NBA Picks
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NBA Playoffs: NBA Finals, Game 4 (0-1, -$330)



San Antonio Spurs (73-28) at Cleveland Cavaliers (62-39).
Line: Spurs by 3.


Game 3 was Cleveland's. As I predicted, the Spurs had their "clunker." They played terribly. Manu Ginobli couldn't score. Tim Duncan was in foul trouble. Even Eva Longoria wasn't wearing anything too revealing. Cleveland's still lost. The Cavs can blame the crooked ref all they want; they shouldn't have been in that position in the first place. And yes, that official should be fired. Immediately.

This series is over. San Antonio will not play as poorly as it did on Tuesday. They're a veteran team that knows how to take care of business. Of 11 squads in NBA Finals history that went up 3-0, seven finished with a sweep. Will be eight of 12 after tonight.

Prediction: Spurs -3.
3 Units.
Incorrect; -$330



NBA Playoffs: NBA Finals, Game 3 (0-1, -$100)



San Antonio Spurs (72-28) at Cleveland Cavaliers (62-38).
Line: Spurs by 2 (Cavaliers +105).


The Spurs always seem to let down once per series. Against Utah, it was Game 3. Against Denver, it was Game 1. I believe the Cavaliers, who play much better at home because they're such a young team, will win one out of desperation. If they don't, it's over.

Prediction: Cavaliers +105.
1 Unit.
Incorrect; -$100



NBA Playoffs: NBA Finals, Game 2 (1-0, +$200)



Cleveland Cavaliers (62-37) at San Antonio Spurs (71-28).
Line: Spurs by 7.


I only risked .5 Units on Game 1 because, well, I suck at predicting the first contest of any series. How bad? Try 1-14. Well, I've been much better the rest of the postseason. I like the Spurs here; although I thought differently a few days ago, I now believe this will be a quick, five-game set. Spurs should win by double digits tonight.

Prediction: Spurs -7.
2 Units.
Correct; +$200



NBA Playoffs: NBA Finals, Game 1 (0-1, -$55)



Cleveland Cavaliers (62-36) at San Antonio Spurs (70-28).
Line: Spurs by 7.


This reminds of those New England Super Bowls against Carolina and Philadelphia. Everyone thought the Patriots were going to win, and no one gave the Panthers and Eagles much of a chance. I think New England was even favored by 7 in each contest. The Patriots ended up claiming the Lombardi Trophy each time, but they didn't cover. I think this game stays close. I wouldn't even be surprised if LeBron and company won.

Prediction: Cavaliers +7.
.5 Units.
Incorrect; -$55



NBA Playoffs: Conference Finals, Game 6 (1-0, +$100)



Detroit Pistons (63-34) at Cleveland Cavaliers (61-36).
Line: Cavaliers by 1.


All I can say is wow. LeBron James' performance in Game 5 was one of the best I've ever seen since another guy wearing a No. 23 jersey graced the court. It's hard to believe James is only 22. He's better than Jordan was at 22. It's almost scary to think how good he'll be five years from now. Oh, and by the way, a trivia question 20 years from now will ask who scored the 30th point for the Cavs. Don't forget it was Drew Gooden.

Cleveland will close this series out tonight. The team lost Game 6 in a similar situation a season ago, so I think it understands what it needs to do. Remember, the Cavs should have won Game 2 and could have won Game 1; they've dominated this series and are consequently 5-0 against the spread.

Prediction: Cavaliers -1.
1 Unit.
Correct; +$100



NBA Playoffs: Conference Finals, Game 5 (3-0, +$425)



Utah Jazz (60-37) at San Antonio Spurs (68-28).
Line: Spurs by 7.


The Jazz are finished. All San Antonio had to do was win one game in Utah to close this series out. This line may seem high, but I don't think it is. The Spurs have way too many veteran players to let a young Jazz squad extend the series back to Utah.

Prediction: Spurs -7
2 Units (Best Bet).
Correct; +$200




Cleveland Cavaliers (60-36) at Detroit Pistons (63-33).
Line: Pistons by 5 (Cavaliers +245).


If it wasn't for a bunch of crooked refs who officiated Game 2, the Cavaliers would be up 3-1. In fact, Cleveland has covered every single matchup in this series. I don't think that changes. I think the money line's worth a shot.

Prediction: Cavaliers +5 - 1 Unit.
Cavaliers +245 - .5 Units.
Correct; +$100
Correct; +$120



NBA Playoffs: Conference Finals, Game 4 (2-0, +$300)



San Antonio Spurs (68-28) at Utah Jazz (60-37).
Line: Spurs by 1.


