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|Date||Match Up||Rating||Score||Result||Profit||Lead Time||Analysis|
|06-13-19||Raptors +3 v. Warriors||Top||114-110||Win||100||12 h 45 m||Show|
20* Raptors/Warriors Game 6 No-Brainer on Toronto +3
The Toronto Raptors are now 5-2 against the Warriors this season. Even in their two losses they had a chance to win, losing by a combined 6 points. And they’ve been unstoppable at Oracle in Golden State.
Indeed, the Raptors are 3-0 SU & 3-0 ATS at Golden State this season with wins by 20, 14 and 13 points. They have actually played their best basketball on the road in this series. And now without Kevin Durant, the Warriors don’t stand much of a chance of slowing them down.
In Game 5, the Warriors got a 3-for-3 from 3-point shooting effort from Durant before he left with injury. His points proved to be the difference in the game in a 106-105 win. In fact, the Warriors made 20 3-pointers compared to just 8 for the Raptors, outscoring them by 36 points from the 3-point line. Yet they still only won by one. The discrepancy in 3-point shooting won’t be near that big in Game 6, and as as result the Raptors should roll again.
The Raptors are 7-1-1 ATS in their last nine games overall. The Warriors are 1-4 ATS in their last five home games. Toronto is 4-0 ATS in its last four trips to Golden State. Bet the Raptors in Game 6 Thursday.
|06-10-19||Warriors v. Raptors -1.5||Top||106-105||Loss||-105||10 h 53 m||Show|
20* Warriors/Raptors Game 5 No-Brainer on Toronto -1.5
The Warriors are getting a lot of respect from oddsmakers here in Game 5. They are only 1.5-point road underdogs to the Raptors. A lot of that has to do with he speculation that Kevin Durant may return, but even if he does he won’t be 100% and will be on a minutes restriction.
The Raptors continue to get no love from oddsmakers despite saving their best basketball of the season for last. They are now 7-1 SU & 7-1 ATS in their last eight games overall against the Bucks and Warriors. That’s no small feat. The only game they lost they lost by 5 to the Warriors and shot just 37.2% from the field.
It will be the best atmosphere ever for a Toronto home game tonight. Canada wants their first ever NBA title, and fans will be raucous. The Raptors are 41-12 at home this season and have some of the best fans in the business. They also have the current best player in the NBA in Kawhi Leonard, who continues to make all the right decisions.
The Raptors are 5-1 SU in all meetings with the Warriors this season. The Warriors just aren’t getting much help outside Curry and Thompson in this series, and the injuries and their lack of depth has really caught up to them. I believe this series ends tonight in Toronto. Bet the Raptors Monday.
|06-05-19||Raptors +5 v. Warriors||Top||123-109||Win||100||10 h 59 m||Show|
20* Raptors/Warriors Game 3 No-Brainer on Toronto +5
The Toronto Raptors had their fourth-worst shooting performance of the entire playoffs in Game 2. They shot just 35-of-94 (37.2%) from the field, yet they still only lost by 5 points. Look for them to shoot the ball much better in Game 3 and to prove once again that they are one of the best road teams in the NBA.
Of course, injuries to the Warriors makes the job a lot easier for the Raptors. They will still be without Kevin Durant for Game 3, Kevon Looney is out for the playoffs after suffering a shoulder injury in Game 2, and Klay Thompson is questionable tonight with a hamstring injury also suffered in Game 2.
The Looney injury is getting overlooked. The trio of Curry, Green and Looney have the best 3-man rating in the entire playoffs at +20.2 compared to only +2.5 without Looney on the floor. They have a +122.5 offensive rating with Looney compared to a +109.4 rating without him. Plus, they have the best 3-man defensive combination in the entire playoffs when Curry, Green and Looney are on the floor together.
The Warriors are 1-7-1 ATS in their last nine games following an ATS win. The Raptors are 5-1 SU & 5-1 ATS in their last six games overall. A better shooting performance tonight will have them taking advantage of the Warriors’ injuries and likely winning this game outright, though we’ll take the points for some insurance. Bet the Raptors Wednesday.
|06-02-19||Warriors v. Raptors -2||Top||109-104||Loss||-107||9 h 22 m||Show|
20* Warriors/Raptors Game 2 No-Brainer on Toronto -2
The Toronto Raptors have now won five straight games over the Bucks and Warriors. This team is proving they are for real and a legit threat to stop Golden State’s three-peat. They know getting Game 2 here is a must with Kevin Durant likely coming back soon.
The Warriors are vulnerable without KD despite all the numbers they have shown about their record with Curry and without Durant. That was evident last series when they had to come back from 15-plus points down in three straight games against the Blazers. Well, the Raptors are much better than the Blazers.
Toronto is 5-0 ATS in its last five games overall. Golden State is 2-10 ATS in its last 12 Sunday games. The Raptors are 35-16-2 ATS in their last 53 home games vs. a team with a winning road record. Toronto is now 3-0 SU & 3-0 ATS in all three meetings with the Warriors this season. Bet the Raptors Sunday.
|05-30-19||Warriors v. Raptors -1||Top||109-118||Win||100||10 h 48 m||Show|
20* Warriors/Raptors Game 1 No-Brainer on Toronto -1
What the Raptors just did to the Bucks in winning four straight was the most impressive feat yet in these playoffs. The Bucks were the best team in the NBA during the regular season, and Nick Nurse and the Raptors came up with the proper game plan to stop them.
Of course, the feat the Warriors just pulled off against the Blazers was also impressive. They swept the Blazers in four games, winning each of the final three games despite trailing by at least 15 points in all three. While impressive, it also shows how vulnerable the Warriors really are. The Blazers aren’t that good.
Certainly this is a step up in class for the Warriors, who will still be without Kevin Durant. And the Raptors proved in the regular season that they could beat the Warriors, sweeping the season series while winning 131-128 at home and 113-93 on the road. Kawhi Leonard is the best player in this series, period, and the role players for the Raptors are really gaining confidence.
I think the 5-day layoff for the Raptors is the superior situation than the 10-day layoff for the Warriors, who are sure to be rusty in Game 1. Toronto is 34-16-2 ATS in its last 52 home games vs. a team with a winning road record. The Raptors are 5-2-1 ATS in the last eight meetings. Bet the Raptors in Game 1 Thursday.
|05-25-19||Bucks +2 v. Raptors||Top||94-100||Loss||-104||8 h 20 m||Show|
20* Bucks/Raptors TNT No-Brainer on Milwaukee +2
The Milwaukee Bucks were the best team in the NBA all season. I’ll back them to get it figured out in Game 6 and get this series back to Milwaukee. The Raptors simply are not this good, getting the breaks late in wins in Game 3 and Game 5.
Officiating certainly went the Raptors’ way in Game 5 as they attempted 31 free throws compared to 18 for the Bucks despite the fact that the game was played in Milwaukee. And Fred VanVleet hit 7 3-pointers, which was the difference and is unlikely to happen again.
The Bucks are 31-16 SU & 28-17-2 ATS on the road this season, so they clearly aren’t phased by traveling. And they lost in double-OT in Toronto in Game 3. Not to mention, they won both regular season meetings in Toronto.
Milwaukee is 16-4 ATS off an upset loss as a favorite this season. The Bucks are 22-3 SU & 19-6 ATS off a loss this season. Milwaukee is 37-16-2 ATS in its last 55 vs. Eastern Conference opponents. Bet the Bucks Saturday.
|05-23-19||Raptors v. Bucks -6.5||Top||105-99||Loss||-110||11 h 43 m||Show|
25* NBA Eastern Conference Playoffs GAME OF THE YEAR on Milwaukee Bucks -6.5
After losing both games in Toronto, and getting embarrassed in Game 4, the Milwaukee Bucks return home highly motivated for a victory in Game 5 to regain control of this series. The Bucks are still 10-3 SU & 10-3 ATS in these playoffs and the best team in the East, and that will show tonight.
Milwaukee has been a great bet off a loss. In fact, the Bucks are 22-2 SU & 19-5 ATS following a loss this season. That’s right, they’ve only lost back-to-back games twice all season, and it just happened for the second time. It’s been a resilient team, and that resiliency will really be on display tonight with the support of their home crowd on their side.
Kawhi Leonard is clearly hobbled and tired. The Bucks made the mistake of double-teaming him last game, and he found open shooters time and time again. The Raptors’ roll players hit those shots at home, but now it will be the Bucks’ role players who step up at home this time around. And I expect Mike Budenholzer to make the right adjustments like he’s done all season and to not double-team Kawhi. He can’t beat them on his own.
Plays on favorites of 3.5 to 9.5 points (Milwaukee) - revenging a loss by 10 points or more, off two or more consecutive road losses are 37-13 (74%) ATS over the last five seasons. Milwaukee is 10-1 ATS off an upset loss as a road favorite this season. The Bucks are 21-5 ATS in their last 26 games off a loss. Milwaukee is 5-1 SU & 5-1 ATS at home in the playoffs this season. Bet the Bucks Thursday.
|05-21-19||Bucks -3 v. Raptors||Top||102-120||Loss||-104||8 h 55 m||Show|
20* Bucks/Raptors TNT No-Brainer on Milwaukee -3
The Milwaukee Bucks played about as poorly as they could have in Game 3. Yet, they still forced double-overtime despite shooting just 37.3% from the field. It was a must-win game for the Raptors in that spot, and they were fortunate to escape with a victory.
They won’t be so fortunate in Game 4 tonight. The Bucks aren’t going to shoot that poorly again as this has been one of the best offensive teams in the NBA this season at 117.9 points per game on 47.3% shooting. They are loaded with great 3-point shooting to surround the unstoppable Greek Freak.
Milwaukee is a ridiculous 22-1 SU & 19-4 ATS following a loss this season. It is coming back to win by 15.0 points per game in this spot. The Bucks are 12-2 ATS off a road loss this season. They have been the most resilient team in the NBA this season. Milwaukee is 20-7-1 ATS in its last 28 road games. The Raptors are 1-4 ATS in their last five games overall. Bet the Bucks Tuesday.
|05-20-19||Warriors v. Blazers +3.5||Top||119-117||Win||100||10 h 58 m||Show|
20* Warriors/Blazers ESPN No-Brainer on Portland +3.5
The Golden State Warriors just became the first team in NBA history to win consecutive playoff games after trailing by 13 or more points. It shows their resiliency, but it also shows how the Blazers could easily be up 2-1 in this series instead of down 0-3.
From a line value perspective, there’s certainly value taking the Blazers in Game 4 here as 3.5-point underdogs when you consider they were 2.5-point favorites in Game 3. That’s a 6-point adjustment. I think the Blazers will show some pride here and not want to get swept.
The Warriors are already without Kevin Durant and DeMarcus Cousins, and now they could be without Andre Iguodala, who left with a calf injury in Game 3. He is their best defender and the Blazers should have a lot more success offensively if he can’t go.
Golden State is 4-12 ATS as a road favorite of 6 points or less this season. Portland is 11-2 ATS when revenging a loss by 10 points or more this season. The Blazers are 17-8-1 ATS in their last 26 games following an ATS loss. The Warriors are 1-7 ATS in their last eight games following an ATS win. Golden State is 19-42-2 ATS in its last 63 games off a win by more than 10 points. Bet the Blazers Monday.
|05-19-19||Bucks v. Raptors -2||112-118||Win||100||12 h 1 m||Show|
15* Bucks/Raptors TNT ANNIHILATOR on Toronto -2
It’s now or never for the Toronto Raptors. They must win Game 3 if they want to get back in this series after losing the first two, and I trust them to get the job done.
The Raptors are 37-11 at home this season. Milwaukee is 7-21 ATS in its last 28 games off three or more consecutive home wins. Toronto is 18-5 ATS after failing to cover four of its last five ATS over the last three years. Toronto is 7-1 ATS in its last eight games vs. a team with a road winning % of greater than .600. Roll with the Raptors Sunday.
|05-18-19||Warriors v. Blazers -2||Top||110-99||Loss||-113||14 h 16 m||Show|
25* NBA Conference Finals GAME OF THE YEAR on Portland Trail Blazers -2
The Portland Trail Blazers know they can beat the Warriors. They proved it in the regular season by splitting the season series 2-2. And they certainly gave them a run for their money in Games 1 and 2 in Golden State.
Indeed, the Blazers were tired off their seven-game series with the Nuggets, yet they were only down by 6 points at the end of three quarters despite playing their worst game of the playoffs in Game 1. They played much better in Game 2 and actually led by 17 in the 3rd quarter, but the Warriors came back and stole a victory late.
Now, with their season on the line, the Blazers should be able to win Game 3 at home. The Warriors are likely to relax after protecting their home court, while the Blazers are likely to play with a big chip on their shoulder here after letting Game 2 slip away. This is my favorite bet of the conference finals.
The Warriors are 3-8 ATS in their last 11 games off a win. The Blazers are 7-1 ATS in their last eight home games vs. a team with a road winning % of greater than .600. Bet the Blazers Saturday.
|05-16-19||Blazers +7.5 v. Warriors||111-114||Win||100||9 h 44 m||Show|
15* Blazers/Warriors ESPN ANNIHILATOR on Portland +7.5
The 22-point blowout the Warriors put on the Blazers was a bit misleading. This was a 6-point game at the end of three quarters. Portland managed to hang around despite committing 21 turnovers and shooting just 36.1% from the field.
So, the Blazers couldn’t have played any worse in Game 1, and they still had a chance to pull the upset going into the 4th quarter. And they were in a tough spot off a difficult Game 7 win in Denver. Now a few more days removed, and they should come back much fresher for Game 2 tonight. Expect the Blazers to give the Warriors a run for their money.
Golden State has shot 49.4% and 50% from eh field in its last two games. Both of those were without Kevin Durant. The Warriors aren’t a better team without Durant, and they certainly will be hard-pressed to continue shooting as well as they did in their last two games against Houston and Portland.
Portland is 8-0 ATS when revenging a road loss by 10 points or more this season. It is bouncing back to win by 8.3 points per game in this situation. Golden State is 9-19 ATS off a win by 15 points or more this season. The Warriors are 1-6 ATS in their last seven games off an ATS win. Take the Blazers Thursday.
|05-15-19||Raptors v. Bucks -6||Top||100-108||Win||100||9 h 50 m||Show|
20* Raptors/Bucks TNT No-Brainer on Milwaukee -6
The Milwaukee Bucks have been the best team in the NBA all season. And as a result, they’ve been the best team for bettors to back, too. They are currently 68-23 SU & 55-33 ATS this season. They’ve been even better in the playoffs, going 8-1 SU & 8-1 ATS for backers with seven wins by double-digits.
The Bucks went 3-1 SU & 3-1 ATS against the Raptors in the regular season. They are in the favorable spot here having a full week off after closing their series with the Celtics last Wednesday. The spot is a much tougher one for the Raptors.
Indeed, Toronto just completed a grueling seven-game series with the 76ers on Sunday. We saw how much the seven-game series took out of the Blazers last night, and I think it will be the same for the Raptors. I think they relax in Game 1 here after surviving the 76ers, and they will simply still be too tired to match the energy and effort the Bucks put into this game.
