Here is a list of possible picks for your parlays for Thursday, June 9th in the NBA and the NHL.
Milwaukee Bucks -3.5 (-110) vs Brooklyn Nets +3.5 (-110)
I thought the Milwaukee Bucks could have stolen a game on the road and am still picking them to respond in Game 3, but they were nothing short of pathetic last time out. Kevin Durant and the Brooklyn Nets made the Bucks look weak and lifeless as they routed them by 39 points.
James Harden has already been ruled out for Thursday’s action, and although his absence has not been impactful yet, I expect the Bucks to play better defense at home and expose the Nets’ lack of a facilitator.
Milwaukee has floundered largely due to a lack of three-point shooting, converting just 24.6% of its 57 threes thus far. This is far off the Bucks’ regular-season average of 38.9% and is destined to change in Game Three.
Giannis Antetokounmpo scored just under 40 points on average in three regular-season matchups with Brooklyn, two of which the Bucks came out victorious in. It is now or never for the Bucks, and although their playoff track record with their backs against the wall is suboptimal, I expect them to hold off the sweep and get a game back, only to lose again in Game Four (barring a major development).
The over/under for this game has been set at 234 points and is one of the tougher parlays to judge. The “under” has hit both times in this series despite this series being the highest-scoring ever based on regular-season statistics. Both teams can heat up, and both can go cold; I expect the “over” to be in favor Thursday night as the Bucks pull away down the stretch to cover and win outright.
Utah Jazz -3.5 (-110) vs Los Angeles Clippers +3.5 (-110)
The Utah Jazz managed to win a close battle in Game One despite the Los Angeles Clippers enjoying a 13-point halftime lead. Donovan Mitchell scored 32 second-half points, and 45 total as the Jazz’s league-best three-point shooters came to life and got them over the line.
The Clippers got an unexpected 18 points from Luke Kennard off the bench while Kawhi Leonard and Paul George combined for 43 points, looking run-down and lethargic at many points. If anyone needed proof of this, rewatch the final sequence in which Leonard and George turned down opportunities to take the final shot and deferred to Marcus Morris Sr.
You may be asking yourself, why should I take the Jazz if they barely won on a night where their star outscored the Clippers’ two on his own? Well, Utah made 5-28 (17.9%) of its first-quarter shots and still managed to win and look like the better team. Now that the rust has been shaken off after a decent rest period, the Jazz will be firing on all cylinders. They will win this game and will do so comfortably.
The O/U for this one is set at 221 (-110), which I expect to be met. The Jazz 65 second-half points in Game One, meaning that the Clippers could score 92 points Thursday and the Jazz could cover, should they keep their recent pace of scoring. While basketball does not quite work like that, the Clippers are capable of easily breaking 100 points, and Utah will handle the rest from there.
Colorado Avalanche +1.5 (-245) @ Vegas Golden Knights -1.5 (+198)
This excellent matchup pits the two best regular-season teams against one another, with a berth in the third round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs waiting at the finish line. The favorite has failed to cover three out of five games thus far, and as tough of a decision as this is, I believe this trend will continue in Game Six.
These teams were both in the top three in goals for and goals against per game and are truly the cream of the crop in the NHL. The season series was split down the middle at four apiece, and neither team has looked definitively better than the other in the postseason either.
The Colorado Avalanche won the first two games of the series only to drop three straight to the Vegas Golden Knights, who are looking to close out Colorado. Two games have been decided in overtime (both finishing 3-2), and Game Six seems to be anyone’s guess.
While I am not entirely convinced that the Avalanche will come out on top, the one-goal cushion is enough to trust them Thursday night. Colorado will cover, and they will hit the “over” of 5.5 (+102). If you are looking to bet the “under,” it is set at 5.5 (-124).
Nothing makes for better spectatorship than sports with a prize on the line, and these should help you earn a bit of extra cash and bragging rights with your friends.
Grant Mitchell is a sportswriter and multimedia contributor for the Sports 2.0 Network dealing with basketball, football, soccer, and other major sports: you can connect with him on Twitter @milemitchell to stay up to date with the latest sports news and to engage personally with him.