Updated September 7, 2020 - 10:33 am
Just as the number of daily NBA and NHL games drops as the playoff fields shrink, football joins the sports fray.
Here’s the betting menu for Monday (overnight odds at the Westgate):
Brigham Young (-1, total 48½, -115 ML) at Navy (-105 ML), 5 p.m.
A Monday night game closes out an abbreviated Week 1 slate. The line has yo-yoed from Navy -2½ to BYU -1½ back to Navy -1 (back to BYU -1 on Monday morning), while the total has steadily dropped from 53½. The teams have only played twice in their history and not since 1989.
Line movement: Favorite flips again, from Navy -1 overnight to BYU -1.
(All games at Lake Buena Vista, Florida)
Boston (-1½, total 212, -120 ML) vs. Toronto (+100 ML), Game 5, 3:30 p.m.
The third-seeded Celtics were a half-second from having the No. 2 seed Raptors buried in a 3-0 hole in the Eastern Conference semifinal series but are now in a best-of-three dogfight. OG Anunoby hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer to give Toronto a 104-103 victory in Game 3, then the Raptors earned a 100-93 victory in Game 4 to even the series. Toronto was a favorite of 2 or 2½ points in the first three games, failing to cover in all of them, then won outright as a 2-point underdog in Game 4. The total is down from 217½ in Game 1 and 215½ in Game 4 after the first four games all went under. The Celtics are now -125 to win the series (Raptors +105).
Line movement: Boston up from -1. Boston series price up from -120.
Los Angeles Clippers (-9, 220, -450) vs. Denver (+375), Game 3, 6 p.m.
The No. 2 seed Clippers dominated in a 120-97 victory in Game 1, but the No. 3 Nuggets struck back for a 110-101 victory to even the Western Conference semifinal series. The line has stayed virtually static for each game at Clippers -9. The total is down sharply from 224 in Game 2 after a second straight under. The Clippers are -1,100 to win the series (Nuggets +700).
Line movement: Total up from 219. Clippers ML up from -420.
(At Edmonton, Alberta)
Tampa Bay (-145, 5 over -115) vs. New York Islanders (+132), Game 1, 5 p.m.
The second-seeded Lightning are solid favorites in the opener of the Eastern Conference Final coming off a seven-day layoff, while the sixth-seeded Islanders had to win Game 7 against top-seeded Philadelphia on Saturday. Tampa Bay is a -180 favorite to win the series (Islanders +160). The most likely result is the Lightning to win in five or six games (each +375). The Islanders went 2-1 against the Lightning in the regular season.
Line movement: Tampa Bay down from -150. Tampa Bay series price down from -190.
(Pitchers subject to change)
(Note: xFIP is an advanced stat that is a more accurate measure of a pitcher’s performance than ERA.)
Miami (+175) at Atlanta (-190, 9), 10:10 a.m.
Probable pitchers: Miami’s Jose Urena (RHP, season debut) vs. Atlanta’s Ian Anderson (RHP, 2-0, 2.25 ERA, 3.21 xFIP)
Philadelphia (-102) at New York Mets (-108, 8½ over -120), 10:10 a.m.
Probable pitchers: Philadelphia’s Zack Wheeler (RHP, 4-0, 2.20 ERA, 3.79 xFIP) vs. New York’s David Peterson (LHP, 4-1, 3.03 ERA, 5.20 xFIP)
Detroit (+177) at Minnesota (-194, 8½ over -115), 11:10 a.m.
Probable pitchers: Detroit’s Michael Fulmer (RHP, 0-0, 7.27 ERA, 4.95 xFIP) vs. Minnesota’s Michael Pineda (RHP, 0-0, 3.00 ERA, 3.95 xFIP)
Line movement: Minnesota down from -200. Total down from 9 under -120.
Texas (+140) at Seattle (-150, 8½ under -115), 1:10 p.m.
Probable pitchers: Texas’ Kolby Allard (LHP, 0-4, 5.40 ERA, 5.65 xFIP) vs. Seattle’s Marco Gonzales (LHP, 4-2, 3.09 ERA, 4.29 xFIP)
Line movement: Total up from 8 over -120.
St. Louis (+167) at Chicago Cubs (-182, 7½ over -120), 1:10 p.m.
Probable pitchers: St. Louis’ Johan Oviedo (RHP, 0-1, 4.30 ERA, 4.95 xFIP) vs. Chicago’s Kyle Hendricks (RHP, 4-4, 3.78 ERA, 3.83 xFIP)
Line movement: Chicago up from -174.