Toronto is 1-9 ATS in road games after allowing 90 points or less over the last two seasons. The Bucks are 35-14-2 ATS in their last 51 vs. Eastern Conference opponents. Milwaukee is 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings. Bet the Bucks Wednesday.
|05-14-19||Blazers +7.5 v. Warriors||94-116||Loss||-106||10 h 32 m||Show|
15* Blazers/Warriors ESPN ANNIHILATOR on Portland +7.5
The Warriors are ripe for the picking with Kevin Durant likely to miss the first two games of this series. Yes, Steph Curry and Klay Thompson caught fire against the Rockets in Game 6 last series to steal a victory, but they can’t be expected to stay that hot.
The fact of the matter is the Warriors are short-handed. They already lacked a bench before losing both DeMarcus Cousins and Kevin Durant. The Blazers won’t take them lightly like the Rockets did, and this is a Blazers team with something special going right now.
Indeed, the Blazers upset both the Thunder and the Nuggets as underdogs in their series. Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum are showing why they are one of the best guard tandems in the NBA. And the Blazers are getting significant contributions from most of their role players like Seth Curry, Zach Collins, Enes Kanter, Al-Farouq Aminu, Rodney Hood and Maurice Harkless.
The Blazers split the season series with the Warriors 2-2, including a 110-109 upset at Golden State as 9-point dogs. Golden State is 1-8 ATS in home games when revenging a loss this season. The Warriors are 9-18 ATS as a home favorite of 6.5 to 12 points this season. Golden State is 0-6 ATS in its last six games following an ATS win. Bet the Blazers Tuesday.
|05-12-19||76ers v. Raptors -6||90-92||Loss||-110||9 h 59 m||Show|
15* 76ers/Raptors TNT ANNIHILATOR on Toronto -6
The Philadelphia 76ers just can’t be trusted to go on the road and win a big Game 7 like this. They only have one player you can trust, and that’s Jimmy Butler. Joel Embiid has been held in check this series by Marc Gasol, Ben Simmons has only had one good game, and Tobias Harris hasn’t been much of a factor.
The Raptors did lose once at home to the 76ers in Game 2, but they blew them out by 13 and 36 points in the other two meetings in Toronto. The Raptors are now 15-1 SU & 11-5 ATS in their last 16 home meetings with the 76ers. They have covered six of their last seven at home against Philadelphia.
Home teams are 105-28 (79%) at home in Game 7’s all-time. Toronto is 16-3 ATS in home games vs. division opponents over the last two seasons. The Raptors are 6-0 ATS in their last six games following. Loss by more than 10 points. Take the Raptors Sunday.
|05-12-19||Blazers v. Nuggets -5.5||Top||100-96||Loss||-105||5 h 29 m||Show|
20* Blazers/Nuggets ABC No-Brainer on Denver -5.5
The Denver Nuggets had the best home record in the NBA during the regular season. They are 39-9 at home, outscoring opponents by 10.1 points per game, and I trust them to get the job done here in Game 7 at home by 6-plus points to cover this spread.
After all, the Nuggets already showed they could handle the pressure of a Game 7 by beating the Spurs at home, and they didn’t even play that well in that game. I expect them to play more like they did in the pivotal Game 5 when they buried the Blazers 124-98 as identical 5.5-point favorites. Home teams are 105-28 (79%) at home in Game 7’s all-time.
Portland is 3-15 ATS in road games after failing to cover five or six of their last seven games aover the last three seasons. Denver is 14-6 ATS as a home favorite of 6 points or less this season. The Nuggets are 13-5 ATS in home games when revenging a loss this season. The Blazers are 0-5 ATS in their last five games following a win. Denver is 4-1 ATS in its last five games following a loss. The Nuggets are 9-3-1 ATS in the last 13 meetings. Bet the Nuggets Sunday.
|05-10-19||Warriors v. Rockets -7||Top||118-113||Loss||-105||9 h 40 m||Show|
20* Warriors/Rockets ESPN No-Brainer on Houston -7
The Houston Rockets let the Warriors off the hook in Game 5. I think they let down from the Kevin Durant injury, and James Harden wasn’t his usual self, shooting just one time in the final eight minutes, 30 seconds of the game.
I think after reflecting on the fact that Durant is out, the Rockets won’t feel bad at all. Remember, they held a 3-2 series lead over the Warriors last season before Chris Paul went out with a hamstring injury and missed the final two games. I believe they would have won that series had Paul not gotten hurt.
Now, the Rockets should win this series because Durant is hurt, and DeMarcus Cousins is already out. The Warriors don’t have any depth this year, which is why they have had to play their starters such big minutes already. That certainly could have attributed to the Durant injury. Now, too much of the scoring load will be placed on Steph Curry and Klay Thompson because the Warriors really don’t have any other scorers.
Houston is 5-0 SU & 4-1 ATS at home in the playoffs this season, outscoring opponents by 13.6 points per game. The Rockets are now 36-10 at home this season. Houston is 8-1 ATS in home games off two or more consecutive ATS wins this season. Bet the Rockets Friday.
|05-08-19||Rockets +6.5 v. Warriors||99-104||Win||100||11 h 38 m||Show|
15* Rockets/Warriors TNT Late-Night BAILOUT on Houston +6.5
The Houston Rockets are loaded with confidence now after taking two must-win games in Houston to even this series at 2-2. They know this pivotal Game 5 is where they can really take a stranglehold on this series and get the sweet revenge they’ve been waiting for since blowing a 3-2 lead last year after Chris Paul went down with injury.
The Rockets have been the more aggressive team in this series, and they’ve done a great job of limiting both Steph Curry and Klay Thompson. They are letting Kevin Durant get his, but the Warriors are much better when the ball is moving and everyone is getting involved. They are playing a brilliant defensive game thus far.
Considering all four meetings in this series have been decided by 6 points or less, I think we are getting some real value here with the Rockets as 6.5-point dogs in a game that will likely go down to the wire again. The Rockets are now 5-3 SU & 6-2 ATS in their eight meetings with the Warriors this season, and I actually believe they are the better team. The Rockets have a deep bench, while the Warriors’ bench is the worst its been in a long time.
Golden State is 9-18 ATS as a home favorite of 6.5 to 12 points this season. Houston is 30-16 ATS in road games off a home win over the last three years. The Rockets are 12-4 ATS in their last 16 games overall. Houston is 9-2 ATS in its last 11 games following a win. The Warriors are 11-23-1 ATS in their last 35 home games. Take the Rockets Wednesday.
|05-08-19||Celtics +9 v. Bucks||Top||91-116||Loss||-110||8 h 5 m||Show|
20* Celtics/Bucks TNT No-Brainer on Boston +9
The Boston Celtics won’t go down without a fight. That’s the type of team they are, and they have heard in the media that this series is already over from everyone. I think there’s a ton of value on the motivated Celtics as 9-point dogs in this contest.
Boston shot 54% in its upset Game 1 victory, which wasn’t sustainable. However, the Celtics have shot just 39.5%, 43.2% and 37.8% in their three games since, and they are a much better shooting team than that. Look for them to get closer to the 50% mark in this Game 5 than they have been in their previous three games.
Boston is 13-4 ATS after failing to cover the spread in three or more consecutive games over the last two seasons. It is winning outright by 8.0 points per game in this spot. Milwaukee is 67-112 ATS in its lsat 179 games off three or more consecutive wins. The Celtics are 6-1 ATS in their last seven road games. The road team is 5-1 ATS in their last six meetings. Bet the Celtics Wednesday.
|05-07-19||Blazers v. Nuggets -4.5||Top||98-124||Win||100||10 h 52 m||Show|
20* Blazers/Nuggets TNT No-Brainer on Denver -4.5
The Denver Nuggets are a resilient bunch. They trailed 2-1 against San Antonio and went and got a huge road win 117-103. Then they followed it up with an 18-point victory at home in Game 5 to regain control of the series. I think we see something similar here against Portland.
After trailing 2-1 after losing a four-overtime heartbreaker, the Nuggets went into Portland and pulled out a victory in Game 4. They have all the momentum and confidence now, and I look for them to continue playing very well on their home court.
The Nuggets had the best home record in the NBA during the regular season and are now 38-9 at home this season. I simply believe they are the deeper, more talented team in this series, and as long as they shoot the ball hallway decent they will win and cover. They have covered in six of their eight meetings with the Blazers this season.
Denver is 18-5 ATS in home games off an ATS win this season. Portland is 3-14 ATS in road games after failing to cover five or six of their last seven ATS over the last three seasons. Plays against road underdogs (Portland) vs. division opponents, off an upset loss to a division rival as a favorite are 25-8 (75.8%) ATS over the last five seasons. Bet the Nuggets Tuesday.
|05-06-19||Warriors v. Rockets -1||Top||108-112||Win||100||9 h 22 m||Show|
20* Warriors/Rockets TNT No-Brainer on Houston -1
The Rockets will be brimming with confidence after taking down the Warriors in overtime in Game 3 and saving their season. Now, I look for them to put forth their best performance yet in a series that has been closely-contested thus far with all three games decided by 6 points or less.
The Rockets are 35-10 at home this season and 4-0 at home in the playoffs, outscoring opponents by an average of 16 points per game. They certainly got more from their role players at home in Game 3 as they made 18 3-pointers as a team and shot 48.4% from the field.
The Rockets are 8-1-1 ATS in their last 10 home games. Houston is 8-2 ATS in its lsat 10 games following a win. The Rockets are 4-3 SU & 5-2 ATS in their seven meetings with the Warriors this season. Bet the Rockets Monday.
|05-06-19||Bucks v. Celtics -1.5||113-101||Loss||-105||7 h 49 m||Show|
15* Bucks/Celtics TNT ANNIHILATOR on Boston Celtics -1.5
The Boston Celtics are fighting for their lives tonight at home in Game 4. If they lose this game, the series is overall. The Celtics will want it more, and the Bucks could easily relax after regaining home-court advantage after an impressive Game 3 victory.
The Celtics shot 54% in Game 1, which wasn’t sustainable. But they have shot just 39.5% in Game 2 and 43.2% in Game 3 since. They are a better shooting team than that, and I look for their offense to be much smoother in Game 4 as more guys get involved.
It was a rare home playoff loss for the Celtics in Game 3. The Celtics are 12-2 ATS in home playoff games over the last two seasons. Boston is 18-7-1 ATS in its last 26 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of greater than .600. The Celtics are 6-2 ATS in their last eight home meetings with the Bucks. Take the Celtics Monday.
|05-04-19||Warriors v. Rockets -3||Top||121-126||Win||100||10 h 45 m||Show|
25* NBA 2nd Round GAME OF THE YEAR on Houston Rockets -3
The Houston Rockets had their chances in both Games 1 and 2 at Golden State. The officials cost them Game 1 in a 4-point loss, and they got within 3 late in the second half of Game 2 but lost by 6. They certainly know they can beat this team, and I can’t see them falling down 3-0 and not putting up a fight.
The Rockets proved they could beat the Warriors by winning three of four regular season meetings with their only loss coming by 2 points. And now they get the Warriors at home for the first time in this series. I expect Golden State to relax after taking care of business at home, and for the Rockets to simply want this one more.
Getting three days off between games was huge for James Harden. His eye injury got extra time to heal, and he should be near 100% for this one. Harden still had 29 points in Game 2 with that eye injury, so I’m not concerned about it at all.
The Warriors are plus-15 in field goal attempts in this series because the Rockets have been terrible in turnovers and allowing offensive rebounds. They have turned the ball over 31 times and have allowed 26 offensive rebounds with the Warriors regaining possession on 30.2% of their misses. Look for the Rockets to shore up those two areas, and that will make all the difference here.
Houston is 8-1 ATS when playing with double revenge this season, coming back to win by 13.6 points per game on average. The Warriors are 0-5 ATS in their last five games following an ATS win. The Rockets are 7-1-1 ATS in their last nine home games. They went 3-0 at home against the Jazz last series, outscoring them by a combined 59 points in the three victories. Bet the Rockets Saturday.
FREE Kentucky Derby Picks!
Win: No. 5 Improbable (5/1)
Improbable was undefeated in three starts as a 2-year-old. Since then he lost by a neck in the Rebel Stakes and by a length to Derby favorite Omaha Beach in the Arkansas Derby. That effort showed he could go the distance with what was previously the best horse in the field in Omaha Beach. Now, I believe Improbable is the best horse in the field.
The pedigree is a good one as well. He is the son of City Zip, a Grade 1-winning sprinter and half brother to 2004 Breeders’ Cup Classic and Horse of the Year Ghostzapper. It’s also worth mentioning he has the same trainer and owner as Triple Crown winner, Justify.
I like the running style of Improbable. He likes to stalk the leader and sit no more than one or two lengths behind before making his move around the final turn. There isn’t going to be a lot of speed in this race, so the stalkers will have the advantage over the closers. Horses sitting too far off the pace will have no chance. Improbable has as good a chance as any at winning the Run for the Roses this year.
Place: No. 16 Game Winner (9/2)
Game Winner is basically a nose and a half-length away from being unbeaten with the two losses coming to elite competition. He lost to Omaha Beach in the Grade II Rebel Stakes by a nose, and we all know that Omaha Beach was the favorite to win the Kentucky Derby before getting scratched.
Then, with his ticket already punched into the Kentucky Derby, Game Winner lost to fellow Bob Baffert trainee Roadster by a half-length in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby. Well, there’s been talk that Game Winner didn’t give it his all in that race because he didn’t need to. Roadster needed the win to quality for the Kentucky Derby, so it would make sense that Baffert would have instructed the jockey of Game Winner to let Roadster win.
The pedigree is a good one as well for Game Winner, which is a bay colt by Candy Ride, the sire of 2017 Horse of the Year Gun Runner. He is also out of Indyan Giving, the daughter of A.P. Indy and champion older mare Fleet Indian. Game Winner can get the distance as Fleet Indians scored in the 1 1/4-mile Personal Ensign (G1) and Delaware H. (G2), and her other stakes wins all came at 1 1/8-miles, the most notorious of which was the Beldame (G1).
Show: No. 8 Tacitus (8/1)
Tacitus won both of his Derby prep races with victories in the Grade II Tampa Bay Derby and the Grade II Wood Memorial. His victory in the Wood Memorial was made even more impressive by the fact that he was bumped at the start, yet he went on to post the best Brisnet speed figure (103) of any horse in their final prep race.
Tacitus has the perfect racing style to win the Kentucky Derby, too. He likes to sit mid-pack, just behind the first set of stalkers. He has drawn the 8th post position, and most horses have had success from the 5-10 spots. He should get a nice trip and be able to stalk the early leaders.
Juddmonte Farms has captured all of the world’s biggest races except the Kentucky Derby. In Tacitus, they believe they will capture the Run for the Roses this year. Dam Close Hatches is a thorough Juddmonte product top and bottom. Sire First Defence is a near relation to homebred Empire Maker, the runner-up as the Derby favorite that went on to win the Belmont.
Exacta Pick: 5, 8, 14, 16 ($2 Exacta Box Costs $24)
Trifecta Pick: 5, 8, 14, 16 ($2 Trifecta Box Costs $48)
Superfecta Pick: 5, 8, 14, 16 ($1 Superfecta Box Costs $24)
Note: I’m throwing in No. 14 Win Win Win (15/1) in my Trifecta Box as I believe he is the horse with the fourth-best chance to hit the board. Other horses I consider to have a shot in order are Roadster (5/1), Vekoma (15/1), Maximum Security (8/1) and Code of Honor (12/1).
|05-02-19||Raptors -1 v. 76ers||Top||95-116||Loss||-110||9 h 33 m||Show|
20* Raptors/76ers ESPN No-Brainer on Toronto -1
After shooting 51.9% in a Game 1 blowout victory, the Raptors were upset in Game 2. That’s because they shot just 36.3% from the field and 27% from 3-point range. They also let the 76ers shoot 11 more free throws than them.
