Bookie Busters: NBA Playoffs and Champions League plays

Bookie Busters: NBA Playoffs and Champions League plays
The Rockets have been tough against the Jazz. Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Bookie Busters was on fire this weekend ending 7-2-2

Let's continue the streak with some NBA and Soccer plays.

Roma vs. Liverpool

The Estadio Olimpico; a place where miracles happen, and the home side will be looking to strike lightning twice in front of over 73,000 enthusiasts. Confidence, mysteriously, is at an all-time high with the locals as they fresh memory of the recent 3-0 win over a Messi led Barcelona, make this feat everything but impossible. If you can stop Messi, then why not Mohamed Salah?

For starters, Salah has netted ten goals in this tournament, and 43 this season across all competitions. He's managed to get on the scoresheet in nine of The Reds last ten fixtures and thats pushed the over 2.5 goals total eight times in that sample size. In the first leg, Salah scored twice while setting up the other two goals, making it a night to remember for the Egyptian sensation.  

The Pick

An open match with end to end action, as the home team must overcome a three-goal deficit. On their side, the benefit of scoring two away goals, but having to net at the minimum three, will leave them exposed playing out of character. The Pool counter attack is what they thrive on, and the situation will play right into their hands.

Play of the Week:

Liverpool Team Total Over 1.5 3x

Over 3

Both teams to score

Salah scores a goal 2x

Rockets vs. Jazz 7:00 PM

The No. 1 overall seed has been giving the Red Rowdy aficionadi worries for their streaky performances thus far in the playoffs. Game 1 of this series finally saw the Rockets come out and dominate from wire to wire led by James Harden's 41 point explosion while hitting seven shots from behind the arch. Houston is 5-0 ATS in the last five in this matchup. Game 1's performance comes as no surprise, as Harden has dominated in those contest averaging 31 points per game while shooting 42.2 percent from the field.

The Pick

Houston dominated the last game, all while only scoring 36 points in the paint. They relied on their bread and butter, the outside shot. When Houston is hitting their shots at the rate they do, it makes it impossible for teams to adjust, especially one that relies on a big body like Rudy Gobert.

Houston is 4-1 ATS in its last five games. The Rockets are also 5-0 ATS in the last five games vs. the Jazz. The total has gone over in four of Utah's last five games when playing on the road vs. Houston. Houston is also 7-3 ATS at home in its last 10 when playing the Jazz. Look for Houston to have its way, making the Jazz play out of character having to chase the game from the start.

Rockets first Half -6.5

Rockets over 52 First Half

Rockets Team Total Over 107.5

Over 205

Celtics  vs. 76ers

Over 207

UEFA Europa League Semifinals Thursday 1:45

Atletico Madrid  vs. Arsenal

Atletico Madrid money line -130

For any questions or comments reach me at @JerryBoKnowz on Twitter.

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Suns defeat Rockets, 110-105. Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images.

Phoenix All-Star Devin Booker and Houston rookie Cam Whitmore got into a minor scuffle midway through the fourth quarter Thursday night and both players were called for a technical foul.

With a couple big blocks on the ensuing possession, Suns center Jusuf Nurkic was there to back his star teammate.

Booker scored 35 points, Kevin Durant added 24 and the Suns held off the Rockets 110-105, with the teams set to meet again in Phoenix on Saturday night.

Nurkic had 16 points, 13 rebounds and three blocks before fouling out. His biggest moment came in the fourth, when he stuffed Whitmore twice on the possession following the scuffle, drawing huge roars from the Phoenix crowd.

“Very important — that's the team sticking together,” Booker said. “That goes a long way. That's what you need when things get tough, it gets to the thick of things and the energy is high. You want to know you have people on your team that are built like that.”

Booker scored 20 points in the first quarter to help give the Suns an 18-point lead they would never relinquish. He has scored at least 20 points in an NBA-high six quarters this season.

Three-time All-Star Bradley Beal missed his fifth straight game because of a hamstring injury.

The Suns took an 86-75 lead into the final quarter. Houston cut the advantage to six midway through the fourth, but Booker responded immediately with a 3-pointer to push the lead back to nine.

That led to the brief skirmish between Booker and Whitmore. Tempers stayed hot over the next few minutes — Houston's Alperen Sengun fouled out and then got two quick technicals, earning an ejection.

Booker hit both of the technical free throws, Nurkic followed with his two free throws from Sengun's foul, and that pushed the Suns' lead to 99-84. The Rockets would cut the lead to four with 16.9 seconds left, but Royce O'Neale hit two free throws to end the threat.

Jalen Green led Houston with 34 points. Fred VanVleet added 21. The Rockets connected on just 11 of 45 3-pointers and shot 33.3% from the field overall, which was their worst percentage of the season.

“It wasn't one of our better nights as far as guys getting open looks and making the extra pass,” Rockets coach Ime Udoka said. “We had a few guys who had it going, but a few guys who were struggling.”

Phoenix has won seven of its past 10 — and nine in a row at home — as it tries to stay in the top six of the Western Conference playoff race and avoid the play-in tournament. The sliding Rockets have lost eight of 10.

“We're getting confident in this building,” Suns coach Frank Vogel said.

Booker's big first quarter pushed the Suns to a 33-17 lead. The four-time All-Star made 8 of 10 shots from the field, including a 33-foot 3-pointer in the final seconds.

Phoenix settled for a 64-53 halftime lead. Booker had 26 points before the break while Green led Houston with 21.

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