Utah had its one win. No way is San Antonio going to lose two in a row. The Spurs win this contest, setting up a potential series-ending battle in San Antonio.

As I've done with my baseball picks (+$630 on the season), I've decided to label picks by Units. Small plays will be .5 Units, average bets will be 1 Unit, games I like a lot will be 2 Units, while rare picks will be marked as 3 Units. That's as high as I'll go for now. I suspect I'll have some 5-Unit plays next year when I use the WalterFootball.com NBA Formula 2.0.

Prediction: Spurs -1.
2 Units (Best Bet).
Correct; +$200




Detroit Pistons (63-32) at Cleveland Cavaliers (59-36).
Line: Pick.


No surprise that the Cavs claimed Game 3. I think this series goes the distance, with each team winning at home until the decisive battle.

Prediction: Cavaliers PK.
1 Unit.
Correct; +$100



NBA Playoffs: Conference Finals, Game 3 (2-2, -$10)



San Antonio Spurs (68-27) at Utah Jazz (59-37).
Line: Jazz by 2 (Spurs +125). First-Half Line: Jazz by 1.


Wow, did the Cavs get robbed yesterday, or what? Not only did LeBron James get fouled, but Anderson Varejao got pushed underneath the basket as well. Cleveland should go to arbitration and protest that game. David Stern, once again the puppeteer. He wants Detroit and San Antonio in the Finals, so that's what's going to happen.

Anyway, I think I know what's going to happen in this game. Utah's going to come out firing because they need this contest much more than San Antonio. The Spurs will be down at halftime but will come back, with or without Stern's help.

Prediction: Jazz -1 (1st Half) - Best Bet.
Spurs +125 (Game).
Incorrect; -$110
Incorrect; -$100




Detroit Pistons (63-31) at Cleveland Cavaliers (58-36).
Line: Cavaliers by 3. First-Half Line: Cavaliers by 2.


Wow, did I get the Spurs-Jazz game wrong, or what? I thought Utah would win the first half and lose the game. The complete opposite happened. Now that's skill. I'm going to chase today, as I think an angry Cleveland squad will jump out to an early lead and dominate the entire contest.

Prediction: Cavaliers -3. - Best Bet No. 2.
Cavaliers -2 (1st Half).
Correct; +$100
Correct; +$100



NBA Playoffs: Conference Finals, Game 2 (1-1, $0)



Utah Jazz (59-36) at San Antonio Spurs (67-27).
Line: Spurs by 6.


I told you I suck at picking the first game of any playoff series! I went 0-2 this round, 0-5 in the second round and 1-7 in the first. That's a whopping 1-14 record! Nice! You can make a fortune fading my Game 1 picks. Unfortunately for your fading tactics, I'm better the rest of the series. As for this game, I think the Spurs cover again. Utah was able to beat Golden State because Carl Boozer was the best player in the paint. That's clearly not the case here.

Prediction: Spurs -6.
Best Bet.
Correct; +$100




Cleveland Cavaliers (58-35) at Detroit Pistons (62-31).
Line: Pistons by 5 (Cavaliers +245).


Cleveland was a missed 3-pointer away from claiming Game 1, so they definitely proved that they can win in Detroit. At +245, the Cavs are definitely worth taking.

Prediction: Cavaliers +245.
Incorrect; -$100



NBA Playoffs: Conference Finals, Game 1 (0-2, -$210)



Utah Jazz (59-35) at San Antonio Spurs (66-27).
Line: Spurs by 6. Total: 184.


I've been bad at picking Game 1s in each series, so let me go with a total here. I think this goes Under for two reasons. First of all, both teams will be jittery, especially Utah, as this is the first game in the Conference Finals. Secondly, both squads are coming off series where scoring was extremely easy. The Spurs and the Jazz will find that much more difficult to do against each other. I'll post a side when Game 2 rolls around. For now, the Under is what I'm going with.

Prediction: Under 184.
Best Bet.
Incorrect; -$110




Cleveland Cavaliers (58-34) at Detroit Pistons (61-31).
Line: Pistons by 6 (Cavaliers +250).


Unless the Cavs win this contest, I'm taking them on the money line in both contests at Detroit. I think they'll win at least one of the first two games of this series.

Prediction: Cavaliers +250.
Incorrect; -$100



NBA Playoffs: Round 2, Game 6 (2-1, +$150)



Detroit Pistons (60-31) at Chicago Bulls (55-36).
Line: Bulls by 2 (Pistons +115).


