgotten man, Rose hadn’t even played since the Masters and when he has played, it hasn’t been great, with MCs in each of his previous three stroke-play starts.

Last week, though, he posted a T13 finish at the PGA Championship and now returns to a place where he won four years ago and has never missed a cut in eight tries.

Bet the Charles Schwab Challenge, Win $200 (No Matter What!)

2022 Charles Schwab Challenge FRL Odds & Picks: Justin Rose, 3 More to Back for First-Round Leader

charles schwab challenge-frl-first round leader-odds-picks-justin rose-jordan spieth-2022
Click for full 2022 Charles Schwab Challenge FRL odds via PointsBet

2022 Charles Schwab Challenge Odds

Golfer Odds
Jordan Spieth +2500
Justin Thomas +2500
Scottie Scheffler +2500
Collin Morikawa +2800
Viktor Hovland +2800
Will Zalatoris +3000
Max Homa +3300
Sam Burns +3300
Tommy Fleetwood +3300
Abraham Ancer +4000
Billy Horschel +4000
Daniel Berger +4000
Talor Gooch +4000
Tony Finau +4000
Chris Kirk +5000
Davis Riley +5000
Gary Woodland +5000
Im Sung-jae +5000
Justin Rose +5000
Webb Simpson +5000
Brian Harman +6000
Harold Varner III +6000
Jason Kokrak +6000
Kevin Na +6000
Maverick McNealy +6000
Mito Guillermo Pereira +6000
Patrick Reed +6000
Rickie Fowler +6000
Sebastian Munoz +6000
Tom Hoge +6000
Cheng-Tsung Pan +6600
Christiaan Bezuidenhout +6600
Kevin Kisner +6600
Kyoung-Hoon Lee +6600
Ryan Palmer +6600
Adam Long +7500
Cameron Davis +7500
Lucas Herbert +7500
Nate Lashley +7500
Russell Knox +7500
Sahith Theegala +7500
Stewart Cink +7500
Troy Merritt +7500
Aaron Rai +8000
Brandon Wu +8000
Cameron Tringale +8000
David Lipsky +8000
Erik Van Rooyen +8000
Ian Poulter +8000
J. J. Spaun +8000
James Hahn +8000
Joel Dahmen +8000
JT Poston +8000
Kurt Kitayama +8000
Lucas Glover +8000
Matthew NeSmith +8000
Patton Kizzire +8000
Adam Schenk +10000
Adam Svensson +10000
Alex Smalley +10000
Austin Smotherman +10000
Beau Hossler +10000
Bill Haas +10000
Brandt Snedeker +10000
Brendon Todd +10000
Brian Stuard +10000
Carlos Ortiz +10000
Chad Ramey +10000
Charley Hoffman +10000
Chez Reavie +10000
Danny Lee +10000
Denny McCarthy +10000
Doc Redman +10000
Doug Ghim +10000
Dylan Frittelli +10000
Emiliano Grillo +10000
Erik Compton +10000
Garrick Higgo +10000
Gresyon Sigg +10000
Harry Higgs +10000
Kevin Streelman +10000
Kevin Tway +10000
Kramer Hickok +10000
Lee Hodges +10000
Luke Donald +10000
Mark Hubbard +10000
Matt Jones +10000
Matthias Schwab +10000
Min Woo Lee +10000
Nick Taylor +10000
Nick Watney +10000
Pat Perez +10000
Patrick Rodgers +10000
Peter Malnati +10000
Richard Bland +10000
Robert Streb +10000
Rory Sabbatini +10000
Sam Ryder +10000
Scott Piercy +10000
Scott Stallings +10000
Stephan Jaeger +10000
Taylor Moore +10000
Trey Mullinax +10000
Tyler Duncan +10000
Wyndham Clark +10000
Zach Johnson +10000
Vincent Whaley +12500
Andrew D. Putnam +15000
Camilo Villegas +15000
James Piot +15000
Jason Dufner +15000
John Pak +15000
Max McGreevy +15000
Michael Thompson +15000
Paul Barjon +15000
Ryan Brehm +15000
John Huh +15000
Hayden Buckley +20000
Martin Trainer +22500
Tyler Strafaci +22500
Bet the Charles Schwab Challenge, Win $200 (No Matter What!)

Historically at Colonial Country Club, there hasn’t been a major advantage for morning or afternoon starters in terms of the first-round leader market at the Charles Schwab Challenge.

There have been a few more morning starters to start fast than afternoon starters, but both should absolutely be in play. Each of the past two seasons have produced co-leaders at 7-under with one of the two players having come from the morning and the other from the afternoon.

When looking at the wind forecast in Fort Worth this week for Thursday’s first round, it appears that 10 a.m.-4 p.m. might get a bit breezy with gusts around 20 mph. It might be wise to have at least one golfer on your first-round leader card that tees off prior to 8 a.m. CT.

Get up to $2,200 FREE to bet the Charles Schwab Challenge.

2022 Charles Schwab Challenge FRL Picks

Jordan Spieth +2200

I am incredibly high on Jordan Spieth’s chances of winning this golf tournament, as I stated in my tournament preview. His course history is too strong to ignore with seven top-10 finishes in his past nine starts including three runners-up and a win at the course. His current form is also excellent, as he’s striking the ball beautifully and seems to be as confident as I can remember from tee to green.

When Spieth wins, he tends to start hot. Last year at this event, he was the first-round co-leader with Sergio Garcia after schooling a seven-under 63. I’d argue that in most cases, an outright bet on Spieth should be accompanied with a first-round leader bet.

The Texan isn’t the type to chase the leader down on Sunday or backdoor his way into a win. If he wins this week, it will be in large part due to his ability to start fast.

Justin Rose +5000

“Rosie” was the first-round leader at this event in 2020. He was able to rise to the top on Thursday in one of the most stacked fields we’ve ever seen at Colonial Country Club. He eventually finished third that week but won the tournament back in 2018. The Englishman clearly really enjoys the golf course.

Rose’s iron play really came around last week, gaining 5.2 strokes on approach. With Colonial having smaller than TOUR average greens, precision on his second shots will be a major asset this week. He also has the capability to get extremely hot with the putter which is a skill I love targeting for a first-round leader.

Rose ranks third in the field in Strokes Gained: Total at Colonial Country Club.

C.T. Pan +6600

Pan’s consistent iron play over the course of the 2022 season is what makes him a good bet in all markets this week. The 30-year-old has gained strokes on approach in seven consecutive events.

When Pan gets to a course that isn’t too long for him to contend, he tends to take advantage. He ranks 12th in the field in Strokes Gained: Total on short par 70s, and Colonial isn’t a course that will penalize him too harshly for being short off the tee.

While he isn’t the best putter on TOUR, Pan tends to do his best putting on Bentgrass, which is what we’ll see this week.

Rory Sabbatini +10000

You probably wouldn’t know it, but in his last 12 rounds, Rory Sabbatini ranks 18th in this strong field in Strokes Gained: Total in the first round. The 46-year old has been quietly playing some good golf of late. He gained 4.4 strokes on approach in his most recent start at the Byron Nelson and has made five consecutive cuts on TOUR.

In addition to the recent resurgence, Sabbatini also has some strong course form at Colonial. Three of his past four trips to the golf course have resulted in a top-20 finish.

“Sabbs” has already shown us he can go low this season, as he fired a first round 64 at the Honda Classic earlier this year. The strong start left him one shot shy of the first-round lead.

At this stage of his career, Sabbatini may not have what it takes to win the event, but he’s capable of beating the field on Thursday.

The must-have app for golf bettors

Custom scoreboard for your bets

Free picks from experts

Live odds for every golfer

MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions for Phillies vs. Braves: Bet the Underdog in NL East Matchup (May 25)

Phillies vs. Braves Odds

Phillies Odds +145
Braves Odds -175
Over/Under 9
Time 7:20 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Phillies and Braves are almost spitting images of one another this season. Both share identical 20-23 records. Both have also won the same amount of games at home (11) and on the road (9) so far. And with this four-game series tied at one game apiece, it wouldn’t surprise me if we end up with a split when it’s all said and done.

Wednesday’s matchup features Philadelphia’s left-hander Ranger Suárez against Atlanta’s Charlie Morton. After glancing at the numbers, I found their stats are also eerily similar. Thus, with slim margins on hand, we’ll need to dig even deeper to find a winning angle.

That said, let’s take a look and see where we can find betting value.

_PromoID=[16457, 16465]

Philadelphia Phillies

It looked like a trip to the West Coast would be the turning point in the Phillies’ season. Against the Mariners, manager Joe Girardi got ejected after arguing a play at first base that led to a Seattle run. Philadelphia went down 3-0, but rallied back only to fall short in a 5-4 defeat.

However, the loss seemed to galvanize the Phillies, as they went on a four-game winning streak that included three victories against the mighty Dodgers. Unfortunately, Philadelphia lost its momentum once Bryce Harper had to miss some games due to an elbow injury.

The Phillies went 1-4 during that stretch, and they’re now 2-2 with Harper back in the lineup. There’s a clear difference with the Philadelphia offense when the reigning NL MVP is in the fold. The Phillies were shut out twice during his absence and scored just four runs during a four-game stretch.

Over the past three games, Philadelphia’s scored 16 runs. With that offensive production, the Phillies have more than a fighting chance to contend for a postseason berth. Now they need to get a similar performance from their pitching staff.

In his first three seasons, Suárez made 44 appearances with only three starts. Last year, he made 12 starts in 39 outings. This season, his appearances have been as a starter. Suárez is 4-2 with a 4.12 ERA and 1.45 WHIP. His advanced numbers align with his traditional ERA, given his 3.99 xFIP and 4.31 xERA.

Much of Suárez’s success comes from his sinker, which he throws 52.1 percent. With that pitch, he can induce ground balls and has a 1.63 GB/FB ratio. The sinker allows Suárez to often get out of trouble because he’s always one ground ball away from a double play. That’s how he’s primarily overcome his 3.43 BB/9 ratio.

Moreover, FanGraphs values his sinker at 5.3 runs above average. That alone is a good enough reason to throw the pitch more than 50% of the time.

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Atlanta Braves

After a few spotty starts, Morton might have found his groove again. He’s allowed four runs in his last 16 1/3 innings to drop his ERA by almost two runs. Through eight starts, he’s 3-3 with a 4.95 ERA and 1.45 WHIP.

Much of Morton’s struggles this season have been self-induced. His 4.28 BB/9 ratio is the second-worst of his career. What’s surprising is he’s getting ahead of opposing hitters with a first-pitch strike rate of 63.1 percent. According to FanGraphs, hitters aren’t chasing his pitches as much this season, as their swings outside the strike zone are down from 31.3% to 27.5 percent. In 2019 and 2020, that number was roughly around 33.8 percent.

The good news is there doesn’t appear to be an issue with Morton’s velocity. He still averages around 95 mph on his four-seamer. Thus, I think Morton has an excellent chance to continue to improve as the season progresses. However, Atlanta’s bullpen will need to manage the game better once their starters exit.

The Braves blew their eighth save of the season on Tuesday, which is the fifth-worst mark in the majors. The reality is the Atlanta bullpen hasn’t been that bad despite the blown saves. It ranks 11th with a 3.38 bullpen ERA, whereas Philadelphia ranks 21st with a 4.15 ERA. The advanced numbers are even more favorable for the Braves as they lead the league with a 2.89 FIP this season.

Thus, Atlanta is due for some positive regression if it can sort things out in the ninth inning.

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Phillies-Braves Pick

I think you can easily make an argument for either pitcher in this matchup. My model makes Atlanta no more than a -133 favorite , which is roughly a 55.86% implied probability. However, the Braves are now as high as -185 on the moneyline at some shops and that price is too rich for my liking.

Since 2018, Philadelphia hasn’t fared well in its visits to Atlanta, as it’s  just 10-23 for a loss of 11.4 units in this spot.

Yet, the Phillies are an impressive 15-8 for 5.46 units when Suárez gets the start on the mound.

The value is clearly with the Phillies, who are currently available at +152 odds on the moneyline at WynnBet. I’ll look to risk a half unit of my bankroll on the road underdogs.

Pick: Phillies ML (+152)

_PromoID=[16481]

Mets vs. Giants Odds, Picks, Predictions: New York Lineup Should Back Rookie Starter (Wednesday, May 25)

mets vs giants-odds-pick-prediction-francisco lindor-jakob junis-may 25

Mets vs. Giants Odds

Mets Odds +110
Giants Odds -130
Over/Under 8.5
Time 3:45 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

Today, we get a rubber match after a game for the ages on Tuesday night between the Mets and Giants. Last night, New York came back from six runs down, which was followed by not one, but two comebacks from the Giants.

On the rubber for the Mets this afternoon will be Thomas Szapucki, who will be making his first big-league start. New York will need some length out of the young left-hander after playing a marathon of a game last night.

The Giants will undoubtedly have the edge in experience on the mound with Jake Junis. The former Royals right-hander has fared well as a swingman for San Francisco thus far, but we’ve seen how explosive the Mets offense can be.

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Lefties to Lead the Way for New York

Not only is the man on the mound left-handed for the Mets today, but most of the lineup may be, as well. Junis may come into this start with a 2.70 ERA, but there are many signs that may skyrocket after today.

Junis has been extremely fortunate thus far when you consider the amount and quality of contact he’s allowed. He is a slider-sinker guy who pitches to contact and relies on producing ground balls. To his credit, he’s done that very well this season with a 48& ground-ball rate.

However, this Mets team will be happy to put the ball in play, and the underlying metrics show Junis has gotten away with more than his fair share of mistakes. He is in the bottom 40% of qualified pitchers in average exit velocity, hard-hit rate and barrel rate.

As I said before, Junis relies heavily on his slider (he throws it 54% of the time), but it has not been an effective weapon against lefties. Left-handed hitters have hit .288 off Junis in his career, and he’ll see plenty of them today with the likes of Francisco Lindor, Jeff McNeil, Brandon Nimmo and Eduardo Escobar being staples of the Mets lineup.


Szapucki’s Inexperience Provides an Edge

Szapucki got a taste of the big leagues as he stepped into mop-up duty last June against the eventual World Series-champion Atlanta Braves. Unfortunately, it did not go well. He was tagged for six earned runs over 3 2/3 innings.

Szapucki could enjoy much more success against this Giants lineup this time around. He has been in the Mets’ top prospect rankings for years now, but since he’s only made one big-league appearance, the opposition won’t have much information on him.

The lefty will feature a three-pitch mix that includes a fastball that sits between 91-93 mph, a changeup at 84 mph with some arm side sink and a curveball that is his bread and butter.

Szapucki’s curveball is regarded as the reason why he can succeed at the big-league level. It has great depth and spin, which has made it very effective against hitters on both sides of the plate in the minors.

Szapucki has had a tremendous season in Triple-A, with a 2.86 ERA over seven starts and had an impressive 12.27 K/9.

In his first career start, he’ll face a Giants lineup that has been middle of the pack against left-handers this year, although San Francisco has guys like Wilmer Flores, Darin Ruf, and Evan Longoria, who have been particularly good against lefties in their careers.

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Mets-Giants Pick

While there is a lot of uncertainty around Szapucki, that may play to his advantage given San Francisco’s lack of familiarity with him.

The Mets lineup should give the rookie plenty of support given the great matchup against Junis. If the Mets can get at least five innings out of Szapucki, they should be in excellent shape to take this rubber match and clinch their 12th series victory of the season.

Pick: Mets +110

_PromoID=[16484]

French Open Odds, Preview, Picks: Grigor Dimitrov vs. Borna Coric Betting Preview (May 25)

french-open-odds-preview-picks-grigor-dimitrov-borna-coric-betting-preview-may-25

Looking for Thursday’s best bets? Click here!

Dimitrov vs. Coric Odds

Dimitrov Odds -385
Coric Odds +290
Over/Under 36.5
Time  9:30 am ET 
Odds via FanDuel. For tips on watching tennis matches, click here.

Welcome to round two of the French Open!

As Borna Coric and Grigor Dimitrov are set to face off, we will get to witness a battle between two phenomenal athletes. Coric and Dimitrov have peak rankings of No. 12 and No. 3 respectively, and this match has the potential to be a thriller that reflects that.

While attempting to return to his peak form post-injury, Coric earned an impressive and much-needed win in the first round over Taberner.

Now, he hopes to present a challenge to Dimitrov, who has only lost to one player in the last month. That’s against the man holding the highest clay court Elo Rating – Stefanos Tsitsipas.

Let’s jump into it.

_PromoID=[18179]

Is Coric Ready For A Physical Battle?

Coric had struggled in his return from injury, winning just his second match of the year on Sunday.

His potential is never in question, but we do have to wonder whether he will fulfill it against Dimitrov. Generally, Coric can do it all on the tennis court, from playing wicked defense to firing off both wings – with a remarkable backhand in particular.

Despite his lack of wins, Coric has yet to drop a match in straight sets. This includes pushing Zverev, Sinner, and Davidovich Fokina to the brink.

Even though the fitness in these matches does not compare to the best-of-five format in a slam, the three-day gap between matches will assure that Coric will be fresh tomorrow. However, his fitness will be in question if this drags very deep.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Dimitrov In Middle Of Excellent Run

Dimitrov is one of the greatest athletes on the tour, and there’s no doubt that he will give it his all and make his opponent work for every point.

The Bulgarian has had a wonderful clay season in Europe, as noted by his semi-final in Monte Carlo and wins over top-tier clay courters in Ruud and Schwartzman.

If not for facing Tsitsipas in three consecutive tournaments, Dimitrov could be making headlines with even more momentum coming into the French.

With his performance during this clay season and his vengeful 6-1 6-1 6-1 thrashing of American Marcos Giron, Dimitrov has found his stride and will be looking to make a run to the second week of a slam once again.

Betting Value

I expect that Coric’s athleticism and style of play will cause Dimitrov plenty of problems.

He will put up a fight permitted his stamina does not falter, but even with this worry, his talent, grit, and determination are too much to pass up at this price.

Back Coric to push Dimitrov, and maybe just pull of a second round stunner.

Pick: Over 3.5 sets (-130 via DraftKings) | Borna Coric ML (+300 via FanDuel)

_PromoID=[268]

Caesars Promo: Code ACTIONCZR Unlocks a $1,100 Risk-Free Bet on Celtics-Heat!

