NBA Pick: NBA Playoff Play of the Day Wednesday

LT Profits Sports Group

Wednesday, May 7, 2014 4:00 AM GMT

Every day during the NBA Playoffs, LT Profits Sports seeks that one single playoff play that has the best chance of cashing. Here is their Playoff Play of the Day Wednesday.

Look for the top seeds in the Eastern Conference to step things up defensively Wednesday after losing the opening game of the conference semifinals at home as the fifth-seeded Washington Wizards (49-39, 26-19 away) again pay a visit to the those Indiana Pacers (60-30, 37-9 home) for Game 2 from Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, IN at 7:05 ET in a game televised nationally on TNT.

The posted total at Pinnacle Sports is 186 for this contest with the current odds on the ‘under’ set at -101.

The Wizards continued their nice playoff run with their fifth post-season win in six games and their fourth road win of these playoffs already 102-96 in Game 1 of this series Monday, and in actuality the game was not nearly as close as that final score with the Pacers cosmetically hitting a few three-pointers in the final minute with the game basically out of reach.

Keep in mind though that the Wizards entered that game well-rested after making fairly quick work of the Chicago Bulls in five games, while Indiana was just one day removed from an intense effort in Game 7 of their opening series vs. the Atlanta Hawks, so a flat effort should really mot have been that surprising.

It has been well documented how awful the Pacers performed after the All-Star break, but to their credit, whenever they needed to vs. the Hawks, they set aside all of their ills and went back to playing the great defense they played while being perhaps the best team in the NBA the first half of the season. To wit, in their four wins over Atlanta, the Pacers allowed an average of 85.3 points with the Hawks being kept in the 80s in all four victories!

For all of their second-half troubles, the Pacers still finished second in the NBA in points against during the regular season at 92.3 per game while leading the league in field goal percentage allowed at 42.0 percent and ranking fourth in three-point defense. When Indiana was on top of its game early in the season, the Wizards could not handle its suffocating defense managing just 66 and 73 points respectively in two pre-All-Star break losses.

Then Washington finally broke through with a 91-78 win over Indiana during the Pacers’ second half slide in the final regular season meeting before cracking the century mark on Monday. However, if the Pacers continue their pattern of rising up defensively when their backs have been against the wall during these playoffs, then the Wizards’ early season offensive struggles vs. Indiana may return tonight.

With that being said, the Wizards have an underrated defense in their own right as Washington finished ninth in the NBA in points against at 99.4 per game as well as a commendable ninth in defensive efficiency. Thus, holding Indiana to 40.7 percent shooting in the series opener was not a fluke especially when the Pacers’ offense that ranked just 24th in the league in scoring is factored in.

That would have us leery about giving points with the Pacers even in what is practically a must-win spot for them, but it does have us liking the ‘under’ quite a bit more as we do again expect Indiana to rely on its stingy defense to return in another big spot.

With this in mind, go ‘under’ in Game 2 at Indiana on Wednesday.

[gameodds]5/286080/?r-1=238-92-43-349-192/us[/gameodds]

NBA Pick: Wizards, Pacers ‘under’ 186 (-101)