I'll let Fred from Endless Banter handle this one: My special today is Pistons. Pistons man. Chicago can't shoot 70 percent again.

Completely agree. Detroit rolls and it doesn't even come to a Game 7.

Prediction: Pistons +115.
Best Bet.
Correct; +$115




Cleveland Cavaliers (57-34) at New Jersey Nets (47-46).
Line: Nets by 3 (Cavaliers +135).


Like Detroit, I think the Cavaliers end this series in six. It won't go back to Cleveland.

Prediction: Cavaliers +135.
Best Bet No. 2.
Correct; +$135




Phoenix Suns (67-25) at San Antonio Spurs (65-27).
Line: Spurs by 3 (Suns +110 First Half).


I can't really decide who's going to win this game, but I like the prospect of betting on the Suns in the first half. This is an elimination game for them, so look for Phoenix to establish an early lead.

By the way, I'm pleased to tell you that I modified my formula. Using a new factor in my equation, I can confidently say we will be hitting 67 percent of our NBA picks next year. Can't wait.

Prediction: Suns +110 (First Half).
Incorrect; -$100



NBA Playoffs: Round 2, Game 5 (1-3, -$220)



Chicago Bulls (54-36) at Detroit Pistons (60-30).
Line: Pistons by 7.


I'm surprised Chicago showed enough grit to win Game 4. I thought Detroit was going to sweep the Bulls. Good for them. Now we can finally get one team into the Eastern Conference Finals. This one will be ugly.

Prediction: Pistons -7.
Incorrect; -$110




Golden State Warriors (47-45) at Utah Jazz (58-35).
Line: Jazz by 4.


I really underestimated this Jazz team and it looks like the public is still doing that. How is Utah only a 4-point favorite after Golden State was -7 on Sunday? Makes no sense. But I'll take it.

Prediction: Jazz -4.
Best Bet No. 1.
Correct; +$100




New Jersey Nets (46-46) at Cleveland Cavaliers (57-33).
Line: Cavaliers by 5.


Speaking of not being favored by quite enough... Cleveland should be -8 at the very least. This series is done.

Prediction: Cavaliers -5.
Incorrect; -$110




San Antonio Spurs (64-27) at Phoenix Suns (67-24).
Line: Spurs by 3 (Suns +140).


I know I said the Spurs would win this game yesterday, but that was before I learned that both Amare Stoudamire and Boris Diaw were suspended. I think the Suns claim this one for a few reasons. They'll play with more energy than San Antonio because they'll be angry and aware that they need to give 110 percent without their two stars. Secondly, the Spurs might take Phoenix lightly because they know they'll have an advantage. And finally, you know everyone and their great step aunt's ugly half-sister is betting San Antonio in the wake of the suspensions (85 percent on the Spurs). No way Vegas loses that much money.

Prediction: Suns +140.
Best Bet No. 2.
Incorrect; -$100



NBA Playoffs: Round 2, Game 4 (1-3, -$185)



Detroit Pistons (60-29) at Chicago Bulls (53-36).
Line: Pistons by 3.


Like I said, I'm going with the Pistons. Sweep.

Prediction: Pistons -3.
Best Bet.
Incorrect; -$110




Utah Jazz (57-35) at Golden State Warriors (47-44).
Line: Warriors by 7.


And also, I like the Warriors again. Even series.

Prediction: Warriors -7.
Incorrect; -$110




Cleveland Cavaliers (56-33) at New Jersey Nets (46-45).
Line: Nets by 3 (Cavaliers +145).


I'm sticking with my original plan that Cleveland will win one of two games in New Jersey. By the way, here's a little trick you can do if you're signed up with a sportsbook. Take the Cavaliers with the money line tonight. Bet the same amount on Cleveland to win the series in seven games (listed at 9/5 on bodog). The only way you can possibly lose cash on this is if New Jersey wins tonight and the Cavaliers win two straight afterward. The reasoning behind this is that if the series is tied 2-2, Cleveland can't win on the road and will win the series in seven games.

Prediction: Cavaliers +145.
Correct; +$145




Phoenix Suns (65-24) at San Antonio Spurs (64-25).
Line: Spurs by 3.


I can't see Phoenix winning this game. San Antonio is just so much better than them.

Prediction: Spurs -3.
Best Bet No. 2.
Incorrect; -$100



NBA Playoffs: Round 2, Game 3 (3-1, +$225)



Detroit Pistons (59-29) at Chicago Bulls (53-35).
Line: Bulls by 2. (Pistons +125).


