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January 19, 2018

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Vegas Play of the Day: NBA Finals Game 3

Here’s the latest installment of the Play of the Day, which uses odds from the South Point. Our three sports writers started with a $10,000 bankroll — fictional, of course.

San Antonio Spurs plus-170 at Miami Heat: $500 to win $850

Thanks to a fluke in our Play of the Day schedule, I’m going to have the first five games of this series. The first two picks were pretty easy, even if the result was only 1-1.

Before LeBron James left Game 1, it was shaping up for a close finish. The Heat made up for it with a straight-up win in Game 2, covering the four points I needed as an underdog.

This one feels way different (read: harder) for me. I see value in the Spurs’ moneyline, especially since it’s likely to be a much lower price in Game 4 if the Heat take a 2-1 series lead. However, my gut says Miami covers minus-4.5, maybe even easily.

I don’t have an explanation for that one, since San Antonio looked like the better team for a large portion of Game 2. It’s just a feeling.

When I come to this kind of impasse and must still make a pick — sure, I could just pick a baseball game, but come on — I have a method that has worked thus far. It’s a question, really: What result is going to be most upsetting if it happens and you didn’t pick it?

That’s it. Basically, it’s managing my disappointment before it even happens.

So, I’m going against my gut and with the perceived value. Kawhi Leonard needs to stay out of foul trouble and James need to play like something other than the best player in the world, at least for one night.

Standings: Bern (30-21-1, $11,829), Keefer (24-31, $7,723), Brewer (18-27-3, $4,450)

Taylor Bern can be reached at 948-7844 or [email protected]. Follow Taylor on Twitter at

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