NBA’s Best Bet: Low Goals Expected in All Game 7 on Sunday

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Now with the start of the 2021-22 NBA regular season, the basketball betting market is hotter than ever. CBS Sports will be offering daily picks during the postseason. Sam Quinn will have at least one pick for every game between now and the NBA Finals. All lines were powered by Caesar Sportsbook.

Latest odds:

less than 207

Most of this information applies to both games on Sunday. Spoiler alert: we’re opting out of each below. Here is the total score from the last 12 games in Game 7.

  • Hawks-76ers 2021: 199
  • Bucks-Nets 2021: 216 (OT)
  • Clippers-Mavericks 2021: 237
  • Nuggets-Clippers 2020: 193
  • Celtics-Raptors 2020: 179
  • Rocket-Thunder 2020: 206
  • Nugget-Jazz 2020: 156
  • Raptors-76ers 2019: 182
  • Blazer-Nuggets 2019: 196
  • Nugget-Spurs 2019: 176
  • Warriors-Rockets 2018: 193
  • Cabs-Celtics 2018: 166

The average score totaled 191.6 points. Only 3 of these games scored over 200 points. Go back and expand the sample if you wish. Throughout all of history, Game 7s tends to get very, very low scores.

There are several plausible explanations for this. Let me make a few suggestions. The tension at the beginning and end of the game tends to limit scoring in the first and last minutes. It’s very difficult to play a play you’ve never seen before as both defenders know the attackers of their opponents who have played six games. Spins tend to be laughably short, and the best players often play the full 48 minutes if needed. They are the players who make the majority of team shots. If they are too tired to trigger an attack, their entire team will struggle to score.

Now let’s consider this, especially in the context of Bucks-Celtics. The average total score for the series is 205.5. The point total is set at 207, which doesn’t account for a typical Game 7 drop. That doesn’t account for the fatigue these teams will be playing on a Sunday afternoon after fighting Friday night in another city. Expect Giannis Antetokounmpo to continue to shoulder unrealistic burdens. The Bugs Star has attempted more than 27 field goals in seven career playoff games. There are only 5 in this series. Sooner or later these teams will run out of fuel. As a result, expect a low-scoring game 7. Pick: Under 207

Latest odds:

less than 205

This series tends in a slightly different direction from Bucks-Celtics. He started scoring incredibly high, but his average score in his last four games is only 199.5. The Suns are shooting at 3 to 41% and the Mavericks are not far behind at 38.5%. If Game 7 nervousness is expected to reduce shooting, especially from Dallas as a road team, but unless Luka Doncic absolutely has a hack, it’s unlikely this game will make it into the top 100. Pick: Under 205

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