NBA betting tips: Picks for Friday's playoff games
Jack Green makes his NBA predictions for Game 6 in two series as the Hawks host the 76ers and the Jazz face the Clippers.
The Hawks are just one win away from the Eastern Conference finals after coming from behind for the second consecutive game to beat the 76ers and go up 3-2 in the series.
Philadelphia has dominated the majority of the last two games but somehow blown leads of 18 and 26 points to move to the brink of elimination.
Joel Embiid dominated early on in Game 5, putting up 17 shots on 8-for-8 shooting in the first quarter, but went cold in the fourth quarter as the Sixers fell apart.
Embiid scored 37 points and Seth Curry added 36, but Philadelphia’s other players combined for just 39 points and the bench has been consistently outscored by Atlanta’s throughout this series.
With Embiid limited by a knee injury that sees him listed as questionable for Game 6, it’s hard to look past the Hawks here.
They went 25-11 at home in the regular season and are currently 3-1 on their own court in the playoffs.
Trae Young is having a special postseason for Atlanta, averaging 29.4 points and 10.3 assists per game, and he put up a career playoff high 39 points in Game 5.
With their star point guard playing at this level and his supporting cast comfortably outplaying the 76ers’ role players in this series, it’s worth taking the points and backing the Hawks to get the job done on Friday night.
After losing the first two games of the series, the Clippers have fought back to go up 3-2 and now have the chance to close it out at home on Friday.
Los Angeles somehow overcame Kawhi Leonard’s absence to win Game 5, with Paul George – often criticised for his struggles in the postseason – coming up big with 37 points, 16 rebounds and seven assists.
The Jazz have struggled with Mike Conley out and Donovan Mitchell playing through an ankle injury. Both are listed as day-to-day and questionable for Game 6, while Leonard and Serge Ibaka are both out for the Clippers.
Despite how this series has turned in the past three games, the Jazz should be considered favourites for this one if Mitchell plays as expected, and Conley returning would be a huge boost.
The Clippers went 11-9 without Leonard in the regular season compared to 36-16 when he was in the line-up, so it’s safe to expect them to suffer from his absence here despite George’s heroics in Game 5.
Mitchell scored 11 points in the fourth quarter of Game 5 despite his sore ankle, and he’s averaging 34 points in this series. It’ll be a different story if he’s ruled out, but the Jazz are worth backing to send this series to Game 7 as long as he’s in the line-up.