Let’s take a closer look at the NBA odds for Game 5 of this Eastern Conference semifinal series at Madison Square Garden, with the opening tip scheduled for 8:00 p.m. ET on TNT.
Also check out my NBA Picks: Spurs vs. Warriors Game 6
A win away
Indiana is just a win away from meeting up with the Miami Heat in the conference finals, as it picked up an impressive 93-82 victory over New York as five-point home favorites in Game 4, while going UNDER the total for a second consecutive contest.
The Pacers are 2-0 straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS) when attempting to close out a playoff series the last two-plus seasons, with no clear advantage in the betting total (1-1 Over/Under)
Only eight NBA teams have overcome a 3-1 deficit to win a series, which places New York in a major hole, considering its two best players are struggling mightily on the offensive end.
Forward Carmelo Anthony and guard J.R. Smith are combining to shoot 33 percent from the field in their last seven games, which has led the team to a 2-5 record over that span.
The Knicks are 6-5 SUATS after two or more consecutive losses since the start of the regular season, with the OVER cashing in six of those opportunities.
Beyond the arc
The Pacers have made more 3-pointers than the Knicks in this series (34-28), which is one of the main reasons that I can’t lay this type of number when looking over the NBA betting lines.
It’s certainly not a shocking revelation, considering Indiana led the league in defensive field goal percentage and defensive 3-point field goal percentage. Overall, the team allowed its opponents 5.43 3-point field goal makes per game.
New York figures to play a better offensive game on its home floor, as it was limited to 153 combined points in two contests at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, but it lands in a bad situational spot.
The Knicks are 0-7 ATS when revenging a loss where the team scored fewer than 85 points, while the OVER is 5-2 in those seven opportunities.
I’m going to recommend that readers back the Knicks as one of their NBA picks Thursday, as the betting public continues to hammer the Pacers as a road underdog, but the line continues to move the other direction.
Indiana’s been outscored 63-34 in the fourth quarter in two games at this venue during this series, which is problematic when looking ahead to Miami.
NBA Pick: New York Knicks -4.5 at Bet 365