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Durant May Need an All-Time Best For Nets to Win
A Look at the Playoff Bracket
Dodgers By Far the Leader of the Pack in MLB
Red Sox and Braves at the Same Odds (+2000)
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ETHUSD chart from Kraken.
Cryptocurrency market capitalization suffered a steep drop in the last month touching 1.19T on May 23rd. Though the sell-off was a staggering 54% off the ATH, the community is now better acclimated to market dynamics given what the lessons from 2013 and 2017, which is likely what kept the drop to 54%.
Just yesterday, BTC once again reached for local highs of $41,341 before pulling back to sub-$40,000, something that's not been seen since the May 25th rally off the May 23rd lows. As BTC claims higher highs, we are reminded that the cyclical nature of markets is visible at minutest intervals. The price-action is crawling higher but on low volume and was unable to break past the bagholder resistance at $41,000. The resistance is stronger as the 200EMA has also converged upon at the $41,000 level. Looking ahead, BTC may break above the $41,000 level if volume in-flow increases and that's when it'll need to contend with the 50EMA. Otherwise, we may see further retracement. Pivot levels have formed at $39,397, $37,727, $34,000, and $32,000, which may act as resistance or support depending on the price action.
ETH is showing a similar pattern although curiously, the price action is forming a wedge with lower-highs as well as higher-lows. Action remains above the 200EMA, which shows an ongoing optimistic consolidation. ETH ran into resistance at $2577 before pulling back to $2506. While ETH is largely trending with BTC, BTC is forming a full-range sideways pattern when ETH is narrowing into a (local) bullish wedge.
This begs the question: will ETH market cap flip BTC market cap this year?
BTCUSD Chart from Kraken.
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Odds provided by BetMGM / Odds table via Vegas Insider [Updated Sunday, June 13, 7:00 am ET]
Kevin Durant May Need an All-Time Performance to Bring This Nets Team to its First NBA Championship
It seems like at least three of the four best seeds will be making their way to the NBA’s conference finals this season, which is just one year after the third-seeded Boston Celtics and fifth-seeded Miami Heat made it to the Eastern Conference Finals. The only top seed that made the conference finals last year was the Los Angeles Lakers, who had the third-best record in the NBA in 2019-20. They took down the third-seeded Denver Nuggets en route to their franchise’s 17th championship. Unfortunately for the 2020-21 Nuggets, they had to play without Jamaal Murray, and that injury was the main reason why they could not win a game against the overwhelming Phoenix Suns (+475, +180).
Meanwhile in the Eastern Conference, the Philadelphia 76ers (+800, +350) ended the fifth-seeded Atlanta Hawks’ (+10000, +4000) 13-game home winning streak with the Game 3 victory. The 76ers finished the regular season with the best record in their conference, and after the Game 1 loss, they are flexing their offensive muscles even without Danny Green, who is out for a couple of weeks due to a calf injury.
The 76ers have been looking strong, but the second-seeded Brooklyn Nets (+130, -200) and third-seeded Milwaukee Bucks (+1200, +475) are in a tight battle. The Nets looked dominant early on in the series, but injuries to James Harden and Kyrie Irving could prove to be dire for a Nets team that seemed to be destined for the 2021 title. The Bucks outscored the Nets by 20 on fast break points, and that cannot happen again if Brooklyn wants to advance to the conference finals.
The NBA’s top team, the Utah Jazz (+360, -105), is on its way to continuing to torment the Los Angeles Clippers (+900, +350) and their fans even with Mike Conley on the sidelines due to a hamstring injury. The fourth-seeded Clippers have yet to make a conference finals in their team history, but they do have a chance at becoming the first team in NBA playoff history to come back from down 2-0 and win the series multiple times in the same postseason.
Donovan Mitchell, Joe Ingles, and the Jazz are ready for their franchise’s first conference finals appearance since Carlos Boozer led the Jazz to two series victories in 2007. That year, Utah lost in the Western Conference Finals to the eventual champion San Antonio Spurs. Mitchell, who is putting up 3-point numbers like Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, is the first Jazz player with at least 35 points in back-to-back playoff games since Karl Malone in 1988. He scored 45 points in Game 1 and 37 in Game 2. Mitchell scored 30 in the Game 3 loss.
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The Playoff Bracket via NBA.com
[Prior to the games played on Monday, June 14]
A Look at the Playoff Bracket
Western Conference Semifinals: The Suns Swept Away the Nuggets, as Jokic was Ejected
(2) Phoenix Suns defeated the (3) Denver Nuggets, 4-0
FiveThirtyEight prediction for the Suns moving forward: Suns move onto the NBA Finals (48%); Suns win the NBA Finals (27%)
Series Update: In Game 3, Devin Booker, Chris Paul, Deandre Ayton came to play, as they spoiled Nikola Jokic’s Most Valuable Player celebration with the 116-102 victory at Ball Arena. The Suns fought hard for their first conference finals appearance since 2010, as Booker went for 28 points, Paul registered 27 points and eight assists, and Ayton doubled-doubled with 10 points and 15 rebounds. Jokic’s 32 points, 20 rebounds, and 10 assists were not enough for the Nuggets to get their first win of the series.
