NBA Playoffs Best Bets (May 13): Tatum Posting Strong Numbers In Points, Rebounds

Jayson Tatum #0 of the Boston Celtics drives to the basket against Donovan Mitchell #45 of the Cleveland Cavaliers during the fourth quarter in Game Three of the Eastern Conference Second Round Playoffs at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse on May 11, 2024 in Cleveland, Ohio.

As the NBA Playoffs continue, the stakes are rising with the second set of Game 4s in the second round featuring pivotal matchups between the Boston Celtics and Cleveland Cavaliers, and the Oklahoma City Thunder and Dallas Mavericks. Both series currently stand at 2-1, making Game 4 crucial for determining the direction each series might take.

For the Celtics and the Cavaliers, a win for Boston could push them to a commanding 3-1 lead, putting significant pressure on Cleveland to stave off elimination in Game 5. Alternatively, a Cavaliers victory would even the series at 2-2, creating a more balanced and unpredictable scenario as the teams head back to Boston.

Similarly, in the series between the Thunder and the Mavericks, the dynamics are just as critical. The Mavericks holding a 2-1 lead means that a victory in Game 4 would give them a strong advantage, pushing the Thunder to the brink of elimination. Conversely, if the Thunder can level the series, it resets the momentum and effectively turns the matchup into a best-of-three, with the psychological edge potentially swinging in their favour.

These Game 4 outcomes are crucial, as they not only influence team morale but also play a significant role in the strategic adjustments and preparations for the remainder of the series.

Boston Celtics vs Cleveland Cavaliers – 7 p.m. ET

The Cavaliers faced a challenging Game 3, falling to the Celtics, 106-93. The Celtics’ tandem of Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown proved to be too much for the Cavaliers, with Tatum delivering a strong double-double of 33 points and 13 rebounds, complemented by six assists. Brown also made significant contributions, nearly achieving a double-double himself with 28 points and nine rebounds.

For the Cavaliers, Donovan Mitchell continued to lead the team in scoring, matching Tatum’s scoring with 33 points and adding six rebounds. Evan Mobley supported well with 17 points and eight rebounds but the overall team performance wasn’t enough to counter the Celtics’ offensive onslaught. As the series progresses to Game 4, the Cavaliers are now in a precarious position, needing to find a way to rebound from this loss and even the series to avoid falling into a deeper hole.

Donovan Mitchell over 30.5 points: -105 (BetMGM)

Mitchell’s exceptional scoring ability, especially highlighted in his performances against the Celtics, marks him as a crucial offensive asset for the Cavaliers. He has consistently surpassed the 30.5-point mark in most of his recent encounters with the Celtics, demonstrating his significant role. Notably, Mitchell scored 33 points in two recent games against them, underscoring his capability to deliver high-scoring outputs during critical playoff games.

Given this track record and the urgency of Game 4, with the Cavaliers looking to even the series at home to avoid facing elimination in Boston, Mitchell’s role becomes even more crucial. Expecting Mitchell to score over 30.5 points in Game 4 is a reasonable projection based on his recent performances, the pattern of his scoring against Boston, and the context of the series. His ability to perform under pressure will be vital as the Cavaliers strive to tie the series and regain momentum before heading back to Boston.

Donovan Mitchell over 30.5 points


Jayson Tatum to record a double-double: -120 (bet365)

Tatum has consistently demonstrated his ability to perform at a high level against the Cavaliers this season, as evidenced by his record of achieving double-doubles in five out of the six games they’ve played, including both regular season and playoffs. His performances have been particularly noteworthy, with significant contributions in points and rebounds. For example, in the first game of the series, Tatum put up 18 points and 11 rebounds, and he followed up with a strong rebounding performance in Game 3, scoring 33 points alongside 13 rebounds.

Despite a slight dip in Game 2 where he grabbed seven rebounds and had 13 rebounding chances, Tatum’s overall trend and ability to bounce back — as shown in Game 3 — highlights his resilience and skill in impacting the game on both ends of the floor. Given his track record and the trend of strong performances on the boards, it’s reasonable to expect that Tatum will secure another double-double in Game 4. His ability to consistently secure rebounds and score effectively makes him a key player for the Celtics as they look to extend their lead in the series.

Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Dallas Mavericks – 9:30 p.m. ET

Game 3 of the series between the Mavericks and Thunder proved to be highly competitive, with the Mavericks edging out a 105-101 victory, making it the closest game of the series so far. P.J. Washington’s standout performance was crucial for Dallas; he led the team in scoring with 27 points and added six rebounds, marking his second consecutive game as a key contributor.

Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving also made significant contributions, each scoring 22 points, further supporting the Mavericks’ offensive efforts. On the Thunder’s side, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander continued to shine, leading his team with 31 points and securing a double-double with 10 rebounds.

As the series progresses, the performances of these key players will continue to be pivotal. The Mavericks will look to build on their narrow victory to take control of the series, while the Thunder will aim to bounce back and even the score, relying heavily on Gilgeous-Alexander’s dynamic play.

Kyrie Irving under 4.5 1st quarter points: -115 (bet365)

Irving’s scoring pattern in the first quarters of these playoff games has indeed established a clear trend. His consistent low scoring in the opening frames, where he hasn’t exceeded 4.5 points in nine consecutive games, highlights a strategic approach in his gameplay. This trend suggests that Irving typically starts games more conservatively and increases his scoring significantly in the second half.

This pattern has persisted in the current series against the Thunder, with Irving not scoring over 4.5 points in the first quarter of the first three games. Given this consistent performance and his strategic approach to gameplay, it seems highly probable that Irving will continue this trend and score under 4.5 points in the first quarter of Game 4.

Kyrie Irving under 4.5 1st quarter points


P.J. Washington over 2.5 threes: -105 (BetMGM)

Washington’s recent performance from beyond the arc has been notably impressive. Over the last two games, he’s converted 12 out of 23 three-point attempts, highlighting his effectiveness and confidence in shooting from long range. This hot streak is part of a broader pattern where he has exceeded expectations in three of his last four games in terms of three-point shooting.

Washington’s increased volume of three-point attempts — totaling 34 in the last four games, averaging almost nine attempts per game — demonstrates a significant role in the Mavericks’ offensive strategy. Given his recent form in shooting from beyond the arc, it’s reasonable to expect Washington to record over 2.5 threes given the high volume he is shooting from three at.

Oklahoma City Thunder over 107.5 points: -108 (Betano)

The Thunder have consistently demonstrated strong offensive performances throughout the season, managing to score over 107.5 points in six out of their last seven games against the Dallas Mavericks, combining both the regular season and the playoffs. Their ability to maintain high scoring was evident in the first two games of the current series against the Mavericks, where they scored 117 and 110 points, respectively. Although they experienced a slight dip in Game 3, scoring 101 points, the overall trend suggests the Thunder have strong offensive power.

Given the critical nature of Game 4, with the Thunder facing the possibility of a 3-1 deficit, it’s reasonable to anticipate an aggressive start and sustained effort to push the scoring. The urgency of not falling further behind in the series is likely to catalyze their performance, encouraging a high-energy, offensive approach. Considering their past scoring achievements and the high stakes of the upcoming game, expecting the Thunder to exceed 107.5 points in Game 4 seems well-founded. Their track record and the necessity to balance the series should inspire a strong scoring effort from the team.