Each week, our “What’s on Tap” series previews the week ahead in the world of sports betting. Come here for a summary of upcoming financial happenings, legislative and regulatory meetings, industry conferences, top games scheduled for the week, and much more. Also, check out our weekly review “Get a Grip” for a look back at last week’s notable news.
Monday, April 17
Bruins begin quest for Stanley Cup
Last week, the Boston Bruins capped a historic regular season when the team set an NHL record for wins with 65 and points with 135. The Bruins open their bid to win the Stanley Cup Monday night against the Florida Panthers. At DraftKings, the Bruins are -225 moneyline favorites to prevail in Game 1; the total is 6.5 goals.
The Bruins will look to end a dubious streak of Presidents’ Trophy winners that have failed to capture the Cup. The Chicago Blackhawks of 2012-13 are the last team to both have the best regular-season record and win the Stanley Cup in the same season.
DraftKings installed the Bruins as the top choice to hoist the Cup at +330, with the Avalanche and Oilers next at +650 and +800, respectively. Three other playoff series open on Monday with the Hurricanes taking on the Islanders in Raleigh and two games out West: Stars-Wild and Oilers-Kings.
Warriors look to avoid winless trip to Sacramento
The Sacramento Kings outlasted the Golden State Warriors 126-123 Saturday night, recording their first victory in the NBA playoffs since 2006. De’Aaron Fox poured in 38 points, tying the league mark for the second-highest playoff debut in NBA history. FanDuel set the over/under at 28.5 points for Fox in Monday’s Game 2.
On the series market, the odds shifted noticeably after the Kings’ victory. The Warriors are now -156 favorites to advance over the Kings, who have odds of +132. Before Game 1, Golden State had odds of -275 at FanDuel to prevail in the series over Sacramento (+225). The Sixers will face the Nets in an earlier game Monday. Philadelphia defeated Brooklyn by 20 in Saturday’s Game 1.
NBA Playoffs injury update
- Bucks fans shuddered Sunday night when Giannis Antetokounmpo left the game in the first quarter with a back contusion. Antetokounmpo, who scored six points in the Bucks’ 130-117 loss to the Heat, did not return. There is optimism within Bucks circles, however, that the two-time NBA MVP will return for Wednesday’s Game 2, FanDuel TV host Shams Charania reported Monday.
- Heat guard Tyler Herro suffered a broken hand in the victory over Milwaukee. Herro is out for Game 2.
- Grizzlies All-Star guard Ja Morant also suffered a hand injury over the weekend, and he is questionable for Wednesday’s Game 2 against the Lakers. The Lakers are now -250 favorites at FanDuel to advance over the Grizzlies (+205), in part due to Morant’s injury status. The Lakers won Game 1 on Sunday by 16.
Tuesday, April 18
Silver, Howe set to appear at CAA World Congress of Sports
Each year, the CAA World Congress of Sports brings together a who’s who of power players in sports. This week’s conference in Los Angeles will be no exception, with appearances from two of the nation’s Big Four pro sports commissioners (Adam Silver and Rob Manfred), as well as NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly.
As the NBA playoffs hit full stride, Silver is expected to address the main takeaways of the league’s new collective bargaining agreement. There is speculation that the new CBA will allow players to promote and invest in sports betting companies. Last week, the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario announced proposed regulatory changes that would restrict athletes and other celebrities from promoting sports betting in instances that target minors.
FanDuel CEO Amy Howe, when speaking Tuesday, may also discuss the recent crackdown on advertising standards. Over the last two months, regulators in New York and Massachusetts have proposed more stringent rules on advertisements by sportsbook operators.
Suns hope to bounce back from opening loss
Relentless on the offensive boards, the Los Angeles Clippers outlasted the Suns 115-110 Sunday night in a highly entertaining Western Conference first-round opening matchup. Kawhi Leonard torched the Suns for 38 points, while Russell Westbrook grabbed several key offensive rebounds down the stretch. As the Clippers led by three in the final minute, Westbrook’s block of Devin Booker’s driving layup with 10 seconds left sealed the victory.
The Suns entered the playoffs with the shortest odds to win the West, but they can ill afford to go to Los Angeles with a two-game deficit. While Phoenix is still the favorite to represent the West in the NBA Finals, the margin has narrowed. On Monday, the Suns had odds of +210 at BetMGM, just ahead of the Nuggets and the Warriors at +350 and +450, respectively. The Suns (+500) are also the third choice at BetMGM to win the NBA title behind the Celtics (+280) and the Bucks (+375).
100 years from now, hoops historians may ask, "what kind of player was Russell Westbrook?" And smart people will just cue the tape of this game. 3-19 from the floor. Won the game.
— David Aldridge (@davidaldridgedc) April 17, 2023
Thursday, April 20
Early props rolled out as NFL Draft hits one-week countdown
The Eagles reached a long-term agreement Monday with Jalen Hurts, signing the quarterback to a five-year, $255 million extension, according to ESPN. At next week’s NFL Draft, several teams will be in search of their own franchise quarterback.
With a number of teams starved for a star quarterback, there is a decent chance that quarterbacks could be taken with the first three draft selections on April 27. It has only happened three times in NFL history, with the last time in 2021 (Trevor Lawrence, Zach Wilson, and Trey Lance).
On Monday, sentiment increased that the Carolina Panthers will take Alabama quarterback Bryce Young with the No. 1 overall selection. There were odds of -900 at FanDuel in the afternoon that Young would be taken with the first pick, compared with odds of -400 on Monday morning. FanDuel also lists Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud as the favorite to be taken second at +150, with Florida quarterback Anthony Richardson the top choice to go third (+175).
MASSIVE movement in Bryce Young's odds to be the No. 1 overall pick 👀
▹ This morning: -400
▹ Moments ago: -1050
▹ Currently: -900#KeepPounding | #NFLDraft pic.twitter.com/PGgA6VAGpQ
— FanDuel Sportsbook (@FDSportsbook) April 17, 2023
Saturday, April 22
Davis-Garcia bout in Vegas
Gervonta Davis will take on Ryan Garcia Saturday in a fight that is shaping up to be one of the most anticipated bouts of the year. While both boxers enter the 136-pound catchweight bout undefeated, Davis has recorded 26 knockouts in 28 career appearances. Davis has odds of -250 at PointsBet to defeat Garcia (+220) with odds of +1600 on a draw.
PointsBet also offers odds on the fight to go the distance, with a prop on it ending early at -334. If you think the fight will go the full 12 rounds, the odds are +240. Davis had his IBF super-featherweight title stripped in 2017 after he missed weight by two pounds for his undercard bout against Francisco Fonseca.