I can’t foresee the Raptors shooting that poorly again. They are the better offensive team in this series, and they are certainly the better defensive team, which has shown. They have held the 76ers to 39.3% shooting and 39.5% shooting in Games 1 and 2, respectively. They clearly have Philadelphia figured out. It took a heroic game from Jimmy Butler to beat them in Game 2.
Plays on road favorites (Toronto) - a good team that outscores its opponents by 3-plus points per game, after scoring 90 points or less are 46-21 (68.7%) ATS over the last five seasons.
Toronto is 10-4 ATS in its last 14 games overall, including 6-2 ATS in its last eight road games. The Raptors are 4-0 ATS in their last four games following an ATS loss. Toronto is 27-12-2 ATS in its lsat 41 trips to Philadelphia, and 14-5 ATS in the last 19 meetings overall. Bet the Raptors Thursday.
|04-30-19||Rockets +5.5 v. Warriors||Top||109-115||Loss||-108||11 h 42 m||Show|
20* Rockets/Warriors TNT Late-Night BAILOUT on Houston +5.5
Even with the Warriors getting all the calls in Game 1, the Rockets only lost 100-104. And the Rockets shot just 41.9% in the process compared to 50.7% for Golden State. That’s a good sign that the Rockets will win Game 2 with a few more things going their way.
Remember, the Rockets had the Warriors down 3-2 last year in the conference finals before Chris Paul got hurt. They went on to lose the final two games. I think they would have won that series had Paul not got hurt.
The Rockets won three out of four meetings with the Warriors during the regular season with their only loss coming by 2 points. They have clearly shown they are on the Warriors’ level, if not the better team now.
Houston is 8-0 ATS when playing with double-revenge this season. It is bouncing back to win by 15.8 points per game in this spot. The Warriors are 10-23-1 ATS in their last 34 home games. Golden State is 7-19 ATS in its last 26 games off a win. The road team is 4-0 ATS in the last five meetings. Bet the Rockets Tuesday.
|04-30-19||Celtics v. Bucks -7||102-123||Win||100||8 h 9 m||Show|
15* Celtics/Bucks TNT ANNIHILATOR on Milwaukee -7
Everything that could go wrong for the Bucks in Game 1 did. They shot just 34.8% as a team compared to 54% for Boston. Don’t expect that kind of discrepancy again. The Bucks will roll in Game 2 to even this series.
Remember, the home team went 7-0 SU & 6-1 ATS last year when these teams met in the playoffs. The Bucks are 35-9 at home this season. They are scoring 119.2 points per game at home and were held to just 90 in Game 1. That’s nearly 30 points off their season average.
The Bucks are 18-4 ATS off a loss this season. They are coming back to win by 14.8 points per game on average in this spot. Milwaukee is 15-3 ATS off an upset loss as a favorite this year, including 9-1 ATS off an upset loss by 10 points or more as a favorite over the last two seasons. Take the Bucks Tuesday.
|04-29-19||Blazers v. Nuggets -4||Top||113-121||Win||100||12 h 44 m||Show|
20* Blazers/Nuggets TNT Late-Night BAILOUT on Denver -4
The Portland Trail Blazers are getting a lot of respect from the books now after beating the Oklahoma City Thunder in five games. Well, the Thunder basically self-destructed and shot less than 41% from the field in three of the five games. Too many poor jump shots by Russell Westbrook did them in.
Getting Enes Kanter was huge for the Blazers to help make up for the loss of Jusuf Nurkic. But now Kanter has a shoulder injury and said it was difficult to even put his jersey on. It’s a separated shoulder, and I just think that now Jokic is going to dominate in this series, starting with Game 1. Jokic owned the Blazers in the regular season, too.
Getting Denver as only a 4-point favorite here is a nice value when you consider they are 37-8 at home this season. And the Nuggets won three out of four during the regular season. Their only loss came in their fourth and final meeting in a game that didn’t matter to them. The Blazers were 8.5-point home favorites in that game, compared to only 2-point home favorites in their first meeting in Portland.
The Nuggets are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 home games vs. a team with a winning road record. Denver is 5-0 ATS in its last five conference semifinals games. The Nuggets are 5-1-1 ATS in their last seven meetings with the Blazers with their only loss coming in that meaningless game. Bet the Nuggets Monday.
|04-27-19||76ers +6.5 v. Raptors||Top||95-108||Loss||-102||10 h 16 m||Show|
20* 76ers/Raptors TNT No-Brainer on Philadelphia +6.5
The Toronto Raptors are 2-14 in their last 16 during Game 1 of a playoff series. They are notorious slow starters. They lost to the Magic in Game 1 last series, and Kyle Lowry was held scoreless. He seems to disappear in Game 1’s and that has been the constant.
The 76ers are 39-19 ATS when revenging a home loss over the last three seasons. Toronto is 3-13 ATS in its last 16 during Game 1 of a playoff series. The Raptors are 4-14 ATS off four consecutive wins this season. Bet the 76ers Saturday.
|04-25-19||Nuggets v. Spurs -2.5||Top||103-120||Win||100||30 h 30 m||Show|
20* Nuggets/Spurs TNT No-Brainer on San Antonio -2.5
The Nuggets managed to end a 14-game losing streak in San Antonio with their victory in Game 4. They followed that up with an 18-point home victory in Game 5. I think they are now being overvalued here, and I expect the Spurs to get a victory in this must-win game and keep this series alive.
This is a very young Nuggets team that hasn’t experienced a close out game outside of Paul Millsap. They are the toughest games to win, especially since they know they have a home game in their hop pocket in Game 7 if need be. The Spurs are going to want this game more, and that will show on the court Thursday night.
As mentioned before, the Spurs are now 14-1 SU in their last 15 home meetings with the Nuggets. They have been one of the best home teams in the NBA this season as well, going 33-10 SU & 25-18 ATS in San Antonio. This is a very short number for them to be laying given those 14-1 & 33-10 numbers.
The Spurs are 24-5 ATS revenging a road loss this season, including 13-2 when revenging a road loss by 10 points or more. Bet the Spurs Thursday.
|04-24-19||Jazz +8.5 v. Rockets||Top||93-100||Win||100||8 h 22 m||Show|
20* Jazz/Rockets TNT No-Brainer on Utah +8.5
The Utah Jazz showed what they were capable of against the Rockets in Game 3 and 4 in Salt Lake City. Nobody in the league can defend the Rockets better than them, and that showed as they held the Rockets to 38.4% shooting in Game 3 and 35.4% in Game 4.
Now, the Jazz have the belief they can win in Houston and extend this series. The amazing part is that the Jazz still haven’t shot up to their capabilities once this series. They shot 39% in Game 1, 39.8% in Game 2, 41.6% in Game 3 and 43% in Game 4. They haven’t shot better than 31.4% from 3-point range in any game, and going 4-for-26 on open looks cost them Game 4.
I think their best shooting performance of the series is still to come. It’s a Jazz team that shoots 46.5% on the season and 35.2% from 3-point range while averaging 111.1 points per game. Yes, the Rockets are a good defensive team, but they aren’t this good. Now that they have some confidence after a 16-point victory in Game 4, expect the Jazz to knock down those open shots in Game 5.
Utah is 10-1 ATS in its last 11 off an upset win by 15 points or more as a home underdog. Bet the Jazz Wednesday.
|04-23-19||Thunder +4 v. Blazers||Top||115-118||Win||100||11 h 56 m||Show|
20* Thunder/Blazers TNT Late-Night BAILOUT on Oklahoma City +4
The Portland Trail Blazers are already talking like they’ve won this series. They have been reflecting back on getting swept the last few years and how much criticism they’ve taken in the media that have fueled them. These are things you’re supposed to be talking about after the series is over, not before.
You can bet the Thunder have heard all the interviews and now will be the team playing with a chip on their shoulder. Russell Westbrook certainly needs quit taking contested jumpers, and he should be wise enough to make the proper adjustments in Game 4. Look for him to be in attack mode and looking to get to the rim every chance he gets, which is when he’s at his best.
Keep in mind the Thunder swept the Blazers in the regular season, going 4-0 SU & 4-0 ATS. So they know they aren’t out of this yet. Win Game 4 and get this series back to OKC, and it’s a whole new series. I still believe they are the better team, and with their backs against the wall tonight, I expect their best effort of the season to try and stave off elimination.
The Thunder have shot worse than 41% from the field in all three of losses in this series. They are a much better shooting team than that, and the Blazers aren’t as good as they’ve shown defensively. It’s a Blazers team that gives up 110.1 points per game and 45.5% shooting on the season, and a lot of that was with their best defender in Jusuf Nurkic. Bet the Thunder Tuesday.
|04-22-19||Rockets v. Jazz +3||Top||91-107||Win||100||11 h 30 m||Show|
20* Rockets/Jazz TNT No-Brainer on Utah +3
A lot has been made about James Harden opening 0-for-15 from the floor and the Rockets still winning Game 3. Well, that’s easily explainable that they won when the Jazz went 4-for-26 on wide open shots in Game 3. The Jazz had control of the game the entire way until the final minutes despite that terrible shooting performance.
The Jazz are a prideful team and will not go down without a fight here. They don’t want swept. And they certainly cannot shoot any worse than they have thus far in this series, shooting 39% in Game 1, 39.8% in Game 2 and 41.6% in Game 3. They have better shooters than those numbers, and I have to think they are due for at least an average shooting performance tonight.
Utah has found a way to slow down James Harden, perhaps better than any other team is capable of in the NBA. They have hung their hats on defense all season as they’ve been one of the best defensive teams in the league. And that’s why they have a good chance to get a win tonight with just an average shooting night, because their defense will be good again.
Quin Snyder is 30-16 ATS revenging a loss as a home favorite as the coach of Utah. The Rockets are 6-14 ATS in road games off a road game this season. The Jazz are 19-7-1 ATS in their last 27 games following a loss. Bet the Jazz Monday.
|04-21-19||Blazers v. Thunder -6||Top||111-98||Loss||-105||37 h 14 m||Show|
20* Blazers/Thunder TNT Late-Night BAILOUT on Oklahoma City -6
The Oklahoma City Thunder were 7.5-point favorites in a must-win Game 3. I was all over them as my 25* NBA 1st Round GAME OF THE YEAR, and they delivered with a 12-point victory. Now we are getting them in another must-win situation Sunday, but at an even better price. They are only 6-point favorites for Game 4 and we’ll take advantage.
The Thunder are a completely different animal at home. The ‘orange out’ by the fans was sweet in Game 3, and expect another raucous atmosphere here in Game 4. The Thunder have lost 11 straight road playoff games, but it has been a different story at home. And keep in mind that the Blazers are still just 2-11 SU in their last 13 playoff games.
Russell Westbrook promised he’d be more assertive on the offensive end leading into Game 3, and he delivered with 33 points. Look for him to remain in attack mode, especially after Damian Lillard really got under his skin in Game 3. This team took a business-like approach and will do so again in Game 4 against a Blazers team that is still undermanned without Jusuf Nurkic, and that’s just now starting to come to fruition.
The Thunder are 5-2 SU & 5-2 ATS in their seven meetings with the Blazers this season. I stated they’d shoot better in Game 3, and they did just that going 15-of-29 (51.7%) from 3-point range. They are just so much more confident at home. The home team is 5-1 ATS in the last six meetings. Oklahoma City is 4-0 ATS in its last four home games. Portland is 1-4 ATS in its last five road games. Bet the Thunder Sunday.
|04-20-19||Rockets v. Jazz -2.5||Top||104-101||Loss||-104||16 h 10 m||Show|
20* Rockets/Jazz ESPN Late-Night BAILOUT on Utah -2.5
A little home cooking should do the Utah Jazz wonders after playing terrible in Houston while losing the first two games of this series in blowout fashion. The Jazz are favored for good reason here despite those poor performances because their season is on the line tonight.
The Jazz couldn’t have shot any worse than they did in Houston. They shot 39% from the floor and 7-of-27 (25.9%) from 3-point range in Game 1. They weren’t any better in Game 2, shooting 39.8% from the floor and 8-of-38 (21.1%) from 3-point range.
Now the Jazz are back at home in the friendly confines of Salt Lake City, where they are 29-12 on the season. While the Jazz will be laying it all on the line in this ‘must-win’ game, the Rockets could certainly let up in Game 3, especially after how easy those first two games came for them.
Plays on home favorites (Utah) - revenging a loss by 10 points or more, off two or more consecutive road losses are 52-21 (71.2%) ATS over the last five seasons. Houston is 0-7 ATS in road games after leading their last two games by 10-plus points at halftime this season. The Rockets are losing by 9.3 points per game in this spot. Bet the Jazz Saturday.
|04-20-19||76ers v. Nets +1.5||112-108||Loss||-103||9 h 35 m||Show|
15* 76ers/Nets TNT Early ANNIHILATOR on Brooklyn +1.5
The Philadelphia 76ers were able to overcome the absence of Joel Embiid in Game 3 by shooting lights out. They shot 48.4% from the floor and 40.7% from 3-point range as a team to take a 131-115 victory. Embiid is expected to be out again for Game 4.
The 76ers were way worse without Embiid during the regular season as he proved to be the most important player to any team in the league based on the numbers. And the 76ers aren’t going to shoot this well again, especially Tobias Harris and JJ Redick, who combined to go 11-of-15 from 3-point range.
Conversely, Brooklyn isn’t going to shoot as poorly as it did in Game 3. The Nets shot just 41.1% from the floor and a woeful 8-for-39 (20.5%) from 3-point range. They are looking at this game as a ‘must-win’, and I think they treat it that way while the 76ers know they still have two games at home to finish the series if need be.
The 76ers are 4-10 ATS in their last 14 games following a win by more than 10 points. The Nets are 9-4 ATS in their last 13 games following a loss by more than 10 points. Philadelphia is 2-13 ATS after covering three of its last four against the spread this season. The 76ers are 7-21 ATS off two more more consecutive wins this season. Brooklyn is 21-10 ATS when revenging a loss this season. Take the Nets Saturday.
|04-19-19||Blazers v. Thunder -7.5||Top||108-120||Win||100||11 h 37 m||Show|
25* NBA 1st Round GAME OF THE YEAR on Oklahoma City Thunder -7.5
The Oklahoma City Thunder’s road playoff woes continued in Portland in Games 1 and 2. They have now lost 11 consecutive road games in the playoffs. But now they’re back home here in a ‘must-win’ Game 3 that should go their way from start to finish in a blowout victory.
Shooting has been the issue for the Thunder as they shot 39.8% in Game 1 and 40.7% in Game 2. They were 5-for-33 (15.2%) from 3-point range in Game 1, and 5-for-28 (17.9%) in Game 2. Obviously, it’s going to be hard for them to shoot this poorly again.
As is the case with most series, role players step up and hit shots at home and miss shots on the road. So guys like Ferguson and Grant for the Thunder will likely start hitting their shots in Game 3 tonight. And Russell Westbrook will be more assertive on offense after saying his play was unacceptable in Game 2. Look for huge games from both Westbrook and George as we see a very inspired effort from the Thunder tonight.