Betting on Game 5 between the Celtics and the Heat tonight? If so, you’ll want to place your online wagers at Caesars Sportsbook. You’ll find betting markets at Caesars that you won’t see anywhere else, including odds boosts, player props and more. Not so sure about signing up at Caesars yet? This exclusive promo code should change your mind:

New Caesars users can claim a $1,100 risk-free first bet for the NBA Playoffs! That’s right. Over a thousand dollars, virtually on the house! The only way you don’t get your money back in free bets is if you win (in which case, you’d make it all back and then some!). And this offer isn’t limited to the NBA Conference Finals — it works for the NHL playoffs, MLB and the WNBA as well. Just make sure to use the code ACTIONCZR when you sign up. Then you’ve locked in this special offer for a $1,100 risk-free bet.

Again, be sure to either use the links on this page or use code ACTIONCZR, or else you won’t be eligible for these offers.

_PromoID=[4778]

Caesars Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, Michigan, New Jersey, Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Tennessee, Indiana, West Virginia, and Virginia — is offering new users in all of its states a $1,100 risk-free bet!

Already have Caesars? No problem: See offers at more sportsbooks for all sports right here and New York-specific offers here.

Best Caesars Promo Codes for the NBA Playoffs, NHL Playoffs and More

Caesars is one of the fastest growing brands in the new sports betting industry, and for good reason: They’re one of the most generous sportsbooks to new and existing users, as shown by this offer. Not many places are giving away a $1,100 risk-free first bet!

Here’s how the promotion works: Sign up using the link on this page and with code ACTIONCZR and make a deposit of up to $1,100 (you won’t need a deposit code). That’s all you have to do: Your first bet up to $1,100 will be completely risk-free.

_PromoID=[4778]

Here is tonight’s East Finals matchup (as if you needed a reminder):

  • Boston Celtics at Miami Heat, Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. ET

And here is tonight’s NHL playoff matchup:

  • St. Louis Blues at Colorado Avalanche, Wednesday at 8:00 p.m. ET

Caesars Odds Boosts and Offers for Wednesday, May 25

The bonuses keep coming at Caesars, even after you’ve redeemed a new user promo. For example, you can score new boosted odds markets daily! Here’s one available now:

  • Jayson Tatum Over 19.5 Points, Nazem Kadri Goal & Ronald Acuna Jr. HR on 5/25: boosted to +1100 odds
  • Many more!

_PromoID=[5114, 5113, 1251, 25]

BetMGM Promo: Use Code ACTION7 to Win $200 on the NBA Playoffs!

betmgm sportsbook promo code and bonus offer

Though we haven’t had many close games so far in the series, the Celtics and Heat are tied at two games apiece heading into a pivotal Game 5 tonight. Do you think Miami can get the win at home despite injuries to Jimmy Butler and Kyle Lowry? Or will the Celtics author another blowout similar to their Game 4 pereformance? No matter how you’re betting on Game 5, you should place your wagers at BetMGM Sportsbook. Check out this incredible promo code for new users: Bet $10 on any NBA playoff game, Win $200 if your team scores 1+ point!

Yeah, you read that correctly. ONE point! The Heat and Celtics both boast elite defenses … but neither squad has been able to hold any opponent scoreless throughout 48 minutes. (That’s not really something that happens in the NBA.) In fact, you’ll be $200 richer within the first few possessions of the game thanks to BetMGM.

To take advantage, either use code ACTION7 or simply click one of the links below.

Win $200 if Your NBA Team Scores a Point!

Bet $10+ on an NBA playoff game

Win $200 if the team you bet scores 1+ points

New users only

BetMGM Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, New Jersey, Indiana, West Virginia, Arizona, Tennessee, Iowa, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Virginia, Wyoming and Washington D.C. — is offering an incredible no-brainer promo to new users. This offer is exclusive to The Action Network, so make sure to sign up here and use promo code ACTION7

Already have BetMGM? No problem: See offers at more sportsbooks for all sports right here.

Best BetMGM Promo Codes the NBA Playoffs, NHL Playoffs and More

MGM has been a famous brand for decades, but you’ve probably started to hear about them more in the online betting space. They have a casino on the strip in Las Vegas, and they’ve launched their mobile, online sportsbook in 10+ states over the last few years — now including Illinois!

They’ve consistently been a favorite of users around the country thanks to their fair odds, great app and website, and awesome new-user offers, like the ones you’ll find here. These are no-brainer offers, which means they’re essentially giving you $200 to start your account. Not bad at all.

Here’s how this one works (there are more below, too): Simply click on a link on this page, sign up using promo code ACTION7, deposit, and bet $10 on the playoff game of your choice. At that point, you’ve claimed your new user bonus, and you’ll get credited $200 if your team scores a single point (or more) in the game.

Remember that these offers are exclusive to the Action audience, so make sure to take advantage while you can.

Win $200 if Your NBA Team Scores a Point!

Bet $10+ on an NBA playoff game

Win $200 if the team you bet scores 1+ points

New users only

 

Not a fan of this NBA offer? Here are some other great options for new BetMGM users:

_PromoID=[245, 16447, 5342]

If you need a reminder, here is tonight’s NBA playoff matchup:

  • Boston Celtics at Miami Heat, Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. ET

And here is the NHL postseason game scheduled for Wednesday:

  • St. Louis Blues at Colorado Avalanche, Wednesday at 8:00 p.m. ET

BetMGM Odds Boosts and Offers for Wednesday, May 25

Have you already taken advantage of a new user offer at BetMGM? Well, the awesome bonuses don’t stop there. BetMGM takes care of their existing bettors with new odds boosts every single day! Here’s one available on site now.

  • Dodgers, Mariners and Padres all to win: boosted to +320 odds
  • Many more!

_PromoID=[5113, 1251, 57, 4778]

FanDuel Promo Code: Make Bank on Playoff Season!

fanduel-promo-code-bonus-offer

With the Lightning already through to the Eastern Conference Finals, there’s only one NHL game on the docket for tonight. But boy is it a good one. The Avalanche return to Colorado looking to finish off the Blues on their home ice. Can they punch their ticket to the Western Conference Final? Or will the Blues battle back and keep their season afloat for another night. Either way, you can cash in at FanDuel.

Not signed up at FanDuel yet? Then you can cash in with their special offer for new users (and you won’t need a promo code): Bet $1,000 Risk-Free on the NHL or NBA Playoffs (or anything else). That’s literally a free grand to bet however you see fit. Bet the Avs goal total. Or the Celtics moneyline. It does not matter. And even if you lose, no worries! FanDuel has you covered with a full reimbursement.

One thing to keep in mind: You don’t need a promo code for this offer for Action users, but you will have to click on the link below to redeem.

_PromoID=[268]

FanDuel Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, Arizona, Connecticut, Iowa, Indiana, Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming — is giving all new users a risk-free sports bet.

Already have FanDuel? No problem: See offers at more sportsbooks for all sports right here.

Best FanDuel Promo Codes and Bonus Offers for the NBA Playoffs, the NHL, and More

FanDuel, originally a company focused completely around daily fantasy sports (DFS), has now become a gambling giant in the U.S., with the country’s biggest sportsbook and online casino. They’re always on the cutting edge when it comes to their app and product, and you certainly won’t be disappointed with adding them to your sports betting portfolio.

They’re also very generous to both new and existing users. This offer is just for new ones, and here’s how it works: Simply sign up at FanDuel using this link, deposit, and place your risk-free bet. If you win, you keep the profits. If you lose, FanDuel gives you the money you wagered back, up to $1,000.

_PromoID=[268]

If you need a reminder, here is tonight’s NBA playoff matchup:

  • Boston Celtics at Miami Heat, Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. ET

And here is the lone NHL postseason games scheduled for Wednesday:

  • St. Louis Blues at Colorado Avalanche, Wednesday at 8:00 p.m. ET

_PromoID=[15174, 1251, 5113, 5114]

BetMGM Bonus Code: Bet the Playoffs, Risk-Free, Up to $1,000!

betmgm sportsbook promo code and bonus offer

We are deep into the NBA and NHL playoffs and teams are dropping like flies. The Mavericks managed to stave off elimination against Golden State with a commanding victory last night. However, down 3-1, they still have a steep hill to climb. Now tonight in the NHL, the Avalanche have the chance to close out a series of their own. The odds-on Western Conference favorite can defeat the St. Louis Blues at home and advance to the Conference Final.

And BetMGM Sportsbook is giving you a $1,000 risk-free bet on the NBA and NHL Playoffs. That’s right — you can bet any of this week’s games using only free money. You win and the winnings are yours. You lose and you get reimbursed what you lost. Special promos like this can’t be found just anywhere. To take advantage either use code ACTION or simply click one of the links below.

Get a $1,000 risk-free bet!

Deposit up to $1,000

Get the full value refunded in free bets if it loses!

New users only

BetMGM Sportsbook — available with online registration and betting currently in the U.S. in Illinois, Louisiana, New York, New Jersey, Indiana, West Virginia, Arizona, Tennessee, Iowa, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Virginia, Wyoming and Washington D.C. — is offering an incredible risk-free offer to new users. This offer is exclusive to The Action Network, so make sure to sign up here and use bonus code ACTION.

Already have BetMGM? No problem: See offers at other top sports betting sites.

Best BetMGM Bonus Codes for the NHL and NBA Playoffs, and More

MGM has been a famous brand for decades, but you’ve probably started to hear about them more in the online betting space. They have a casino on the strip in Las Vegas, and they’ve launched their mobile, online sportsbook in 10+ states over the last few years — now including Illinois!

They’ve consistently been a favorite of users around the country thanks to their fair odds, great app and website, and awesome new-user offers, like the ones you’ll find here. These are no-brainer offers, which means they’re essentially giving you $1,000 to start your BetMGM career. Not bad at all.

Here’s how this one works (there are more below, too): Simply click on a link on this page, sign up using bonus code ACTION, deposit, and bet up to $1,000 on any of today’s NHL or NBA playoff games. At that point, you’ve claimed your new user bonus. If your bet wins, congratulations — you keep the profits. But if it loses, no sweat! BetMGM reimburses you up to $1,000 in free bets.

Remember that these offers are exclusive to the Action audience, so make sure to take advantage while you can.

Get a $1,000 risk-free bet!

Deposit up to $1,000

Get the full value refunded in free bets if it loses!

New users only

 

Not a fan of this offer? Here are some other great options for new BetMGM users:

_PromoID=[5114, 5342]

If you need a reminder, here is tonight’s NBA playoff matchup:

  • Boston Celtics at Miami Heat, Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. ET

And here is the lone NHL postseason games scheduled for Wednesday:

  • St. Louis Blues at Colorado Avalanche, Wednesday at 8:00 p.m. ET

BetMGM Odds Boosts and Offers for Wednesday, May 25

Have you already taken advantage of a new user offer at BetMGM? Well, the awesome bonuses don’t stop there. BetMGM takes care of their existing bettors with new odds boosts every single day! Here’s one available on site now.

  • Celtics to win by 1-5 points: boosted to +400 odds
  • Many more!

_PromoID=[5113, 1251, 57, 4778]

Wednesday MLB NRFI Odds & Picks: Proven First-Inning Starters, Weather Give Red Sox vs. White Sox Value (May 25)

wednesday mlb picks-nrfi-lucas giolito-rich hill-red sox vs white sox-may 25

Shayne Trail breaks down his favorite NRFI/YRFI bet of the day below, but you can follow all of his bets in the Action Network app.


Marlins vs. Rays — No Runs First Inning (-145)

Matchup Red Sox (Hill) vs. White Sox (Giolito)
First Pitch 8:10 p.m. ET
Best Line FanDuel

On Wednesday, we look to take a NRFI between two veteran American League pitchers with the weather on their side today.

Surprisingly, Rich Hill is a top-tier NRFI pitcher. Since 2020, the southpaw is 37-9 to the NRFI across four teams.

Against 28 first-inning batters this season, Hill has only issued one walk and allowed six hits holding hitters to a .222 average. Hill is also limiting opposing leadoff hitters to a .143 average. That has resulted in a 5-2 NRFI record.

Hill performs best for the NRFI in non-division games, in which he’s 20-7 since 2020.

Here is how Hill has fared against the hitters he’s likely to face tonight on the south side of Chicago:

  • AJ Pollock: 4-for-21
  • Tim Anderson: 0-for-2
  • Jose Abreu: 1-for-3

Also, projected No. 2 hitter Yoan Moncada has just two hits in his last 25 at-bats.

Like Hill, Lucas Giolito has enjoyed significant NRFI success, going 30-8 since the start of last season.

This year, against 29 first-inning batters, Giolito has only given up six hits. He’s holding teams No. 1 and No. 2 hitters to .125 and .154 averages. Good for a combined 4-for-29. In non-division games since the 2020 season, Giolito is 19-4 to the NRFI.

Here is how Giolito has fared against some of his matchups today in the past:

  • Xander Bogaerts: 2-for-8
  • Rafael Devers: 1-for-5
  • J.D. Martinez: 5-for-10

Also, leadoff hitter Enrique Hernandez is only hitting .180 against right-handed pitching in 2022. Alex Verdugo, who is projected to bat fifth, is only slashing for a .185 average in May.

With slight rain and 13 mph wind blowing toward home plate, look for these NRFI winners to continue their success tonight.

As always, six outs to glory…

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Get all of Shayne Trail’s NRFI/YRFI bets instantly in The Action Network app.

NBA Playoffs Odds, Predictions: Betting Angle for Celtics vs. Heat Game 5

A tied up series with two wins apiece on each side. The Eastern Conference finals is now a best two out of three series. That’s the landscape for the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat ahead of tip-off.

For tonight’s all-important matchup, I’m looking at one tactical angle, one key question yet to be answered, and one bet to make for Celtics-Heat Game 5.


_PromoID=[18090]

The Angle: Miami Hasn’t Had a Good Offensive Game … Yet.

There was little surprising about the Heat having a miserable offensive performance on the road against a desperate Celtics team in Game 4. The Heat’s weakness all season has been their offense, and they have long stretches, sometimes full games, where their offense simply sputters.

The Heat scored one point, (1), uno, a single point against drop coverage in the first quarter of Game 4. They scored 18 points on 15 possessions against drop coverage in pick-and-roll the rest of the way.

The Celtics’ defense is incredible and deserves credit for disrupting Miami. The Heat’s spacing was also horrible.

This is the first possession of the game, and it didn’t get better. This isn’t necessarily surprising, the Heat offense is oftentimes very bad. For the series, Miami is averaging just 90.9 points per play in the half court, per Cleaning the Glass.

That is basically the offensive version of when you make that awkward joke in a meeting and the whole room goes silent. It’s the offensive version of passing gas in an elevator. It’s the offensive version of putting ketchup on macaroni and cheese. The offensive version of putting Rachel Platten’s “Fight Song” on the jukebox on repeat at closing time.

However, Miami hasn’t had a good outlier performance in this series yet either. Their best shooting performance vs. expected eFG% was in Game 3 where they shot 2.4 percentage points better than expected. The Celtics, by contrast, shot 10.5 percentage points better in Game 2.

I’m not saying to bet on an outlier, but it provides a little bit of a buffer. Miami has averaged 112 points per game immediately following a loss in these playoffs, including a 109 scoring output in Game 3 to regain home court advantage in Boston.

On the road in the playoffs, they’ve averaged 99.6 points per game; at home that number goes to 111.5. They aren’t facing the Atlanta Hawks or Philadelphia 76ers (especially the Sixers without Joel Embiid). But the Heat defense has been good enough in this series.

If you just don’t think the Heat can score at all unless they’re facing inferior competition, then by all means, lay the point and a half. But just as I fully expected overall poor offensive performances by the Heat in the series against a great defense, and one game (at least) where they would be particularly bad, they also are likely to find shots to drop.

And just as Game 4 was an obvious spot to believe Boston would respond down 2-1, so too is Miami at home in such a position.

_PromoID=[17354]

The Question: Can Miami Slow Down Boston’s Bigs?

Al Horford continues to throw it back to 2015. Horford has a +23.9 Net Rating in this series and Boston has allowed just 97 points per 100 possessions with him on the court. The Heat have done fine with Bam Adebayo against Horford; even after the crazy-bad Miami performance in Game 4, Boston is still just +1 in the Horford-vs.-Adebayo minutes.

The problem is Robert Williams. Since Williams came back, he’s +22 in the minutes vs. Adebayo, and +8 in 14 minutes without Bam on the court. Meanwhile, that means Horford can play more minutes vs. the bench and in non-Bam Horford minutes, Boston has outscored Miami by 41 points.

The Heat not having Markieff Morris as a viable small-ball stretch five here due to his whiplash injury taking him out of the rotation really hurts here. It seems unlikely that Erik Spoelstra will trust Omer Yurtseven, but they could honestly use the size as Dewayne Dedmon simply has not been playable in this matchup.

Miami’s options are basically down to trying a small-ball unit without a center, playing Yurtseven, or running Adebayo 45 minutes. But if the Heat are going to win, they have to find a solution for what the bigs are doing to them defensively with Williams back, especially if Marcus Smart plays.

_PromoID=[18090]

The Bet to Make in Game 5

The Heat are home dogs in a game where Jimmy Butler is not listed on the injury report and Tyler Herro is expected to play. This is madness.

The value is unequivocally on Miami here. Boston is a better team and should win the series; they’ve proven that since January and over the course of the first four games. But they’re not so much better as to be favorites on the road vs. the No. 1 seed in the conference that has been lights out at home.

Butler has bounced back after having down games. The Heat are 9-5 straight up and ATS since Butler joined the Heat in the playoffs after Butler scores fewer than 20 points, including 2-0 at home in these playoffs in such a scenario. They are 4-2 SU and ATS at home after a loss in the playoffs since Butler. Spoelstra is 10-2 straight up at home in Game 5s in the playoffs and has never been a home dog in such a scenario.

I would bet this close to tip to make sure you’re aware of all relevant injury news as this series has been brutal in that regard.

I’ll be betting light — betting against the team I think will win the series in a Game 5 is perilous — but at plus money, there should be no play but Miami. The sharps agree as we’ve tracked four sharp moves on the Heat in the Action app while the public comes in on Boston.

The Bet: Miami +1.5

Win $50 if Jimmy Butler Scores 1+ Point!

Sign up using code ACTIONNBA

Place a $5+ NBA entry

Live in 31 states!

Celtics vs. Heat Game 5 Odds & Picks: Our Staff’s 5 Best Bets (May 25)

nba-betting-odds-expert-picks-predictions-celtics-vs-heat-best-bets-may-25

With Game 5 between the Celtics and Heat in Miami tonight, our Action Network NBA analysts have five best bets for this crucial matchup. They are targeting player props, a team total, and spread picks.

Check out their analysis and picks below.

