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|Date||Match Up||Rating||Score||Result||Profit||Lead Time||Analysis|
|12-08-18||Notre Dame v. UCLA -6||Top||62-65||Loss||-115||15 h 17 m||Show|
My 9* Rivalry Rout is on UCLA (10:30 EST).
The Irish’s four game win streak was snapped in an 85-80 loss to Oklahoma last time out and I think ND will suffer a predictable letdown here as well in this difficult road venue.
UCLA on the other hand avoided any “traps” heading into this one with back-to-back convincing victories over Hawaii and Loyola Marymount.
The Irish were completely dominated by the Sooners on both ends of the court in their latest setback. They’d go on to shoot just 28.0 percent from range. TJ Gibbs was a bright spot in defeat with 18 points, three assists and three boards.
UCLA was led by 17 points from both Kris Wilkes and Jaylen Hands in the Bruins most recent win.
UCLA has done well in this spot for bettors as well, going 5-1 ATS in their last six non-conference home games following a two games or more unbeaten streak, while Notre Dame has struggled, going just 2-5 ATS in its last seven non-conference contests.
For all the reasons listed above, lay the points.
|12-08-18||Kings v. Pacers -3||Top||97-107||Win||100||12 h 54 m||Show|
My 10* GAME OF THE WEEK is on the Indiana Pacers (7:05 EST).
Both teams are playing the second game of a back-to-back, which really makes home court a big advantage for the Pacers in this match-up in my professional opinion.
The Kings come in off a big 129-110 road win in Cleveland, while The Pacers return home off a big 112-90 win over Orlando on Friday.
Note that this is an in season revenge game for Indiana, which fell 111-110 in Sacramento only last week.
It’s a natural letdown spot for Sacramento, which plays its final game of its Eastern swing. Sacramento averages 114.7 PPG and it concedes 116.6. De’Aaron Fox averages 17.3 points and 7.5 assists per night.
Indiana comes in having won straight. The Pacers average 105.8 PPG and they concede just 102.1. Victor Oladipo leads the nightly charge with 21.4 points, 6.6 boards and 1.56 steal per game.
Even with Oladipo out, I love the Pacers here. Note that Sacramento is a terrible 10-17 ATS in its last 27 after covering five or six of its last seven games against the spread, while Indiana is 5-2 ATS in its last seven when playing the second game of a back to back.
For all the reasons listed above, lay the points.
|12-08-18||Rockets -2.5 v. Mavs||104-107||Loss||-110||11 h 44 m||Show|
My 8* Battle 4 Texas is on the Houston Rockets (6:05 EST).
Houston will be desperate her after its terrible start. The Rockets come in off a humbling 118-91 road loss to Utah on Thursday.
After a great stretch, the Mavs have also come back down to Earth, most recently getting drubbed 118-91 on the road in New Orleans.
Note that this is an in-season revenge game for the Rockets too after the Mavericks took a 128-108 road victory in the first match-up of the season.
Overall the Rockets are averaging 108.5 PPG and conceding 109.8. James Harden leads the nightly charge with 29.8 points, 5.6 boards and 8.3 assists per game.
The Mavericks are averaging 110.6 PPG and they’re allowing 109.6. Luke Doncic leads the way with 18.1 points, 6.5 boards and 4.3 assists per night.
I’ll point out though that Houston is 18-11 ATS in its last 29 in trying to revenge a home loss vs. an opponent, while Dallas is only 2-8 ATS in its last ten (including 1-3 ATS this season) after scoring 105 points or more in three straight games.
Lay the points.
|12-08-18||Michigan State -3 v. Florida||63-59||Win||100||6 h 56 m||Show|
My 8* Eye-Opener is on Michigan State (12:00 EST).
MSU posted a 90-68 home win over Iowa in its latest action, while Florida beat WVU 66-56.
Michigan State is averaging 87.2 PPG and it’s conceding 68.7. After a loss to Louisville the Spartans have won two straight. In the latest victory Nick Ward had 26 points and went 10 from 10 from the floor.
Florida is averaging only 71 PPG and it’s allowing 61.6. KeVaughn Allen had 19 points in the win over the Mountaineers.
Note though that the Gators are only 1-4 ATS in their last five following an ATS victory, while Michigan State is 4-0 ATS In its last four vs. teams with a win percentage above .600 and 4-1 ATS in its last five following a SU victory.
I have a hard time seeing the Gators’ offense matching pace down the stretch. Lay the points.
|12-06-18||Rockets v. Jazz -1.5||Top||91-118||Win||100||15 h 21 m||Show|
My 10* Knockout is on the Utah Jazz (10:35 EST).
Houston has allowed 116.1 PPG over its last nine games. It has caused the team's defensive rating to tumble to 25th among NBA teams. The Rockets' offense has not been up to last year's standard (109.2 PPG ranks 18th) ) and it hasn't been able to keep up. The result has been five losses over their last seven contests. Meanwhile, Utah has won four of its last six games and knocked down a franchise-record 20 three-pointers in Tuesday's 139-105 rout of the San Antonio Spurs (10 different players connected on at least one from behind the arc during the impressive victory).
Utah cruised to a 100-89 road win in the first matchup of this series back in late October and I believe it’ll have an even easier time of it today.