Plays on home favorites (Oklahoma City) - revenging a loss of 10 points or more, off two or more consecutive road losses are 52-21 (71.2%) ATS over the last five seasons. The home team is 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings. Bet the Thunder Friday.
|04-18-19||Nuggets v. Spurs -3.5||Top||108-118||Win||100||10 h 48 m||Show|
20* Nuggets/Spurs NBA TV No-Brainer on San Antonio -3.5
The San Antonio Spurs have controlled this series thus far outside of the 4th quarter in Game 2. They have pretty much led the entire way other than that one quarter, where Jamal Murray went off for 21 points. Look for them to take back control of this series with a win and cover at home in Game 2.
The Spurs have been one of the best home teams in the NBA this season. They are 32-9 on their home floor. The Nuggets have a losing road record, and they just can’t win in San Antonio. Indeed, the Nuggets have lost 13 straight games in San Antonio, a streak that dates back to March 2012.
San Antonio is 7-0 ATS in home games when playing four or less games in 10 days this season. The Spurs are 27-8 ATS when revenging a loss this season. San Antonio is 20-2 ATS when revenging a loss where opponent scored 110 points or more this year. They are winning by 12.2 points per game on average in this spot. Bet the Spurs Thursday.
|04-18-19||76ers v. Nets +3.5||131-115||Loss||-105||8 h 13 m||Show|
15* 76ers/Nets TNT ANNIHILATOR on Brooklyn +3.5
The Nets have really been impressive in this series with the 76ers thus far. They led basically the entire way in their 111-102 win in Game 1. They hung tough in the first half and only trailed 64-65 at the break in Game 2 in what was essentially a must-win game for the Nets. They got blown out in the second half, which is to be expected.
The Nets haven’t been to the playoffs in years, so it’s going to be a raucous atmosphere in Brooklyn tonight for Game 3. And the Nets will be playing with a chip on their shoulder after Joel Embiid was seen laughing about elbowing Jarett Allen in the postgame news conference. They want revenge in a big way here.
The Nets are 23-18 at home this season, while the 76ers actually have a losing record on the road. Brooklyn is 33-16 ATS when revenging a loss this season. The Nets are 16-5 ATS in their last 21 games when playing on two days’ rest. Take the Nets Thursday.
|04-17-19||Jazz +7 v. Rockets||Top||98-118||Loss||-107||10 h 53 m||Show|
20* Jazz/Rockets TNT Late-Night BAILOUT on Utah +7
The Utah Jazz are deploying a new strategy in defending James Harden. They are making him go to his weak hand with a trailing defender. They didn’t execute in Game 1, but they should be much more successful in Game 2.
The Jazz shot 39% compared by 50.5% for the Rockets in Game 1, as well as 25.9% and 36.6% from 3-point range, respectively. Utah is one of the best rebounding teams in the NBA, and they were actually out rebounded, too. Look for both of those stats to be swayed more in their favor in Game 2.
Utah is 10-1 ATS off two or more consecutive road losses over the last two seasons. The Jazz are 20-6-1 ATS in their last 27 games following a straight up loss. The road team is 6-2-1 ATS in the last nine meetings, and the Jazz are 3-1-1 ATS in their last five meetings in Houston. Bet the Jazz Wednesday.
|04-17-19||Pacers +7.5 v. Celtics||91-99||Loss||-105||7 h 24 m||Show|
15* Pacers/Celtics TNT ANNIHILATOR on Indiana +7.5
It’s pretty impressive the Pacers only lost by 10 to the Celtics in Game 1 with how poorly they shot the ball. They shot 33.3% from the floor, 22.2% from 3-point range and 57.1% from the free throw line. They certainly won’t shoot that poorly again, and as a result they should be able to stay within this 7.5-point spread in Game 2.
The Pacers are 12-4 ATS in their last 16 conference quarterfinals games. Indiana is 4-1 ATS in its last five games following an ATS loss. Boston is 1-8 ATS in its last nine home games. The Celtics are 1-6 ATS in their last seven home games vs. a team with a losing road record. Take the Pacers Wednesday.
|04-16-19||Thunder +1.5 v. Blazers||Top||94-114||Loss||-105||11 h 43 m||Show|
20* Thunder/Blazers TNT Late-Night BAILOUT on Oklahoma City +1.5
The Oklahoma City Thunder shot just 39.8% as a team and 5-for-33 (15.2%) from 3-point range in Game 1. The Blazers shot 11-for-25 (44%) from 3-point range. Yet, the Thunder still had a chance to win late and only lost 99-104.
Knowing that those shooting percentages will almost certainly turn in their favor in Game 2 as they can’t get much worse, I’m taking the Thunder to bounce back with a victory tonight. They still have several big advantages in this series, not the least of which is the loss of Jusuf Nurkic.
I think the Blazers will breathe a sigh of relief after they ended a 10-game playoff losing streak. And the Thunder will get back to dominating them just as they did in the regular season. The Thunder went 4-0 SU & 4-0 ATS against the Blazers in the regular season. Bet the Thunder Tuesday.
|04-16-19||Spurs v. Nuggets -6.5||105-114||Win||100||9 h 19 m||Show|
15* Spurs/Nuggets NBA TV ANNIHILATOR on Denver -6.5
The Nuggets lost 96-101 to the Spurs in Game 1. I was on the Spurs in that game, and they pulled the upset. But I’m reversing courses here and taking the Nuggets to get the win and cover in Game 2 in what is essentially a must-win game.
The Spurs are content with winning one game in Denver, and they were aided by some great performances from their role players in White, Gay and Forbes, who all scored 14-plus points. They were also helped by poor shooting by the Nuggets.
Indeed, the Nuggets shot just 42% for the game and 6-of-28 (21.4%) from 3-point range. That’s not going to happen again as this is one of the most dynamic offensive teams in the league, and the Spurs have the worst defense they’ve had in years. The Spurs shot 48.2% as a team and 46.7% from 3-point range in Game 1, also numbers that will be hard for them to match.
The Spurs are 17-25 on the road this season, while the Nuggets are 34-8 at home. Take the Nuggets Tuesday.
|04-15-19||Nets v. 76ers -7.5||Top||123-145||Win||100||8 h 15 m||Show|
20* Nets/76ers TNT No-Brainer on Philadelphia -7.5
The Philadelphia 76ers shot just 40.7% in Game 1 and were upset as a result. They will come back highly motivated for a victory in Game 2 tonight to square this season. Look for them to get the win and cover at home tonight.
Joel Embiid did play in Game 1 after being questionable leading up to it. He hadn’t practiced before. Now that the 76ers got a feel for playing with him again, they should be much sharper offensively in Game 2. And look for them to get a lot more from Ben Simmons, JJ Redick and Tobias Harris, who weren’t assertive enough in Game 1.
I think there’s value here with the 76ers considering they were 8-point favorites in Game 1, and now they are only 7.5 to 8-point favorites in Game 2. The Nets are simply happy with stealing one game and won’t bring the same kind of effort for Game 2. They will have a hard time matching the intensity the 76ers play with tonight.
The 76ers are 31-15 ATS in their last 46 home games vs. a team with a losing road record. Philadelphia is 31-11 at home this season. Bet the 76ers Monday.
|04-14-19||Pistons +12.5 v. Bucks||86-121||Loss||-103||35 h 20 m||Show|
15* Pistons/Bucks TNT ANNIHILATOR on Detroit +12.5
The Detroit Pistons played about as well as anyone down the stretch just to make the playoffs. They went 19-12 SU & 20-11 ATS in their last 31 games overall to get to .500 on the season and snag the final playoff spot in the East.
And many of those losses came without Blake Griffin, who has an excellent chance to return to the lineup for the playoffs. The Pistons got a break with their Game 1 being on Sunday, meaning they have been off for three days since last playing on Wednesday. That should give him ample time to get rested and ready.
Even if Griffin doesn’t play, the Pistons are still good enough to stay within 12.5 points of the Bucks, who are also banged up. The Bucks are likely to be without Malcolm Brogdon, Nikola Mirotic, Pau Gasol and Tony Snell to start the playoffs. And Giannis is banged up with a calf injury. The Bucks did not play well down the stretch with all these injuries, and it’s asking them a lot to cover a spread this high in Game 1 with all their injuries.
Dwane Casey is 16-2 ATS after leading their previous game by 20 or more points at halftime in all games he has coached. The Pistons are 6-0-1 ATS in their last seven games vs. a team with a winning % above .600. Detroit is 8-1-1 ATS in its last 10 games off a win by more than 10 points. The Bucks are 2-8 ATS in their last 10 conference quarterfinals games. Roll with the Pistons Sunday.
|04-14-19||Thunder +3.5 v. Blazers||Top||99-104||Loss||-109||32 h 50 m||Show|
20* Thunder/Blazers ABC Sunday No-Brainer on Oklahoma City +3.5
I’m surprised the Portland Trail Blazers are actually favored against the Oklahoma City Thunder. They shouldn’t be favored in any game in this series, and as a result I’ll take the Thunder as road underdogs in Game 1 of this series.
The Blazers were swept by the Pelicans in the playoffs last year, getting upset despite having home-court advantage. And they are worse off this season with the loss of Jusuf Nurkic. His loss hasn’t been felt to close out the regular season, but it will be felt in the playoffs.
Now, Steven Adams’ job just got a whole lot easier, and he’s going to be a big factor in this series. Lillard and McCollum are two great players, but they aren’t good enough on their own to beat the Thunder without Nurkic, and there just isn’t a whole lot of talent outside those two now.
The Blazers will regret not losing their final game of the season, which meant they’d face the Thunder instead of the Jazz in the first round. The Blazers are 0-4 SU & 0-4 ATS against the Thunder this season, and that one-sided dominance is only going to continue. They have no answer for Paul George and Russell Westbrook, who are better than Lillard and McCollum. Portland is 7-24-2 ATS in its last 33 conference quarterfinals games. Bet the Thunder in Game 1 Sunday.
|04-13-19||Spurs +6 v. Nuggets||Top||101-96||Win||100||15 h 1 m||Show|
20* Spurs/Nuggets ESPN Late-Night BAILOUT on San Antonio +6
There aren’t many series that have upset potential, but this is certainly one of them. That’s because the experience and coaching of the Spurs can overcome the young, talented Nuggets in a seven-game series.
I think the Spurs have a great chance to steal Game 1. Greg Popovich once again overachieved based on expectations, and let’s not forget the Spurs still have two of the best players in the NBA in Aldridge and DeRozan. They will be prepared for Game 1 tonight.
The Nuggets will be making the playoffs for the first time in a long time. They barely missed out on the playoffs on the final day of the season last year. They could have used that experience, and I think nerves will be an issue for them in Game 1 of this series tonight.
I also think the fact that Denver recently beat San Antonio by 28 at home has inflated this line. But that was the 2nd of a back-to-back for the Spurs, and nobody throws away back-to-backs like Popovich. In the other three meetings this season, the Spurs won by 8 and 1 at home, and only lost by 3 on the road.
The Spurs are 26-8 ATS when revenging a loss this season. San Antonio is 19-2 ATS when revenging a loss where opponent scored 110 or more points this season. The Nuggets are 0-7 ATS in their last seven conference quarterfinal games. Take the Spurs in Game 1 Saturday.
|04-13-19||Nets v. 76ers -5.5||111-102||Loss||-106||7 h 50 m||Show|
15* Nets/76ers NBA Playoffs Opener on Philadelphia -5.5
We are getting the Philadelphia 76ers cheap because Joel Embiid is doubtful. It would be a bonus if he plays, but I’m not expecting it. I still think the 76ers have enough to win this game by 6-plus points at home over the Nets in Game 1 Saturday.
This is a great story that the Nets have put together this year, making the playoffs after being down in the dumps for years. But that also means they’re inexperienced, and I’m not expecting them to be on their ‘A Game’ in Game 1 tonight because of it. Nerves will be an issue, and by the time they settle down it will be too late.
The 76ers still have four All-Stars and got their much-needed playoff experience last year. They are still the more talented team with the likes of Simmons, Butler, Harris and Redick. And they will get the job done at home today.
Philadelphia is 18-5 ATS after failing to cover four or five of its last six games this season. The 76ers are 20-8 ATS in home games when playing on two days’ rest over the last three seasons. Brooklyn is 14-29 ATS in its last 43 road games after covering the spread in three or more consecutive games. Bet the 76ers in Game 1 Saturday.
|04-10-19||Magic v. Hornets -2||Top||122-114||Loss||-109||10 h 47 m||Show|
20* Magic/Hornets ESPN Wednesday No-Brainer on Charlotte -2
The Charlotte Hornets have to win tonight and have the Detroit Pistons lose on the road to the New York Knicks to get into the playoffs. First things first. They will win at home tonight over the Orlando Magic and handle their business.
The Hornets have fought too hard to put themselves in this position to lose this game tonight. They have gone 8-3 SU & 9-2 ATS n their last 11 games overall, which includes upset wins over the Celtics, Raptors (twice), Spurs and Pistons.
The Magic have already clinched a playoff spot and really don’t care whether or not they lose this game tonight. There is some seeding at stake, but it’s minimal and not important because the top three teams in the East that they’d potentially face are all very formidable opponents in the Bucks, Raptors and 76ers.
Charlotte owns Orlando, going 13-1 SU & 11-3 ATS in the last 14 meetings. That domination continues tonight as the Hornets get the win and cover as short home favorites to keep their playoff hopes alive. Bet the Hornets Wednesday.
|04-10-19||Thunder -3 v. Bucks||127-116||Win||100||10 h 47 m||Show|
15* NBA Wednesday No-Doubt Rout on Oklahoma City Thunder -3
The Oklahoma City Thunder still have a lot to play for tonight. If they beat the Bucks tonight, they would be the NO. 6 seed in the West. A loss though, and they could finish anywhere from 6th to 8th. They want to do anything possible to avoid the 8th spot and a matchup with the Warriors in the first round.
The Bucks have nothing to play for. They clinched the No. 1 seed in the East and the No. 1 seed overall, so they will have home-court advantage. They are expected to rest Giannis, Brook Lopez, Malcolm Brogdon, Nikola Mirotic, Tony Snell and Pau Gasol, among others.
We have one motivated team playing all their starters up against a non-motivated team resting all their starters. It’s an easy choice here tonight folks. Take the Thunder Wednesday.
|04-09-19||76ers v. Heat -4||Top||99-122||Win||100||9 h 10 m||Show|
20* NBA Tuesday No-Doubt Rout on Miami Heat -4
The Miami Heat have lost four straight games and now trail the Pistons by one game for the final playoff spot in the East. The Pistons have also lost four straight, opening the door for both the Heat and Hornets to catch them.
No matter what happens, you know that the Heat will be motivated to win what could likely be the final home game of Hall of Fame Dwyane Wade, who is retiring at season’s end.
The Philadelphia 76ers have absolutely nothing to play for. They are locked into the No. 3 seed in the East. That’s why they are resting Joel Embiid and J.J. Redick tonight due to minor injuries. They want nothing to do with winning this game tonight.
Plays on home favorites of 3.5 to 9.5 points (Miami) - revenging a loss where opponent scored 100 o more points, off two or more consecutive road losses are 52-21 (71.2%) ATS over the last five seasons. Miami is 15-5 ATS off two or more consecutive road losses over the last three seasons. Bet the Heat Tuesday.
|04-08-19||Texas Tech +1.5 v. Virginia||Top||77-85||Loss||-103||14 h 18 m||Show|
20* Texas Tech/Virginia Championship No-Brainer on Texas Tech +1.5
Wrong team favored here. The Virginia Cavaliers are lucky to be here. They needed four comeback wins in their five tournament games, including their opener against Gardner Webb.