_PromoID=[18090]

NBA Odds & Picks

Click on a pick to skip ahead
Jaylen Brown Player Prop
Celtics vs. Heat Spread
Celtics Team Total
Celtics vs. Heat Spread
Jaylen Brown Player Prop

Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat

Pick
Jaylen Brown Over 2.5 3s Made
Book
FanDuel
Tipoff
8:30 p.m. ET
TV
ESPN

Joe Dellera: Jaylen Brown had one bad game in Game 4, but the volume and usage is still there – he’s made three or more 3s in six of seven against the Miami Heat this year, and he’s cleared this in nine of their last eleven games.

Even in Game 4, he still attempted six 3s, and he is averaging 3.3 makes on 7.6 attempts (43.4% shooting) against Miami this year.

The offense is funneling Brown opportunities, and he has taken eight, seven, nine, and six 3-point attempts in this series. Even with the down game, Brown has led the series in scoring by piling up 25 points per game with an efficient 116.8 points per 100 shot attempts, especially given the defenses in this series. Consequently, expect him to bounce back from a down game and make over 2.5 3s in Game 5.

Win $50 if Jaylen Brown Scores 1+ Point!

Sign up using code ACTIONNBA

Place a $5+ NBA entry

Live in 31 states!

» Return to the table of contents «


Pick
Celtics -1.5
Book
BetMGM

Raheem Palmer: The Eastern Conference Finals series between the Celtics and Heat has been anything but predictable as both teams have taken turns blowing out the other. In many ways we’ve seen outlier performances from both teams in their wins, however it’s clear the Heat come into this pivotal Game 5 with more struggles on the health front with Jimmy Butler (knee) and Tyler Herro (groin) both dealing with injuries that caused them to miss time in this series.

While Robert Williams and Marcus Smart have also missed time, we’ve seen the Celtics overcome their losses. The Heat aren’t nearly as deep, and with Kyle Lowry still recovering from a hamstring injury, it feels like the Heat don’t have enough offensively, particularly against a Celtics team which boasted the top ranked Defensive Rating in the league this season (106).

Excluding Game 3, where the Celtics laid an egg for much of the game, it feels like they’ve been the better team throughout much of this series, and they likely win Game 1 if they aren’t coming off a grueling seven-game series against the Milwaukee Bucks. Nonetheless, I’ll back the Celtics here to win and cover Game 5.


» Return to the table of contents «


Pick
Celtics Over 102.5 Points
Book
BetMGM

Brandon Anderson: I don’t want to take a side in this game.

I like the Celtics better, but the books apparently do too, making Boston a road favorite in Miami where the Heat had been untouchable all playoffs before the Celtics shot the leather off the ball in Game 2.

Boston has been the better team over the course of the series. The Celtics have more playmakers and scorers, and I trust them more on both offense and defense. But Miami is really good, mentally and physically tough, and not going to go away easy. The Heat know they need this one, and they may get it.

I still prefer Boston, but playing the team total gives me more outs. If the Celtics do get the road win, it’s very likely the Celtics go over 102.5 points. Boston’s defense just about always shows up, so it’s the offense that dictates Celtics victories. Boston had scored 108 or more in every playoff win until going under this line by half a point after 15 minutes of Game 4 garbage time.

But the Cs can go over this even in a loss too with the number so low. They scored 103 and 107 in two losses this series, hitting this over. That makes Boston 3-1 to this over for the series, and the team is averaging 110 points per game against Miami, including 117 PPG on the road. Since Boston became this juggernaut version of itself in late January, the Celtics are averaging over 104 points per game even in losses.

A Celtics win almost certainly clears this number, while a loss might still give us a coin flip. Boston has gone over 102.5 points in 12 of 15 postseason games, hitting this over 80% of the time. That’s the best play for Game 5 because it gives us multiple paths to victory.

BetSync with PointsBet for easy bet tracking

Automatically import all your bets

Track your bet win probability

Available in NJ, IN and CO

» Return to the table of contents «


Pick
Heat +1.5
Book
BetRivers

Matt Moore: You should absolutely wait to see if Jimmy Butler plays in this game. He’s not listed on the injury report for Game 5.

Assuming he plays, Miami is 9-5 straight up and against the spread in the playoffs since Butler joined the Heat in games where he scores more than 20 points and 6-3 SU and ATS at home (2-0 this postseason). In these playoffs, Miami is 2-1 SU and ATS after Butler scores fewer than 20, including Games 3 and 4 when he scored just eight and six points.

Butler is a lot like Jayson Tatum in that the game can come and go from him at times, but he usually responds when called upon. Miami is 7-1 SU and 6-2 ATS at home in these playoffs. They’ve been lights out in these types of games.

For the Heat to be getting points in this spot with Butler not on the injury report is absolute madness. There is a market perception that seems heavily aligned with the public narrative that Boston is somehow leagues beyond the top seed in the East.

I won’t bet heavily on this game, but I like this to Miami -2.5, which it almost assuredly will not get to. I will fade the public skepticism toward a very good Heat team at home.

_PromoID=[17354]


» Return to the table of contents «


Pick
Jaylen Brown Over 2.5 3s Made (-135) | Over 6.5 Rebounds (-115)
Book
FanDuel

Brandon Anderson: Jaylen Brown continues to be massively important for Boston this series. Jayson Tatum has his hands full with P.J. Tucker and Jimmy Butler giving him all he can handle defensively, and Tatum has a big defensive role too. But that means Brown gets the softer matchup on both ends, and it means he has a size advantage as well. And until a poor Game 4, he had taken advantage of it.

Brown had just 12 points, seven rebounds, and a single 3-pointer in Game 4, all three numbers his lowest of the series. But even including that game, he’s still leading Boston in both points and rebounds for the series. Brown is now averaging 25.0 points and 8.5 rebounds per game, and he should have a bounce-back game here.

Let’s start with the 3s, since that one’s more straightforward. Brown made only one trey last game, but he had a few others go halfway down and finished 1-of-6. Some nights the shots just don’t fall, but the volume was still there, and Brown has still gone over 2.5 made 3s in six of seven Heat games on the season and nine of his last 11 against Miami overall. Keep playing the over.

As for the rebounding, that’s not a new trend for Brown. He’s a terrific positional rebounder and has averaged 7.6 RPG over his last 25 playoff games, so this line remains too low. Brown has at least seven boards in all four games this series, so he’s gone over the line all four times, and this prop gets even better if Robert Williams is limited or out, leaving the Celtics smaller overall and Brown playing bigger.

Brown actually leads both teams in rebounds with 34 on the series compared to 30 from Al Horford and 29 from Bam Adebayo. Brown is still +330 to lead the series in rebounding at DraftKings, and he’s +1900 to lead in RPG at FanDuel. Horford is the leader there at 10.0 RPG — remember he missed Game 1 — but Brown is in play on both of these the way he’s rebounding this series.

You know what else he’s still in play for? Conference Finals MVP. If you already tailed along the way, you probably don’t need to triple-down here, but at +1300 at FanDuel, Brown is still a juicy pick to win the first Larry Bird trophy. He’s ahead of Tatum in points and rebounds per game, and he’s shooting better from the field and on 3s while also committing eight fewer turnovers.

Tatum is the hotter name after a big Game 4, but this number is still far too long for a guy playing this well, leading his team in points and rebounds, on the team still favored to win the series.

The must-have app for NBA bettors

The best NBA betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

» Return to the table of contents «


Blues vs. Avalanche Game 5 Odds, Pick, Prediction: Colorado Poised to Close Series (May 25)

blues vs avalanche-game 5-odds-pick-prediction-nhl playoffs-may 25

Blues vs. Avalanche Game 5 Odds

Blues Odds +210
Avalanche Odds -260
Over/Under 6.5 (-115 / -105)
Time 8 p.m. ET
TV TNT
Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

St. Louis managed a huge win in Game 2 of this Western Conference semifinal and appeared in good shape heading back home to the Enterprise Center with the split.

Things didn’t go as planned in St. Louis, though, as the Blues were outscored by a combined 11-5 and head back to Colorado facing a do-or-die Game 5.

Will Colorado close this series in its first chance to do so? Let’s break down the matchup

_PromoID=[18149]

St. Louis Struggles to Contain Elite Avs Attack

St. Louis spent a ton of energy worrying about more than simply winning a crucial affair in Game 4, looking to exact a measure of revenge from Nazem Kadri for bumping Jordan Binnington in Game 3.

The result was ultimately not very good, as Colorado broke through with a big second period on route to a 6-3 victory. The Avalanche’s deep offensive attack again proved too much for this shaky St. Louis defensive core to handle, and Colorado won the expected goals battle 3.39-1.93.

St. Louis now has just a 40.34 xGF% in the series and has generated 33 high-danger scoring chances to the Avs’ 43.

Colorado’s deep roster with elite talents has provided a tough challenge for St. Louis’ limited defensive core, and I think it’s unlikely we see the Blues hide their mediocre defense at this point.

Ville Husso has not thrived by any means this playoff either, and seeing the red-hot Jordan Binnington fall to injury was another notable blow. Husso has played to a -4.8 Goals Saved Above Expected rating (GSAx) in five playoff games, with an .884 save percentage.

Given a bigger sample size, I’m sure those numbers would be closer to his regular-season averages. St. Louis will most likely need a massive performance from the 27 year old Finn in Game 5 to be in with a chance.

_PromoID=[18122]

Colorado’s Elite Talent Is Turning in Elite Results

Colorado is skating one of the more talented rosters in recent history. It has been clear throughout this playoff run how many different ways it can find ways to win.

Kadri was the star of the show in Game 4, managing three goals and an assist in an inspiring performance. All season, he has been spectacular on the power play and driving the second unit. Kadri is a big reason why it’s just so hard to match up with the Avs.

Nathan MacKinnon and the top-unit has been excellent, while Cale Makar and Devon Toews have clearly been the best defensive pairing during the postseason. Behind that, Colorado has gotten excellent playoff performances from a number of depth pieces like Arturri Lehkonen.

Colorado has played to the best expected goals rating during the playoffs at 61.91 xGF% in eight games.

Most importantly behind all of that, Darcy Kuemper has been very steady when called upon between the pipes, as evidenced by a .917 save percentage and -0.1 GSAx.

Jared Bednar’s group knows full well how quickly these series can get away given its playoff failures in recent years. Wrapping up the series as quickly as possible is also crucial for a team already without defenseman Samuel Girard for the rest of the playoffs.

My belief is the Avalanche will play a confident and sharp game Wednesday, and we should see this spectacular roster playing at close to its peak form.

The must-have app for NHL bettors

The best NHL betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Blues vs Avalanche

All season, I have been pretty bullish about just how good this St. Louis team truly is. Now, I feel the Blues are running on fumes against the ridiculously good Avalanche.

It’s possible we could see the Blues show a ton of resilience and find a way to steal Game 5 in Colorado, but it’s a lot easier to envision this deep Colorado attack causing a wealth of problems yet again, and the numbers surely support that likely playing out.

Plus money for the Avs to win by two or more seems like a good proposition to me, and I surely believe we have value to make a play on them to finish St. Louis with a big performance at home tonight.

Pick: Colorado Avalanche -1.5 +105 (play to -110)

_PromoID=[17787]

MLB Player Prop Picks: Betting Overs on Cal Quantrill & J.D. Martinez (Wednesday, May 25)

mlb player props-picks-predictions-cal quantrill-jd martinez-may 25-mlb

Wednesday’s MLB slate has plenty of day games, but I’ve found two players at night who I believe provide value in the player props market.

Our Action Labs Props Tool grades each prop on a scale from 1-10, and I’ll be sure to include the grade for each of my betting recommendations in my discussions below.

Cal Quantrill over 3.5 Strikeouts (-140)

Guardians @ Astros
First Pitch 8:10 p.m. ET
Best Line DraftKings

Cal Quantrill finally got plugged into the Guardians’ rotation in May of last year, and it’s been smooth sailing since.

Quantrill posted a 3.12 ERA in his 22 starts in 2021 and is at 3.48 ERA through his first seven starts this year. He’s failed to complete five full innings in just one of those seven starts and is averaging almost six innings per start this season.

The Guardians clearly trust him, since he has failed to eclipse 90 pitches in only his first start this season, when he wasn’t fully stretched out to pitch deep into games.

Quantrill is by no means a strikeout machine, but his length has given him results. Since getting that first start against the White Sox on May 31 of last season, Quantrill has cashed over 3.5 strikeouts in 15 of his 19 starts.

He’s only managed to do that in three of his first six starts this season, but those three wins have happened in the last four starts. Quantrill even struck out four Angels and seven Padres, two of the hottest lineups in the league.

It’ll be really tough to get strikes past the Astros, but the Houston lineup is more vulnerable this season. After finishing with the second-best strikeout rate against right-handed pitchers last year, the Astros have slipped to eighth in that category.

I believe in Quantrill’s ability to pitch deep into games, and I’ll back him to get more than three today. Our Action Labs Player Props Tool projects Quantrill for 4.1 Ks Wednesday evening, which gives me enough value to bet this line.

Pick: Over 3.5 Ks (-140)

Action Labs Grade: 6/10

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

JD Martinez over 1.5 Total Bases (+115)

Red Sox @ White Sox
First Pitch 8:10 p.m. ET
Best Line DraftKings

Boston has been on fire, leading MLB in wRC+ (145), OPS (.860) and ISO (.232) over the last two weeks. The Red Sox have scored 49 runs just over the past five games.

Alex Cora and Chaim Bloom remained patient with the Red Sox lineup, and it’s begun to pay off. This team has been punishing the ball all season, but the balls weren’t finding the gap.

Now, they are.

There are plenty of Boston hitters to point to, but J.D. Martinez deserves the biggest callout. Rafael Devers leads the team in WAR, but Martinez leads the team in OPS+. He has a 1.005 OPS and a 182 OPS+ so far in 2022.

Martinez’s latest hot run at the plate is insane. He’s slashing .425/.454/.675 during May, recording 12 extra-base hits over his last 80 at-bats. At one point, he had an 18-game hit streak going.

Predictably, this has been huge for Martinez backers. He’s cashed his bases total in 17 of his last 23 games (74%), and I like Martinez to cash again today.

Lucas Gioltio is a powerful pitcher, but he’s struggled against Martinez in the past. In 11 lifetime plate appearances, Martinez is 5-for-10 against Giolito with an average exit velocity of 91.4 mph and 18.6-degree launch angle.

Giolito tries to set hitters up with a four-seam fastball before catching them off guard with a changeup. That two-pitch mix has been an incredibly powerful combination this season, and the White Sox righty is striking out over 12 batters per nine innings so far this season.

But I’d be careful trying to sneak those pitches by Martinez, who has a +6 Run Value against the four-seam this season while slugging .675 on the pitch. And while he’s only seen 37 changeups this year, he’s slugging .600 against them.

Credit: Baseball Savant.

At anything better than even money, I love Martinez to rake in this matchup against Giolito and the White Sox bullpen.

Pick: Over 1.5 TBs (+115)

_PromoID=[16477, 16482]

2022 Charles Schwab Challenge Odds, Picks: 2 Outright Bets & 1 DFS Target

charles schwab challenge picks-odds-dfs-kevin na-brian harman-cameron tringale-2022

Read more of Derek’s content at RotoGrinders.


Click arrow to expand 2022 Charles Schwab Challenge odds via BetMGM

2022 Charles Schwab Challenge Odds

name Odds
Justin Thomas +1100
Scottie Scheffler +1200
Jordan Spieth +1400
Collin Morikawa +1800
Viktor Hovland +2000
Will Zalatoris +2000
Sam Burns +2500
Max Homa +2800
Abraham Ancer +3300
Daniel Berger +3300
Jason Kokrak +3300
Sungjae Im +3300
Tony Finau +3300
Chris Kirk +4000
Davis Riley +4000
Justin Rose +4000
Mito Pereira +4000
Talor Gooch +4000
Tommy Fleetwood +4000
Webb Simpson +4000
Billy Horschel +5000
Brian Harman +5000
Gary Woodland +5000
Harold Varner III +5000
Kevin Na +5000
Sebastian Munoz +5000
C.T. Pan +6600
Maverick McNealy +6600
Patrick Reed +6600
Ryan Palmer +6600
Tom Hoge +6600
Adam Long +8000
Cameron Tringale +8000
Christiaan Bezuidenhout +8000
K.H. Lee +8000
Rickie Fowler +8000
Troy Merritt +8000
David Lipsky +8000
Doug Ghim +8000
Alex Smalley +10000
Cam Davis +10000
Erik van Rooyen +10000
J.J. Spaun +10000
J.T. Poston +10000
Joel Dahmen +10000
Kevin Kisner +10000
Lucas Glover +10000
Lucas Herbert +10000
Matthew NeSmith +10000
Patton Kizzire +10000
Russell Knox +10000
Stewart Cink +10000
Aaron Rai +12500
Brendon Todd +12500
Denny McCarthy +12500
Emiliano Grillo +12500
Ian Poulter +12500
James Hahn +12500
Kevin Streelman +12500
Nate Lashley +12500
Patrick Rodgers +12500
Austin Smotherman +15000
Brandon Wu +15000
Carlos Ortiz +15000
Dylan Frittelli +15000
Kurt Kitayama +15000
Mark Hubbard +15000
Min Woo Lee +15000
Pat Perez +15000
Peter Malnati +15000
Rory Sabbatini +15000
Scott Stallings +15000
Stephan Jaeger +15000
Taylor Moore +15000
Vince Whaley +15000
Greyson Sigg +15000
Chad Ramey +20000
Chez Reavie +20000
Matt Jones +20000
Matthias Schwab +20000
Nick Taylor +20000
Sahith Theegala +20000
Wyndham Clark +20000
Adam Schenk +25000
Beau Hossler +25000
Danny Lee +25000
Michael Thompson +25000
Richard Bland +25000
Robert Streb +25000
Trey Mullinax +25000
Tyler Duncan +25000
Zach Johnson +25000
Adam Svensson +30000
Andrew Putnam +30000
Brandt Snedeker +30000
Charley Hoffman +30000
Doc Redman +30000
Harry Higgs +30000
Kramer Hickok +30000
Lee Hodges +30000
Luke Donald +30000
Paul Barjon +30000
Sam Ryder +30000
Brian Stuard +35000
Garrick Higgo +35000
Kevin Tway +35000
Bill Haas +50000
Camilo Villegas +50000
Hayden Buckley +50000
John Pak +50000
Martin Trainer +50000
Nick Watney +50000
Ryan Brehm +50000
Max McGreevy +50000
Erik Compton +50000
James Piot +50000
T. Strafaci +50000
Martin Trainer +50000
Ty Strafaci +50000
Bet the Charles Schwab Challenge risk-free up to $1,000.