I know the Bulls had the best home record in the history of mankind, blah blah blah... Whatever. The Pistons are so much better than Chicago. I figure they'll win at least one contest in the Windy City, so taking the money line twice should result in a positive payout.

Note: I'm going away this weekend, but I like the Pistons money line on Sunday, whatever it is. They'll close it out in four.

Prediction: Pistons +125.
Best Bet.
Correct; +$125




Utah Jazz (57-34) at Golden State Warriors (46-44).
Line: Warriors by 6.


The Warriors blew opportunities in both games at Utah to steal one on the road. This seems like it'll be a home-dominated series. I like the Warriors here in a blowout.

Note: I'm going away this weekend, but I like the Warriors on Sunday, no matter what the spread is.

Prediction: Warriors -6.
Correct; +$100




Cleveland Cavaliers (56-32) at New Jersey Nets (45-45).
Line: Nets by 4 (Cavaliers +195).


Same as the Pistons-Bulls series: I think the Cavaliers will steal one in New Jersey, so I'm taking the money line twice (unless Cleveland wins tonight).

Prediction: Cavaliers +195.
Incorrect; -$100




Phoenix Suns (65-23) at San Antonio Spurs (63-25).
Line: Spurs by 4.


Phoenix was desperate in Game 2 and it didn't surprise me one bit that the game was a blowout. San Antonio will strike back on its home court.

Prediction: Spurs -4.
Correct; +$100



NBA Playoffs: Round 2, Game 2 (3-2, +$90)



Chicago Bulls (53-34) at Detroit Pistons (58-29).
Line: Pistons by 5. Total: 181.


So, I was dead wrong about the Pistons. They're clearly the best team in the East and the only squad that has a shot at knocking them off is Cleveland. Chicago simply looked overmatched. This series should be over in five.

Prediction: Pistons -5.
Under 181.
Correct; +$100
Incorrect; -$110




New Jersey Nets (45-44) at Cleveland Cavaliers (55-32).
Line: Cavaliers by 4.


Cleveland won the first game but didn't cover. I definitely think they win again. Maybe we'll get lucky this time.

Prediction: Cavaliers -4.
Correct; +$100




San Antonio Spurs (63-25) at Phoenix Suns (65-23).
Line: Suns by 5.


The Spurs know they had to win one game in Phoenix. They got the job done, now Phoenix will be playing with its back against the wall. If the Suns lose Game 2, the series is over.

Prediction: Suns -5.
Correct; +$100




Golden State Warriors (46-43) at Utah Jazz (56-34).
Line: Jazz by 4 (Warriors +145).


If Steven Jackson hits a three at the end of Game 1, the Warriors come out winners. This series is so evenly matched you almost have to take the moneyline underdog every single time.

Prediction: Warriors +145.
Incorrect; -$100



NBA Playoffs: Round 2, Game 1 (0-5, -$530)



Chicago Bulls (53-33) at Detroit Pistons (57-29).
Line: Pistons by 5 (Bulls +190). Total: 181.


I think the Bulls have a great shot at winning this game; they were 3-1 against the Pistons in the regular season, and the underdogs seemed to do well in first games of the opening round.

Prediction: Bulls +190.
Over 181.
Incorrect; -$100
Incorrect; -$110




San Antonio Spurs (62-25) at Phoenix Suns (65-22).
Line: Suns by 4 (Spurs +150 1st Half). Total: 200.


The Spurs are such a great team. I think they're going to win the Championship. Thus, you can imagine how much I like them as an underdog.

Prediction: Spurs +150 (1st Half). - Best Bet No. 1.
Under 200.
Incorrect; -$100
Incorrect; -$110




New Jersey Nets (45-43) at Cleveland Cavaliers (54-32).
Line: Cavaliers by 6.


If the Raptors had any sort of playoff experience, I believe they would have beaten the Nets. New Jersey's just not that talented a team. The Cavs have been here before. I think they come away without a blowout.

Prediction: Cavaliers -6. - Best Bet No. 2.
Incorrect; -$110




Golden State Warriors (46-42) at Utah Jazz (55-34).
Line: Jazz by 4 (Warriors +165).


I can't believe the Warriors are an underdog once again. They're more than some simple eight-seed. They have a legitimate shot at winning the whole thing. I think they claim Game 1.

Prediction: Warriors +165.
Incorrect; -$100



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