They only beat Oregon by 4 as 8.5-point favorites, needed a buzzer-beater to send the Purdue game to OT, where they eventually won by 5. And they trailed by 4 with under 10 seconds to play against Auburn, yet somehow won that game after a Kyle Guy 3-pointer and another Guy 3 free throws with 0.6 seconds remaining to win by 1.
Their miracle run comes to an end tonight against a Texas Tech team that had been hands down the most dominant team in the tournament and deserves to be here. The Red Raiders are 5-0 SU & 5-0 ATS in their five tournament games, winning four by double-digits with the only exception being their 6-point win over No. 1 seed Gonzaga.
While Virginia gets credit for its defense more than anyone, it’s actually Texas Tech that leads the country in defensive efficiency. They held Buffalo (58), Michigan (44) and Michigan State (51) to season lows in points in the tournament thus far. Virginia’s great defensive numbers are aided by the fact that they play at the slowest pace in the entire country.
This is a complete Red Raiders team with a star in Culver, four players in Moretti, Mooney, Edwards and Corprew who all shoot 38.8% or better from 3-point range, and three dogs on the inside in Owens, Francis and Odiase who handle all the dirty work and are the main reasons this team is so good on defense along with Culver.
Texas Tech is 14-1 SU & 13-2 ATS in its last 15 games overall. Chris Beard told his team that they were good enough to play on the final Monday of the season before the season started. They bought in, and he’s arguably the best coach in the country with what’s he’s done with this team in his three years here. Look for his players to deliver him a much-deserved title tonight. Bet Texas Tech Monday.
|04-07-19||Hornets +6.5 v. Pistons||Top||104-91||Win||100||7 h 45 m||Show|
20* NBA Eastern Conference GAME OF THE MONTH on Charlotte Hornets +6.5
This is a must-win game for the Hornets. They trail the 8th place Pistons by two games and each team has three games remaining. If Charlotte were to go 3-0 and Detroit 1-2, they’d get in the playoffs.
That’s because the Hornets have swept the season series with the Pistons thus far, winning all three meetings. And now they go for the season sweep and are somehow catching 6.5 points against a team they’ve owned.
The Hornets are 6-3 SU & 7-2 ATS in their last nine games overall. The Pistons are starting to feel the pressure of making the playoffs. They are just 2-6 SU in their last eight games overall. Bet the Hornets Sunday.
|04-07-19||Thunder v. Wolves +6.5||132-126||Win||100||6 h 14 m||Show|
15* NBA Western Conference ANNIHILATOR on Minnesota Timberwolves +6.5
The Minnesota Timberwolves are always a tough out at home. And the Oklahoma City Thunder certainly aren’t playing well enough to be laying 6.5 points on the road to the Timberwolves.
The Thunder are just 4-7 SU & 4-7 ATS in their last 11 games overall. The Timberwolves have won three of their last five, including upset home wins over the Warriors and Heat. Minnesota is now 25-14 SU at home this season.
The Timberwolves have owned the Thunder this season, going 3-0 SU & 3-0 ATS in their three meetings and will be going for the season sweep today. They have won outright as underdogs in all three meetings.
The Thunder are 3-12 ATS in their last 15 vs. Western Conference teams. Oklahoma City is 1-8 ATS in Sunday games this season. The Timberwolves are 7-0 ATS in their last seven meetings with the Thunder. Minnesota is 6-1 ATS in its last seven home meetings with OKC. Take the Timberwolves Sunday.
|04-06-19||Texas Tech +2.5 v. Michigan State||Top||61-51||Win||100||12 h 40 m||Show|
25* NCAA Tournament GAME OF THE YEAR on Texas Tech +2.5
Texas Tech’s last three wins have been mighty impressive. They held a high-powered Buffalo offense to just 58 points in a 20-point wins, then they held Michigan to just 44 points in a 19-point win, and they pulled away late to beat Gonzaga 75-69.
That win over Michigan can tell us a lot about how this game is going to play out as well. Keep in mind Michigan State needed three second-half comebacks to beat Michigan all three times they played this year. They were fortunate to win those three games, so that gives them a common opponent, and the Red Raiders blasted Michigan by 19.
In fact, Texas Tech and Michigan State have seven common opponents this season. Texas Tech is outscoring those teams by 9.1 points per game, while Michigan State is only outscoring them by 6.4 points per game. It’s a great way to compare teams.
Texas Tech just doesn’t have any weaknesses. They are arguably the best defensive team in the country, they have a star in Jarrett Culver who averages 18.9 points per game, they have four 3-point specialists who all shoot 38% or better. And they have unsung heroes inside in Tariq Owens and Norense Odiase who can bang with anyone.
Texas Tech is 13-1 SU & 12-2 ATS in its last 14 games overall. The Red Raiders are 6-0 in their last six Saturday games. Texas Tech is 11-1 ATS in its last 12 vs. a team with a winning record. Bet Texas Tech Saturday.
|04-06-19||Auburn +6.5 v. Virginia||62-63||Win||100||9 h 57 m||Show|
15* Auburn/Virginia Final Four ANNIHILATOR on Auburn +6.5 The Auburn Tigers have beaten Kansas, UNC and Kentucky in the last three rounds to get to the Final Four. I think it’s safe to say they are for real, even though they don’t get the credit they deserve. This team will go as far as electric guards Harper and Brown take them. And I don’t think their run is over just yet. It would be hard to feel good about laying this many points with Virginia. They beat Oregon by just 4 and Purdue by 5 in overtime after they got a miracle buzzer beater to force the extra session. They way they slow it down is conducive to close games. Auburn showed it could win in shootouts, shooting 52.5% in the 89-75 win over Kansas and 54.5% in the 97-80 win over UNC. But the Tigers also showed they could win the grind it out game, shooting just 40% in their 77-71 win over Kentucky last time out. Auburn is 12-0 SU in its last 12 games overall. The Tigers are 7-1 ATS in all tournament games this season. The underdog is 4-0 ATS in the last four meetings. Take Auburn Saturday.
|04-06-19||Nets +8.5 v. Bucks||Top||133-128||Win||100||8 h 53 m||Show|
20* NBA GAME OF THE WEEK on Brooklyn Nets +8.5
The Brooklyn Nets are fighting for their playoff lives right now. They are 39-40 and hanging on to a playoff spot, just one game ahead of the 9th-place Heat and two games ahead of the 10th-place Hornets. They need a win tonight.
The Milwaukee Bucks are primed for a letdown. They just clinched the top seed not only in the East, but overall, too. They did so with an impressive comeback against the 76ers in the final minutes. Now, they literally have nothing to play for in their final three games, and they should be resting starters.
Brooklyn also wants revenge form a 121-131 home loss to the Bucks on April 1st earlier this week. They don’t have to wait long to get their revenge tonight. And they come in on two days’ rest, so they are fresh and ready to go.
The Nets are 12-4 ATS in their last 16 games playing on two days’ rest. Brooklyn is 4-1 ATS in its last five road games. The road team is 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings. Bet the Nets Saturday.
|04-05-19||Celtics v. Pacers +1||117-97||Loss||-105||9 h 43 m||Show|
15* Celtics/Pacers ESPN ANNIHILATOR on Indiana +1
The Indiana Pacers just lost a 112-114 heartbreaker at the buzzer at Boston on March 29th. They don’t have to wait long for revenge now as they play them a week later, but at home this time around. And these teams are tied for 4th and 5th place in the East, so it’s a huge game likely determining which team gets home-court advantage in the first round.
The Pacers have been dynamite at home this season. They are 29-10 SU at home this year, while Boston is just 19-20 SU on the road. The home team has won all three meetings between these teams this season.
The Pacers are 10-4 ATS in their last 14 home games. Indiana is 16-5 ATS in its lsat 21 Friday games. The Celtics are 0-5-1 ATS in their last six games off an ATS win. Indiana is 5-1 ATS in the last six meetings. Take the Pacers Friday.
|04-05-19||Heat -3 v. Wolves||Top||109-111||Loss||-109||9 h 43 m||Show|
20* NBA Non-Conference GAME OF THE WEEK on Miami Heat -3
The Miami Heat are currently in 9th place in the East. They are a half-game behind both the Magic and Nets for the 7th and 8th spots. This is a must-win game for them Friday night in Minnesota, and they should get the win and cover here.
Minnesota has been playing without Robert Covington, Jeff Teague, Derrick Rose and Taj Gibson, and they remain out. The Timberwolves are just kind of going through the motions right now, going 3-8 SU & 3-8 ATS in their last 11 games overall.
The Heat are 11-3 ATS in non-conference road games this season. Miami is 26-12 ATS in all road games this season. The Heat are 45-16-2 ATS in their last 63 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. The Timberwolves are 1-4 ATS in their last five home games. Minnesota is 1-7 ATS in its last eight vs. Eastern Conference opponents. The Timberwolves are 0-5 ATS in their last five games following an ATS win. Bet the Heat Friday.
|04-05-19||South Florida +1.5 v. DePaul||77-65||Win||100||8 h 37 m||Show|
15* South Florida/DePaul CBI No-Brainer on South Florida +1.5
The DePaul Blue Demons have been hit hard by injuries here down the stretch in this CBI Tournament Championship series with South Florida. They will be without both Eli Cain (13.1 PPG, 119 assists) and Devin Gage (8.8 PPG, 129 assists), their top two assist men. And they could be without Jaylen Butz (7.1 PPG, 5.9 RPG), who is questionable.
South Florida was already the better team coming into this championship series. But now they are far and away the best team considering the Blue Demons have lost both Cain and Gage to injury. Look for the Bulls to win Game 3 tonight and take down the title.
DePaul is 1-8 ATS after having won three of its last four games this season. South Florida is 12-3 ATS in its last 15 road games. The Bulls are 7-1 ATS as a road underdog or PK this season. South Florida is 8-1 ATS vs. good offensive teams that score 77-plus points per game this season. The Blue Demons are 0-7 ATS in their last seven home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400. Roll with South Florida Friday.
|04-04-19||Cavs +9.5 v. Kings||104-117||Loss||-104||11 h 35 m||Show|
15* NBA Thursday PLAY OF THE DAY on Cleveland Cavaliers +9.5
The three NBA teams with the worst records in the league get an equal chance at the No. 1 pick this year. Well, Cleveland is basically assured of being a bottom three team now. So they can afford to try here down the stretch. And they’ve done a decent job of that as they are 8-6-1 ATS in their last 15 games overall. They have not packed it in yet.
I know their six-game losing streak doesn’t look good, but when you look at who they’ve played it’s easier to make sense of it. They’ve lost to five playoff teams in the Clippers, Bucks, Celtics, Spurs and Clippers, and they also lost on the road at Phoenix. Now they are rested and ready to go coming in on two days’ rest since that loss to the Suns Monday.
The Kings were recently officially eliminated from the playoffs. They have gone 1-3 SU & 1-3 ATS in their last four games overall, including their 25-point home loss to Houston on Tuesday. I just don’t foresee the Kings being motivated enough to put away the Cavs by double-digits, which is what it would take for them to cover this 9.5-point spread tonight.
Cleveland is 12-4 ATS after failing to cover the spread in two or more consecutive games this season. Plays against home teams (Sacramento) - off a home blowout loss by 20 points or more, in April games are 43-15 (74.1%) ATS since 1996. Plays on underdogs of 3.5 to 9.5 points (Cleveland) - in non-conference games, off three or more consecutive road losses are 38-10 (79.2%) ATS since 1996. Take the Cavaliers Thursday.
|04-04-19||Lipscomb v. Texas -1.5||Top||66-81||Win||100||7 h 30 m||Show|
25* NIT GAME OF THE YEAR on Texas -1.5
The Texas Longhorns have saved their best basketball of the season for the NIT. They have won four straight to get here, and their last two wins were really impressive. They beat Colorado by 13 as 5-point home favorites and then got revenge on TCU with a 14-point win as 1-point favorites.
Lipscomb is very fortunate to make it this far. They beat NC State on a buzzer-beater in the quarterfinals, then erased an 11-point deficit against Wichita State in the final seven minutes and won 71-64, closing that game on a 21-3 run. Give them credit for getting here, but their run stops here against a superior Texas team.
Texas is 7-0 ATS after playing three consecutive games as a favorite this season. Bet Texas Thursday.
|04-03-19||Rockets v. Clippers -1||Top||135-103||Loss||-110||29 h 51 m||Show|
20* NBA Wednesday No-Doubt Rout on Los Angeles Clippers -1
Don’t look now but the Clippers are currently only a half-game behind the Jazz for the 5th seed in the West. Prior to the season, nobody could have foreseen this coming. They lost Blake Griffin, Chris Paul and DeAndre Jordan over the past few seasons, and traded away leading scorer Tobias Harris prior to the deadline.
The Clippers haven’t missed a beat, and this is one of Doc Rivers’ best coaching jobs ever. They play team basketball as well as anyone in the NBA, lacking a true superstar, but loaded with players who are playing their roles to perfection. And few teams have been playing better than the Clippers down the stretch. They are 13-2 SU & 10-4-1 ATS in their last 15 games overall.
While the Clippers come in fresh on two days’ rest having last played on Sunday, the Rockets will be playing the 2nd of a back-to-back after a trip to Sacramento Tuesday night. The Kings play at one of the fastest paces in the NBA, so that game will have taken a lot out of the Rockets. I don’t think Houston will have much left in the tank tonight.
The Clippers have won both meetings with the Rockets this season by a combined 24 points. Los Angeles is 6-1 ATS in its last seven meetings with Houston. The Clippers are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 home games vs. a team with a. Winning road record. Los Angeles is 7-1 ATS in its last eight vs. Western Conference foes. Houston is 1-11 ATS off three consecutive covers as a favorite over the last three seasons. Bet the Clippers Wednesday.
|04-03-19||Pacers v. Pistons -3.5||108-89||Loss||-107||8 h 54 m||Show|
15* NBA Eastern Conference ANNIHILATOR on Detroit Pistons -3.5
I love the situation for the Detroit Pistons tonight. This is a home-and-home with the Pacers, and the Pistons lost 102-111 in Indiana on Monday. Now they don’t have to wait long for revenge as they get them at home this time around Wednesday and will likely have Blake Griffin back in the lineup after he sat out Monday’s game.
The Pistons are an incredible 11-0 SU & 11-0 ATS in their last 11 home games. Meanwhile, the Pacers are 0-10 SU & 2-8 ATS in their last 10 road games. The home team is 4-0 SU & 4-0 ATS in the last four meetings, and 8-1 SU & 8-1 ATS in the last nine meetings.
The Pacers are likely to be without three starters tonight. They were already without Victor Oladipo, but now both Wesley Matthews (hamstring) and Darren Collison (groin) have been downgraded to out for this contest. It’s revenge time for Detroit tonight as they get their 12th straight home win and cover. Take the Pistons Wednesday.
|04-02-19||Wichita State v. Lipscomb||64-71||Loss||-105||9 h 36 m||Show|
15* Wichita State/Lipscomb NIT ANNIHILATOR on Wichita State PK
Nobody has faced a tougher path to get to the NIT semifinals than Wichita State. They’ve gone on the road and pulled off three outright upsets over Furman 76-70 as 4-point dogs, Clemson 63-55 as 7-point dogs and Indiana 73-63 as 3.5-point dogs.
