Ready for the NHL’s Western Conference Finals?
Of course, you are. You’ve got your Vegas Golden Knights logo shirt, your Vegas Golden Knights logo cap and you’ve even buffed up your Vegas Golden Knights license plate frame. Knights owner William P. Foley thanks you for all of the above — it’s money in the bank for the 78-year-old billionaire businessman, former attorney and wine entrepreneur.
Ah, but do you have your futures ticket? Or have you cashed your previous ticket or tickets on Round 1 and Round 2 of the playoffs and plan to roll them over on the VGK in the Conference Finals vs. the Dallas Stars?
Here’s the latest: The Golden Boys are -145 or -150 to win the series that starts Friday with the Stars +125 on the buyback. But wait, there’s more.
Among the many props out there, over 5.5 games in the series is -190 at Station Casinos. Under is +155. Total goals scored in the series is 33.5 with both over and under priced at -115. Player to score the most goals in the series has the Knights’ William Karlsson at even money and the Stars’ Jamie Benn at -130.
But how do the VGK feel about going against former coach Peter DeBoer, who is now aligned with the Stars?
“When Pete was here, obviously, a lot of guys enjoyed playing for him,” VGK forward Reilly Smith told KTNV. “It’s part of the business. You get used to it, but there’s things you can try to expose, obviously, because you have seen the system for a couple of years.”
Regardless, Games 1 and 2 are at the Deep Freeze on the Strip, aka T-Mobile Arena on Friday and Sunday. And the line on Game 1? Somebody’s been betting on the Stars. After opening at Golden Knights -137, the current line is generally -125 but still as high as -135 at some “square” books. The total is 5.5.
The puck drop for Friday’s game is at 5:35 p.m. On Sunday, first action is at noon.
— And then they were four: The NBA playoffs continue to deliver thrills, chills, slam dunks and shifting odds. The Boston Celtics, after a Game 1 loss to the Miami Heat on Wednesday, are no longer favorites to take down the title. That honor goes to the Denver Nuggets, who are up 2-0 vs. the Los Angeles Lakers, and are +125 and + 110, respectively, BetMGM and Caesars Sportsbook to win it all.
The Celtics are next at +140 and +150, respectively. Next are the Lakers and the Miami Heat at +800 and +850. Astute followers of this post probably remember that only a week ago, the Heat were as high as +1,800 to win it all. Can you spell v-a-l-u-e?
Asked by the the website ClutchPoints if he thought the Heat could make a deep playoff run in 2023, Heat Star Jimmy Butler said, “Damn right, I did. … And the best part of it is, we still don’t care what none of y’all think. We don’t care if you pick us to win.”
Game 2 of the Heat-Celtics series is Friday. The line is Celtics -9, up from -8 in Game 1, and the total is up from 212.5 in Game 1 to 215.
— Fight night back in Vegas: After a trip to the East Coast last week, UFC’s Fight Night returns to the Apex facility on Saturday night.
Mackenzie Dern brings her 12-3-0 mark to a women’s strawweight bout vs. Angela Hill, who is 15-12-0. Unsurprisingly considering Dern’s record, she is anywhere from a -175 to -190 favorite. Hill is +150 to +175 on the buyback.
As strawweights, the combined weight of the two fighters is 230 pounds.
Over 4.5 rounds is -150. Under is +130. The featured fight is scheduled for 5:50 p.m.
— Bringing up the rear: Trying to pick up a few bucks betting Major League Baseball? Have you tried fading the Oakland-soon-to-be-Las Vegas A’s?
After losing three of four to the Texas Rangers and two of three to the Arizona Diamondbacks, the A’s are dead last among Major League teams at TeamRankings.com.
They have 10 wins and 35 losses for a woebegone 22.1 win percentage. The have a startling win margin of negative 3.6 runs — by far, the worst in the majors. That is, not only are they losing games, they are losing them badly.
As ESPN noted, they have also lost all eight home series this year.
“We’re going to battle,” A’s right fielder Ramon Laureano told the GazetteXtra after a 5-3 loss on Wednesday. “That’s what we can do. We’ve got to stay positive, keep working, be patient and hopefully we can put it together and start having fun here.”
Good luck with that.