What’s On TV Tonight, And How Not To Lose Your Money Gamblin’ On The NBA And NHL Playoffs

  • Matt Rudnitsky

Welcome to SportsGrid’s new, daily feature, where we tell you what sports are on TV tonight. Then, I do my best to help you win some money while watching. You know, if you’re into that sort of thing, and gambling is legal in your jurisdiction. Feel free to tweet hateful things at me if my advice moves you to do so. TV games are often the toughest games to find an edge on, so don’t go crazy, people. If I do recommend a bet, I’ll keep track of it, so you can tell me how awful (or wonderful?) I am. For record-keeping, we’ll assume a standard bet is $10. Occasionally, there will be 2x or 3x bets, maybe 4 or 5 if I’m feeling spunky. Good luck, America!

Important note: Money you make in the playoffs isn’t worth more than money you make in the regular season. Stay disciplined.

NHL Playoffs: Maple Leafs (+190) at Bruins (-205) (7:00 p.m., NHLN)

The Bruins have been the better team in this series by a bit, but the Leafs were an overtime heartbreaker away from tying it at 2-2. It’s been fairly even. The Bruins were -175 favorites in the first game in Boston. They won. Then the price jumped to -205 for Game 2, and they lost. The first price was fair. Why is this 30 cents higher? I don’t necessarily think Toronto wins, but +190 is beyond dumb. And Toronto is the type of team (and with a high-powered offense and a series that has seen just one one-goal game) that, if they win, have a very good chance of winning by 2+ goals. Toronto -1 at +411 is absolutely absurd and deserves a full unit bet.

Maple Leafs ML +190, $10 to win $19 AND Maple Leafs -1 (+411), $10 to win $41.10

NHL Playoffs: Rangers (+111) at Capitals (-120) (7:30 p.m., NBCSN)

I’ve liked the Capitals all series, as well as the under, but I held off on both bets in New York, because the Rangers’ offense has been much better at home. They put up eight goals in two games at home, but scored just one goal, in overtime, in two games in Washington. The Capitals have looked much better than New York, losing the road games on odd bounces and stupid penalties. The Capitals should be significantly bigger favorites, and my only worry is Henrik Lundqvist, who has been very, very good. Still, I love this play.

Capitals ML (-120), $20 to win $16.67 AND UNDER 5 (-105), $10 to win $9.52

NHL Playoffs: Ducks (+113) at Red Wings (-123) (8:00 p.m., CNBC)

I liked the Ducks and unders before the series. The Ducks are 3-2 and unders are 2-1-2. I still like them, but these prices are pretty tight.

Ducks ML (+113), $5 to win $5.65 AND UNDER 5 (-116), $5 to win $4.31

NHL Playoffs: Blues (+135) at Kings (-145) (10:00 p.m., NBCSN)

I think there is a tiny smidgen of value on the Blues here, because this series has been very evenly matched. But I have the Kings at +330 to win this series, so I’ll be rooting for them. Also, when I say smidgen, I mean smidgen. If I had to pick, I still think the Kings win. I am also all about the under 5, even at a steep price. Kings unders at home, I like.

UNDER 5 (-160), $10 to win $6.25

NBA Playoffs: Heat (-8.5) at Bulls (8:00 p.m., ESPN)

The Bulls won the first game, outright, as 13-point underdogs. Then, they lost Game 2 by 37, as 13-point road underdogs. I liked Miami a tiny bit at the opening number of -6, but betting on the trendy, popular road team is rarely a good idea, especially after the line has moved 2.5 points. I will be shocked if Miami loses, but I won’t be shocked if they don’t cover the spread, massive talent gap aside.

Pass, bros

NBA Playoffs: Spurs at Warriors (-2) (10:30 p.m., ESPN)

There is a thing called recency bias; google it. This tweet is a bit cherry-picked and hyperbolic, but its point explains my bet.

There is value on San Antonio.

Spurs +2 (-102), $25 to win $24.51

Bonus Bets!

Crazy parlay that actually has a chance to win:

Spurs +2.5/Heat ML/Capitals ML/Maple Leafs -1 (+2070.8), $10 to win $207.80

Record in games actually worth risking money on: 162-107 (+$266.95)

Good luck!

What else is on:


7 p.m. | WGN
Chicago Cubs at Washington

8 p.m. | MLB Network
New York Yankees at Kansas City or Los Angeles Angels at Chicago White Sox

Lines taken from 5dimes.eu (with reduced juice) and betonline.ag

Heat photo via; Kings photo via