Certainly Lipscomb’s run to the semifinals has been impressive as well, winning at Davidson, at UNC-Greensboro and at NC State. But their run stops here against the better team and the better coach in Wichita’s Greg Marshall.
Wichita State is 8-1 ATS in all tournament games this season. The Shockers are 13-3-1 ATS in their last 17 games overall. Wichita State is 6-0-1 ATS in its last seven games vs. a team with a winning % above .600. Take Wichita State Tuesday.
|04-01-19||Magic +7 v. Raptors||109-121||Loss||-105||8 h 2 m||Show|
15* NBA Monday Undervalued Underdog on Orlando Magic +7
The Orlando Magic are a half-game back of the Heat for 8th, one game back of the Nets for 7th and 1.5 games back of the Pistons for 6th. They have a legitimate shot to make the playoffs here with just five games to play. And I know they’ll be max motivated tonight against the Raptors.
It’s safe to say the Magic have been playing their best basketball of the season down the stretch with hopes of making the playoffs. Indeed, the Magic are 7-1 SU & 6-2 ATS in their last eight games overall. That includes upset road wins over both Miami and Indiana.
The Raptors are stuck in limbo. They are three games out of first place in the East with five games to go, and 4.5 games ahead of 3rd place. They really have nothing to play for the rest of the way, and it’s starting to show. Don’t be surprised if they continue giving their starters some rest with nothing to play for.
Nobody has played Toronto tougher than Orlando this season. The Magic are 2-1 SU & 3-0 ATS in their three meetings with the Raptors. They only lost by 2 at home as 7-point dogs, won by 29 at home as 4.5-point dogs, and won by 15 on the road as 6.5-point dogs. Now they are catching 7 points in the 4th and final meeting, which is simply too much given what’s at stake for them.
Toronto is 0-7 ATS after scoring 110 points or more in four straight games this season. Orlando is 13-3-1 ATS in its last 17 games vs. a team with a winning record. The Magic are 13-3-1 ATS in their last 17 vs. NBA Atlantic Division opponents. The Raptors are 2-8 ATS in their last 10 vs. NBA Southwest Division foes. Orlando is 4-0-1 ATS in the last five meetings. Take the Magic Monday.
|04-01-19||Bucks v. Nets +2||Top||131-121||Loss||-105||8 h 57 m||Show|
20* NBA Eastern Conference GAME OF THE MONTH on Brooklyn Nets +2
The Brooklyn Nets are trying to secure a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. They are only one game ahead of the 9th place Magic. They can’t afford losses at this point, and they have been playing with a sense of urgency here of late because of it.
The Nets have handled the pressure well by going 5-1 ATS in their last six games overall despite playing five of those six games on the road. They won their lone home game by 14 over Boston on Saturday, and now have a day to get ready for the Milwaukee Bucks.
The Bucks are a mash unit right now. They are without Tony Snell, Nikola Mirotic, Malcolm Brogdon and Pau Gasol. Both Giannis Antetokounmpo and Khris Middleton are questionable after sitting yesterday, meaning they’ll be playing the 2nd of a back-to-back after an overtime loss to the Hawks. The Bucks would be wise to rest these guys again because they basically have the No. 1 seed locked up in the East with a three-game lead with only five games to play.
I know I’m going to get a max motivated, healthy Nets team today. You don’t know what you’re going to get from the Bucks. That makes this an easy choice. The Nets are also 5-0 ATS in their last five Monday games. Bet the Nets Monday.
|04-01-19||DePaul v. South Florida -1.5||Top||61-63||Win||100||7 h 22 m||Show|
20* DePaul/South Florida CBI No-Brainer on South Florida -1.5
The South Florida Bulls have reached the Championship Round of the CBI Tournament to take on the DePaul Blue Demons in a Best of 3 series. This is a critical Game 1 for the Bulls, who know that their next two games will be at DePaul. They need to protect their home court.
The Bulls have done a very good job of protecting their home court all season. They are 17-5 at home, while Deal is just 3-8 in true road games. They have won their first three games of this CBI Tournament all at home over Stony Brook, Utah Valley State and Loyola-Marymount. They won by 9 each of the last two games.
DePaul hasn’t exactly been that impressive and the competition has been pretty weak in their three CBI games thus far. They beat Central Michigan by 14 in their opener, but only beat Longwood by 8 as 14.5-point favorites and Coastal Carolina by 5 as 8-point favorites.
The Blue Demons are 11-28-3 ATS in their last 42 games following a win. DePaul is 3-14-1 ATS in its last 18 Monday games. The Blue Demons are 0-4 ATS in their last four road games. The Bulls are 17-6 ATS in their last 23 games following a win. The Bulls are 8-0 ATS in their last eight meetings with DePaul. Roll with South Florida Monday.
|03-31-19||Michigan State v. Duke -2||Top||68-67||Loss||-107||6 h 14 m||Show|
20* Michigan State/Duke Elite 8 No-Brainer on Duke -2
The Duke Blue Devils certainly feel like a team of destiny with the way they escaped with wins over UCF and Virginia Tech in the final seconds. They certainly won’t be phased if this one comes down to the wire, and I trust them to make the plays in the end.
Michigan State has had a very easy path to the Elite 8 with wins over Bradley, Minnesota and LSU. But now the Spartans meet their match finally in the Blue Devils, who were the favorites coming into the NCAA Tournament and the top overall seed. And it won’t help Michigan State not having Kyle Ahrens and now a banged-up Nick Ward, who suffered a hand injury against LSU.
Michigan State is 0-6 ATS after allowing 65 points or less in five straight games over the last two seasons. The Blue Devils are 10-2 ATS in their last 12 vs. Big Ten opponents. The Blue Devils are 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings. Bet Duke Sunday.
|03-31-19||Auburn +5 v. Kentucky||77-71||Win||100||3 h 29 m||Show|
15* Auburn/Kentucky Elite 8 ANNIHILATOR on Auburn +5
The Auburn Tigers are the hottest team in the NCAA Tournament, hands down. And yet they are catching points here against Kentucky when they shouldn’t be. The Tigers have won 11 straight coming in, and their last two victories were mighty impressive beating Kansas by 14 and North Carolina by 17 to prove they are for real.
Kentucky has been fortunate to get by Wofford and Houston in its last two games. Wofford’s best player went 0-for-12 from 3-point range, and the Wildcats only beat them by 6. Then Kentucky had to erase a 3-point deficit in the final minute and went on a 7-0 run to close to beat Houston by 4.
Adding to Auburn’s motivation is the fact that it lost both regular season meetings to Kentucky. But the Tigers have reeled off 11 straight wins since their last loss to the Wildcats and are a much different team than the one that lost those two games.
Auburn is 10-1 ATS after allowing 75 points or more in two straight games over the last two seasons. The Tigers are 6-0 ATS after a combined score of 175 points or more over the last two years. Take Auburn Sunday.
|03-30-19||Purdue v. Virginia -4||Top||75-80||Win||100||10 h 18 m||Show|
20* Purdue/Virginia Elite 8 No-Brainer on Virginia -4
The Purdue Boilermakers became the first team in NCAA Tournament history to make at least 16 3-pointers in two consecutive games. They went 16-of-30 against Villanova and 16-of-33 against Tennessee. I just can’t believe they can keep this hot shooting up for a 3rd consecutive games.
That’s especially the case considering they are up against one of the best defensive teams in the country in the Virginia Cavaliers in the Elite 8. The Cavaliers give up just 54.8 points per game and 38.1% shooting from the field, including 28.1% from 3-point range. And that’s playing in the rugged ACC. They’ll have an answer for Edwards, Kline and company in this one.
Virginia is 8-0 ATS in Saturday road games over the last two seasons. The Cavaliers are 10-1 ATS in road games after allowing 50 points or less over the last two seasons. Virginia is 44-20-1 ATS in its last 65 games overall. This is the year the Cavaliers finally get through to the Final Four. Bet Virginia Saturday.
|03-30-19||Blazers v. Pistons -5||90-99||Win||100||8 h 13 m||Show|
15* NBA Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Detroit Pistons -5
The Detroit Pistons are playing their best basketball of the season here down the stretch. They are 16-8 SU & 18-6 ATS in their last 24 games overall. The Pistons are 9-0 SU & 9-0 ATS in their last nine home games. Look for them to make easy work of the Portland Trail Blazers tonight.
The Blazers are in a tough spot tonight. They will be playing the 2nd of a back-to-back and their 3rd road game in 4 days. They are already short-handed missing two of their three best players in Jusuf Nurkic and CJ McCollum. They were able to get by the Bulls and Hawks without them, but the Pistons are a different animal.
Detroit is 14-3 ATS in home games after covering five or six of their last seven against the spread over the last two seasons. The Trail Blazers are 0-4 ATS in their last four games playing on zero rest. Portland is 1-6 ATS in its last seven trips to Detroit. Take the Pistons Saturday.
|03-29-19||Hornets -2 v. Lakers||115-129||Loss||-115||12 h 44 m||Show|
15* Hornets/Lakers NBA Late-Night BAILOUT on Charlotte -2
The Charlotte Hornets are 1.5 games out of 8th place in the Eastern Conference. They need wins like blood right now, and I’ll gladly back them as short road favorites over the hapless Los Angeles Lakers, who have nothing to play for but pride.
The Hornets are brimming with confidence right now. They are 4-0 SU & 4-0 ATS in their last four games overall. Jeremy Lamb hit a half-court shot at the buzzer to beat the Raptors outright as 11.5-point dogs two games ago, and that shot makes them feel invincible. They went on to upset the Spurs in overtime as 4.5-point dogs.
Now, the Hornets are rested and ready to go as they come in on two days’ rest. They are taking on a Lakers team that has completely folded down the stretch, going 4-13 SU & 4-13 ATS in their last 17 games overall. The Lakers are missing a ton of key players due to injury, and Lebron James is on a minutes restriction. They just don’t have the talent or the desire now to compete with Charlotte tonight.
The Hornets are 19-6-1 ATS in their last 26 Friday games. The Lakers are 7-25-1 ATS in their last 33 vs. Eastern Conference opponents. Los Angeles is 0-6 ATS in its last six Friday games. The Lakers are 1-7 ATS in their last eight games following a loss by more than 10 points. The Hornets are 10-2-1 ATS in their last 13 trips to Los Angeles. Take the Hornets Friday.
|03-29-19||Virginia Tech +7 v. Duke||Top||73-75||Win||100||11 h 2 m||Show|
20* Virginia Tech/Duke Sweet 16 No-Brainer on Virginia Tech +7
Everyone is making a big deal about Zion Williams coming back from injury. And since he has, the Blue Devils have been grossly overvalued. They Blue Devils are just 1-4 ATS since he returned, and 3-10 ATS in their last 13 games overall. I think they’re getting too much respect here again tonight.
What’s getting overlooked is Virginia Tech getting its best player in Justin Robinson back from injury in time for the NCAA Tournament. Robinson (13.4 PPG, 5.0 APG) is their leader and floor general. With him in the lineup, the Hokies are capable of beating anyone in the country.
Virginia Tech beat Duke 77-72 as 3-point home dogs in their most recent meeting this season. I know Zion didn’t play, but Robinson was out for that game as well. And Duke is extremely fortunate to still be alive after beating UCF 77-76 after trailing by 3 with only a few seconds remaining. They got a 4-point possession, and UCF missed two shots at the buzzer that magically stayed out.
Duke is 2-11 ATS vs. good shooting teams that make 45% or more of their shots after 15-plus games this season. The Hokies are 7-0 ATS in their last seven Friday games. The Blue Devils are 1-9 ATS in their last 10 games following a win. Duke is 0-4 ATS in its last four NCAA Tournament games. Bet Virginia Tech Friday.
|03-29-19||Blazers v. Hawks +3.5||118-98||Loss||-110||9 h 44 m||Show|
15* NBA Friday UPSET SHOCKER on Atlanta Hawks +3.5
The Atlanta Hawks have been the best-kept secret in the NBA here down the stretch. The betting public wants nothing to do with them because they are just 27-48 on the season. That has allowed for a great opportunity for sharp players to back them knowing that they are playing much better than their record.
Indeed, the Hawks are 13-4 ATS in their last 17 games overall. They have won three straight, including upset home wins over Utah and Philadelphia to really show what they are capable of. They also won by 10 on the road at New Orleans as 2.5-point favorites.
Now, the Hawks come in on two days’ rest, so they’ll be fresh and ready to go against the Blazers. The Blazers are getting too much respect for their blowout win at Chicago against the Bulls’ D-League team last time out. But this is where the injuries to CJ McCollum and Jusuf Nurkic really show up tonight against a Hawks team that is better than Portland minus those two key players.
The Hawks are 9-2 ATS in their last 11 vs. Western Conference opponents. Atlanta is 5-0 ATS in its last five games following a straight up win. Portland is 4-15 ATS in road games after failing to cover four or five of its last six ATS over the last three seasons. Take the Hawks Friday.
|03-29-19||Pacers v. Celtics -6.5||Top||112-114||Loss||-105||8 h 22 m||Show|
20* NBA Friday No-Doubt Rout on Boston Celtics -6.5
I love the spot for the Boston Celtics tonight. They trail the Indiana Pacers by one game for the 4th seed in the East, which would mean home-court advantage in the first round. These teams will meet in the first round for sure, so home-court advantage will be huge. The season series is tied 1-1, so this will determine the tiebreaker.
Boston comes in on two days’ rest and fully healthy for the first time in a long time. They are primed for a big effort at home, where they are 26-12 on the season. They beat Indiana 135-108 in their lone home meeting this season, and a similar blowout can be expected.
That’s especially the case when you consider how poorly the Pacers have been playing on the road here of late. That’s where they really miss Victor Oladipo’s leadership and ability to get big buckets on the highway. The Pacers are 0-9 SU & 1-8 ATS in their last nine road games, losing by 10.7 points per game on average.
Boston is 10-1 ATS after having lost four of its last five games over the last two seasons. It is coming back to win by 11.1 points per game on average in this spot. Bet the Celtics Friday.
|03-28-19||Oregon +8.5 v. Virginia||49-53||Win||100||13 h 44 m||Show|
15* Oregon/Virginia Sweet 16 Late-Night BAILOUT on Oregon +8.5
The Oregon Ducks are the hottest team in the tournament and still getting no respect from oddsmakers today as 8.5-point underdogs to the Virginia Cavaliers. The Ducks are 10-0 SU & 10-0 ATS in their last 10 games overall with eight of their wins coming by double-digits.
Everyone should have known they were for real when they dispatched a very good Wisconsin team 72-54 as 2-point dogs. They followed it up with a 73-54 win over a good UC-Irvine team as 4.5-point favorites in the Round of 32. To be able to score over 70 points on those two very solid defensive teams bodes well for them against Virginia.
The Ducks have been defending the 3-point line very well, and Kenny Wooten has been a shock blocking machine inside. They will be able to slow down Virginia inside and out, and that will be the key in them covering this inflated 8.5-point spread tonight. They only give up 39.9% shooting on the season and 29.1% from 3-point range.
The Cavaliers may win this game, but if they do it will go down to the wire. They have consistently underachieved in the NCAA Tournament, going just 1-5 ATS in their last six tournament games. Take Oregon Thursday.
|03-28-19||Clippers +9 v. Bucks||Top||118-128||Loss||-110||10 h 55 m||Show|
20* NBA Non-Conference GAME OF THE WEEK on Los Angeles Clippers +9
No team is playing better than the Los Angeles Clippers right now. The Clippers are 11-1 SU in their last 12 games overall with their only loss coming on the 2nd of a back-to-back against Portland. And yet they’re still getting no respect as 9-point dogs to the Milwaukee Bucks tonight.
