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NBA second round playoff trends: Fatigue is a factor

Profile Picture: Jeremy Jones

May 27th, 2021

We have only gotten through two games of each series in the first round, but it's never too early to start thinking about your betting plans for the next round.

Get the lowdown on the best trends to follow for the second round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs based on historical data.

Fatigue starts to kick in

At this point in the season, fatigue is always a factor. It really starts to kick in after teams have played a full playoff series, and especially when that series takes all seven games to complete. Teams that win Game 7 of a previous series are 32-47 straight up in Game 1 of the next series, and 33-46 in the following series overall.

Last year in the bubble, teams that won Game 7 of a series went 1-3 ATS in Game 1 of the next series. In 2019, these teams went 1-2 ATS in the same scenario. The big takeaway here is to look for teams that come out of grueling seven-game series against teams that have some extra rest. The team with the extra rest will come out on top more often than not. 

The Brooklyn Nets were 14-7 ATS this season when they had the rest advantage. They could be dangerous in the second round if they sweep their series, as expected, and face a fatigued opponent. 

Sweeps lead to cash

Teams that sweep their opponent in the previous series are 28-14 straight-up and 23-18-1 ATS in Game 1 of the next series. It is even more impressive when that team is at home in Game 1. They are 24-5 straight-up and 19-10 ATS in that scenario.

The dramatic turn can happen when a team playing with five or more days of rest goes against an opponent on just one day of rest. This can often happen when one team is coming off a sweep and the other team needs six or seven games to advance. In this scenario, the team with the rest advantage is an astounding 14-3-1 ATS.

One last trend to look at is that teams that finish off their previous opponent in a sweep, will hit the Under in Game 1 of the next series at a 57% rate (24-18). Some teams that could be looking at a sweep in Round 1 include the Nets, Philadelphia 76ers, Milwaukee Bucks, and Dallas Mavericks.

Unders start to pour in

Last season, in the second round of the playoffs, the Under went an amazing 19-4-1 in all games. In the 2019 second round of the playoffs, the Under went 13-14 in all games. That is a record of 32-18-1 in the past two seasons, and 41-28-1 in the past three seasons.

As fatigue starts to set in, so does the lack of scoring. In Game 6’s of series’ since 2005, the Under is 75-56. In Game 7’s of series’ since 2005, the Under is 32-19. Continue to look for some good total wagers where you can smash the Under in the second round, especially late in the second round.

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