We have yet to hit a winner since I started writing this weekly betting preview, but that should change soon enough.

When it comes to my betting cards, I’ve had the runner-up each of the last two weeks. If anything, I’d say we are trending in the right direction. After the year’s second major, the PGA TOUR heads back to Texas for the Charles Schwab Challenge.

Unlike the last two weeks, we have plenty of course history and course data to work with for this event. Colonial Country Club has been a regular stop on the PGA TOUR for many years. The course is a par-70 that measures just over 7,200 yards. The course won’t play as difficult as Southern Hills last week, but it does have some teeth. It has ranked in the top 20 in difficulty in each of the last five years and the early-week forecast calls for some heavy wind on Saturday and Sunday.

There isn’t one specific type of golfer that contends at Colonial every year. Many short game specialists have excelled here in the past (Kevin Na, Jordan Spieth, Kevin Kisner, Brian Harman, etc.), but we’ve also seen Daniel Berger and Jason Kokrak in the winner’s circle the last two years. Ultimately, golfers need to keep the ball in play off the tee and be solid with the rest of their game. The greens here are small and tough to hit, which puts an emphasis on the short game.

Before we get into the picks, I should also note that course history here is predictive year in and year out. The golfers that have played well here in the past tend to play well here again. In fact, we haven’t had a first-timer win this event in over 20 years. Trends are made to be broken, but I am avoiding those that are making their first appearance at this event.

Bet the Charles Schwab Challenge, Win $200 (No Matter What!)

Favorite Bet: Kevin Na +5000

If Na is able to win the Charles Schwab Challenge for the second time in his career, golf Twitter can all celebrate together. He is seemingly one of the more popular bets of the week and you can still find him at +5000 on the FanDuel.

While Na struggles mightily off the tee, a lot of that is negated this week. He has gained over 14 strokes on approach in his last three starts and he might be the best scrambler on the PGA TOUR. The putter can be hit or miss, but we know he’s capable of gaining five or more strokes with the flat-stick on any given week.

Favorite Longshot: Cameron Tringale +10000

While Na is a popular bet this week, I am on Tringale island.

At this point last season, he was a popular DFS value and a popular longshot bet. It seems like everyone has forgotten about him, even though he is starting to flash some consistency.

Tringale has gained on approach in 10 of his last 11 starts, and his skillset matches the course perfectly. His irons are locked in, he’s underrated around the green, and he’s one of the best putters on TOUR on bentgrass greens.

Tringale is still searching for his first win on the PGA TOUR, so I’m backing up this outright bet with a top five bet as well.

Favorite DFS Value: Brian Harman $7,800 DK / $9,500 FD

Harman sticks out like a sore thumb this week when it comes to DFS. He has really turned his driving around this year and has gained over 10 strokes on approach in his last two events. If the driver continues to cooperate and if he gains strokes with his irons, I don’t envision a scenario where he doesn’t pay off this cheap price point. He has an elite short game and he loves it around Colonial. He has made eight straight cuts at this event and all of those finishes ended up being in the top 35.

Good luck this week!

The must-have app for golf bettors

Custom scoreboard for your bets

Free picks from experts

Live odds for every golfer

MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions for Brewers vs. Padres: Target Total in West Coast Matinee (Wednesday, May 25)

brewers vs padres-odds-pick-prediction-yu darvish-aaron ashby-may 25

Brewers vs. Padres Odds

Brewers Odds +120
Padres Odds -140
Over/Under 7.5 (+105 / -125)
Time 4:10 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Milwaukee Brewers bounced back on the back of reigning Cy Young winner Corbin Burnes on Tuesday night, evening the series with the San Diego Padres at one apiece.

The Padres will turn to Yu Darvish in the series finale, while Aaron Ashby rejoins the Milwaukee rotation for the series finale.

Can the Padres take home the series at Petco Park behind Darvish, or will the Brewers play spoiler for the second straight night?

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Ashby’s Stuff Isn’t a Concern

Ashby will likely remain until Freddy Peralta (shoulder) returns from the injured list. The left-hander’s biggest issue is his control, as he ranks in the bottom 10% of MLB in walk rate (5.4 per nine innings), and it’s come back to bite him on multiple occasions.

When he’s locating well, though, Ashby is tough to hit. He ranks in the top 12 percent in hard-hit rate and xSLG. Opponents have just a .211 xBA against the southpaw, who has a 3.13 xERA over 28 1/3 innings.

Even when he was coming out of the bullpen, Ashby threw multiple innings out of long relief, although he’s pitched more than four innings just once this season. It’s likely the Brewers bullpen will play an important role in this game. That unit ranks 12th in bullpen ERA and is tied for the fewest home runs allowed.

However, closer Josh Hader is currently on the bereavement list and without a timetable for return. Also, both Trevor Gott and Devin Williams have thrown on back-to-back days, which means they’re likely unavailable on Wednesday.


Darvish Strives for Consistency Following Gem

Darvish takes the mound fresh off a seven-inning shutout of the Phillies a week ago, but the 35-year-old has been quite inconsistent this season.

Darvish ranks right around league average in xERA (3.76), hard-hit rate and xwOBA. His underlying metrics does show potential for positive regression, with his FIP (3.48) sitting a half-run lower than his ERA (3.91). He is also walking fewer batters and giving up fewer home runs than last season.

At the same time, Darvish’s strikeout rate has dropped 10% and his xBA (.253) currently stands as his career-worst despite letting up less barrels in 2022.

Much of Darvish’s success comes down to his cutter, which has a .340 batting average against thus far. If his primary pitch is working, Darvish’s deep arsenal can shut down the opposition on any given night, as it has against the likes of the Dodgers or aforementioned Phillies.

Darvish has also been extremely effective at home, where he has a 1.37 ERA over three starts. On the road, he’s been roughed up to the tune of a 5.81 ERA.

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Brewers-Padres Pick

While I do lean toward the Brewers taking home this series finale, I think there’s more value on the first five total in this matchup.

Darvish has been inconsistent at times this season, but he’s got a proven track record at Petco Park. He doesn’t get himself into trouble with location issues, and I expect him to limit the Milwaukee bats in the early going.

Tack on Ashby’s effectiveness to limit hard contact and his near 30% strikeout rate, and I think he should turn in another solid outing as he rejoins the Brewers rotation.

Even if Ashby doesn’t go the full five innings, the Milwaukee bullpen should finish the job. I don’t trust the full game under because of the Brewers bullpen potentially being shorthanded, but I do see value in the first five innings.

We’ll back pitching to reign supreme once again in the first half of Wednesday evening’s series finale as the bats once again remain quiet.

Pick: First 5 Innings Under 4 (to -120)

_PromoID=[17281, 17286]

French Open Wednesday Odds & Picks: Siniakova to Play Fernandez Tight (May 25)

Looking for Thursday’s best bets? Click here!

The second round of the French Open is set to begin and there’s more value on Wednesday’s order of play for us to exploit.

Read below for two plays from the slate of tennis at Roland Garros!

Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches.

_PromoID=[18179]

Kaia Kanepi (-180) vs. Beatriz Haddad Maia (+140)

7 a.m. ET

Kaia Kanepi was on the brink of defeat in the first round of Roland Garros, but the Estonian came back from a set and a break down to defeat Garbine Muguruza 2-6, 6-3, 6-4.

Kanepi won 70% of her first-serve points and was only broken once after the first set. On return, she won 55% of her second-serve return points, generating 13 break points on the Muguruza serve. Kanepi’s huge game, including her powerful groundstrokes, are very hard to handle, even on the clay.

Kanepi has quietly gone 9-3 this clay-court season, although five of those wins were on the green clay of Charleston and in the altitude of Madrid, conditions that are unlike Roland Garros.

Beatriz Haddad Maia has went 12-4 on the clay this year. This includes her first-round victory at Roland Garros where Haddad Maia beat Cristina Busca 6-3, 1-6, 6-2.

While Haddad Maia only won 52% of her service points against Busca, she won 53% of her return points. This included 62% of the points on Busca’s second serve, which helped contribute to seven breaks of serve.

While Haddad Maia took last week off, she’s coming into this event having won the Saint Malo Challenger against Anna Blinkova and then making the final of the Paris Challenger the following week.

She used her lefty game very effectively, controlling the baseline with her forehand, while her flatter backhand was still solid and cut through the court well.

This will be a match between two in-form players who hit huge groundstrokes. Haddad Maia is slightly better on defense compared to Kanepi, while the Estonian really makes it a point to try to dictate.

Haddad Maia can control the baseline with her lefty forehand, dragging Kanepi around the court and forcing her into making the errors we saw for the first 1.5 sets yesterday against Muguruza.

Pick: Haddad Maia +3.5 games (-130 via PointsBet)

BetSync with PointsBet for easy bet tracking

Automatically import all your bets

Track your bet win probability

Available in NJ, IN and CO

Leylah Fernandez (-185) vs. Katerina Siniakova (+144)

8:30 a.m. ET

Leylah Fernandez got her Roland Garros campaign off to a good start. Fernandez beat Kiki Mladenovic 6-0, 7-5.

She returned very well against Mladenovic, winning 55% of her return points and breaking Mladenovic six times.

Fernandez hit 23 winners compared to 17 unforced errors, but was hit-or-miss when approaching the net, winning 8-of-15 net points. The Canadian also showed great mental toughness, coming back from 3-5 *30-40 in the second set.

The US Open finalist has gone just 2-3 on clay this season. Fernandez understands point construction on hard courts better and her groundstrokes don’t make nearly as much of an impact on clay. In her career, Fernandez has won just 56% of her clay-court matches.

Katerina Siniakova had a strong start to the French Open. She defeated Petra Martic in straight sets to set up this showdown with Fernandez.

Siniakova hit 27 winners compared to 19 unforced errors against Martic, breaking the Martic serve six times. However, Siniakova was not great on her serve, winning just 54% of her service points.

She has won 64% of her professional matches on clay, including a WTA Tour singles title in Bastad in 2017 and two French Open doubles titles.

Fernandez is the better player, but Siniakova is a little bit better on clay. This is reflected in their Elo ratings, where Fernandez has the higher overall Elo, but Siniakova has the higher clay-court Elo.

While Fernandez will look to dictate, Siniakova’s defense and counterpunching will frustrate the Canadian and force the Fernandez to go bigger and bigger, which should lead to unforced errors.

Siniakova has played 119 more career matches on clay than Fernandez and this experience will be tough for Fernandez to make up.

Pick: Siniakova +3.5 games (-130 via PointsBet)

_PromoID=[5113]

French Open Novak Djokovic vs. Alex Molcan Odds, Picks, Predictions (May 25)

french-open-novak-djokovic-vs-alex-molcan-odds-picks-predictions-may-25

Looking for Thursday’s best bets? Click here!

Djokovic vs. Molcan Odds

Djokovic Odds -4000
Molcan Odds +1300
Over/Under 28.5
Time 8 a.m. ET
Odds via FanDuel. For tips on watching tennis matches, click here.

Novak Djokovic takes on Alex Molcan in a rematch of last year’s Belgrade final, but this time with a unique twist. Djokovic’s long-time coach Marian Vajda will be in the opposing box.

Both players arrive on a hot streak. Djokovic is fresh off a title in Rome and Molcan finished as a runner-up in Lyon last week. In a match with a massive line, let’s dive into the best way to find value.

_PromoID=[268]

Djokovic Is Officially Back

After his long hiatus due to off-court dealings, Djokovic struggled to pick up wins. He was spraying errors more than we had seen in years, but more importantly, he would fade in extended matches as his fitness was visibly lacking.

Then came the Masters tournaments of Madrid and Rome where he reached the semi-final before falling in a deciding tiebreaker to the surging star Carlos Alcaraz before finding triumph in Rome not long after.

The world No. 1 was once again playing as his ranking would suggest. After a quick start to the French Open against Yoshihito Nishioka where Djokovic surrendered only four games, he has his eyes on a record-tying 21st Grand Slam title.

_PromoID=[18179]

Molcan Ready For Rematch

Molcan is in peak form as he resides at a career high ranking of 38. He has been the runner-up twice on the year and has made a vital addition to his team with Marian Vajda.

The Slovak has had two matchups against a top-10 opponent in 2022, winning one and falling in a tight third set in the other.

With revenge on his mind as well as the advantage of knowing his opponent’s game – thanks to their previous matchup and his acquisition of Djokovic’s former coach – Molcan will feel confident in his chance to turn some eyes.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Betting Value

Facing an opponent with inside information on their game is an advantage that does not come around often.

Vajda was part of Djokovic’s team throughout his great success and will know his strengths and weaknesses better than anyone else. Beyond Vajda raising Molcan’s game to the next level, he will also be able to find the best ways to cause the seemingly impenetrable Djokovic some problems.

I fully expect Molcan to arrive in this match fired up. He will cherish the opportunity to have a rematch against Djokovic and be able to play with much less pressure than their last matchup, which occurred in a final.

Molcan may experience slight fatigue following a final in Lyon and limited days of rest, but his motivation and current form will keep the match competitive.

Pick: Molcan +9.5 Games (-120) 

MLB Odds, Pick, Prediction for Tigers vs. Twins: Bettors Can’t Trust There Starting Pitchers (May 25)

tigers vs twins-odds-picks-predictions-mlb-may 25 2022

Tigers vs. Twins Odds

Tigers Odds +165
Twins Odds -200
Over/Under 7.5
Time 1:10 p.m. ET
TV YouTube
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Minnesota Twins look to sweep the visiting Detroit Tigers on Wednesday. The Twins have squeaked out two close victories so far in this series, as the Tigers try to find their way out of the season-long lull they’ve been experiencing thus far.

The Twins turn to Dylan Bundy, who is about as reliable as that Toyota Matrix I bought on the internet a few years back (not reliable!). Unfortunately for you, when Bundy does not perform to your expectations, you cannot file a complaint to the Better Business Bureau.

Speaking of complaints, the Detroit Tigers send Rony Garcia to the mound, who is an actual professional baseball pitcher by all accounts.

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Garcia Stands As An Unknown For Detroit

In the Tigers’ defense, they are 5-5 over their last 10 games. That does not hide the fact that they are 5-15 on the road in 2022, though.

This season was supposed to be a year of progress for the Tigers. Instead, it’s been a nightmare marred by injuries and underperformance — which sounds like a regular Tigers season to me.

There isn’t much data available on Garcia. However, what little information is available shows he has a career 7.53 road ERA and a 8.26 road FIP over 14 1/3 innings.

He’s also flanked by a bullpen that has been considerably deflated by injuries. Once a top unit, the Tigers’ pen has sunk to a below-average unit. Over the past few weeks, they’re in the bottom half of the league in FIP and barely in the top half of the league in ERA.

The Tigers’ offense — which is substantially less injured than its pitching staff — is still a bottom-third unit against RHP on the road over the past couple of weeks. However, they are facing Bundy, who gave many false hope after a strong start to his season.


How Will Bundy Pitch For Minnesota?

Bundy has been weird this season. His first three starts of the year made it seem like he’s turned a new leaf and found something that works for him. Then he got pounded in his next two starts. Context set in and the data revealed that the three offenses he faced were not as good as advertised.

The Tigers’ offense is bad, but Bundy has not surrendered a run at home over two starts. He also has a 2.21 FIP at home, but this is his first home start since April 23rd, and he’s due for regression.

The Twins’ offense is still a solid bunch that has an above-average wRC+ at home against RHP over the past couple of weeks.

With the Tigers’ thin pitching corps, the Twins should be able to mount some offense.

_PromoID=[16477]

Tigers-Twins Pick

While the Tigers’ offense is not in top form, the over is set at 7.5 in this matchup, as of Wednesday morning. That’s a total that the Twins could be able to carry on their own. However, with Bundy being due for regression, this is a good opportunity for the Tigers to contribute.

It’s really hard to trust Bundy to secure the victory, and the moneyline and runline don’t seem like the best plays here.

Pick: Over 7.5

Warriors vs. Mavericks Series Odds: Golden State Looking to Close Out Dallas at Home

Warriors vs. Mavericks Series Odds

Warriors Mavericks
Series Winner -3000 +1400
Win in 5 -290 +2800
Win in 6 +500 +1500
Win in 7 +700 +1400
Odds as of Tuesday and via FanDuel.

After Game 4

The Mavericks are officially on the board in the Western Conference Finals after handling business and avoiding the sweep at home in Game 4.

Luka Doncic nearly recorded a triple-double (30 points, 14 rebounds and nine assists), but it was Dorian Finney-Smith’s 23-point outing and Reggie Bullock’s six 3s that proved to be the difference for Dallas.

The series will now shift back to the Bay Area, where the Warriors will look to shoot a bit better from downtown in order to advance to the NBA Finals.

After Game 3

The Warriors took a commanding 3-0 series lead with a 109-100 victory in Dallas. The Warriors led by one at halftime and then established a bit of breathing room as they outscored Dallas, 30-21, in the third quarter. Luka Doncic finished with 40 points on 11-of-23 shooting, but the Mavericks, as a team, shot just 13-for-45 (28.9%) from beyond the arc. Stephen Curry led the Warriors with 31 points and Andrew Wiggins added 27. The Warriors are slight underdogs in Game 4, but moved from -800 to -10000 to win the series. The Mavericks went from +700 to +3100 to advance to the NBA Finals.

After Game 2

The Mavericks came out strong in Game 2, sinking 15 threes in the first half and leading by as much as 19 at one point. However, despite 42 points from Luka Doncic, Dallas was unable to hold on and lost 126-117. The Warriors outscored the Mavericks 68-45 in the second half. Stephen Curry led the Warriors with 32 points, but Kevon Looney also came up huge and finished with 21 points and 12 rebounds. A 2-0 deficit, while daunting, isn’t foreign territory for Dallas as the Mavericks were down 2-0 last round against the Suns. The Mavericks went from +360 to +800 to win the series, while the Warriors moved from -460 to -700.

After Game 1

The Warriors cruised to a 112-87 victory in Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals. The Splash Brothers — Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson — got off to a slow start, but picked things up as the Warriors put the game away in the third quarter.

Curry finished with 21 points and Thompson had 15. Andrew Wiggins also came up big for Golden State as he finished with 19 points and played solid defense. All five Warriors’ starters scored in double digits. Golden State was also able to limit Luka Doncic to just 20 points on 6-of-18 (3-of-10 from deep) shooting.

The Warriors were already heavy favorites to win the series, but the win moved the line from -250 to -460. The Mavericks went from +200 to +360.

