East Region Predictions
Will anyone in the East Region be able to stop Duke in the NCAA Tournament? Here’s a breakdown of the region and our prediction to reach the Final Four?
According to oddsmakers at BetNow.eu, Duke is the clear favorite to win, as the Blue Devils are getting odds of -150 to win. Other short odds to win are Michigan State (+350), Virginia Tech (+1000) and LSU (+1200).
The Favorite: 351 Duke -150
The Blue Devils are stacked and have the most impactful player of the entire tournament in Zion Williamson. He and RJ Barrett could be the first two picks in the 2019 NBA Draft. Even though the odds are extremely short, it’s hard to see many teams being able to compete with them in this field.
Stay Away From: 352 Michigan State +350
The Spartans have been showing a lot of heart over the last few weeks, but MSU is a beat up team. Star player Cassius Winston is dealing with a toe injury that won’t be healed, Nick Ward is still recovering from a fractured hand and bench player Kyle Ahrens isn’t expected to return after severely spraining his ankle in the Big Ten Tournament final. MSU also has some really eye-popping losses to the likes of Indiana and Illinois due to turnovers. The Spartans just have to many red flags to make me think they can beat Duke, or even make it to that point.
The Dark Horse: 356 Maryland +2500
The Terrapins don’t inspire a ton of confidence due to their inconsistent play, but there is actually some reasons to find good value in them. As the 6 seed, Maryland gets a play-in winner on Thursday and then could potentially face a third-seeded LSU team that is dealing with their coach being suspended. Should Maryland make it past this weekend, the regional is at Washington D.C., which is right next door for the Terps. A home crowd could give them an added chance to upset the likes of Michigan State and Duke. If you are looking for a real shocker and a pay day, Maryland has some good value.
I don’t love picking the clear favorite, but Duke just seems to have an easy path to the Elite Eight and it’s hard to not think they can’t beat any team in a 1-game scenario. Their half of the region is very winnable. Virginia Tech is not a great threat, as the Hokies haven’t faced Duke at full health. Michigan State is talented, but beat up and prone to bad losses. LSU has plenty of questions as well. I just don’t see a team being able to out them on the road to Minneapolis.
EAST REGION PREDICTION: Duke -150