This is a depleted Bucks team that is playing without Malcolm Brogdon, Nikola Mirotic, Pau Gasol, Tony Snell and Donte DiVencenzo. And the Bucks are in a massive letdown spot off their huge win over the Rockets on Tuesday on National TV. That was an MVP battle between Harden and Giannis and there was a lot of hype leading into it. I expect them to fall flat tonight.
Milwaukee has only won one of its last 14 meetings with the Clippers by more than 9 points. That makes for a 13-1 system backing the Clippers based on this 9-point spread. Bet the Clippers Thursday.
|03-28-19||Purdue v. Tennessee -1||Top||99-94||Loss||-115||10 h 39 m||Show|
20* Purdue/Tennessee Sweet 16 No-Brainer on Tennessee -1
I think we’re getting Tennessee at a great value Thursday. The Vols failed to cover the spread in each of their first two NCAA Tournament games. Because they didn’t cover when they easily could have, they are undervalued now.
The Vols held a double-digit lead over Colgate early but managed to win by just 7 as 17.5-point favorites. Then, they led Iowa by 25 but let the Hawkeyes come all the way back to tie the game and force overtime. They eventually won by 6 as 8-point favorites. They could have easily covered both games had they kept their foot on the gas.
Meanwhile, Purdue is overvalued after covering the spread in each of their first two tournament games. They won by 13 over Old Dominion as 12.5-point favorites, barely covering. And they’re really getting a lot of respect for beating Villanova by 26 as 3-point favorites. Nobody was beating Purdue that day as Carsen Edwards and company shot lights out and Villanova couldn’t throw the ball in the ocean.
I’m just not a big believer in Purdue because they rely too much on one player in Carsen Edwards to get their points. Tennessee is loaded with all five starters averaging double-digits scoring. Purdue won’t be able to beat them up inside like they do most opponents. Tennessee’s two best players are forwards Grant Williams and Admiral Schofield who combine to average over 35 points and 14 rebounds per game.
I actually like the fact that Tennessee is now battle-tested after having to stave off both Colgate and Iowa late. If this one comes down to the wire, I trust the Vols to make the necessary plays. The Vols are 13-1 ATS vs. teams who commit 12 or fewer turnovers per game over the last two seasons. Bet Tennessee Thursday.
|03-26-19||Creighton v. TCU -3.5||58-71||Win||100||9 h 8 m||Show|
15* Creighton/TCU NIT ANNIHILATOR on TCU -3.5
The TCU Horned Frogs are taking out their frustration from not making the NCAA Tournament on the rest of the NIT field. They have posted back-to-back blowout wins and covers over Sam Houston State by 13 as 12-point favorites and Nebraska by 16 as 4.5-point favorites.
Creighton has also handled its business at home, beating Loyola-Chicago by 9 and Memphis by 12. But the Bluejays now have to go on the road and face a Horned Frogs team that is 14-5 at home this season. It’s also a Horned Frogs team that can taste Madison Square Garden with another victory tonight, so they’ll continue to be max motivated.
Creighton only has four true road wins all season. The Horned Frogs are 11-0 ATS in their last 11 non-conference games. The Bluejays are 0-8 ATS in road games after covering four or five of their last six ATS over the last two seasons. TCU is 14-3 ATS after having won four of its last five games over the last three seasons. Roll with TCU Tuesday.
|03-26-19||Rockets +4 v. Bucks||Top||94-108||Loss||-103||8 h 23 m||Show|
20* Rockets/Bucks TNT No-Brainer on Houston Rockets +4
The Houston Rockets are 14-2 in their last 16 games overall with their two losses coming by a combined 3 points. They are playing their best basketball of the season and are ready to take down the Milwaukee Bucks, who have just recently been hit hard by injuries that will have them more worried about getting healthy for the playoffs than winning games down the stretch.
The Bucks will be without Malcolm Brogdon, Nikola Mirotic, Tony Snell and Pau Gasol tonight. The good news for them is that they have a four-game lead over the Raptors first 1st place in the East, and a 4.5-game lead over the Warriors for the 1st overall seed in the playoffs. They can certainly afford some losses here down the stretch.
Milwaukee is 13-29 ATS in home games after having won three of its last four games over the last three seasons. Houston is 5-0 ATS in its last five vs. Eastern Conference opponents. Bet the Rockets Tuesday.
|03-26-19||Spurs v. Hornets +4||116-125||Win||100||7 h 53 m||Show|
15* NBA Tuesday UPSET SHOCKER on Charlotte Hornets +4
The Charlotte Hornets are just two games out of 8th place in the Eastern Conference, trailing the Miami Heat for the final playoff spot. They have come up clutch by winning and covering against Minnesota, Boston and Toronto in three consecutive games, including their buzzer-beater from half court to beat the Raptors on the road. This team is playing with a ton of confidence now.
The Spurs are going to make the playoffs. They are simply playing for positioning at this point, and that’s it. They can’t get home court in the first round, but they could get anywhere from the 5th to the 8th seed. In all reality, that’s not a lot to play for. Don’t be surprised to see Greg Popovich start to rest players when he gets the chance here down the stretch.
The Hornets went into San Antonio and won 108-93 as 7-point road dogs in their first meeting this season. And now they are catching 4 points at home in the rematch in what is a must-win for them, and not a must-win for the Spurs. It’s especially important considering the Hornets go on the road for six of their next seven games after this contest.
Charlotte is 13-1 ATS vs. bad pressure defensive teams that force 12 or fewer turnovers over the last three seasons. It is winning by 9.5 points per game in this spot. The home team is 5-2 ATS in the last seven meetings. Take the Hornets Tuesday.
|03-25-19||Nets +6.5 v. Blazers||144-148||Win||100||10 h 10 m||Show|
15* Nets/Blazers NBA TV Late-Night BAILOUT on Brooklyn +6.5
The Brooklyn Nets have really turned it on with the playoffs approaching. They have won six of their last nine with their only three losses all coming on the road to three of the best teams in the West in OKC, Utah and the LA Clippers. But they’ve also gone on the road and beaten the Lakers, Kings and Hawks during this stretch.
Now, the Nets come in on two days’ rest after beating the Lakers on Friday. And while they’re fully healthy, the same cannot be said for the Pistons, who are missing CJ McCollum. They have been able to squeak by Indiana, Dallas and Detroit at home in their first three games without him. And if they win tonight, it won’t be by more than 6 points.
Brooklyn is 7-0 ATS in road games after two straight games where they attempted 90 or more shots this season. The Nets are 14-4 ATS when revenging a home loss by 10 points or more over the last two seasons. Brooklyn is 13-2 ATS in road games after allowing 105 points or more in four straight games over the last two seasons. The Nets are 9-2 ATS in their last 11 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. Take the Nets Monday.
|03-25-19||Norfolk State +14.5 v. Colorado||60-76||Loss||-110||9 h 2 m||Show|
15* NIT PLAY OF THE DAY on Norfolk State +14.5
Norfolk State has now won nine of its last 11 games with its two losses both coming by exactly 3 points. They should not be catching 14 points here against Colorado in the NIT. I expect the Spartans to give the Buffaloes a run for their money tonight.
Norfolk State proved what it was capable of with an 80-79 road win at Alabama as 16-point dogs in the opening round of the NIT. Meanwhile, Colorado struggled to get past Dayton 78-73 at home and was fortunate to cover the 4.5-point spread.
Colorado is 4-15 ATS in its last 19 tournament games. The Buffaloes are 5-15 ATS after having won six or seven of their last eight games over the last three seasons. Colorado is 20-36 ATS off a win over the last three seasons. Roll with Norfolk State Monday.
|03-25-19||Thunder -5.5 v. Grizzlies||Top||103-115||Loss||-110||8 h 10 m||Show|
20* NBA Monday No-Doubt Rout on Oklahoma City Thunder -5.5
It’s time to ‘buy low’ on the Oklahoma City Thunder tonight. They have lost four of their last five both straight up and ATS, but all five games were against playoff teams. In fact, they have played nine straight games against playoff teams coming in, so their recent struggles can largely be attributed to the schedule.
Now, the Thunder finally get to play a non-playoff team in the Memphis Grizzlies, who are so decimated by injuries right now that they can’t possibly be competitive tonight. They are playing without Jaren Jackson Jr, Kyle Anderson, CJ Miles, Avery Bradley and Joakim Noah tonight.
It’s no wonder the Grizzlies have lost four of their last five games overall despite playing four non-playoff teams. They have played five of their last six against non-playoff teams as well. They are coming off a 13-point home loss to Minnesota, and a similar beat down can be expected in OKC’s favor tonight.
Memphis is 1-10 ATS in home games off a home loss by 10 points or more over the last three seasons. The Thunder are 7-1 ATS in their last eight Monday games. Oklahoma City is 9-3 ATS in its last 12 games when playing on two days’ rest. The favorite is 12-4 ATS in the last 16 meetings. Bet the Thunder Monday.
|03-24-19||Cal-Irvine +5 v. Oregon||54-73||Loss||-105||16 h 39 m||Show|
15* UC-Irvine/Oregon TBS Late-Night BAILOUT on UC-Irvine +5
The UC-Irvine Anteaters proved they were for real by beating Kansas State 70-64 outright as 4-point dogs. Now they further validate their 31-5 record this season by topping the red hot Oregon Ducks on Sunday in the Round of 32.
The Ducks are getting way too much respect from oddsmakers at this point due to going 9-0 SU & 9-0 ATS in their last nine games overall. But the bulk of their run came in eight games against weak Pac-12 completion. They did beat Wisconsin 72-54, but they went on a huge run to close that game and shot 54.9% as a team while Wisconsin shot 33.3%. Everything that could go right for them, did.
The Anteaters aren’t getting enough respect for their 17-game winning streak, and they know it. They will continue to thrive in the underdog role here Sunday. This is a UC-Irvine team that beat the likes of Texas A&M and St. Mary’s in true road games in the non-conference. They aren’t afraid of taking down big conference teams.
UC-Irvine is 10-1 ATS when the total is 129.5 or less this season. This is expected to be a low-scoring affair, so getting points with the dog is always good when that’s the case. Irvine is 7-0 ATS vs. poor foul drawing teams that attempt 18 or fewer FT per game after 15-plus games this season. The Anteaters are 12-3-1 ATS in their last 16 games overall. Roll with UC-Irvine Sunday.
|03-24-19||Ohio State v. Houston -5.5||Top||59-74||Win||100||15 h 53 m||Show|
20* CBB Sunday No-Doubt Rout on Houston -5.5
I liked No. 6 seed Iowa State against Ohio State and lost. The Cyclones are 5.5-point favorites in that game, and they played their worst game of the season. Only 3 players showed up, and two of them were off the bench. It’s safe to say that if I liked Iowa State -5.5 against Ohio State, then I certainly like No. 3 seed Houston against the Buckeyes in the exact same price range as -5.5-point favorites.
The Cougars made easy work of Georgia State 84-55 in the Round of 64. That means they were able to rest their starters, which is a huge rest advantage over the Buckeyes, who were fighting tooth and nail to beat Iowa State until the closing seconds when the Cyclones missed a potential game-tying 3-pointer.
Houston also got to play the earlier game, so they have had a few extra hours to rest unlike Ohio State, which played the final game of the night in Tulsa. I always like backing teams in tournaments who got to play the early game and won in a blowout against teams that played the late game and were in a dog fight. The Cougars got a chance to watch Ohio State and scout them afterward.
Houston is 6-0 ATS after failing to cover two of their last three against the spread this season. The Cougars remain undervalued because they lost outright to Cincinnati in the Big East title game. But you could see that coming from a mile away because they weren’t motivated after beating Cincinnati twice in the regular season. They are ‘all in’ now with their season on the line, and they will make easy work of the overmatched Buckeyes. Bet Houston Sunday.
|03-24-19||Buffalo +4 v. Texas Tech||58-78||Loss||-109||12 h 8 m||Show|
15* CBB Sunday UPSET SHOCKER on Buffalo +4
The Buffalo Bulls own a 32-3 record identical to the Houston Cougars, who I also like Sunday. I’m backing the Bulls knowing that they kind of went through the motions in the regular season, and now they are putting both feet forward in the NCAA Tournament, living up to their potential.
That showed in a 91-74 win over Arizona State in their Round of 64 showdown. And now they take on the Texas Tech Red Raiders, who lost to West Virginia 74-79 in the Big 12 Tournament. This is a Red Raiders team that is getting a lot of respect for their run to the Elite 8 last season, but they lost almost everyone from that team.
Give Chris Beard credit for guiding this undermanned Texas Tech team to a share of the regular season Big 12 title. This is still a very good Red Raiders team, but they’re nowhere near as good as the team that made the Elite 8 last year. The only key player from that team is Jarrett Culver, and while he is having a monster season, he has to do too much on his own. Buffalo is a team that plays team basketball, and I’ll gladly take team basketball over one star any day of the week.
Buffalo is 10-1 ATS in its last 11 neutral court games with a total of 145 to 149.5. The Bulls are 9-2-1 ATS in their last 12 non-conference games. Buffalo is 20-6-2 ATS in its last 28 neutral site games. Texas Tech is 2-6 ATS in its last eight non-conference games. Take Buffalo Sunday.
|03-24-19||Nuggets -1.5 v. Pacers||88-124||Loss||-109||11 h 3 m||Show|
15* NBA Sunday PLAY OF THE DAY on Denver Nuggets -1.5
The Denver Nuggets are neck-and-neck with the Golden State Warriors for 1st place in the Western Conference. They actually lead the Warriors by 0.5 games for 1st place. They know their best chance to beat them in a 7-game series is to have home-court advantage, so they should be max motivated in every game they play the rest of the way.
The Indiana Pacers are in a different position. They certainly want to get home games if they can, but there’s no doubt the Celtics catch them and pass them for 4th place before the season is over. The Pacers only hold a one-game lead over the Celtics for 4th place. And this is an Indiana team playing without its best player in Oladipo, and possibly missing Darren Collison Sunday, who is questionable with a quad strain.
Reality has certainly hit the Pacers hard here of late being without Oladipo. They have lost four straight and two of those losses came by double-digits. Meanwhile, this max-motivated Nuggets team has put themselves in this great position of getting the No. 1 seed in the West by winning six straight coming in. They’ll make it 7 in a row Sunday with a win and cover at Indiana.
The Nuggets are 5-2 ATS in their last seven road games. The Pacers are 2-9 ATS in their last 11 vs. a team with a winning % above .600. Indiana is 0-5 ATS in its last five games off a loss. Denver is 10-4 ATS in its last 14 trips to Indiana. Take the Nuggets Sunday.
|03-24-19||Iowa v. Tennessee -7.5||Top||77-83||Loss||-108||6 h 8 m||Show|
20* Iowa/Tennessee CBS Early ANNIHILATOR on Tennessee -7.5
The Iowa Hawkeyes are getting a lot of love from oddsmakers after upsetting Cincinnati 79-72 in the Round of 64. It’s easy to forget that Iowa was getting dominated by 13 points in that game, but had a huge comeback win. I know because I had Cincinnati, and it was a bad beat.
That’s why I’ll fade Iowa today knowing that they can’t possibly hang with a team the caliber of Tennessee today. The Hawkeyes have gone 2-9 ATS in their last 11 games overall and were huge money burners prior to that win over Cincinnati. I believe it was an aberration, and not the norm.
