What Are The Best Bets For The NBA Playoff Series & Who Will Be Voted 2021 GOAT?

Posted on May 21, 2021 - Last Updated on May 22, 2021

As the play-in games come to an end, the focus will shift to the first-round series. There are a lot of juicy matchups & ever-changing NBA playoffs odds and betting lines at all the legal NJ online sportsbooks.

Especially in New York where the Knicks are finally back in the playoffs, and YES… I was admittedly wrong about them on my NY Knicks preview article in December 2020.

Taking a look at all of the series prices on the board at FanDuel Sportsbook, let’s break down the eight series and see if there’s some value to be had.

NBA Playoffs Odds – Live Feed Updated on June 23, 2024

Below you’ll see the most up-to-date NBA playoff schedule & live odds feed.  We also supply real-time NJ sportsbook offers for all the recently scheduled matchups with betting lines from the NJ online sports betting apps.

No. 1 Philadelphia 76ers vs No. 8 Washington Wizards

NBA Playoffs Odds At FanDuel Sportsbook: 76ers, Wizards

The Philadelphia 76ers are set to face the Washington Wizards in the first round of the playoffs. The 76ers are a heavy favorite as they’re the No. 1 seed but they’ll have to be careful here. To start, they don’t exactly have a great pedigree of success in the postseason.

sixers playoff odds

Ben Simmons’ has had issues in the playoffs and – as a team – they’ve been mentally frail.

Much of that was pinned on former head coach Brett Brown and while Doc Rivers has led the team to the top seed in the Eastern Conference, he also has a track record of coming up short in the postseason (see: blowing a 3-1 lead to the Denver Nuggets last playoffs).

The Wizards are a tricky opponent as they’re playing pretty well right now. This team started the year 17-32 but finished by winning 17 of their final 23 contests. Russell Westbrook is having an incredible season, averaging 22.2 points per game with 11.7 assists and 11.5 rebounds.

Everyone knows about Brad Beal but this team has some depth as very quietly, second-year forward Rui Hachimura has been averaging 17.0 points per game with 4.7 rebounds.

This team lost all three of their meetings with the 76ers this season all three were early before they turned it around.

We’ll see if they can put a scare into them.

Sixers 2021 NBA Playoffs Odds – FUTURES

We scoured all the top NJ sports betting apps to find the best NBA futures betting odds for the sports bettors.

Sixers 2021 NBA Player Futures

Enjoy the best betting lines & odds picked out from all the top sports betting apps.




No. 2 Brooklyn Nets vs No. 7 Boston Celtics

NBA Playoffs Odds at FanDuel Sportsbook: Nets -1300, Celtics +790

nba playoffs odds sportsbook promo

The Boston Celtics beat the Washington Wizards in the play-in game and will now get to face the Brooklyn Nets in the first round.

Beating them will be a tall order as the Nets are the favorite to win the NBA Championship. That’s not surprising given that they have a stacked starting lineup with Kevin Durant, James Harden, Kyrie Irving and Blake Griffin.

If this were a year ago, many might have surmised that the Celtics have a shot to contend here because of coaching, defense and team depth. This year’s Celtics team has struggled on many of those levels. They haven’t had great team chemistry, their depth is lacking and they’ll be without star Jaylen Brown for the series.

Boston lost all three meetings with Brooklyn, scoring just 95, 104 and 109 points in their three meetings. They’re likely going to have a tough time with the Nets, who are second in the NBA with 118.6 points per game.

No. 3 Milwaukee Bucks vs No. 6 Miami Heat

Series Price At FanDuel Sportsbook: Bucks -300, Heat +250

brooklyn nets 2020 odds

The Milwaukee Bucks and Miami Heat engaged in a very entertaining playoff series last postseason. Many assumed that the Heat would be mincemeat for the Bucks but Jimmy Butler and company surprised in the bubble. Will we see a similar scenario play out?

These two teams have mostly been quite different this year but the playoff series could again be a rugged, close contest. The Bucks added Jrue Holiday as a key third piece but they didn’t exactly improve as a result – at least in the regular season.

This is a team that had a winning percentage of .732 or better the last two seasons but dropped to .639 this season. Regardless, the main concern will be what happens in the playoffs. They’ve had a history of underachieving in the postseason and one more shortcoming could cost Mike Budenholzer his job.

As for the Heat, many figured this would be a team on the rise after making the NBA Finals last season but they seemingly regressed. They finished sixth in the Eastern Conference and really didn’t put it all together until late. They were just 28-28 after 56 games but finished the year on a 12-4 run. We’ll see if they can carry that momentum into the playoffs.

