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The Basketball Tournament (TBT) Championship Odds and Picks – July 14th

Jamil Wilson jump shot
Jamil Wilson and the Golden Eagles are the betting favorite to win The Basketball Tournament. Photo from @MUOverload (Twitter).
  • Golden Eagles battle Sideline Cancer in $1 million Final of The Basketball Tournament
  • Sideline Cancer are 3.5-point underdogs after upsetting powerhouse Overseas Elite with a walk-off three pointer
  • See the odds, our analysis and best bets for the game below

After an eventful semifinal Sunday, The Basketball Tournament will crown a first-time champion on Monday, when the Golden Eagles take on Sideline Cancer.

It will be a return trip to the Finals for the Eagles – a primarily Marquette alumni-based squad – who fell to Carmen’s Crew in last year’s title tilt.

Meanwhile, Sideline Cancer punched their Finals appearance slaying by the dragons, knocking off Overseas Elite, the four-time TBT champs and everyone’s prohibitive favorite to win the ‘chip.

(4) Golden Eagles vs (22) Sideline Cancer

Team Spread Moneyline Total
Golden Eagles -3.5 (-115) -167 O 152.5 (-115)
Sideline Cancer +3.5 (-115) +130 U 152.5 (-115)

Odds taken July 14th. Tip-off is 7pm ET

While the Eagles are favored, oddsmakers are showing respect to the tourney’s 22nd-seeded squad. Let’s find out if there’s another upset in the works to wrap thing up in Columbus, and predict who locks up that winner-take-all $1 million purse.

Creek Paddles Sideline Cancer Home

Hands up if you thought Sideline Cancer’s Cinderella run was coming to a halt when they fell behind by double-digits to Overseas Elite. The OE’s had lost a total of one time in the entire history of the tournament.

But credit Marcus Keene, who did much of the heavy lifting in the third quarter. His 22 points helped keep Sideline Cancer within striking distance. He was aided by the 16-point, 10-rebound performance by Eric Thompson, while Remy Abbell had 14 points and five rebounds.

The heroics were reserved for Maurice Creek, who sent the powerhouse Elite packing with the type of dagger Elam Endings were created for.

Eagles Soaring into Finals

It’s fair to say that much of the tourney hype surrounded the defending champion Carmen’s Crew, and perennial contender Overseas Elite, who boasted arguably the best player in the tournament in Joe Johnson.

But it was the Golden Eagles, denied a title and a cool million just a year ago, who would not be denied a return trip for some unfinished business.

Sunday’s semifinal win was another workmanlike approach: close, but with them in control, getting to the Elam Ending and cruising to a victory.

It was a pair of familiar faces getting it done, as Jamil Wilson led the way with 23 points and seven rebounds, while Darius Johnson-Odom chipped in 13 points. The pair lead the team in scoring at TBT, pumping in 17.3 points a game each.

What’s the Best Bet?

There are two solid wagers that I’d be leaning on in this one.

These are two of the stingiest defenses at TBT this year. Sideline Cancer has allowed a paltry 67.5 points per game, and they’re the only team in the tournament to keep the opposition under 68 across four games, as they didn’t get a an opening round bye. They’re the only team that’s played four games up to this point.

Right behind them in fourth place are the Golden Eagles, who are allowing just 71 points a contest across their three games. I don’t see this game being a shootout, so taking the under looks very appealing.

As for who takes home the big prize, the Eagles have had great balance and shooting all tournament. They are a blistering 32-for-73 from beyond the arc, which is the second-best clip of the tourney at 43.8%. They’re also one of only two teams to shoot better than 50%+ from the field (minimum two games).

Sideline Cancer has drilled the second most threes at TBT, and are one of only two teams that have scored over 100 points in the paint, though it’s taken them four games to reach those numbers. The Golden Eagles aren’t that far behind, putting up 90 inside the painted area, good for fourth overall.

Sideline Cancer’s best chance is to hope their defense can contain GE, and get to the Elam Ending within striking distance. Still, even in that scenario, I like the team who’s been there before with nothing to show for it yet.

The pick: Golden Eagles-2.5 (-112), Under 152.5 (-112)

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