Golden State Warriors

It wasn’t exactly pretty for the Warriors at every turn in Round 2 — a 39-point loss on the road isn’t ideal — but they managed to pull through against the Memphis Grizzlies to move onto the Western Conference finals for the first time since 2019.

The Warriors and Grizzlies played at the fastest Pace (102.42 possessions) of any series in Round 2 and the Warriors are fourth overall in Pace (99.82) in the playoffs. That will create an interesting contrast with the Mavericks who play at a much slower Pace.

Golden State also has some wounded Warriors — Andre Iguodala, Gary Payton II and Otto Porter Jr. — will will impact their rotations. Head coach Steve Kerr was not optimistic about Payton returning after his elbow injury, Iguodala will be re-evaluated for his ongoing disc injury Thursday and Porter has chance to come off the bench for Game 1.

Despite the injuries, Caesars has the Warriors listed as -250 favorites in the series (about 68% implied odds) and they are also +135 to win the NBA title.

_PromoID=[4778, 16830]


Dallas Mavericks

The Mavericks shocked many, including the Phoenix Suns, with their dominant Game 7 win. Led by the leading scorer in the postseason, Luka Doncic, the Mavericks pulled off a 33-point rout on the road to beat the best team in the NBA. Their offense has come alive to match their stifling defense since the start of Round 2 — they led all teams in the conference semis in Offensive Rating (114.3) and Effective Field Goal Percentage (55.7%).

Dallas’ main injury concern was Doncic entering the playoffs and he’s been on fire despite missing the first two games of the series. Even with Doncic’s heroics, oddsmakers have the Mavericks as big underdogs entering this series. Their odds to win the series in seven games (+800), aren’t too far off from the Warriors’ odds to sweep (+625).

Mavericks vs. Warriors Game 5 Odds

Mavericks Odds +7.5
Warriors Odds -7.5
Moneyline +265 / -330
Over/Under 216.5
Time 9 p.m. ET
TV TNT
Odds as of Tuesday and via FanDuel.

Warriors vs. Mavericks Conference Finals Schedule

Game 1: Mavericks 87, Warriors 112
Game 2: Mavericks 117, Warriors 126
Game 3: Warriors 109, Mavericks 100
Game 4: Mavericks 119, Warriors 109
Game 6: Saturday May 26 | 9 p.m. ET on TNT (If Nec.)
Game 7: Monday May 30 | 8 p.m. ET on TNT (If Nec.)

Celtics vs. Heat Game 5 Odds, Pick, Prediction: Boston Has Advantage on the Road (May 25)

celtics vs heat-odds-game-5-preview-prediction-pick-nba-may 25 2022

Celtics vs. Heat Odds

Celtics Odds -2.5
Heat Odds +2.5
Over/Under 204
Time 8:30 p.m. ET
TV ESPN
Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

On paper, this was supposed to be an epic matchup between the No. 1 and No. 2 seeds in the Eastern Conference.

This series may be tied at two, but none of the games have been competitive. This has been a “zig-zag” series, with each team trading blowout wins.

In addition, there have been key players out in each of the games:

Game 1: Marcus Smart, Al Horford, Kyle Lowry
Game 2: Lowry, Derrick White
Game 3: Robert Williams III, Jimmy Butler (second half)
Game 4: Tyler Herro, Smart

On Wednesday, the Celtics and the Heat return to Miami for Game 5. Will the zig-zag trend continue with the Heat bouncing back at home for the win? Or can the Celtics steal another game on the road to gain a 3-2 lead?

Let’s break down this pivotal Game 5.

_PromoID=[18090]

Lots Riding on Celtics’ Injuries

The Celtics pounced on the Heat early, jumping out to a 18-1 lead and never looking back in a 102-82 victory in Game 4. Jayson Tatum had a fantastic outing, scoring 31 points on 8-for-16 shooting.

The Celtics came out with a sense of urgency in order to prevent falling into a 3-1 hole. None of the Heat starters scored in double digits against the stifling Celtics defense.

Smart and Williams III are both questionable for Game 5. Smart sat out Game 4, and the Celtics survived without him. Payton Pritchard came off the bench to drop 14 points and three 3-pointers.

Without Williams III in Game 3, the Celtics had to resort to some unproductive Daniel Theis minutes and playing smaller lineups with Grant Williams.

As a result, Bam Adebayo took advantage of this with his playoff-high 31 points. Time Lord played in Game 4 and was able to have a short 18-minute night and get some additional rest thanks to the blowout win.

Potentially having two of their starters and best defenders out would be painful. However, it was promising to see White and Pritchard step up in Smart’s absence in Game 4. Also, Williams has not been playing his usual minutes, as he’s still playing through discomfort.

_PromoID=[16702]


Will Herro Play For Heat?

The Heat are also ailing with a myriad of injuries. Sixth Man of the Year Herro (left groin strain) and starting point guard Lowry (left hamstring strain) are both being listed as questionable for Wednesday.

In addition, Max Strus, P.J. Tucker and Gabe Vincent are listed as questionable on the injury report, as well.

This has been common for the Heat, as they prefer not to be transparent with their injury reports.

Fortunately, Butler is not one of those names on the list, but after a 3-for-14 shooting night, one has to assume that he’s not playing at full strength.

The player that is most worrisome is Herro. If he can’t go, that’s a huge blow offensively for a team that tends to go on scoring droughts frequently.

The Heat’s Offensive Rating improves by 2.8 points per 100 possessions when he is on the court, per Basketball Reference. They’ve gone 1-5 straight up and 0-6 against the spread in their previous six games without Herro, per the SDQL at Gimme The Dog.

Even when he’s on the court, Lowry has not been an effective player.

Victor Oladipo was a lone bright spot in the Game 4 loss, adding in 23 points. He’s proved to be an X-Factor for Miami in the playoffs.

The Heat have been great at home. Prior to the Game 2 blowout, they had won 10 consecutive games at home.

They’ve performed well at home after a road loss, going 19-9-1 ATS (67.9%) since the 2019-2020 season, per the SDQL.

Expect their offense to be a little more aggressive after their poor effort in Game 4.

_PromoID=[18112]

Celtics-Heat Pick

The Heat may be great at home, but I still favor the Celtics in this game. I think they have an advantage with two of the three best players in this series in Jaylen Brown and Tatum. Butler may still be dealing with the knee injury he suffered in Game 3 that caused him to miss the second half.

With so many key players on the injury report, it may be prudent to wait for lineups to be announced.

However, I am grabbing the Celtics -1.5 ahead of time.

I think the impact of Herro potentially being out is more detrimental to the Heat than Smart for the Celtics. Herro is an offensive-minded player and if he is not 100%, it will have a greater impact on his effectiveness.

Also, I do not think the players that would be replacing his minutes are as strong, making him more valuable to his team.

Pick:  Celtics -1.5

NBA Western Conference Finals Bad Beat: Rough Night For First Half Over Bettors

nba-western-conference-finals-bad-beat-rough-night-for-first-half-over-bettors

As the only game on the NBA slate on Tuesday, all eyes were fixed on Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals between the Golden State Warriors and Dallas Mavericks.

And the eyes of first-half total bettors were glued to the television for the last couple of minutes of the first half.

The first half total was set at 110 at most sportsbooks.

_PromoID=[18105]

There were 52 points scored in the first quarter, as the Mavs led 28-24. Over bettors were uncomfortable, but not even close to dead. The Mavs went on a run in the middle of the second quarter, scoring 19 points in a little over five minutes of play.

Dallas suddenly led 58-42. The score was 62-47 with 1:33 left in the first half after Luka Doncic made a layup.

Most of you are already doing the math. Yes, that’s 109 total points for the first half. Over bettors needed just one more point to at least push the total, depending on what number they had. Two points, and they get to cash their tickets.

By now, you probably realize how it’s going to end. This article would not be written if there were more points scored in the half during the last 93 seconds.

Of course, there were no points scored in the last 93 seconds. There were four shots missed and two turnovers.

It was a minute and a half of agony for over bettors, as they watched a surefire winner suddenly become a loser.

This is surely a night that won’t soon be forgotten for bettors of the first half over.

The must-have app for NBA bettors

The best NBA betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Celtics vs. Heat Game 5 PrizePicks Player Props: Picks for Jaylen Brown & Bam Adebayo (May 25)

nba prizepicks player props-back-jaylen-brown-bam-adebayo-in-celtics-heat-may 25

Player props have become among the most popular bets in the industry, but while the amount of states with legalized gambling is growing, some may feel left out.

Enter: PrizePicks.

With PrizePicks, you get the opportunity to essentially parlay game prop over/unders with cash payouts depending on how many you get correct on that day’s slate.

You can do a Flex Play or a Power Play. A Flex Play gives you lesser odds, but you can win money even if you don’t nail every pick. Meanwhile, a Power Play is similar to a parlay — it’s all or nothing.

Here’s how I would approach Wednesday’s Game 5 of the NBA’s Eastern Conference Finals.


What is PrizePicks? A daily fantasy operator — meaning they’re available in more states (30) than sports betting is! — PrizePicks offers a unique opportunity for action on player props in which you parlay two or more plays together.


Win $50 if Jaylen Brown Scores 1+ Point!

Sign up using code ACTIONNBA

Place a $5+ NBA entry

Live in 31 states!

Jaylen Brown Over 2.5 3s

Jaylen Brown has been fantastic for Boston in the Conference Finals. Even after a poor Game 4, he still leads the Celtics in points and rebounds.

While Jayson Tatum absorbs all the defensive pressure from Jimmy Butler and P.J. Tucker, Brown has been able to hunt mismatches against smaller players. That means more shots, and it’s meant more 3s against a defense that gives up 3-point attempts in heaps.

Brown went under this number in Game 4, but could have easily gone over if not for a bad shooting night (1-of-6). He’s gone over this total in the other three games of the series. Also, he’s made at least a trio of 3s in six of seven games against Miami this season and nine of his last 11 against the Heat overall.

Bam Adebayo Over 2.5 Assists

Kyle Lowry’s return has helped re-balance the Heat’s minutes, and Bam Adebayo has been a beneficiary.

It’s no coincidence that Adebayo had his best game of the series in Lowry’s first game back — the two have such great synergy together. Bam’s assists actually go up — not down — with his point guard back.

Adebayo has gone over 2.5 assists in five of seven playoff games with Lowry out there, and he’s also gone over that number in three of four games vs. the Celtics this season when Lowry plays.

He didn’t get there in Game 4 — falling short by one dime — but he did have six potential assists. He probably goes over most games when the Heat aren’t shooting historically terribly from the field.

_PromoID=[17354]

Celtics vs. Heat Game 5 Player Props & Picks: Bets for Jaylen Brown, Kyle Lowry, More (May 25)

nba player props-picks-how-to-bet-jaylen-brown-kyle-lowry-more-in-game-5-may 25

The Heat and Celtics return to Miami with the Eastern Conference Finals tied at two games apiece.

While there are plenty of ways to bet Game 5, this specific article will touch on player props.

We’ll be using the Action Labs Player Prop tool to compare our NBA projections to the props posted at a variety of sportsbooks. Below, I have laid out multiple prop bets that I’m playing, the case for each bet and the best books to find odds on those player props.

Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

NBA Player Props & Picks

Jaylen Brown, Over 2.5 3s (-135), Over 6.5 Rebounds (-115)

Celtics vs. Heat Celtics -1.5
Time | TV 8:30 p.m. ET | ESPN
Best Book FanDuel

Jaylen Brown continues to be massively important for Boston in this series.

Jayson Tatum has his hands full with P.J. Tucker and Jimmy Butler giving him all he can handle defensively, and Tatum has a big defensive role, too. But that means Brown gets the softer matchup on both ends, and it means he has a size advantage, as well. And until a poor Game 4, he had taken advantage of it.

Brown had just 12 points, seven rebounds and a single 3-pointer in Game 4, all three numbers were his lowest of the series. But even including that game, he’s still leading Boston in both points and rebounds in the ECF.

Brown is now averaging 25.0 points and 8.5 rebounds per night, and he should have a bounce-back game here.

Let’s start with the 3s, since that one’s more straightforward. Brown made only one trey last game, but he had a few others go halfway down and finished 1-of-6.

Some nights the shots just don’t fall, but the volume was still there. Brown has still gone over 2.5 made 3s in six of seven games against the Heat on the season and nine of his last 11 against Miami overall. This is the time to keep playing the over.

As for the rebounding, that’s not a new trend for Brown. He’s a terrific positional rebounder and has averaged 7.6 boards over his last 25 playoff games. That means this line remains too low.

Brown has at least seven boards in all four games this series, so he’s gone over the line all four times. This prop gets even better if Robert Williams III is limited or out, leaving the Celtics smaller overall and Brown playing bigger.

Brown actually leads both teams in rebounds with 34 on the series compared to 30 from Al Horford and 29 from Bam Adebayo.

Brown is still +330 to lead the series in rebounding at DraftKings, and he’s +1900 to lead in RPG at FanDuel. Horford is the leader there at 10.0 RPG — remember he missed Game 1 — but Brown is in play for both of these with the way he’s rebounding in this series.

You know what else he’s still in play for? Conference Finals MVP. If you already tailed along the way, you probably don’t need to triple-down here, but at +1300 at FanDuel, Brown is still a juicy pick to win the first Larry Bird trophy.

He’s ahead of Tatum in points and rebounds per game, and he’s shooting better from the field and on 3s. He also has eight fewer turnovers.

Tatum is the hotter name after a big Game 4, but this number is still far too long for someone playing this well.

_PromoID=[18090]


Kyle Lowry, Under 10.5 Points (-105)

Celtics vs. Heat Celtics -1.5
Time | TV 8:30 p.m. ET | ESPN
Best Book DraftKings

It brings me no real pleasure to bet against Kyle Lowry, but it’s time.

Lowry is a star in this league, a true warrior, an NBA champion and at least for me, a deserving future Hall of Famer. He’s the greatest Toronto Raptor of all time. He does all the little winning things that make teams great.

But he clearly isn’t at full health right now, and he hasn’t been for this entire playoff run. Lowry had 10 points and nine assists in his playoff debut for the Heat, and then played 37 minutes in a Game 2 win.

He hasn’t been the same since.

He missed the final two games of the Atlanta series and three games against Philly, and if we’re being brutally honest, the Heat were worse when he played against the Sixers.

Lowry then missed the first two games of this series, too, before coming back after almost two weeks off and immediately providing a spark for his team. He helped Miami get a huge early lead, allowing them to capture a Game 3 win.

Lowry had his highest-scoring game of the playoffs in that one with 11 points — he also added six assists and four steals. But he was ineffective again in Game 4 without that long rest, scoring just three points on 1-of-6 shooting.

For the playoffs, Lowry is now averaging just 6.4 points per game. He’s gone under this line in all but one game, hitting this under 86% of the time. And remember: that one over was by a single free throw and came after almost two weeks of rest.

There will be no Lowry slander here, but that doesn’t mean we can’t play an under and profit off what we’re seeing.

The must-have app for NBA bettors

The best NBA betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Bonus NBA Prop Angles, Pending Health

  • Robert Williams III, Over 1.5 Blocks (-145 DraftKings): We’ve got some contingent props for Wednesday because you’ll need something just before tip once you know these guys are starting with their usual minutes. Williams has multiple blocks in six straight playoff games, including seven in three games against the Heat. He also averaged 2.5 blocks per game since the Celtics’ January 29 breakout and his move outside the paint, hitting this over in 15 of 22 (68%) games.
  • Marcus Smart, Over 5.5 Assists (-148 FanDuel): If Smart is in action, this is a must play. The Celtics have missed their point guard on both ends, not just defense. In the two games he’s played, Smart has recorded 19 assists, going easily over this line in both games. He’s gone over this line in four straight matchups and in nine of 12 playoff appearances (75%).
  • Jimmy Butler, Under 0.5 3s (+164 FanDuel): You never really know when Butler will decide to take a few 3s, but he’s made only one all series and has taken only seven. He’s now 1-for-14 on 3s against Boston in seven season games, and he clearly looks hurt, with only 14 points on 22 shots in the last two outings. He’s taken only two 3s in those games and hasn’t been an aggressive scorer.

_PromoID=[17354]

Updated 2022 Charles Schwab Challenge Odds & 9 Picks for Jordan Spieth, Tony Finau, More

charles schwab challenge-odds-picks-predictions-jordan spieth-tony finau-colonial-2022
Click arrow to expand 2022 Charles Schwab Challenge odds via PointsBet

2022 Charles Schwab Challenge Odds

Golfer Odds
Jordan Spieth +900
Justin Thomas +1200
Scottie Scheffler +1200
Collin Morikawa +1800
Viktor Hovland +2200
Will Zalatoris +2200
Abraham Ancer +2800
Max Homa +2800
Sam Burns +2800
Tommy Fleetwood +3000
Daniel Berger +3300
Sungjae Im +3300
Tony Finau +3300
Webb Simpson +3300
Talor Gooch +3500
Billy Horschel +4000
Brian Harman +4000
Chris Kirk +4000
Davis Riley +4000
Justin Rose +4000
Kevin Na +4000
Mito Guillermo Pereira +4000
Gary Woodland +5000
Harold Varner III +5000
Jason Kokrak +5000
Sebastian Munoz +5000
Maverick McNealy +6000
Tom Hoge +6000
Cameron Tringale +7000
Cheng-Tsung Pan +7000
Christiaan Bezuidenhout +7000
Ryan Palmer +7000
Patrick Reed +8000
Erik Van Rooyen +9000
Lucas Herbert +9000
Russell Knox +9000
Troy Merritt +9000
Aaron Rai +10000
Adam Long +10000
Cameron Davis +10000
David Lipsky +10000
Denny McCarthy +10000
Doug Ghim +10000
Ian Poulter +10000
Joel Dahmen +10000
Kevin Kisner +10000
Kevin Streelman +10000
Kyoung-Hoon Lee +10000
Matthew NeSmith +10000
Patton Kizzire +10000
Rickie Fowler +10000
Stewart Cink +10000
Brandon Wu +12500
Brendon Todd +12500
Dylan Frittelli +12500
J. J. Spaun +12500
JT Poston +12500
Lucas Glover +12500
Nate Lashley +12500
Patrick Rodgers +12500
Sahith Theegala +12500
Alex Smalley +15000
Austin Smotherman +15000
Emiliano Grillo +15000
James Hahn +15000
Kurt Kitayama +15000
Mark Hubbard +15000
Matt Jones +15000
Matthias Schwab +15000
Min Woo Lee +15000
Nick Taylor +15000
Pat Perez +15000
Peter Malnati +15000
Richard Bland +15000
Rory Sabbatini +15000
Scott Stallings +15000
Stephan Jaeger +15000
Taylor Moore +15000
Adam Schenk +20000
Beau Hossler +20000
Carlos Ortiz +20000
Chad Ramey +20000
Chez Reavie +20000
Danny Lee +20000
Gresyon Sigg +20000
Scott Piercy +20000
Wyndham Clark +20000
Zach Johnson +20000
Adam Svensson +25000
Andrew D. Putnam +25000
Brandt Snedeker +25000
Charley Hoffman +25000
Doc Redman +25000
Garrick Higgo +25000
Kramer Hickok +25000
Luke Donald +25000
Michael Thompson +25000
Sam Ryder +25000
John Huh +25000
Brian Stuard +30000
Harry Higgs +30000
Lee Hodges +30000
Robert Streb +30000
Trey Mullinax +30000
Tyler Duncan +30000
Vincent Whaley +30000
Jason Dufner +30000
Hayden Buckley +35000
Paul Barjon +35000
Kevin Tway +40000
Bill Haas +50000
Camilo Villegas +50000
Erik Compton +50000
James Piot +50000
John Pak +50000
Martin Trainer +50000
Max McGreevy +50000
Nick Watney +50000
Ryan Brehm +50000
Tyler Strafaci +50000
Bet the Charles Schwab Challenge, Win $200 (No Matter What!)