No. 4 New York Knicks vs No. 5 Atlanta Hawks

Series Price At FanDuel Sportsbook: Hawks -120, Knicks +100

nba playoffs odds sportsbook promo

Two of the biggest surprise teams in the NBA will go head-to-head in this first-round showdown. The Knicks are finally back in the playoffs as they’ve done things the right way.

Not only do they have an exciting young cast, but they also have a smart coach who is leading the way. Tom Thibodeau has guided this young roster to play with discipline. They finished the season first in opponent points-per-game and opponent field goal percentage.

The Hawks’ season illustrated a tale of two different teams: they started the year 14-20 and fired head coach Lloyd Pierce as a result. Management felt that the results simply weren’t good enough given the roster was loaded with young talent. They were proved right as the hiring of Nate McMillan completely turned the team around. They finished the year on a tear, going 27-11 over their final 48 games, which was one of the best records in the league over that span.

Both teams are very young and short on playoff experience, so that will make for an entertaining showdown.

No. 1 Utah Jazz vs No. 8 Memphis Grizzlies

Series Price At FanDuel Sportsbook: Jazz, Warriors

fanduel 76ers odds nj sports betting

The Utah Jazz are the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference but many have their concerns. While they’ve been the best team in the West during the regular season, are they built playoff-tough?

They’ll might have got a serious test in Round 1 against a Golden State Warriors team led by MVP Steph Curry but they didn’t make the cut. After Curry and a thinned-out Warriors roster nearly beat the Los Angeles Lakers in the play-in game, they lost to the Memphis Grizzlies on Friday night.

The Jazz is one of the most balanced teams in the league as they are fourth in the NBA in terms of scoring and third in terms of points-per-game allowed. Memphis is led by Ja Morant and while they have some balance, they are a team that is 18th in field goal percentage. That figures to be a big challenge against a strong defensive team like Utah.

No. 2 Phoenix Suns vs No. 7 Los Angeles Lakers

Series Price At FanDuel Sportsbook: Suns +140, Lakers -160


One of the most intriguing first-round series will be the NBA Champion Los Angeles Lakers going up against the upstart Phoenix Suns. No team has exceeded expectations in the West more than the Suns. Many thought they’d maybe be a fringe playoff team; they pushed for the top seed overall.

They’re loaded with quality as Devin Booker is a superstar, Chris Paul is an All-Star, and players like DeAndre Ayton, Mikal Bridges, Jae Crowder, Dario Saric, and Cam Johnson contribute. They’re well-coached and smart, but they’re short on playoff experience.

As for the Lakers, they’ve had a shaky season and are quite lucky to even be the No. 7 seed right now. Anthony Davis and LeBron James have missed ample time with injuries and the team has struggled without them. They’ve made it back just in time for the playoffs but nobody is quite certain how healthy they are. James and Davis have either looked less than 100% at times or fatigued or something else because this team should be better than what they’ve shown. The good news is that they still have James and Davis, and some solid depth. They’ll be tested but many will expect them to survive here.

No. 3 Denver Nuggets vs No. 6 Portland Trail Blazers

NBA Playoffs Odds at FanDuel Sportsbook: Nuggets +110, Trail Blazers -130

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The Denver Nuggets and Portland Trail Blazers engage in a first-round playoff series that should be evenly matched. The Nuggets might be the No. 3 seed but they’re limping coming into the playoffs. It’s not their record – they started the year 17-15 and finished on a 30-10 run – it’s the fact that they are without star point guard Jamal Murray, who tore his ACL and is now out.

The Trail Blazers enter the playoffs having won 10 of their last 12 games and they’re hoping to prove that this is finally the year they should be taken seriously. One of the main reasons is because they believe they have the necessary depth beyond Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum. Typically, it’s just those two trying to carry the team but the addition of Normal Powell has added 17.0 points per game in production. In the frontcourt, Jusuf Nurkic and Enes Kanter are healthy, so they could be enough to match up with or at least slow down (somewhat) Nikola Jokic.

No. 4 Los Angeles Clippers vs Dallas Mavericks

Series Price At FanDuel Sportsbook: Clippers -400, Mavericks -325

nba playoffs odds 2021

The Los Angeles Clippers and Dallas Mavericks squared off in the first round of the postseason last year and now they’re back at again. Both teams feel like they’ve improved but nobody is quite certain if that will translate into postseason success.

For the Clippers, they fired head coach Doc Rivers and retooled their roster in the hopes of making a championship run. Anything less than an NBA Finals appearance will be a disappointment for them. As for the Mavericks, they’re a young team that’s trying to prove that they can be a contender one day. A playoff series win – or at least pushing the Clippers to seven games – would be an achievement.

Dallas seemingly put things together at the end of the season as they were just 30-26 on April 18th. They went 12-4 the rest of the way and are riding some momentum. They took two of three from the Clippers in the regular season, so they won’t be intimidated in this matchup.

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