Then in Game 4, the Nuggets were fighting hard, but the referees did not take too kindly to a big swipe by Jokic on Suns guard Cameron Payne. The Flagrant 2 foul led to Jokic’s ejection, which came after just 28 minutes of play that turned into 22 points and 11 rebounds. The Suns were led again by Paul and Booker, who continued to explode. Paul scored 37 points on 14-for-19 shooting while Booker poured in 34 points to go along with 11 rebounds. Phoenix looks primed for its third NBA Finals appearance in franchise history and its first in 28 years.
Eastern Conference Semifinals: Giannis and the Bucks were Down 2-0, But They Could Steal the Series against the Nets Who Could be Without Harden and Irving
(2) Brooklyn Nets are tied with the (3) Milwaukee Bucks, 2-2
Game 5 tips off at 8:30 pm ET on Tuesday, June 15 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn
Game 5 Spread: opened at Bucks -2; currently at Bucks -3
Game 5 Moneyline: opened at Bucks -132; currently at Bucks -150
Game 5 Over / Under: opened at 223.5; currently at 218.5
Remaining Schedule for the Series:
Game 6. Thursday, June 17, time TBD at Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee
Game 7 (if necessary). Saturday, June 19, time TBD at Barclays Center in Brooklyn
FiveThirtyEight prediction: Nets win the series (58%)
Series Update: For the first time ever, Milwaukee Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer leaned on his star Giannis Antetokounmpo for more minutes in Game 3, and he was rewarded with the win over the James Harden-less Brooklyn Nets. Antetokounmpo went off for 33 points and 14 rebounds, but he went just 1-for-8 from downtown in 43 minutes. Khris Middleton posted a game-high 35 points and 15 rebounds on 3-for-6 shooting from deep in the victory.
Then in Game 4, Jeff Green suited up for the Nets after missing six games due to a foot injury. However, the injury bug hit Brooklyn again, as Kyrie Irving left the contest and did not return, as the visiting Nets fell to the Bucks at Fiserv Forum, 107-96. Just two Nets scored in double figures (Kevin Durant with 28 and Irving with 11) while the Bucks had five double-digit scorers, including Antetokounmpo who had a game-high 34 points and 12 rebounds. It is anyone’s series now as they head back to Brooklyn. The Nets were lucky that the x-rays on Irving’s right ankle were negative. We will have to see if he is back in the lineup soon.
NBA Predictions via FiveThirtyEight prior to the games on Monday, June 14
Los Angeles Dodgers By Far the Leader of the Pack in Major League Baseball
As we inch closer to the halfway mark of the 2021 season, the Los Angeles Dodgers (+340 to win the World Series) are in a battle for the National League West division crown with the rival San Francisco Giants (+3000). The San Diego Padres (+700) are not far behind in terms of title odds, but they are not performing as well as the Giants.
Meanwhile, the New York Mets (+900) have been dominating their weak NL East division with tremendous pitching by Taijuan Walker, Marcus Stroman, and of course, the Cy Young favorite (-175) and MVP candidate (+700) Jacob deGrom. The WWE belt is also a nice touch for their unofficial player of the game award.
Interestingly, the New York Yankees find themselves in the top five of World Series odds as they continue to be outplayed consistently by both the Tampa Bay Rays (+1500) and Boston Red Sox (+2000). In the American League Central division, the Chicago White Sox (+650) and their MLB-leading run differential continue to be rated highly as they dominate opponents at home.
Odds table via Odds Shark [from Saturday, June 1]
Even with Differing Records, the Red Sox (+2000) and Braves (+2000) are at the Same Odds to Win the World Series
MLB Prediction (BOS @ ATL) via FiveThirtyEight
On Tuesday, the Boston Red Sox and Atlanta Braves begin their second two-game series in as many months, and the first game of the series is practically a coin flip according to FiveThirtyEight. Unfortunately, NL MVP candidate Ronald Acuña Jr. (+300) left Sunday’s game with right pectoral tightness. Since the move was precautionary, we will have to see if he can return in time for the two games of this series. Both J.D. Martinez and Xander Bogaerts have made waves this season, and they stand tied for third at +2000 in the AL MVP odds.
Eduardo Rodriguez (5-4, 6.03, 1.45), who has dealt with myocarditis and a dead arm, has struggled and is on pace for career-worst numbers. He has surprisingly been arguably the worst starter in the rotation for the Red Sox this season. Boston’s pitching staff will need to bounce back soon, especially after allowing eight home runs to the Toronto Blue Jays on Sunday.
Former Seattle Mariner and Tampa Bay Ray Guillermo Heredia, who has played a lot of the outfield for the Braves this season, has faced Rodríguez a bunch in his career. He has a homer against E-Rod but just a .588 OPS and five strikeouts in 21 career plate appearances against the Red Sox starter.
Meanwhile, Tucker Davidson (0-0, 1.53, 0.96), is making his fourth start of the season with the Braves rotation being hobbled. Coincidentally, Davidson's only MLB appearance in 2020 came against the Red Sox: he drew the start and gave up seven runs (two earned) in an 8-2 loss. Bobby Dalbec took him deep as a part of an eight-run second inning for Boston.
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