Tennessee, on the other hand, failed to cover in a 77-70 win over Colgate. They jumped out to a huge double-digit lead before Colgate came back and made it interesting. And because they failed to cover as 17.5-point favorites, they are now undervalued.
Iowa is 0-6 ATS after a game with five or fewer offensive rebounds over the last two seasons. Tennessee is 16-4 ATS in road games off a non-conference game over the last three seasons. The Hawkeyes are 2-7 ATS in their last nine NCAA Tournament games. Iowa is 0-5 ATS in its last five games off a win. The Vols are 3-1-1 ATS in their last 5 vs. Big Ten foes. Bet Tennessee Sunday.
|03-23-19||Auburn -2 v. Kansas||Top||89-75||Win||100||12 h 11 m||Show|
20* Auburn/Kansas CBB Late-Night BAILOUT on Auburn -2
The Auburn Tigers have now won nine straight games. They are as hot as any team in the tournament. And I think the fact that they only won by a single point against New Mexico State has them undervalued in the Round of 32. They led that game by 13 late and the Aggies made a ferocious comeback in the final minutes, taking advantage of several Auburn turnovers. It was a bad beat for Auburn backers like myself.
The Jayhawks, conversely, are getting a lot of respect for their 34-point win over Northeastern. While impressive, we cannot quickly forget their 12-point loss to Iowa State in the Big 12 Championship. And Northeastern isn’t nearly as good as New Mexico State.
The fact of the matter is Auburn is a much more talented team than Kansas right now in their current state. The Jayhawks are still missing two of their best players, while the Tigers are fully healthy and loaded under Bruce Pearl. The Tigers know this is their chance to do something special, and they won’t let Kansas stand in the way today.
Kansas is 0-7 ATS in all Saturday games played away from home this season. The Jayhawks are 0-6 ATS off a win by 15 points or more this season. Kansas is 0-6 ATS after allowing 25 points or less in the first half last game over the last two seasons. These three trends combine for a 19-0 system backing the Tigers. Bet Auburn Saturday.
|03-23-19||Minnesota +10.5 v. Michigan State||50-70||Loss||-104||10 h 13 m||Show|
15* CBB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on Minnesota +10.5
I was in my home town of Des Moines Thursday watching games all day at Wells Fargo Arena. I got to see Michigan State and Minnesota first-hand. And from my takeaways, I’m convinced Minnesota is catching too many points tonight.
First of all, it was essentially a home game for Minnesota as they had probably 3/4 of the fans in attendance. They crushed Louisville 86-76 in what was one of their most impressive performances of the season. That was a Top 25 Louisville team defensively, and the Gophers did whatever they wanted to, getting layup after layup and cashing in open 3-pointers time and time again.
I have been really impressed with Minnesota here down the stretch of the season. They beat Big Ten co-champ Purdue twice, topped what was a hot Penn State team, and also beat Louisville in four of their last six games. And now they’re up against a Michigan State team that I think they can be competitive with today due to being without both Joshua Langford and Kyle Ahrens, and Nick Ward clearly isn’t 100%.
I also watched Michigan State losing to Bradley for the majority of the game. That was a 55-55 game late before the Spartans pulled away for a misleading 76-65 victory. Bradley is not very good, and they had the Spartans on the ropes. Like they’ve done many times here down the stretch, the Spartans won the game in the last few minutes. And if they win today, it will be another nail biter against a Minnesota team playing its best basketball of the season.
Michigan State is 0-6 ATS after four straight games where opponent had 31 or fewer rebounds over the last two seasons. The Golden Gophers are 4-1 ATS in their last five neutral site games. The Spartans are 0-4 ATS in their last four NCAA Tournament games. Plus, the Spartans were actually outnumbered by Bradley fans, so it felt like a home game for Bradley too. This will 100% be a home game for the Gophers. Take Minnesota Saturday.
|03-23-19||Heat v. Wizards -1.5||Top||113-108||Loss||-104||9 h 14 m||Show|
20* NBA Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Washington Wizards -1.5
The Washington Wizards are still clinging on to hope of making the playoffs. The team they are chasing is the Miami Heat, and they get a shot at the Heat tonight. This is clearly a must-win game for the Wizards, and I fully expect them to lay it all on the line to get the victory at home Saturday.
The Wizards gave a big effort on Thursday but came up short in a 5-point home loss to Denver as 8.5-point dogs. They had yesterday off, and they also have two more days off after this game before embarking on a four-game road trip. That’s another reason they should be ‘all in’ tonight knowing they have two days off after this.
Miami is in a very difficult situation. The Heat will be playing the 2nd of a back-to-back after a loss at Milwaukee last night, and they’ll also be playing their 5th game in 7 days. Making matters worse is the fact that they are expected to be without both Justise Winslow and Rodney McGruder.
Washington is 17-5 ATS in home games when revenging a loss this season, including 13-3 ATS in home games when revenging a road loss. The Wizards are 6-1 ATS in their last seven games following a loss. Washington is 22-13 ATS at home this season. Roll with the Wizards Saturday.
|03-22-19||St. Louis v. Virginia Tech -10||52-66||Win||100||50 h 50 m||Show|
15* Saint Louis/VA Tech TruTV Late-Night BAILOUT on Virginia Tech -10
Virginia Tech gets Justin Robinson back, their best player. They are the most dangerous 4-plus seed in the entire tournament now. Virginia Tech beat Duke late in the season, lost to Florida State in OT, and lost to Virginia by 6. They showed they could play with anyone down the stretch.
Virginia Tech is 10-1 ATS as a neutral court favorite of 6.5 to 12 points. They are winning by 17.5 points per game in this spot. The Hokies are 6-0 ATS in their last six Friday games. Virginia Tech is 5-1 ATS in their last six neutral site games. Roll with Virginia Tech Friday.
|03-22-19||Ohio State v. Iowa State -5.5||Top||62-59||Loss||-106||49 h 16 m||Show|
20* Ohio State/Iowa State TBS No-Brainer on Iowa State -5.5
Iowa State is fully healthy for basically the first time all season. And it was nice to see what they were capable of when fully healthy and focused in the Big 12 Tournament. They won their conference tournament by beating Baylor (by 17), Kansas State (by 4) and Kansas (by 12).
I think the Cyclones are one of the most talented teams in the country, and they are certainly under-seeded. I fully expect them to make a deep run. They have rabid fans that will travel the six hours to Tulsa, and if they make the Sweet 16, it’s only three hours from Ames to Kansas City, which is where the Big 12 Tournament was held.
Ohio State doesn’t even belong in the NCAA Tournament. The Buckeyes went just 19-14 this season nd struggled mightily down the stretch. They went just 3-7 SU & 4-6 ATS in their last 10 games overall with their three wins coming over Northwestern, Iowa and Indiana. They went 0-5 against NCAA Tournament teams not named Iowa during that stretch with all five losses coming by 6 points or more, and three by double-digits.
Ohio State is 0-6 ATS when playing with five or six days’ rest over the last two seasons. Iowa State is 8-1 ATS as a neutral court favorite of 6 points or less or PK over the last three years. The Buckeyes are 0-8 ATS in their last eight NCAA Tournament games. Ohio State is 0-6-1 ATS in its last seven vs. Big 12 opponents. These four trends combine for a 28-1 system backing the Cyclones. Take Iowa State Friday.
|03-22-19||Liberty v. Mississippi State -6||80-76||Loss||-110||47 h 7 m||Show|
15* CBB Friday No-Doubt Rout on Mississippi State -6
The Mississippi State Bulldogs are on a roll to close the season. They are 7-3 SU in their last 10 games overall and their only losses came on the road to Auburn and Tennessee (twice).
Plays against an underdog (Liberty) - off a win over a conference rival as an underdog of 6 points or more, a top-level team (80% wins or more) playing a team with a winning record are 33-9 (78.6%) ATS since 1997.
The Bulldogs are 9-1 ATS in their last 10 Friday games. Mississippi State is 4-1 ATS in its last five NCAA Tournament games. The Bulldogs are 35-16-1 ATS in their last 52 games off an ATS loss. Roll with Mississippi State Friday.
|03-22-19||Colgate v. Tennessee -17.5||70-77||Loss||-104||43 h 31 m||Show|
15* CBB Friday Afternoon Line Mistake on Tennessee -17.5
Tennessee plays Colgate. Colgate has no chance of staying within 17.5 points of Tennessee. The Vols will roll by 20-plus in this showdown.
The Vols are highly motivated following a bad loss to Auburn in the SEC Tournament. Colgate lost to New Jersey Tech in the non-conference, and they lost to Syracuse by 21 on the road and South Florida by 10 on the road. They also lost by double-digits on the road to Penn State and Pitt, while also losing to Navy on the road.
Tennessee is 8-1 ATS after a a game with 5 or less offensive over the last 3 seasons. The Vols are 12-4 ATS in their last 16 games following double-digit loss. Bet the Vols Friday.
|03-22-19||Iowa v. Cincinnati -3||Top||79-72||Loss||-109||40 h 46 m||Show|
25* Round of 64 GAME OF THE YEAR on Cincinnati -3
This is my favorite play of any of the Round of 64 games. This is also the first game on the board Friday, so start your day a winner. I really think Cincinnati is under-seeded getting a #7 seed. They went 28-6 this season in what turned out to be a loaded American Athletic Conference.
Four teams made the NCAA Tournament from the AAC in Cincinnati, Houston, UCF and Temple. And the Bearcats got their revenge from two regular season losses to Houston with an impressive 69-57 win over the Cougars in the AAC title game.
There’s probably not a player in the tournament I trust more with the game on the line than Cincinnati’s Jarron Cumberland. He averages nearly 19 PPG and can get his own shot whenever he wants. But this is a deep Bearcats team with six players averaging at least 8 PPG.
One of my favorite things about this game is that the committee basically made up for under-seeding the Bearcats by basically giving them a home game. This game will be played in Columbus, Ohio, which is just a 90-minute drive from Cincinnati’s campus.
They’ll be up against an Iowa team that really faded down the stretch, which is become a common theme for them in the Fran McCaffery era. The Hawkeyes are just 4-6 SU & 1-9 ATS in their last 10 games overall. Their only four wins came against Northwestern, Rutgers, Indiana & Illinois, which are four of the worst teams in the Big Ten.
The Hawkeyes needed buzzer beaters to beat both Northwestern and Rutgers, and they needed a late 3-pointer to force overtime against Indiana at home, where they eventually won. They were blasted by 21 points by Michigan in the Big Ten Tournament.
Cincinnati is a team that plays similar to the way Michigan does. They are a physical team that slows down the tempo, always looking for the best shot, and they’ll make Iowa play defense for 30 seconds. The Hawkeyes don’t play much defense.
Iowa is better against teams that want to run with them, and Cincinnati does not fit the bill. The Hawkeyes have been terrible against teams that slow it down and control the tempo. And that’s how I see this game playing out. I also don’t expect Iowa fans to travel that well because they have lost faith in this team down the stretch.
Iowa is 3-14 ATS in road games off a loss over the last three seasons. The Hawkeyes are 1-7 ATS in their last eight eight NCAA Tournament games. I think Cincinnati is by far the superior team, and with home-court advantage, this is a very short number to have to lay with them. Bet Cincinnati Friday.
|03-21-19||Montana v. Michigan -14.5||55-74||Win||100||25 h 18 m||Show|
15* Montana/Michigan TNT No-Brainer on Michigan -14.5
Montana is a popular underdog, but they shouldn’t be. This line has been bet from 16 down to 15 and 14.5 even in some places. I think the value is there to pull the trigger on the Michigan Wolverines in this one.
Montana is 137th in the Kenpom rankings and played the 301st-toughest schedule in the country. Michigan is 5th in the Kenpom rankings and played the 19th-toughest schedule.
When Montana took a step up in class in the non-conference, they lost badly. Their two toughest opponents in the non-conference were Creighton and Arizona, two teams that didn’t even make the NCAA Tournament. Well, they lost by 26 to Creighton and by 19 to Arizona. Michigan is far and away the toughest team that the Grizzlies will have faced, and that’s why they should be able to cover 15 here.
Michigan is 9-1 ATS off a conference loss over the last two seasons. The Wolverines are 6-0 ATS in road games after scoring 60 points or less over the last two seasons. Michigan is 11-1 ATS in all games following a loss over the last two years. The Wolverines are 40-19-4 ATS in their last 63 neutral site games. Travis DeCuire is 7-17 ATS in all tournament games as the coach of Montana. The Grizzlies are 1-6 ATS in their last seven non-conference games. Montana is 0-4 ATS in its last four vs. Big Ten opponents. Bet Michigan Thursday.
|03-21-19||Seton Hall v. Wofford -2.5||68-84||Win||100||25 h 10 m||Show|
15* Seton Hall/Wofford CBS Late-Night BAILOUT on Wofford -2.5
Wofford is 29-4 and ranked in the Top 20 for good reason. They are also 21st in the Kenpom rankings, well ahead of Seton Hall in 56th. They Terriers are favored for a reason here, and they should be bigger favorites to boot.
Wofford played one of the tougher non-conference schedules of all the mid majors, checking in at 121st in strength of schedule. Their four losses this season came to UNC, Oklahoma, Kansas and Mississippi State, which are four NCAA Tournament teams. They also won at South Carolina by 20, and beat UNC-Greensboro three times by 29, 30 and 12 points, and that’s a Greensboro team that was on the bubble.
It’s time to ’sell high’ on Seton Hall, which won four of its last five games while going 5-0 ATS to punch its ticket into the Big Dance. This is a Pirates team that is way too reliant on one player in Myles Powell, who averages 22.9 PPG. They only have one other double-digit scorer, and that’s Myles Cale at 10.3 PPG. Wofford has a deadly trio that all average 13.2 PPG or more, led by Fletcher Magee (20.5 PPG).
Wofford is 11-1 ATS in its last 12 games overall. The Terriers are 6-0 ATS in their last six games vs. a team with a winning record. The Pirates are 2-8 ATS in their last 10 games following a loss. Take Wofford Thursday.
|03-21-19||Murray State v. Marquette -3||83-64||Loss||-117||20 h 26 m||Show|
15* Murray State/Marquette TBS ANNIHILATOR on Marquette -3
There’s just too much love for JA Morant and the Murray State Racers in this one. They are a very popular underdog pick because they won their conference tournament and beat Belmont in the title game. As a result, this line has been bet from 4.5 down to 3.5 and even 3 in some spots.
I think it’s time to ’sell high’ on Murray State and ‘buy low’ on Marquette, which the betting public wants nothing to do with after losing five of their final six games of the season. But all five losses came by single-digits as they finally had some bad luck in close games after having a lot of good luck in close games prior to that. This is still a 24-9 Golden Eagles team and arguably the best team in the Big East.
Murray State did not impress me at all in non-conference. They lost the two toughest games they played to Alabama and Auburn, and I would argue that Marquette will be the best team they have faced yet, if it’s not Auburn. The Racers played the 272nd toughest schedule in the country, while Marquette played the 57th.
Marquette is 6-0 ATS in road games vs. good shooting teams that make 45% or better after 15-plus games this season. The Golden Eagles are 13-3 ATS after failing to cover four or five of their last six against the spread over the last three seasons. They are winning by 14.4 points per game in this spot. The Golden Eagles are 4-0 ATS in their last four non-conference games. Roll with Marquette Thursday.
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