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Best NBA Bets For East Play-in Tournament

Trae Young and the Hawks are a popular bet for the NBA play-in games.

All good things must come to an end. The 2023/24 NBA regular season has ended, and what a season it was. Thankfully, we have the postseason to continue the fun. I have curated the best NBA bets for the East Play-in tournament. This is the second in a two-part series. This article will focus on the Eastern Conference.

Best NBA Bets For East Play-in Tournament

Philadelphia 76ers vs Miami Heat

7:00 PM EST, Philadelphia, PA, Wells Fargo Center

This is a play-in tournament game between the 7th and 8th seeds. The winner here will play against the New York Knicks, who secured the second seed in the final game of the season. Fortunately, for the losing team, they will get a second chance at playing in this year’s playoffs. They will face the winner of the 9th/10th team play-in game for the right to be the eighth seed.

Injury Report

Missing tonight

K.J Martin (toe)

De’Anthony Melton (back/injury recovery)

Robert Covington (Knee)

Duncan Robinson (Back)

Terry Rozier (Neck)

Josh Richardson (Shoulder)

Questionable

Joel Embiid (Knee)

Pick: 76ers -5.5 (-110)

This will be the fifth meeting of the season between both ball clubs. The season series is tied at 2-2. The most recent encounter between both teams happened just a fortnight ago. The 76ers pulled off a four-point win in Miami.

The 76ers, behind Joel Embiid, are arguably the most dangerous play-in team in the whole NBA. Injuries derailed what could have been an all-time statistical season from a player. Before his injury, Joel Embiid was on track to have the highest PER ( Player Efficiency Rating) recorded in a season. He was averaging more points per game (34.7) than minutes per game (33.6) through 39 games. He could have won a third straight-scoring title. What if?

The 76ers have an impressive core around Joel. Despite dealing with injuries, they have a team filled with proven playoff vets. It’s almost ludicrous that a vet like Buddy Hield will be making his postseason debut. Expect him to be a factor in this game one way or another.

The 76ers head into this game in the best form they could be. They have won eight games in a row. During this run, they have kept their opponents to 105 points or less in five games. They have scored at least 116 points in five games.

The Heat have been good in their previous 10 games, winning seven. On a closer look, those wins were against the Raptors (twice), Hawks, Rockets, Trailblazers, Wizards, and a Knicks team missing key players. Not a murderer’s row. Back the 76ers to cover the spread at home and proceed to the playoffs proper.

Chicago Bulls vs Atlanta Hawks

9:30 PM EST, Atlanta, GA, United Center

This game will be between the 9th and 10th seeds. The winner of this game will play the loser of the 7th/8th seed play-in game for the right to be the eighth seed and face the Boston Celtics in the first round of the playoffs. The loser bows out of the 2024 postseason.

Injury Report

Missing tonight

Seth Lundy (Ankle)

Onyeka Okongwu (Toe)

Jalen Johnson (Ankle)

Saddiq Bey (Knee)

Zach LaVine (Foot)

Patrick Williams (Foot)

Lonzo Ball (Knee)

Onuralp Bitim (Eye)

Questionable

Andre Drummond (Ankle)

Ayo Dosunmu (Quad)

Pick: Over 222.0 (-110)

This will be the fourth meeting of the season between both teams. The Bulls have a 2-1 lead in the season series. The most recent encounter ended in a dominant 12-point win for the Hawks.

The Hawks have been one of the more efficient offenses in the league despite the plethora of injuries they have dealt with, including to their franchise cornerstone Trae Young. They scored 118.3 points per game, good for the 13th-best offensive rating in the NBA. They rank high (top 10) in important offensive categories such as three-pointers made per game, free throws made per game, and pace.

The Bulls, led by Demar Derozan, are one of the lower-ranked teams in pace in the NBA (bottom-five: 96.28). Still, they have shown a tendency to speed up their pace of play when facing speedier teams. In their second meeting, the pace in that game was 101.49. That game obliterated this over. In fact, two games in the season series went over this total. Pick the over in this matchup.

These are my best NBA bets for the East play-in tournament. Let’s repeat some recent successes. Good luck with your bets.

Odds courtesy of DraftKings as of approximately 10:00 a.m. EST on April 17. These are for entertainment purposes only and by no means a guarantee. Wager responsibly.

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