- The Toronto Raptors are one win away from winning the NBA Eastern Conference final
- They lead the Milwaukee Bucks 3-2 with Game 6 Saturday in Toronto
- Bovada has moved the Raptors to favorite’s status for the first time in the series
It’s time to go all-in on the Toronto Raptors.
Toronto stunned the Milwaukee Bucks 105-99 in Game 5 of the NBA Eastern Conference, the first road win of the series by either team. It puts the Raptors clearly in the driver’s seat, ahead 3-2 in the best-of-seven series with Game 6 set for Saturday at Scotiabank Centre.
For the first time in the series, Toronto is given the favorite’s status by the sportsbooks. Bovada lists the Raptors as the -260 chalk to win the series and advance to the NBA Finals.
2019 NBA Eastern Conference Finals Odds
|Team||2019 NBA Eastern Conference Final Odds at Bovada|
*Odds taken 05/24/19
Even after back-to-back wins in Games 3 and 4, Toronto was still listed as +220 underdogs to win the series by Bovada.
Raptors Had It All Going On
Game 5 opened with Toronto as cold as ice. The Raps shot 1-for-8 from the field to begin and before you knew it, Milwaukee was up 18-4.
Remember when the Raptors were down 0-2 against the Bucks? pic.twitter.com/dLIxVwtJOg
— Caroline Cameron (@SNCaroline) May 24, 2019
That’s when Kawhi Leonard decided to show everyone that any fears he was harboring a serious leg injury were pure folly. The Toronto forward scored over 30 points for the fourth time in five games, finishing with 35.
A big difference in this series is that Toronto is not asking Leonard to carry the team on his back. Fred Van Vleet delivered 21 points in Game 5. Kyle Lowry had 25 in Game 4 and the Toronto bench provided 48 points to the cause.
Don’t Mention the Maple Leafs
Just a few weeks ago, Toronto’s hockey team also came home with a 3-2 series lead against the Boston Bruins, looking to advance beyond the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs for the first time since 2004.
Raptors' Kawhi Leonard (35 points in Game 5 win over Bucks): "I'm not afraid of the moment. I enjoy it." pic.twitter.com/ek7MiFcz42
— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) May 24, 2019
The Maple Leafs lost Game 6 at home, and Game 7 back in Boston. Now it’s the Bruins who are about to begin play in the Stanley Cup final.
Really, though, what do the Raptors have in common with the Leafs? Well, they do play in the same arena, and for the same corporation, and are known for a history of failure.
History Will Be Made
Before Thursday, the Bucks hadn’t lost three games in a row all season long. The Raptors have never rallied to win a series when down 2-0 but they’ve displayed resiliency all playoffs.
Bucks 3-game losing streaks this season:
• vs. the Raptors in the playoffs
• that's it pic.twitter.com/kX1iDKpP83
— SB Nation (@SBNation) May 24, 2019
They rebounded from a series-opening loss to Orlando to win in five and from 2-1 down to the Sixers to win in seven.
A Canadian team has never played in the NBA Finals. That’s about to change. We The North is strong and is going to be set free from a legacy of postseason disappointment.
You could play the Raptors to win the series and in the Game 6 moneyline at -140. Put $100 on both of these wagers and your take home will be $309.
Better yet, play the full $200 on the Game 6 moneyline and you’ll collect $342.
Let's have fun and keep it civil.