Tampa Bay (+110) at Washington (-120, 8), 3:05 p.m.
Probable pitchers: Tampa Bay’s Charlie Morton (RHP, 1-1, 4.82 ERA, 4.50 xFIP) vs. Washington’s Max Scherzer (RHP, 3-2, 3.95 ERA, 3.27 xFIP)
Kansas City (+190) at Cleveland (-210, 8 over -115), 3:10 p.m.
Probable pitchers: Kansas City’s Brad Keller (RHP, 3-1, 1.93 ERA, 4.27 xFIP) vs. Cleveland’s Zach Plesac (RHP, 2-1, 1.33 ERA, 2.89 xFIP)
Line movement: Cleveland up from -200.
New York Yankees (+119) vs. Toronto (-129, 9½ under -120), 3:37 p.m. at Buffalo, New York
Probable pitchers: New York’s Jordan Montgomery (LHP, 2-2, 5.76 ERA, 4.07 xFIP) vs. Toronto’s Hyun-Jin Ryu (LHP, 3-1, 2.51 ERA, 3.10 xFIP)
Line movement: Toronto down from -140. Total up from 9 over -120.
Arizona (+105) at San Francisco (-115, 7½ over -115), 5:05 p.m.
Probable pitchers: Arizona’s Zac Gallen (RHP, 1-0, 1.80 ERA, 3.66 xFIP) vs. San Francisco’s Kevin Gausman (RHP, 2-2, 4.43 ERA, 3.09 xFIP)
Line movement: San Francisco up from -105. Total down from 8 -110.
Colorado (+170) at San Diego (-185, 8½), 6:10 p.m.
Probable pitchers: Colorado’s Kyle Freeland (LHP, 2-1, 4.09 ERA, 4.10 xFIP) vs. San Diego’s Dinelson Lamet (RHP, 2-1, 2.62 ERA, 4.02 xFIP)
Line movement: San Diego down from -200. Total up from 8 over -115.
Houston (+120) at Oakland (-130, 9), 6:10 p.m.
Probable pitchers: Houston’s Cristian Javier (RHP, 4-1, 3.35 ERA, 4.93 xFIP) vs. Oakland’s Frankie Montas (RHP, 2-3, 6.06 ERA, 5.03 xFIP)
Line movement: Oakland down from -145.
What happened Sunday
Favorites went 2-0 straight-up and against the spread, and totals went 2-0 to the over.
— Milwaukee (-2) stayed alive with a 118-115 overtime victory against Miami in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference semifinal series. The game went over 220 in the extra period. The top-seeded Bucks earned their first win of the series despite losing league MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo to an ankle injury in the second quarter. His status for Tuesday’s Game 5 is uncertain. Khris Middleton had 36 points, eight rebounds and eight assists for Milwaukee.
— The Los Angeles Lakers (-5½) held off Houston for a 117-109 victory to even the Western Conference semifinal series at 1. The game went just over 223. The Lakers led by 16 after the first quarter and at halftime, but the Rockets stormed back to take a two-point lead going to the fourth quarter. Los Angeles took the lead back early in the fourth, then held off Houston the rest of the way. The Rockets had the ball with four seconds left, but didn’t get a shot up for the cover. The Lakers shot 56.6 percent from the field and 44.4 percent (12 of 27) on 3-pointers. The Rockets shot 41.5 percent on 3s (22 of 53), but Russell Westbrook made only 1 of 7. He scored only 10 points and had seven turnovers.
— Dallas (+145) got the jump on the Golden Knights in a 1-0 victory to open the Western Conference Final. John Klingberg scored 2:36 into the game, then the Stars held on the rest of the way. Dallas held the edge in shots early, but the teams ended up even at 25-all as the Knights pushed for the equalizer in the third period. The Knights were -240 to win the series before Game 1 (Stars +200), but the price has been adjusted to -125 (Stars +105).
Favorites went 9-5 with one pick’em game. Colorado (+250) scored the biggest upset with a 7-6 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Totals went 8-7 to the under.
Hot Corner handicapper selection
Under 5 Lightning-Islanders (-105)
Dana Lane (@DanaLaneSports, 4-3, +0.68 units): I anticipate the Islanders dictating the pace, on the theory that the team that just finished its series is more ready than the team that has been waiting after dispatching Boston in five. The Islanders need to get on the board first, then let their smothering defense work (1.94 goals allowed per game in the playoffs). The Lightning won’t enjoy the space that they did against the Bruins, who at times were mentally checked out.