Saturday, February 06, 2010

NBA Superbowl Cold Cut Combo

Well guys, we got a nice 2-1 day (winners on Jazz and T'Wolves), but lost the big play on Portland, so if you followed my unit designation, you dropped the juice. If you are a flat bettor, you made out with a winning day, so I'll go ahead and hope that MOST of you guys were betting flat. Kidding.

Obviously, it gets marked down as a loss in the old diary of plays and the bankroll, but I think it's an interesting spot with Kobe Bryant getting the late scratch and that actually killing our play. I take full responsibility for the big play falling tonight, but I pointed out in my blog and I want to point out over here that when a superstar gets scratched late, that is often a recipe for disaster for the OTHER team, and we were just a little unlucky here, as the Blazers had GAMEPLANNED for Kobe, and the fans came to see Kobe, and when he went out, the air came out of Portland's balloon, and the other 13 Lakers not named Bryant decided to play harder than they have all season. Just the luck of the draw sometimes.

That being said, I completely understand if everyone that bought yesterday's play is a little upset and you have every right to be. If you want to vent (despite the 2-1 night, overall), I'm right here to listen to it, but I do want to THANK EVERYONE that has continued to trust me since I turned Pro! You guys have been amazing with your loyalty and I haven't said enough how much I value EACH AND EVERY one of you, EACH AND EVERY day! I hope you'll continue to put your trust in me going forward despite this little stroke of back luck, and I can't wait for the next big NBA card and the potential ALL STAR game prop bets that I'll be laying on you!

Sports Wagering

Kings @ Raptors - Toronto by 8.5 with a total of 215. Let's get one thing out of the way - this side is pretty fair. The Kings are spiraling, and they are one of the worst road teams in the entire NBA. This is an interesting game because Toronto is like an aged, skilled version of Sacramento. Both teams like to get up and down the floor; both teams like to claim they play a little defense every once in a while; both teams win at home. The difference, though, is that Toronto is better at scoring, better at playing team defense, and better at winning at home. So, is all that enough to give the Kings almost double-digit points as the dog? These teams have not met yet this year, but Toronto has crushed Sacramento in Canada for about the last decade, though admittedly, they haven't played that often. Toronto has been decent as a favorite this year, so this isn't necessarily a "bad" line for them, though there isn't a ton of "value" on the side of the Raptors, thanks mostly to the fact that they've been winning. Toronto has won 6 of 7 games, but they've failed to cover their last 2, starting to hit that point where they won for long enough that they've become slightly overvalued. That's not to say that they won't cover, but I don't believe backing Toronto here is a winning long term proposition. I'm not sure backing Sacramento is, either, since they could easily lay an egg. Basically, if Sacramento plays tough, they cover, if they don't show, they don't; it's 50/50. I believe Toronto's team defense, which was improving near the turn of the decade, has devolved a bit as we enter February. They are 13-5 O/U in their last 18 games, so the scoring is up, but the opponent's score is up, as well. The Kings suffered through a terrible scoring month in January, and I think it's largely on the shoulders of Kevin Martin. He's not getting any lift in his shot, and to a certain degree, he's disrupting the offense. Down the line, he's obviously a help, but right now, he's slowing things down. Here's the bottom line - the Kings average 106 ppg at home, and 97 on the road. Opponents score 105 ppg in both locations, so it's pretty obvious why they don't win away from home - they can't shoot! It's always a little dangerous to back a team traveling clear across the country, and the Kings, while a young, excitable club, might be thinking a little bit about getting to that All Star break, and trying to get some practice days in, and get the offense back in rhythm. Tyreke Evans is playing hurt, so you know he wants a day or two off. Oh, and this one is at noon eastern time, 9am pacific. You think the Kings really want to be up at the crack of dawn on the east coast, a time when some of these go to sleep in the offseason? I think there may be some value on the Under in this one, since even minor defense from Toronto should result in a few clunkers from the Kings, and I think Toronto wins by 9-10, which means slight lean to the Raps.

Magic @ Celtics - This line is OFF. I always enjoy these huge games, especially right now, while you have two teams that are winning, but not really covering, and these titans, each normally a team that you have to pay a premium to bet on, losing that premium for just one day. This game has Celtics written all over it, if Boston wants to split the season series. Of course, Orlando is coming of an embarrassing loss at the hands of the Washington Wizards, so will they be pissed or will they continue to stink? I'm not a huge fan of picking a side in this one, especially since I believe Boston will have to cover a small spread, and this game may very well be decided in the final few seconds. I lean just slightly to the Celts, as they started playing some strong basketball in the final quarter against Jersey, and I think they get fired up for this one, and I also think oddsmakers have a strong grasp of the totals in these Magic-Celtics games, now. The last one fell within a point of the posted mark (posted total, 189; final total, 190), so I think oddsmakers will give us an indicator of where they expect this one to end up with the line they bring out. These teams tend to play very slow, ugly games, so I wouldn't be surprised to see another Under, especially on Superbowl Sunday, when no one is going to be paying attention to basketball, even on the big stage in Boston. I expect less-than-lively crowds, and I expect Boston to play well enough late to make it a winner. I also think the lack of energy on the part of both teams is going to lead to some missed jumpshots early, and even if the pace picks up, I think it's going to be very low scoring early. I lean Boston and Under.

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