The Charles Schwab Challenge is an excellent follow-up to what was an excellent PGA Championship last week.

Three of the top-five players in the world and five of the top 10 are at Colonial Country Club for one of the PGA TOUR’s oldest stops in Fort Worth. That doesn’t even include Will Zalatoris, a Dallas native who came close to besting Justin Thomas last weekend in Tulsa.

Colonial, like Southern Hills Country Club, is a par-70, but it plays 400 yards longer than the PGA Championship host course. A certain type of player has generally won at Colonial, but last year Jason Kokrak broke that mold.

Our GolfBet staff is on it this week, laying out its favorite bets and picks for the Charles Schwab below.

The must-have app for golf bettors

Custom scoreboard for your bets

Free picks from experts

Live odds for every golfer

2022 Charles Schwab Challenge Picks

Maverick McNealy — Top 20 (+250)

Jason Sobel: While he didn’t show his typical high floor last week, McNealy has proven to be a dangerous commodity on short courses, playing well at places like Pebble Beach and Harbour Town so far in his young career.

McNealy also seems like he’s on the verge of figuring this one out, improving from 42nd in his first start to 32nd at the next one to 20th last year.

Justin Rose +6500

Chris Murphy: There are a lot of spots I could go here and I am still deciding what I want to do at the top of the board, but I am sticking with my Sunday night best bet of Justin Rose heading into this week.

Rose put together one of his best weeks of the year last week at the PGA Championship as he closed out the week at even par to finish T13. Rose gained 5.2 shots on that elite major field with his irons, gaining strokes on approach in every round and even picking it up a notch over the weekend.

Rose’s finish was the best he has had since January and it comes at a great time. Now, he heads into a course where he has had great success in his career, including a 2018 victory. Rose has not missed a cut in his last four trips to this event and three of those resulted in top 20s with two being top 3s.

Rose is 40-1 or 50-1 at most books. The best number is at DraftKings at 65-1, on which I’ll be all over him in all markets.

Jordan Spieth +1200

Matt Vincenzi: Spieth was my headline bet at the Byron Nelson a couple weeks ago. Although he didn’t get it done in the end, he did nothing to dissuade me from believing that a win in Texas for him is imminent.

Course history has proven to be extremely important at Colonial and there is none better at the course (or even close) than Spieth. In his past six trips to Fort Worth, he has six top-ten finishes including a win and three runners-up. His form overall in the state of Texas is nothing short of immaculate.

Spieth’s performance at the PGA Championship wasn’t his best showing, but statistically he continued his strong ball striking. He gained 8.6 strokes from tee to green including a solid 4.7 strokes on approach. He’s still struggling on the greens, as he lost 3.2 strokes on the field with the putter.

In his past four starts at Colonial Country Club, Spieth has gained 7.1 (2021), 8.6 (2020), and 7.5 (2019). If there was ever a place where the 28-year-old can find his putting stroke, it’s here.

Spieth opened the week everywhere around 15-1, but he was bet heavily on Tuesday and is now even the betting favorite at PointsBet. You can still get 12-1 at BetMGM, as of Tuesday night.

Bet the Charles Schwab Challenge risk-free up to $1,000.

Tony Finau +4000

Joshua Perry: Finau has not been his usual consistent self this season, but there have been signs of improvement overall.

Finau gained strokes across the board last week at the PGA. It was the first time he accomplished that since his win at the Northern Trust last year. He also showed glimpses of elite ball striking. He gained six strokes off the tee at the Wells Fargo a couple weeks ago and in Mexico, he gained eight strokes with his irons on his way to a second-place finish.

This has also been a spot where Finau has played well. He was runner-up to Kevin Na in 2019 and has made the cut in all six starts, with no result worse than 34th.

Chris Kirk — Outright (+5000) & Top 5 (+1000)

Derek Farnsworth: Even though Kirk has a lot of missed cuts on his resume this season, most of those have been by one or two strokes. The underlying statistics continue to look solid, as he has gained at least two strokes tee to green in 10 of his last 11 events. He put together a strong Sunday round at the PGA Championship to vault up into a tie for fifth and now returns to one of his favorite courses on tour.

Kirk has made nine straight cuts at Colonial Country Club and even won here back in 2015. He’s accurate off the tee, his irons have been on fire, and he’s underrated around the greens. He’ll need a good putting week to find himself in contention, but Kirk is one of those golfers that can have those spike weeks on the greens. He’s an average putter in total, but he’s gained or lost more than a stroke to the field in eight straight events.

Kirk started the week around 60-1 at most books. He’s down to 50-1 at DraftKings, and it’s even lower elsewhere.

Talor Gooch +4000

Landon Silinsky: It is likely many still have sour tastes in their mouths after rostering Gooch two weeks back at the Byron Nelson, as he shot a first-round 73 en route to an ugly missed cut. He righted the ship last week at the PGA Championship, finishing in a tie for 20th. His game was clicking on all cylinders as he gained over three strokes on approach and eight strokes tee-to-green.

Gooch has teed it up at Colonial four times in his career, making the cut three times and posting a career best finish of T14 last year. He’s a way better player now than he’s ever been in his career, and we’re getting a nice price here on one of the most underrated golfers on the PGA TOUR.

Gooch is 35-1 at most books, but you can still get him at 40-1 at WynnBet.

Bet Talor Gooch, Win $200 (No Matter What!)

Scottie Scheffler (Top 5), Collin Morikawa (Top 10) AND Will Zalatoris (Top 20) – +2900 @ FanDuel

Rob Bolton: If we’re worried about PGA Championship hangovers, we’re not worried about it in the context of these guys.

Scheffler just goes out and plays the next shot, whether it’s right now, tomorrow, next week or in a month. See ball, hit ball, win. He’s No. 2 in my Power Rankings at PGATOUR.com.

Morikawa is No. 5. Despite his pair of wins in majors among already five PGA TOUR victories, it’s still tough to forget about his playoff loss in the Return to Golf at Colonial in 2020. He answered with a T14 last year. That he’s back again (when he doesn’t have to be) proves his affinity for the track, the test and the opportunity for redemption.

Seeing Zalatoris (No. 3) applaud Justin Thomas on Sunday at Southern Hills gave me life. What terrific spirit (again) in the face of defeat (again). So much positivity for the local resident, oh, and with talent to match. In his last five starts, he’s connected on four top-six finishes.

Bet at FanDuel, get a $1,000 risk-free bet.

Kevin Na +5000

Bryan Berryman: It’s no secret that Kevin Na loves playing at Colonial. The tight fairways, heavily bunkered approach shots, and Bentgrass greens fit perfectly into his game that is anchored by accuracy and putting.

In eight career Charles Schwab starts, he has four top-15 finishes that include a fourth in 2018 and a win in ’19.

Na’s superior accuracy both off the tee and into greens gives him a distinct advantage anytime he tees it up at Colonial. This accuracy has been on full display lately, hitting 65% of his fairways on the year and gaining 14.2 strokes on approach in just his last three starts.

As the 10th-ranked putter across all rounds in this field on Bentgrass, he is literally checking every box for me this week. We’re catching a player with exceptional course history, coming in with great form at a great number.

Fire up Na for your betting card this week, with PointsBet the only book still offering 50-1 as of Tuesday night.

Get up to $2,200 FREE to bet the Charles Schwab Challenge.

Wednesday French Open Best Bets: The Second Round Plays to Make (May 25)

wednesday-french-open-best-bets-the-second-round-plays-to-make-may-25

Looking for Thursday’s best bets? Click here!

The second round of play has arrived a the French Open as players push on in a bid to secure significant ranking points and prize money.

Our tennis analysts have delivered a number of bets across each singles draw, with underdog moneylines, spreads and totals to evaluate.

Here’s how we’re betting Wednesday’s Roland Garros slate.

Matches are listed in chronological order. Match times are subject to change and many will be played after their projected start time. Read here for advice on watching the French Open.

_PromoID=[18179]

Emma Raducanu vs. Aliaksandra Sasnovich

5 a.m. ET

Will US Open champion Emma Raducanu be able to push on in her bid to secure a second Grand Slam?

Avery Zimmerman doesn’t believe so, and he details why you’re better off fading the world No. 12

Victoria Azarenka vs. Andrea Petkovic

5 a.m. ET

A 32-year old Azarenka being favored on clay to win in straight sets? That is a mis-price, says Jon Reid.

See why he believes all of the value lies with the German in this one.

John Isner vs. Gregoire Barrere

5 a.m. ET

Another favorite that is getting too much credit comes with John Isner, says Reid.

He believes that the extended nature of this pair’s anticipated sets will allow you to play the total with positive expected value.

Kaia Kanepi vs. Beatriz Haddad Maia

5 a.m. ET

Kaia Kanepi secured an upset win over Garbine Muguruza in round one while Beatriz Haddad Maia got past a tough Cristina Bucsa.

David Gertler looks at the matchup and explains his best bet for the match.

Novak Djokovic vs. Alex Molcan

7:30 a.m. ET

Expecting Novak Djokovic to roll to an easy victory against Alex Molcan?

Not so fast, says Luke Holmberg, who is keying in on the coaching battle behind the match.

Leylah Fernandez vs. Katerina Siniakova 

8:15 a.m. ET

Looking for an early morning underdog to get behind? Look no further than Katerina Siniakova, says Gertler.

He looks at why the Czech is underpriced here.

Tallon Griekspoor vs. Brandon Nakashima

8:30 a.m. ET

American Brandon Nakashima picked up a big win in the first round, but Reid is looking to take advantage of his inexperience on clay here.

Read on to see why Tallon Griekspoor should secure a comfortable win against Nakashima.

Grigor Dimitrov vs. Borna Coric

9:30 a.m. ET

This matchup represents an all-world athletic battle, but we can we expect on the technical end?

Holmberg believes that it will be far tighter than oddsmakers are giving the underdog credit for, and he outlines how you can take advantage of that.

Botic van de Zandschulp vs. Fabio Fognini

10:30 a.m. ET

A match that may be one of the most entertaining of the day comes between the charismatic Fognini and underrated van de Zandschulp.

Reid discusses where the value lies in the late-morning match.

Magda Linette vs. Martina Trevisan

10:30 a.m. ET

Magda Linette is coming off of a massive upset win over Ons Jabeur, so should you expect her to ride that form into the second round?

Not with this matchup, says Reid, who likes the price you can get on the Italian Martina Trevisan.

Petra Kvitova vs. Daria Saville

10:30 a.m. ET

Petra Kvitova got past Anna Bondar in two sets, but the scoreline doesn’t reflect Kvitova’s level, explains Reid.

See why he feels that Daria Saville is a live underdog in this match.

Rafael Nadal vs. Corentin Moutet

2:45 p.m. ET

Does home favorite Corentin Moutet have any chance against the odds-on favorite, Rafael Nadal?

Read on to see how Kenny Ducey is playing the night session match.

Alexander Zverev vs. Sebastian Baez

2:45 p.m. ET

Can the clay-court specialist trouble the world No. 3?

He sure can, says Ducey, who is backing Sebastian Baez to secure a set in this contest.

2022 College World Series Futures Odds: Tennessee Remains Heavy Favorite Heading into Postseason

2022-college-world-series-futures-odds-tennessee-remains-heavy-favorite-heading-into-postseason

2022 College World Series Odds

Team Odds
Tennessee +350
Oregon State +900
Stanford +1300
Oklahoma State +1600
Arkansas +1800
Texas +2000
LSU +2000
Virginia +2000
Vanderbilt +2200
Miami (FL) +2500
Virginia Tech +2500
Texas Tech +2800
Louisville +2800
Notre Dame +3000
Texas A&M +3000
Auburn +3500
TCU +3500
UCLA +3500
Gonzaga +4000
Southern Mississippi +4000
Arizona +4500
Florida State +4500
Florida +5500
Oregon +5500
UC Santa Barbara +6000
Georgia +6500
Ole Miss +7500
North Carolina State +7500
Maryland +7500
Wake Forest +7500
Georgia Tech +9000
Oklahoma +9000
Dallas Baptist +9000
Grand Canyon +10000
North Carolina +10000
Texas State +10000
East Carolina +10000
Georgia Southern +13000
Coastal Carolina +13000
Liberty +13000
Alabama +15000
Connecticut +15000
Wofford +15000
West Virginia +15000
Clemson +15000
Louisiana Tech +15000
Baylor +20000
Michigan +20000
Mercer +20000
Louisiana-Lafayette +20000
South Alabama +20000
San Diego +20000
Rutgers +20000
Campbell +20000
UCF +20000
Wright State +20000
Old Dominion +20000
South Florida +25000
South Carolina +25000
Kentucky +25000
Iowa +25000
Nevada +30000
Davidson +30000
San Francisco +30000
Sacramento State +30000
Presbyterian +30000
Cincinnati +30000
VCU +30000
UTSA +30000
UNLV +30000
Indiana +30000
Tulane +40000
Florida Atlantic +40000
FGCU +40000
Southern Illinois +40000
Wichita State +40000
Pittsburgh +40000
Central Michigan +40000
Charlotte +40000
California +40000
Kansas State +40000
Ball State +50000
Arizona State +50000
Northeastern +50000
Troy +50000
Columbia +50000
UNCW +50000
Sam Houston +50000
Portland +50000
Texas Rio Grande Valley +50000
Louisiana-Monroe +50000
Purdue +50000
Cal Baptist +50000
Jacksonville State +50000
Indiana State +50000
BYU +50000
Bradley +70000
Middle Tennessee +70000
Illinois State +70000
Illinois +70000
Missouri State +90000
Evansville +90000
Coppin State +90000
Loyola Marymount +90000
Samford +90000
Washington +90000
UNC Greensboro +90000

The regular season is wrapping up and schools will begin their conference tournaments this week as they eye the coveted College Baseball World Series.

Sportsbooks have posted odds on who will take home the National Championship this season in Omaha.

The No. 1 ranked Tennessee Volunteers are the heavy favorite to win it all at +350 on DraftKings. The Vols are 49-7 on the season and went 25-5 in the regular season.

Oregon State is the next closest team at +900 and the only other school with odds of 10-1 or better.

There is a large grouping between 13-1 and 20-1 on DraftKings that includes Stanford, Oklahoma State, Arkansas, Texas, LSU and Virginia.

Next week will be conference championship week, with the NCAA bracket to be announced on May 31. The Regionals will run from June 3 to June 6 and the Super Regionals will run from June 10 to June 13. The first day of the CWS is on June 17, with the championship starting on June 25.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

1. Tennessee +350

The Vols have been one of the best teams in college baseball for most of the season. They went 24-2 in non-conference play and followed that up with a 25-5 record in the SEC. It is a mere formality that they will lock in the No. 1 overall seed in the tournament.

2. Oregon State +900

The Beavers are 41-13 overall and went 20-10 in the Pac-12. They are trending in the wrong direction, however, as they’ve lost back-to-back series to Arizona and UCLA. They will need to garner some momentum in the inaugural Pac-12 Tournament and show they’re a serious contender for the CWS.

3. Stanford +1300

Despite Oregon State having better odds to win the National Championship, Stanford is actually the team that clinched the regular-season Pac-12 title this past week. The Cardinal hold a 37-14 record and went 18-9 in the Pac-12.

4. Oklahoma State +1600

Oklahoma State is a curious case. It’s ranked No. 9 in the NCAA RPI and No. 13 at Baseball America, but has the fourth-highest odds at DraftKings to win it all. The Cowboys hold a 36-18 record and went 15-9 in the Big 12. A good conference tournament could lock them up the opportunity to host the regionals.

5. Arkansas +1800

Arkansas is another team entering the postseason trending in the wrong direction. The Razorbacks have dropped back-to-back series and enter the SEC Tournament stumbling. They’ll have to garner some momentum this week if they want to host the regionals.

_PromoID=[5113]

MLB Odds, Pick, Prediction for Rockies vs. Pirates: Pittsburgh Has the Edge in Wednesday Matinee (May 25)

rockies vs pirates-odds-pick-prediction-mlb-may 25-wednesday

Rockies vs. Pirates Odds

Rockies Odds +105
Pirates Odds -125
Over/Under 8
Time 12:35 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

To round off the third matchup of a three-game set, Zach Thompson will pitch for the Pittsburgh Pirates against prospect Ryan Feltner and the Colorado Rockies.

Thompson is a veteran righty who induces some weak contact. He’s in the middle of the pack with a xERA of 4.39, but his 4.88 ERA proves he’s been a tad unlucky.

Feltner has only made a few appearances at this level, one of which was this season. In that outing, he gave up four earned in five innings against the Phillies. However, he did show some promise, striking out seven in that game.

In the month of May, neither of these teams has particularly dazzled off of right-handed pitching, but the Pirates have been slightly better.

With a newer face on the hill versus a veteran starter, they maintain the edge.

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Numbers Don’t Favor Rockies’ Feltner

Feltner is predominantly a fastball pitcher. In his start this season, he threw his four-seamer around 49% of the time, while mixing in a slider, curveball and changeup as off-speed alternatives.

This Pirates team has eight batters with a .340+ xwOBA clip off of right-handed fastballs this season. In addition, in each MLB appearance, Feltner has allowed at least two walks. Against righties this season, the Pirates have a 9.2% walk percentage, ranking ninth in MLB.

