ish's picks and plays
Amanda Aylmer / Vendetta Sports Media

Only 4 games today, but I got my plays for each one and some player props for the NBA. We had an insanely good run last week by finishing 17-21 on the week. I can only pray we keep this hot streak going, but games obviously get tougher and tougher as playoffs go on. Let’s get to it!

Boston Celtics vs Brooklyn Nets

Boston and Brooklyn both know this series is over. In their last game, James Harden, Kevin Durant, and Kyrie Irving all showed that they could do what the team needed to win. Irving had 39 points and 11 rebounds, KD had 42 points shooting 14-for-20 with 3 triples, and Harden finished with 23 points and 18 assists. Brooklyn is just too good for this Celtics team. The spread is set at 12.5 right now after starting at 10.5, and there is a small part of me that thinks that 12.5 is too much with Jayson Tatum and Brad Stevens on the other team, but with Kemba Walker out tonight, it’s a tough call.

PICKS: Nets -12.5. I expect the 1st half to be somewhat tight, and then the Nets will go on a 15-20 point run in the 3rd, and that should do it. Nets 3rd Quarter -4.

Player Props: Kyrie Irving Over 25.5 Points, Harden Over 2.5 3 PM, Irving Over 3.5 Assists, Kevin Durant Over 4.5 Assists, Joe Harris Over 12.5 Points.

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Portland Trail Blazers vs Denver Nuggets

Damian Lillard went 1-of-10 last game from the field, yet the Trail Blazers still won by 20. Michael Porter Jr. had 3 points on only 3 shots. That makes no sense that the Nuggets have their 2nd best player take less than 5 shots in 23 minutes. That can’t happen. Nikola Jokic and Damian Lillard will have bounce-back games tonight, but who will step up for Denver other than Jokic? MPJ has regressed in points each game of this series, so maybe Austin Rivers? Who knows. All I know is that someone needs to step up and help the Joker soon, or else the Nuggets will have a quick exit from the playoffs this year.

PICK: Portland +2 and to take the lead in this series 3-2.

Player Props: Michael Porter Jr Over 6.5 Reb, C.J. McCollum Over 2.5 3 PM, Nikola Jokic Over 5.5 Assists, Robert Covington Over 1.5 3 PM

Los Angeles Lakers vs Phoenix Suns

90% of the money is on Phoenix to cover tonight against LeBron James, and I find that hard to believe. Anthony Davis will most likely be out tonight, but it’s hard to fade LeBron in the playoffs even without AD. The series is tied at 2-2, and Lebron will look to take over this game. With AD out, LeBron will be surrounded by at least 3 good shooters at all times tonight, and that is when he is most dangerous, driving and dishing. AD has been an anchor on the defensive side but inconsistent on the offensive end, and I think the Lakers will try and push the pace tonight with him out. Their defense has been among the best all season with or without him in the lineup, and I like LeBron on the road tonight as the underdog.

PICK: Lakers +5, Lean to Over 208 if AD is out.

Player Props: Andre Drummond Over 9.5 Reb, LeBron James Over 1.5 3 PM, Kyle Kuzma Over 1.5 3 PM (plus money)

Tampa Bay Lightning vs Carolina Hurricanes

Not going with anything official in this game. I lean to Tampa Bay winning this one due to the goalie advantage they have with Andrei Vasilevskiy over Alex Nedeljkovic between the pipes. The Lightning looked good in Game 1 and especially when their goalie plays that dominant, it is hard to see them go down. I expect this one to be low-scoring and go to overtime with Tampa pulling it out. I hope I’m wrong, and the Canes tie this series up.

PICK: Game to go to overtime for plus money.