Seven weeks of the Big3 regular season are in the books and we finally have our Final Four set. Year 2 of the eight-team round robin saw two new teams make the postseason, creating plenty of intrigue for basketball betting enthusiasts as the league heads to Dallas for the semifinals on August 17.
The championship game will take place in Barclays Center on August 24. Let’s break down each team’s chance of cutting down the nets in two weeks, and then we’ll give you our pick to win it all. But first, here's a break down of each team' playoff odds.
Corey Maggette has a serious case for both MVP and Comeback Player of the Year. He’s returned in 2018 with a vengeance, averaging 16.9 points and 7.1 rebounds. He’s been complemented well by a pair of former NBAers in Cuttino Mobley, who made 39 percent of his 3-pointers in the regular season, and Glen Davis, who shot 54 percent from the field.
They scored 399 points in the regular season, second most behind Trilogy (8-0) a year ago. So it’s simply icing on the cake that they also have a motivated Chris “Birdman” Andersen, who leads the league with 1.4 blocks per game.
There isn’t much this team is lacking, and they enter the postseason having won a league-best five straight games, including a thumping of fellow 7-1 seed 3 Headed Monsters. According to Karamba, they’re the favorites at odds of +160 and for good reason. There isn’t a better offensive group, and offense wins in Big3.
It’s hard to believe Reggie Evans is 38 years old. He’s playing like he’s 28 for the Monsters, averaging a league-best 10.3 rebounds while ranking seventh in points (15.5) and third in blocks (1.3). He’s even sixth in steals (0.9) and eighth in steals. Simply put, he’s been everywhere. Jamario Moon continues to fill in admirably for Rashard Lewis, averaging 11.8 points on 55 percent shooting while Madmoud Abdul-Rauf has made 10 triples on 46 percent shooting from deep.
They’ve squeaked out wins in the tournament, with four wins by three points or less, but the key here is they’ve won. With a capped point total, close games are the norm. They slipped up against Power but righted the ship with their best win of the year in Week 8. The momentum is there and they’ve acclimated Moon in to the system. Getting Evans at +195 on Karamba looks good, but he can’t be the only one defending.
Good luck trying to figure out 3’s Company. They went toe-to-toe with 3 Headed Monsters in Week 5 and then smoked fourth seed Tri State and Ghost Ballers by a combined 40 points in Weeks 6 and 7. And then, with a chance at the No. 2 seed, laid an egg in Week 8 against Killer 3’s. So who knows which team will show up in the semifinals?
Working in their favor is a combination of Andre Emmett and Baron Davis, who make up the Big3’s only tandem that both average at least 15 points per game. But who can step up as a third scorer? Jason Maxiell had 16 points in the Week 8 loss but will need to show up in the semis if 3’s Company wants to hang with the Monsters. It won’t be easy, which makes their +300 odds on Karamba about right.
From the worst odds in the tournament to a spot in the Final Four. And for all the former NBA power that Tri State touts, it’s been David Hawkins doing the most damage. The 23-year-old is averaging 16.8 points on 51.6 percent shooting, 7.1 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game. Those numbers – plus his 1.6 steals – are all in the top 5, and he’s got a steady Amare Stoudemire pacing him in the frontcourt.
And though he’s underperformed to date, this could be Nate Robinson’s real time to shine. They’re the No. 4 seed, but they also handed top seed Power its only loss of the regular season. If Hawkins, Stoudemire and Robinson are all at their best this is a dangerous, dangerous team. We’ve liked their large odds all year, so of course +370 on Karamba looks like a steal.
A year ago it felt like Trilogy wasn’t going to be stopped, and they weren’t during their undefeated 10-0 season. But the topline talent this season is spread out across this playoffs. Maggette, Mobley and Davis are as good a trio as the Big3 has seen, and Andersen has really helped complement.
Though Tri State has been our underdog pick the whole way, Power is rolling and will have added motivation to avenge the regular season loss. In the other semifinal game we’ll take the do-it-all in Reggie Evans, pitting a matchup of top two seeds against each other, just like last year.
And though it isn’t the sexy pick, we’ll roll with the favorites. Power has scoring, 3-point shooting, a post presence and a rim protector. Not much else is needed in a 3-on-3 setting. They’ve been the best team essentially all year, and that won’t change in two weeks’ time. Roll with Power and the +160 odds they’re getting on Karamba.
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