All of these variables should give Feltner enough trouble on behalf of Pirates bettors.

The Rockies’ bullpen is a little strapped for production. They only have four pitchers with a sub-4.00 xFIP this month: Tyler Kinley, Ty Blach, Carlos Estevez and Daniel Bard. Their collective 4.25 xFIP is not encouraging if Feltner leaves the game early, either.


Can Thompson Get the Job Done?

On the other side of the diamond, the Pirates have struggled just as much this month. They do have David Bednar, though, who has been exceptionally reliable as a closer.

Thompson has gone at least five innings in each of his last three starts, so this should play into the Pirates’ hands, as well.

Other than Bednar, Duane Underwood Jr. and Bryse Wilson have also been helpful this month.

The key to this game will be Thompson’s performance. He ranks in the 82nd percentile in Average Exit Velocity at 86.8 MPH and the 71st percentile in Hard Hit Percentage at 35%. He utilizes a mix of a cutter, sinker, four-seamer, changeup and curveball, so he will keep the Colorado hitters guessing.

In May, only four hitters have held a .340+ xwOBA off of righties, and Brian Serven is one of them. He’s the backup catcher to Elias Diaz. Depending on which catcher gets playing time in this one, the lineup against Thompson could be weakened with Diaz, based on his splits in May.

Digressing from that point, that’s not nearly enough ammunition to get the job done against a pitcher like Thompson.

One of Thompson’s weak points is he’ll walk the occasional batter, but since Feltner will likely do the same and Colorado is walking 1.2% less than Pittsburgh when facing righties this season, the Rockies won’t hold an advantage.

Building off of that, the Rockies only have a 79 wRC+ mark in May. This is 11 points lower than the Pirates, thus expanding upon the point that they are at a disadvantage.

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Rockies-Pirates Pick

Thompson is not a very strong pitcher, but compared to Feltner, he wins the edge. The Pirates also have the better closer, so, as long as Thompson can go five or six strong, he’ll limit the damage.

The Rockies have had a slightly less valuable relief corps in May, so the Pirates get the edge.

Pittsburgh also has several hitters who can crush right-handed fastballs. Unless Feltner suddenly uses other pitches in his arsenal, he’ll give up runs.

Take the Pirates.

Pick: Pittsburgh Pirates -130 (play to -145)

_PromoID=[16477]

MLB Best Bets: 4 Picks From Tuesday’s Slate, Including Guardians vs. Astros, Rangers vs. Angels

mlb odds-picks-predictions-4-best-bets-from-tuesdays-slate-including-guardians vs astros-rangers vs angels-may 24

Aces are wild on Tuesday night in Major League Baseball. There’s a plethora of top arms taking the mounds for their respective clubs, which means there’s extra intrigue in the betting market.

Our analysts have keyed in on four games from the slate, starting this evening with PhilliesBraves and wrapping up with a pair of games on the West Coast, including the nationally televised affair between Corbin Burnes and Blake Snell in San Diego.

Here are our four best bets from Tuesday’s MLB slate.

_PromoID=[16477, 16447]

MLB Odds & Picks

Click on a game to skip ahead
Philadelphia Phillies vs. Atlanta Braves
7:20 p.m. ET
Cleveland Guardians vs. Houston Astros
8:10 p.m. ET
TexasRangers vs. Los Angeles Angels
9:38 p.m. ET
Milwaukee Brewers vs. San Diego Padres
9:40 p.m. ET

Philadelphia Phillies vs. Atlanta Braves

Pick
Phillies +150
Book
DraftKings
Pitchers
Kyle Gibson vs. Max Fried
First Pitch
7:20 p.m. ET

Anthony Dabbundo: Phillies right-hander Kyle Gibson is one of just a handful of pitchers in MLB with a groundball rate above 50% this season. His expected indicators like xERA and SIERA rate him as a much improved pitcher the last two seasons compared to years past. His xERA is currently sitting at 3.51.

The Phillies lineup has also been top 10 in both barrel rate and hard hit rate and projects much better against left-handed pitching than right. Philadelphia has also hit much better away from its home ballpark this year.

Gibson is opposed by Max Fried, who hasn’t quite been able to find his form from his elite 2020 season. He’s been improved after a brutal start to this 2022 season, but his xERA still sits up above 3.50 and there’s not much difference between the two starting pitchers in terms of ERA projections.

Philadelphia has the slightly better lineup and even with the worse bullpen, I’m backing the Phils at +150 to win on the road. I’d play it down to +130.

_PromoID=[16481, 16457, 16492, 16465]


» Return to the table of contents «


Cleveland Guardians vs. Houston Astros

Pick
Astros First Five -1 (-115)
Book
DraftKings
Pitchers
Zach Plesac vs. Framber Valdez
First Pitch
8:10 p.m. ET

Kenny Ducey: Rejoice, bettors, for Zach Plesac pitches today.

The troubled right-hander will face one of the very best offenses in baseball on the road in Houston, and fireworks should ensue. The Astros are fourth in wRC++ on the year, fourth in expected wOBA and third in expected batting average, according to Statcast. Though they haven’t made the most noise at the plate with solid contact, they’re still ninth in barrels per plate appearance.

That ranking just may rise with Plesac on the bump for Cleveland. The 27-year-old is striking out a very concerning 13.8% of hitters, and his entire arsenal is getting taken to the woodshed. He’s allowed a .314 xBA on his fastball and .318 xBA on his changeup, and ranks in the bottom 10% in general expected batting average. He’s also got exit velocity numbers in the bottom 20% of the league.

Simply put, this is going to be a nightmare for Plesac. His offense isn’t likely to help him much, either, considering the Guardians are in the bottom five in wRC+ against lefties this season. Not only does Framber Valdez throw with his left hand, he’s also incredible at pitching to contact and is red-hot at the moment.

I’ll back Houston for the first five.

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

» Return to the table of contents «


Texas Rangers vs. Los Angeles Angels

Pick
Over 8.5 (+100)
Book
DraftKings
Pitchers
Dane Dunning vs. Noah Syndergaard
First Pitch
9:38 p.m. ET

Sean Zerillo: Based on early 2022 indicators, Dane Dunning (4.22 xERA, 3.29 xFIP, 3.58 SIERA) has outperformed Noah Syndergaard (4.31 XERA, 4.21 xFIP, 4.19 SIERA) to a significant degree.

The market is still pricing Syndergaard closer to his peak self (career 3.21 xFIP and 3.40 SIERA). Still, his velocity has fallen off dramatically since his last full season in 2019 (down from 97.7 mph to 94.1 mph). He hasn’t returned to anywhere near peak form after Tommy John surgery (like Justin Verlander has, for instance).

Batters aren’t chasing Syndergaard’s pitches outside of the strike zone nearly as often as they used to (29.6% vs. 34.6% career), and he’s not generating swinging strikes as often either (11.8%, vs. 13.1% career).

Thor’s stuff has moved closer to average — rather than the elite tier — and unless we see that upper-90s velocity return to his fastball, I’ll continue to find ways to bet against him.

I projected Texas around +135 (42.5% implied) for this matchup and would bet their moneyline to about +146 (40.5% implied) at roughly a two percent edge.

Otherwise, play the Over 8 (up to -118) or 8.5 (to +100) at a similar edge compared to my total projection (8.75).

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

» Return to the table of contents «


Milwaukee Brewers vs. San Diego Padres

Pick
Brewers -130
Book
DraftKings
Pitchers
Corbin Burnes vs. Blake Snell
First Pitch
9:40 p.m. ET

DJ James: The Atlanta Braves touched up Corbin Burnes a bit in his last outing, but the Padres have struggled against right-handed pitching in the month of May. Thus far, they rank 27th in the MLB with a 78 wRC+ mark, only ahead of Oakland, Detroit and Toronto.

Burnes does not give free passes. His walk rate is 4.1%, and his strikeout rate is 31.5%. The Padres may not typically chase all that much (28.1% on the season), but Burnes is elite in this metric at 34.9%.

On the flip side, Blake Snell was abysmal in his one start this season, and I’m expecting similar form until he works his way fully back from the injury that cost him the beginning of the season.

Against left-handed pitching this season, Andrew McCutchen and Hunter Renfroe both boast .400+ xwOBA. The Brewers also have six other batters over .340.

The Brewers may have a sub-100 wRC+ in May off of southpaws, but fading Snell with Burnes in a bounce-back spot is a good idea. Bet them to -150.

_PromoID=[16477, 16447]


» Return to the table of contents «


Alexander Zverev vs. Sebastian Baez French Open Odds, Prediction (May 25)

alexander zverev vs sebastian baez-french-open-odds-prediction-may 25

Looking for Thursday’s best bets? Click here!

Alexander Zverev vs. Sebastian Baez Odds

Zverev Odds -600
Baez Odds +425
Total 30.5 (-120 / +100)
Time 2:45 p.m. ET
Odds via DraftKings. For tips on watching tennis matches, click here.

Alexander Zverev knows the road ahead. In order to win this wide-open Grand Slam, he must take out Carlos Alcaraz — who sits on the other side of his quarter — then likely either Novak Djokovic or Rafael Nadal. After that, he’ll still need to play and win his first-ever final at this level.

With all of this to think about, could the World No. 3 be looking past his second-round opponent, Sebastian Baez?

Let’s take a closer look at this one.

_PromoID=[18179]

Zverev Eyeing First Grand Slam Title

Zverev has quietly had an incredible season. He’s lost nine times, but he’s also reached the quarters of every Masters 1000 — with the exception of Indian Wells. He was a semifinalist at two of the three clay-court Masters and lost to Alcaraz in the Madrid final.

The story here with Zverev is the same one it’s been for years now. There’s much that has been expected of the 25-year-old — who has one of the biggest games around — but the German has yet to win that first Grand Slam that has always felt inevitable.

The French Open is probably the best place for him to get it done. He’s done some of his best work on the clay over his career and stands at 25-8 on the surface since the start of 2021.

He was a semifinalist at Roland Garros last year — losing to Stefanos Tsitsipas in an epic five-set match — and he’s twice been to the quarters.

His game is one that is frankly suited for faster conditions, but Zverev is someone who has always felt comfortable on the clay, considering how much he played on the dirt at a young age.

His big serve and massive backhand frequently get him out of trouble, and he always seems to find himself in holes with his unforced errors and double faults.

Don’t Underestimate Baez 

For the casual tennis bettors out there who may not know Baez, you ought to tune into this one to watch some special tennis.

The young Argentine was seemingly allergic to losing last year, taking home a whopping six titles on the ATP Challenger Tour and amassing a 56-16 record at all levels. This season, he’s managed to parlay that success into meaningful results.

Baez failed to capture his maiden title in Santiago in late February — when he lost in a three-set heartbreaker to Pedro Martinez. But just a couple of months later, he’d make up for it with a sensational win in Estoril, which included victories over Marin Cilic, Richard Gasquet, Albert Ramos-Vinolas and Frances Tiafoe.

Baez is an undersized player, and because of this, he can struggle on serve. What he doesn’t bring in that department, though, he more than makes up for it on the forehand wing. The 21-year-old can hang with the best of them from the baseline and has real put-away power off that forehand wing.

He also seems to have incredible instincts under pressure for someone his age. That will do him well in the coming years.

Simply put, this kid is very special and will be around for a while. He will likely gobble up clay-court trophies and make a Roland Garros semifinal one day.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Betting Value

These two just met in Rome, and boy did they play a close match. Baez would wind up falling in straight sets, but he was only broken once by Zverev.

The match went to a tiebreaker in the first set, which saw Zverev waste four set points before eventually taking it 8-7.

In the second set, he would win by breaking at 4-3 and serving it out with ease.

Baez wound up winning more points on serve than Zverev, who won just 72% compared to the youngster’s 80%. Baez was unable to generate a break point, but he was incredibly competitive in this one and only managed to face one break point himself.

The margins are far too thin for Zverev to be a favorite of this magnitude. I’m going to back Baez to win a set here.

Pick: Baez +2.5 Sets (-105)

_PromoID=[5114]

Corentin Moutet vs. Rafael Nadal French Open Odds, Prediction (May 25)

corentin moutet vs rafael nadal-french-open-odds-prediction-may 25

Looking for Thursday’s best bets? Click here!

Corentin Moutet vs. Rafael Nadal Odds

Moutet Odds +1800
Nadal Odds -10000
Total 38.5 (-115 / -115)
Time 2:45 p.m. ET
Odds via PointsBet. For tips on watching tennis matches, click here.

Rafael Nadal has had an injury-riddled season, and because of that, he entered Roland Garros as an underdog for the first time in what feels like forever.

The man has lost four matches ever at the French Open, but he’s had plenty of close encounters. Could this be one of them?

Let’s look into the matchup.

_PromoID=[18179]

Mystery Moutet

It seemed like Corentin Moutet was bound to be a mainstay on tour when he broke into the top 100 a few years ago. But we haven’t seen much of the eccentric Frenchman in the last couple of years.

Moutet started off the year on fire, with a run to the semifinals in Adelaide after he was defaulted for unsportsmanlike conduct the week prior.

He was a talking and winning machine. Moutet even went five sets with Sebastian Korda at the Australian Open in a match he really should have won. He looked to be a force on tour once again.

Unfortunately, Moutet never really recovered after that rocky end to his trip to Australia. He lost three of his next four matches during the indoor hard-court swing before taking two and a half months off.

He returned at the Challenger level, and after dropping two of his three matches, turned up at Roland Garros and dominated Stan Wawrinka.

It seems like a big mystery where Moutet’s game is at right now, but we know at his best, he can be a very tough out.

We also know his best results have come on the clay, and they’ve come in France. Like Hugo Gaston on Tuesday, we could see a player with no form seemingly establish it out of thin air behind these raucous crowds at Roland Garros.

The must-have app for bettors

The best betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Can Nadal Find Some Consistency?

You could write 2000 words on how Nadal looks at the moment, and where he’s been over the last three years. I won’t go too far into detail, but I’ll let you know that despite the fact that he’s lost just four times in his entire career at the French Open, Nadal is going to be on upset alert early this year.

The Spaniard dealt with a rib injury against Taylor Fritz in the Indian Wells final and later, a foot injury in a loss to Denis Shapovalov in Rome.

For how great the start of his season was with a win at the Australian Open, the last month or so has been rather rocky. There’s no denying Nadal is still one of the three or four best clay-court players in the world — even in his injured state. He’s just not quite the unstoppable force he’s been for most of his time on tour.

With all that said, Nadal’s trip to Roland Garros started off unassumingly enough. He easily beat Jordan Thompson in straight sets, dropping just two games in each set. It brings his record in his last four matches to 2-2.

Betting Value

Nadal’s domination of Thompson doesn’t really tell us much. The Aussie has never been much of a clay-court player and is nothing more than a borderline top-100 player who earns his points over bad opponents. He owns no weapons and had no way to really impact Nadal’s game.

Moutet is a disruptor on the court, mixing in drop shots and jumping two-handed backhands. Though he’s small, he can create plenty of offense for himself and win matches with his exceptional defense.

There’s also the crowd factor. The French fans have always cheered Nadal on for all the great things he’s done at Roland Garros, but it’s fair to expect a partisan crowd on Wednesday. French fans seem to really like Moutet, who is a character, and I imagine he will get some sort of lift from playing on Chatrier.

With that being said, I’m going to back Moutet to stay competitive here. I just think there are too many questions about Nadal’s health, and there’s been a severe overreaction after Rafa’s opening-round win.

Pick: Over 26.5 (-110)

_PromoID=[5114]

Mets vs. Giants Odds & Picks: Can Logan Webb Help San Francisco Snap Skid vs. New York?

mets vs giants odds-picks-predictions-mlb-may 24

Mets vs. Giants Odds

Mets Odds +105
Giants Odds -125
Over/Under 7.5
Time 9:45 p.m. ET
TV MLB.TV
Odds via Caesars. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The San Francisco Giants’ struggles continued in Game 1 of this three-game series against the New York Mets. Alex Cobb’s dreadful luck continued on Monday in the 13-3 drubbing amidst the Giants’ fifth consecutive loss.

New York will send Chris Bassitt to the mound Tuesday. Bassitt has been very strong in the early going with a 4-2 record and a 2.77 ERA in 48 2/3 innings.

San Francisco will hand the ball to Logan Webb, who has followed up his excellent 2021 campaign with a 3.54 ERA in 48 1/3 IP.

Are the Mets worthy of a bet as underdogs?

_PromoID=[16484, 16459]

Can Mets Keep Up This Offense?

Webb will be tasked with shutting down a Mets lineup that has been very potent against right-handed pitching so far this season. New York has hit to the second-best wRC+ rating of 120 vs right-handed pitching, and a .333 wOBA in 1,217 PAs.

Each of Luis Guillorme, Pete Alonso, Brandon Nimmo and Mark Canha hold a wRC+ mark beyond 130, and the Mets will offer a lot of tough outs to one of the league’s better pitchers in Webb.

New York does appear due for some regression with regards to it’s success at the plate, however. The Mets hold a 14th-best xwOBA of .426, and the league’s second-highest BABIP of .306. coming from a 23rd-ranked hard-hit rate of 36.7%.

So while New York sits tied for the second-most runs produced in the league so far entering Tuesday’s action and is clearly fielding a vastly improved lineup, it seems likely that once those marks level-off we are looking at a strong but not spectacular batting order.

Which is still great news for Mets fans, as obviously at full strength this is a scary starting rotation, and Bassitt has been a big part of that so far in 2022.

Bassitt has given New York a lot of steady work, and his 48 2/3 innings so far this season is the 21st most of any pitcher league-wide, pitching to a strong xERA of 3.29.

Bassitt throws an array of six pitches, led by his cutter and sinker which hold QOPAs of 5.22 and 4.94, respectively. Altogether he has pitched to a QOPA of just 4.32, but the plethora of options certainly make game-planning tough on opposition batters.

San Francisco did manage to get to Bassitt on April 20th for five earned runs from eight hits, and offer a tougher-than-average test to be sure for Bassitt, who has been analytically trending in the wrong direction over his last 100 PAs.

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Can Webb Prop Up Giants?

San Francisco has offensively performed at a very effective rate to begin the 2022 campaign, and has managed 4.90 runs per game with some very positive underlying numbers.

The Giants hold the league’s eighth-best xwOBA of .338, with an xSLG of .443. San Francisco has shown strong plate discipline across the board, and appears to have a scrappy offensive unit once again this season.

Against right-handed pitching, the Giants have fared very well, with a 110 wRC+ rating and a .321 wOBA.

