Raptors look to even series against Magic as double-digit favourites

Orlando Magic centre Nikola Vucevic (9) protects the ball from Toronto Raptors centre Marc Gasol (33) during first half NBA basketball playoff action in Toronto, on Saturday, April 13, 2019. (Frank Gunn/CP)

The Toronto Raptors will be looking to even their first-round NBA playoff series with Orlando at a game apiece when they take on the Magic in Game 2 on Tuesday as 10-point favourites on the NBA odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

Toronto turned in an uneven performance in Saturday’s series opener, posting just 19 second-quarter points on their way to a 104-101 loss, extending the club’s straight-up losing streak in the playoffs to five games ahead of Tuesday night’s Magic vs. Raptors betting matchup at Scotiabank Arena.

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The Raptors’ shaky play in their postseason opener comes in contrast to their steady performance down the stretch. Toronto closed out its regular-season schedule on a solid 7-1 straight-up run, including five victories by double-digit margins, to come within one victory of the franchise record of 59 wins.

However, the club’s historic struggles in playoff openers continued in Saturday’s loss as 9.5-point chalk, which marked the 10th time that the Raptors have lost Game 1 of a first-round series in 11 all-time trips to the NBA playoffs.

Toronto has also struggled in recent dates with the Magic, with the loss in Game 1 dropping the club to 1-3 SU in their past four clashes. The Raptors have also been a disappointment at the sportsbooks when facing Orlando, covering just once in their past seven meetings, and going 5-12-1 in 18 tilts since November 2014, according to the OddsShark NBA Database.

The Raptors have also failed to cover in five of their last six outings while pegged as a home favourite of nine or more points, but have posted outright wins in 15 of 17 as big home chalk. Despite their disappointing Game 1 performance, and shaky history against Orlando, the Raptors enter Game 2 as clear but reduced favourites to get past the Magic, sporting -320 odds on the NBA playoff series prices after opening as massive -1200 favourites.

For the Magic, Saturday’s victory extended their current SU win streak to five games, including outright wins in three straight contests as road underdogs.

Orlando powered its drive back to the NBA playoffs for the first time since 2012 on the strength of a steady 11-2 SU run down the stretch. The Magic have regularly racked up the points during their late-season surge, averaging 115.6 points per game over their 14 outings, spawning a 7-1 run for the OVER in totals betting.

However, the Magic remain +260 underdogs on the series prices, and lag as a distant +10000 wager on the NBA championship odds, well back of Toronto which enters Game 2 pegged at +1200 on those NBA futures.

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