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All times Eastern, and all odds via Caesars Sportsbook
🔥 The Hot Ticket
- Key Trend: Klay has scored at least 22 in five of his last seven games.
- The Pick: Klay Thompson Over 21.5 Points (-106)
A lot has been made of the up-and-down nature of Anthony Davis' performance in the postseason, and I considered taking the under 41.5 PAR on The Brow tonight. But it's too obvious a play, and I don't see much value on the line where it's at.
I do see plenty of value in Klay Thompson's points total. He shot only 42.6% overall and 38.3% from three in the first three games against the Kings, averaging 18.3 points per game. Those are good numbers for nearly everybody else in the league but sub-par for Klay. He also shot only two free throws in the first three games.
Things have changed since. While he's had a couple of bad three-point shooting games (he was 4-for-19 in Games 6 and 7 vs. Sacramento), overall, he's been a much more reliable scorer. The biggest difference has been getting to the line, as he's averaged three free throw attempts per game while shooting 40% from three. That's caused his scoring average to climb to 22.7 points per game.
What makes me even more confident is that he's averaging that 22.7 points, despite a 15-point performance in Game 3. One in which Klay was an awful 5-for-14 from the field and saw him sit out most a chunk of the fourth quarter with the Lakers winning by 30. Thompson has made no secret of how important this series is for him. He wants to make a mark. I expect he makes one tonight. I'm taking the over 21.5 points here, but I will sprinkle a bit on an alternate total that sees Klay scoring at least 30 too.
Here's what SportsLine is saying about the game: The Projection Model doesn't like much of anything here, but SportsLine's handicappers have shared a few of their favorite props for tonight.
💰 The Picks
Knicks at Heat, 7:30 p.m. | TV: TNT
The Pick: R.J. Barrett Over 2.5 Assists (-145) -- I was very tempted to take the over in this game. I still might, but I'm not making it my official play for the game. My gut tells me it's too low, and after the slop fest that was the last game, I expect we see a course correction.
However, the Knicks being without Immanuel Quickley does cause some concern about their second unit's offensive ceiling.
Instead, we'll focus on an R.J. Barrett prop. He had 10 assists in the first two games before finishing with only one in Game 3. Considering the Knicks made only 31 field goals as a team in the entire game, I don't know that it was Barrett's lack of facilitating as much as New York's lack of shotmaking. Also, with Quickley out, Barrett could see more minutes than usual and have the ball in his hands more too.
⚽ Champions League
Real Madrid vs. Manchester City, Tuesday, 3 p.m. | TV: CBS
The Pick: Over 2.5 (-135) -- It's somewhat difficult to figure out how much signal there is in the noise considering Real Madrid doesn't have anything significant to play for in La Liga, but the team's defense has been a mess lately. Yes, Madrid won the Copa del Rey last week with a 2-1 win over Osasuna, but before that, it had lost two of three in league play, and the lone win was a 4-2 win over 14th-place Almeria. Madrid allowed eight goals in those three matches on an xG of 5.5. On the one hand, you can say they were a bit unlucky. On the other, what the hell is Real Madrid doing allowing 5.5 xG in three matches against Girona, Almeria and Real Sociedad?
Also, can Madrid just turn off and flip the switch for Manchester City? We're talking about the team that might be the best in the world. How sharp can we reasonably expect Madrid to be in this spot?
I don't think they'll be at their best, but I don't want to bet Manchester City to win. City is rolling right now and should win, but Real Madrid is Real Madrid, and this is the Champions League. They've pulled bigger rabbits out of smaller hats. Instead, the better play is the over. Man City's attack is relentless, and my concerns about Madrid's defending are legitimate. But if any team can find the back of the net against this Man City squad and take the play to it, it's Real Madrid. I expect Madrid looks to sit deep and counterattack early, but Man City takes a lead and causes them to open up. Then things will get wild.
AC Milan vs. Inter Milan, Wednesday, 3 p.m. | TV: CBS
The Pick: Inter Milan (+145) -- Timing is everything in life. In the quarterfinals, AC Milan ran into a Napoli team that had been the talk of European soccer all season. But Milan ran into it at the right time, as Napoli was dealing with injuries and suspensions to key players, the most notable of which was Victor Osimhen. Milan took advantage and knocked Napoli out of the competition. Now the timing is no longer on their side.
Milan's Rafael Leao suffered a groin injury in Milan's match against Lazio over the weekend, and the reports are not optimistic he'll be available to play in this match. That's a serious blow for Milan, as Leao is tied with Olivier Giroud for the team lead in goals this season with 13. He's the most dangerous threat Milan has, and if he doesn't play, they become much simpler to defend.
Further complicating things for Milan from a timing perspective, the Inter team they'll face without him is playing better than it has all season. Inter has won five straight and outscored opponents 15-1. That includes wins over Juventus, Lazio and Roma, so it's not as if Inter is beating up on the bottom of Serie A. Defensively, Inter hasn't allowed more than 0.9 xG in any of its last seven matches. Inter has also won two of the three matches it played against AC Milan already this year, both of which were shutout wins. Everything screams Inter this week.
🔒 SportsLine Pick of the Day: The advanced computer model features the Athletics-Yankees game in parlay that would pay over 7-1.