The concern has surprisingly been less-than-dominant pitching, and over the last eight games in particular the Giants’ team ERA is 7.86.

I do not expect to see that trend continue Tuesday, as Webb has looked great in the early going and seems likely to trend towards similar results to his stellar 2021 season.

Webb has pitched to a QOPA of 4.51 so far compared to his 4.27 mark in 2021, and his xERA is down to 3.18 from his previous mark of 3.20. Webb has fared very well as a home favorite in non-divisional games, running up a 11-1 mark straight up.

_PromoID=[17285]

Mets-Giants Pick

At first glance, this may look like a good time to ride the red-hot Mets to manage another win. New York has hit right-handed pitching more effectively than the Giants so far this season, and Bassitt’s surface-level numbers are better than Webb’s.

However, the Giants expected batting rates suggest they should be right there with the Mets, and Webb projects to offer an edge in starting pitching over Bassitt.

I believe we are going to see Webb pitch a really strong game tonight, and give the Giants an excellent chance to snap their five-game skid. At -125, I believe we have some value backing the Giants, and I also like a small play on Webb to record the win at +180.

Pick: San Francisco Giants -125 (Play to -130) Logan Webb To Record a Win +180

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Afternoon French Open Picks, Previews: Fabio Fognini a Dangerous Underdog (May 25)

afternoon-french-open-picks-previews-fabio-fognini-dangerous-underdog-may-25

Looking for Thursday’s best bets? Click here!

We have a jam-packed round two from Roland Garros.

The hectic 128-match first round has finally come to a close, and as the second round gets underway, some may need a rest and a day to sleep in and recharge.

Not to worry! We’ve got a pair of matches scheduled to be last on their respective courts to preview in this piece. So rest up, and get ready for some of the afteroon action!

Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches.

_PromoID=[18179]

Magda Linette (-120) vs. Martina Trevisan (+100)

10:30 a.m. ET

Get ready for a long match between these two women. Neither possesses very much power and both love to make plenty of balls in each rally, looking to construct the point while waiting for an opening to pounce.

This would be one of those matches, where even if it finished in straight sets, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the time on court tick over the two-hour mark.

Ultimately, this one comes down who is the better clay-court player and who has the variety to break the potentially monotonous rallies. Trevisan fits that categorization moreso than Linette.

Other than Linette’s stunning round one victory over Ons Jabeur, her clay season hasn’t been anything to write home about. She made a decent run in Charleston on the quicker green clay, but it’s tough to really nail down who her second-best win of the red clay season has been – and that’s not because there’s a plethora to choose from.

It makes sense, given her style. Linette is solid from the baseline, but there isn’t any kind of jaw-dropping power, nor is there a whole lot of variety to what she does.

That may suffice against error-prone players, or other hard courters, but against the likes of Trevisan, she’s going to need to find more ways to win points, as she won’t be gifted many from the other side of the net.

Trevisan brings a bit more to the table than Linette, despite not possessing the most powerful groundstrokes. Her rally tolerance is elite and she also has sneaky power on the forehand wing when she wants to dial it up.

Just last week in Rabat she led the tournament with 97 winners, per OptaAce. That was done in just five matches, with only one of those going three sets.

For a more defensive-minded player, that’s impressive. It also shows Trevisan’s ability to dial up the pace a bit, as well as use her point construction to open up enough space, making winners much easier to find.

Take the player with more experience, better form and a more clay-court oriented game here at a relatively cheap price.

Pick:  Trevisan ML (+100 via PointsBet)

BetSync with PointsBet for easy bet tracking

Automatically import all your bets

Track your bet win probability

Available in NJ, IN and CO

Botic van de Zandschulp (-164) vs. Fabio Fognini (+136)

10:30 a.m. ET

Fabio Fognini in best-of-five tennis as an underdog on clay. Where do I sign?

Fognini’s ability from both wings is sublime. The cliche “he makes it look easy” comes to mind when talking about the pace he’s able to generate from the baseline. He may look relaxed and nonchalant, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t going to uncork a big forehand deep into the corner of the court.

His movement is solid, he has no issue slicing and he can move his opponents back and forth with ease.

Van de Zandschulp is a fine opponent. His game is solid from the ground, he’s got a big serve and powerful groundstrokes and he has comfort on the dirt. The problem is Fognini can stick with him when he’s at his best and the Italian possesses the more dynamic game.

As for motivation concerns with Fognini, there are a few reasons that fear shouldn’t be top of mind.

First and foremost, this is the French Open. If there is ever a time that Fognini will remained engaged, it’s over the course of these two weeks. Second, the Italian thrives off of crowd support. When the crowd is at his back, he rarely packs up and tanks.

That was evident in Rio de Janeiro earlier this season and the crowds in Paris love him. They were enthusiastically urging him on throughout his opening round match as well.

There’s never certainty when it comes to Fognini, but having him at nearly +140 on the moneyline is a mistake that should be bet.

Pick: Fognini ML (+136 via FanDuel)

_PromoID=[268]

MLB PrizePicks Plays: 5 Player Props, Including Christian Walker & Josh Bell

Tuesday’s MLB slate features 15 games, which means there are plenty of player props to take advantage of across the board.

Player props have become among the most popular bets in the industry, but while the amount of states with legalized gambling is growing, some may feel left out.

Enter PrizePicks.

With PrizePicks, you get the opportunity to essentially parlay game prop over/unders with cash payouts depending on how many you get correct on that day’s slate.

Therefore, let’s take a look at some of the options on Tuesday’s Major League Baseball slate and see where we can find some value to turn a profit.

A quick refresher if you aren’t familiar with PrizePicks: you can combine up to five different O/U player props to payout up to 10x your wager.

You can do a Flex Play or a Power Play. A Flex Play gives you lesser odds, but you can win money even if you don’t nail every pick. Meanwhile, a Power Play is similar to a parlay — it’s all or nothing.

Here’s how I would approach today’s MLB slate.


What is PrizePicks? A daily fantasy operator — meaning they’re available in more states (30) than sports betting is! — PrizePicks offers a unique opportunity for action on player props in which you parlay two or more plays together.


Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

MLB PrizePicks Plays for Tuesday, May 24

Josiah Gray Pitcher Fantasy Score Under 23.5

Josiah Gray will start in the second matchup of this three-game series as the NL East’s Washington Nationals host the NL West’s Los Angeles Dodgers.

Through eight starts this season, Gray possesses a 4.36 ERA and 1.269 WHIP. His metrics are not much better as he has a .358 xwOBA, .249 xBA, and .518 xSLG.

Gray has gone under this total in two of his last three starts and now faces one of the best lineups in baseball.

_PromoID=[17284]

Josh Bell Hitter Fantasy Score Under 5

I am also fading a few Nationals hitters in this matchup as they are slated to go against right-hander Walker Buehler. Buehler is having yet another great start to his season as he is 5-1 with a 2.89 ERA through eight starts.

In his one start against the Nationals last season, Buehler threw six scoreless innings. Bell has been a good fade candidate recently as he has gone under this total in six of his last seven games.

Cesar Hernandez Hitter Fantasy Score Under 5

The other Nationals hitter I am fading in this contest is Cesar Hernandez. When facing right-handed pitchers this season, Hernandez possesses a mere .262 BA, .323 OBP, .320 SLG, and .643 OPS.

Over four career plate appearances against Buehler, Hernandez is 0-4 with one strikeout. Hernandez’s fantasy score has failed to go over five in three of his last four games.

_PromoID=[16449]

Daulton Varsho Over 0.5 Runs + RBIs

The NL West’s Arizona Diamondbacks host the AL Central’s Kansas City Royals, and I’ll be backing a few Diamondbacks hitters as they are slated to go against right-hander Jonathan Heasley.

Heasley has had a difficult start to his season as he is 0-2 with a 4.32 ERA and 1.800 WHIP through two starts. Daulton Varsho should be a good candidate to back in this matchup as he has gone over this total in five of his last six games.

Varsho has been much better against right-handed pitchers this season as 38 of his 40 runs/RBIs have come against right-handers.

Christian Walker Hitter Fantasy Score Over 6.5

Christian Walker is the other Arizona hitter I am backing in this contest. Walker’s surface-level numbers do not tell the whole story as positive regression should be looming for Arizona’s first basemen.

This season, Walker boasts a .412 xwOBA, .277 xBA, and .624 xSLG. Going over this total in seven of his last 12 games, I am comfortable backing Walker to find success against Jonathan Heasley and the Kansas City Royals.

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Flames vs. Oilers Game 4 Odds & Picks: Will the High Scoring Continue?

nhl-playoffs-game-4-odds-preview-prediction-flames-vs-oilers-may-24

Flames vs. Oilers Odds

Flames Odds +100
Oilers Odds -120
Over/Under 6.5 (-105 / -115)
Time 9:30 p.m. ET
TV ESPN
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NHL Odds here.

The Edmonton Oilers host the Calgary Flames in Game 4 on Tuesday night following Sunday’s 4-1 victory.

Two of the first three games of this series have seen seven or more total goals scored. Will we see another high-scoring affair between these two teams, or can the goaltending step up in a similar fashion to Game 3?

_PromoID=[18150]

Can the Flames Overcome Markstrom’s Struggles?

The Calgary Flames enter this contest looking to even up the series following Sunday’s loss. This game is essentially a must-win for the Flames as a 3-1 series deficit would be an extremely difficult hill to climb against this Oilers team.

Averaging 4.33 goals scored per game in this series, Calgary’s offense will be heavily depended upon in Game 4. Generating High-Danger Scoring Chances has not been a problem for the Flames in these playoffs as they rank second among the remaining teams in five-on-five Expected Goals For (xGF) per 60 minutes.

Finishing on these High-Danger Scoring Chances has been where the problems have arisen for the Flames this postseason. However, the Oilers are a good matchup for that trend to reverse course as their defense is one of the worst remaining in the playoffs.

The shaky play of starting goaltender Jacob Markstrom means Calgary’s offense will have less margin for error. Over the first three games of this series, Markstrom possesses a troubling 0.853 save percentage.

Markstrom’s metrics are not any better as he possesses a game average of -0.45 Goals Saved Above Expected (GSAx) over the first three games of this series.

Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

Will the Oilers’ Top Line Continue to Dominate?

The Edmonton Oilers will look to take a commanding 3-1 series lead before going back to Calgary for Game 5. Coach Jay Woodcroft made a change this series when he stacked Evander Kane/Leon Draisaitl/Connor McDavid on a single line in Game 1.

This change has been wildly successful as the Flames have had no answer for that line. Through the first three games, those three players have generated 23 combined points.

I mentioned in the preceding section that Calgary ranks second among the remaining playoff teams in five-on-five xGF per 60 minutes, which puts them just behind Edmonton. Ranking first in this metric, the Oilers have generated High-Danger Scoring Chances at will, which is mostly a product of how dominant that Kane/Draisaitl/McDavid line has been.

However, Edmonton’s blue line has struggled in these playoffs as they rank second-last among the remaining playoff teams in five-on-five Expected Goals Against (xGA) per 60 minutes.

Sign up for all of Ontario’s best sportsbooks.

Flames vs. Oilers Pick

With two powerhouse offenses squaring off, I like the over to hit for the third time in four games. While the last game went under this total, Edmonton goaltender Mike Smith played out of his mind when he stopped 32 of 33 shots.

Smith has been incredibly inconsistent in these playoffs as he can have a shutout in one night and then a 0.700 save percentage the next. That being said, the Flames’ backs are against the wall, and if they are beaten in this game, I don’t believe it will be due to Mike Smith but rather the three-headed monster that the Oilers boast on the first line.

Pick: Over 6.5 (-105) | Play up to (-120)

The must-have app for NHL bettors

The best NHL betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

Brewers vs. Padres Odds & Picks: Will Corbin Burnes Bounce Back?

brewers-vs-padres-odds-picks-predictions-mlb-may-24-2022

Brewers vs. Padres Odds

Brewers Odds -135
Padres Odds +115
Over/Under 6.5
Time 9:40 p.m. ET
TV TBS
Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

Fresh off a walk-off single in the bottom of the 10th, the San Diego Padres look to keep the ball rolling against the Milwaukee Brewers on Tuesday night. San Diego has won five straight and eight of its last 10.

Blake Snell takes the mound for the second time in 2022 for the Padres, and he’ll have his hands full against reigning Cy Young award winner Corbin Burnes.

Can the Brewers bounce back behind their ace, or will the Padres continue to roll at Petco Park?

Win $50 if ANY Game Has a Scoreless 1st Inning!

Sign up using code ACTIONMLB

Place any entry on an MLB game

Available in 31 states!

Brewers Bats Stepping Up

The identity of the Milwaukee Brewers has changed in 2022. Yes, they still have one of, if not the best pitching rotation in baseball. However, they finally have the offensive firepower to make them a complete team.

In 2021, the Brewers offense ranked 23rd in wRC++ and 19th in wOBA. They struck out often and sat in the middle of the pack in power. Despite that, they won 95 games, mostly because they allowed the third-fewest runs.

But the Brewers offense has finally hit a stride in the opening months of the season. Their wRC+ is all the way up to 13th, and their wOBA is seventh.

Offensive numbers are down in MLB in 2022, but the Brewers have ever-so-slightly improved across the board. The offseason addition of Hunter Renfroe (123 wRC+) has provided a significant boost.

That gives more leeway for pitchers like Burnes, who enters Tuesday with a 2.27 ERA. His Strikeout Rate remains above 30%, and he’s even walking fewer batters this season than in his Cy Young year.

One thing to note about Burnes is his xERA does sit nearly a run higher at 3.16, and his Barrel Rate has tripled from 2021. It’s not a huge concern early on — and his velocity hasn’t dipped — but something to monitor as the season progresses.

_PromoID=[17281]


Can Snell Find His Form for the Padres?

Missing the beginning of the season with a groin injury, Blake Snell made his season debut last week against the Philadelphia Phillies, struggling through three and 2/3 innings.

The southpaw threw 84 pitches, lacked control — he walked three — and gave up three runs in the loss.

Looking back on his 2021 season, Snell struggled with location and hard contact. His xERA (4.82) sat over a half-run higher than his ERA (4.20), and he hasn’t been the same pitcher since leaving Tampa Bay.

Last season, Snell ranked in the bottom 10 percent in both Walk Rate and Barrel Rate. He over-performed with his fastball — a .213 batting average versus .248 xBA — and had a career-worst .431 xSLG against.

Snell is not the ace he once was, and while he still has the potential to dominate — think back to his last three starts of 2021 where he went 21 and 2/3 innings of three-run ball with 31 strikeouts — he’s been way more vulnerable since being traded to San Diego.

The 29-year-old made one start last season against Milwaukee and was charged with five runs over three and 2/3 innings in a loss.

_PromoID=[16447]

Brewers-Padres Pick

The Brewers opened as slight favorites at -115 and have since been hammered down to -135 across most sportsbooks. The early jump was expected considering the pitching matchup and uncertainty that surrounds Snell.

While the Padres have been playing better as of late, it’s been their pitching, not hitting, doing the job. They are in the middle of the pack in both wRC+ and wOBA over the last 14, and that’s with Manny Machado continuing his early-season MVP-like tear.

The Brewers hold the edge both offensively and on the mound Tuesday night. Burnes has a sparkling 1.80 ERA through four starts on the road and a 1.07 ERA in night games.

Especially considering Burnes enters off his worst start of the season, I’d expect him to shut down this Padres lineup en route to a win.

Pick: Brewers Moneyline (bet to -135)

The must-have app for MLB bettors

The best MLB betting scoreboard

Free picks from proven pros

Live win probabilities for your bets

NHL Odds & Player Props: Bet Antti Raanta and Elias Lindholm in Tuesday’s Playoff Games (May 24)

NHL betting analyst Nicholas Martin breaks down his four favorite plays from Tuesday’s slate of Game 4 playoff games across the landscape.


_PromoID=[14312]

Antti Raanta Under 2.5 Goals Against -115 (Play to -120)

Hurricanes vs Rangers — 7 p.m. ET

Carolina has settled into its more traditional form defensively after a surprisingly sloppy effort in Game 1 of this series, and I believe we will see that form continue in a massive Game 4 at Madison Square Garden Tuesday.

The Hurricanes has held the Rangers to just 2.66 xGF/60 over the last two outings, but as we have seen all season from the Hurricanes, their true defensive play is likely even a decent margin sharper than expected goal rates indicate.

Coach Rod Brind’Amour group does a tremendous job of preventing the types of breakdowns that go under quantified in expected goals data, which was a big part of each of Frederik Andersen and Antti Raanta allowing far fewer goals than expected in the regular season.

An important note towards this prop is that empty net goals do not count, and in turn this bet has cashed in every game to start the series. I expect another very close and hard-fought game Tuesday at MSG, and this looks like a good way to get a little more value than betting on the under 5.5 at -140 to me.

_PromoID=[18148]


Johnny Gaudreau Over 3.5 Shots On Goal +100 (Play to -110)

Flames vs. Oilers — 9:30 p.m. ET

Gaudreau has hit this number in 8-of-11 playoff games so far, including five straight games entering tonight’s massive game four tilt.

Edmonton was clearly the better side in Games 2 and 3, but that did not stop Calgary’s top unit from generating a strong amount of chances. The Oilers have allowed 38.33 shots against per game throughout 10 playoff games so far, and remain a good target for shots on goal props.

Gaudreau has averaged seven attempts on goal per game so far in this series with an average of five shots reaching the net, and with how the Flames top unit is capable of driving play, it seems unlikely to me those averages do not hold.

Whether it will ultimately be enough to win a game against McDavid and this Oilers offence remains to be seen, but I expect Gaudreau and the Flames stars to find a way to make more of a difference tonight and drive play at a strong rate 5-on-5.

Get Your First Deposit Matched Up to $100!

Sign up and deposit up to $100

Your deposit will be fully matched

New users only

Elias Lindholm Powerplay Point +225 (Play to +215)

Flames vs. Oliers — 9:30 p.m. ET

We have continued to see a wealth of man advantages being handed out in the battle of Alberta, and it does not seem likely that will change anytime soon.

My expectation is that the Flames will manage an altogether better effort than we saw in Game 2, and Calgary should draw more penalties with a heightened run of play. I believe Calgary will score a powerplay goal tonight, and see Lindholm as a good target for a point at this price.

Calgary’s powerplay has generated a ton of chances in this series, with a 10.11 expected goals for per/60 rate so far. Lindholm is always a key focal point of the Flames man advantage, and is excellent at finding soft spots in coverage on the powerplay.

_PromoID=[18150]