PLAYOFF TIME! RAPTORS AT 76ERS ON SATURDAY NIGHT
The Toronto Raptors are in for a real dogfight against the Philadelphia 76ers in the first round of the 2022 NBA Playoffs, which begin this weekend.
The Sixers are a sizable favourite to win the series, per the latest odds at Spreads.ca. In fact, despite Toronto closing with one of the league's best W-L records during the second half of the season, the Raptors are tipping off at 3-2 odds, which means a $100 wager on the Canadian team to advance would return $150 in profit.
The feisty Raptors won the regular-season series between these two teams 3 games to 1.
While veteran Sixers coach Doc Rivers is a proven winner (recall that he coached the Boston Celtics to an NBA championship in 2008) the Raptors' Nick Nurse is wrapping up his fourth season. He guided Toronto to the NBA championship during his debut campaign in 2018-19, establishing himself as one of the league's most gifted up-and-coming coaches. A deep run in this year's playoffs will solidify that reputation. And, he's got the talent to pull it off, and perhaps even get to the finals. But the 76ers do pose quite an obstacle.
This is going to be a great series to watch (and bet on).
Game 1 tip-off is at 6:00 pm EST. Also note that Game 2 will also be played in Philadelphia, with a Monday night 7:30 pm EST start time.
Here's the numbers for Game 1 at Spreads.ca:
OPINION (powered by Pointspreads.ca):
Most bettors apparently still don't believe in the Raptors, and it's puzzling as to why there's so much doubt. This team is dangerous and will give Philadelphia a fight.
We love the Raptors to win the series, which we see as closer to a toss-up.
We also like Toronto +4.5 to cover in Game 1. If they don't cover, we like them even more to cover in Game 2.
Prediction -- The Raptors will win at least one of these first two playoff games.