Note as well that Utah is 4-1 ATS in its last five when playing on one days rest, while Houston is interestingly 0-4 ATS in its last four vs. teams with a home winning percentage of less than .400.
Rockets’ star Chris Paul was just one of eight form the floor in the loss to Minnesota most recently and I think he’ll struggle again here against this surging home side.
Lay the points.
|12-05-18||Utah State v. BYU -1.5||80-95||Win||100||13 h 43 m||Show|
My 9* Rivalry Rout is on BYU (9:00 EST).
BYU comes in as the “hungrier” team after a three-game losing streak. Utah State on the other hand is primed for a predictable letdown here in my opinion after back-to-back victories.
The Aggies currently rank among the nation’s best in scoring and rebounding, but strength of schedule has to be taken into account in my opinion. In their 89-65 blowout win over UC Irvine last Saturday, Quinn Taylor had 21 points, six boards and one assist.
The Cougars have lost three straight after winning five straight. Most recently BYU lost 113-103 to Weber State. Yoeli Childs had 31 points, seven boards and three assists.
I’ll point out as well that Utah State is just 3-7 ATS in its last ten as a road underdog of six points or less or pick, while BYU is a perfect 5-0 ATS in its last five after failing to cover the spread in four of its last five games.
For all the reasons listed above, play on BYU.
|12-05-18||Nebraska v. Minnesota +3||78-85||Win||100||13 h 42 m||Show|
My 8* Showdown is on Minnesota (9:00 EST).
Minnesota comes in as the “hungrier” team after losing two of its last three. The competition has been stiff though, most recently to Ohio State and Boston College.
The Cornhuskers come in complacent here in my opinion after three straight wins over Illinois, Clemson and Western Illinois.
Nebraska comes in off a satisfying 75-60 win over Illinois. Guard James Palmer Jr. had 23 points.
Minnesota had a difficult time moving the ball vs. the No. 17 ranked scoring defense in Ohio State. But the Golden Gophers come in hungry and focused and I think they make the most of the home court advantage.
I’ll point out as well that Nebraska is just 8-9 ATS in its last 17 after covering two of its last thee vs. the spread. while Minnesota is already a perfect 3-0 ATS at home this season.
For all the reasons listed above, grab the points.
|12-05-18||76ers +6 v. Raptors||102-113||Loss||-105||12 h 58 m||Show|
My 9* Showdown is on the Philadelphia 76ers (8:05 EST).
Philadelphia lost 129-112 in Toronto in the first matchup of the year back on October 30th. The 76ers have since “found” themselves and they come into this one on top form. While the outright victory is clearly not out of the question, I’ll recommend grabbing the points in a contest which I see being decided by whichever of these talented teams has its hands on the ball last.
The Raptors are ripe for the picking after a disheartening 106-103 home loss to Denver. The 76ers on the other hand have won four straight, most recently a 103-95 victory at home over Memphis.
Philadelphia averages 114.2 PPG and it allows 111.8. Joel Embiid averages 27 points, 13.4 boards and two blocks per game.
Toronto averages 116.6 PPG and it concedes 108.3. Kawhi Leonard leads the way with 25.6 points and 8.5 boards per game.
I’ll point out though that Philly is already a solid 4-2 ATS this year in trying to revenge a loss vs. an opponent, while Toronto is only 5-8 ATS at home this season.
Grab the points.
|12-05-18||Nuggets -5 v. Magic||Top||124-118||Win||100||11 h 59 m||Show|
My 10* Wipeout Winner is on the Denver Nuggets (7:05 EST).
At some point the Nuggets are going to have a letdown, but I don’t think that tonight is that night.
Denver enters off a confidence building 106-103 road win over the Raptors.
The Magic come in off a very satisfying win in Miami just last night and I think they’re primed for a predictable letdown vs. this deep and talented non-conference visiting side.
The Nuggets come in on top form having won six straight. Denver averages 110.2 PPG and it concedes 102.7. Nikola Jokic leads the way with 16.7 points, 9.7 boards and 7.5 assists per night.
The Magic average 105.8 PPG and they concede 108.1. Clearly that’s not a recipe for long-term success. Nikola Vucevic leads the nightly charge with 21 points, 11.3 boards and 3.8 assists per night.
I’ll point out as well that Orlando is just 3-7 ATS in its last ten home games vs. a team with a road winning percentage of greater than .600, while Denver is 4-0 ATS in its last four on the road.
Look for these strong trends to continue and lay the points.
|12-05-18||Ohio State v. Illinois +5.5||Top||77-67||Loss||-105||10 h 43 m||Show|
My 10* Underdog Shocker is on Illinois (7:00 EST).
Ohio State enters off a satisfying 79-59 home win over Minnesota and I think it’ll get caught looking past its lowly opponent today. Illinois is hungry here, off a 75-60 loss to Nebraska in its Big Ten opener. The Illini play with revenge here as well (not surprisingly), after Ohio State posted the 75-67 home win last season.
The Buckeyes are 7-1 and averaging 78.4 PPG, while conceding 60.1. Kaleb Wesson was a standout in the latest victory with 15 points.
The Illini are averaging 77.4 PPG and they’re allow 77.1. Illinoishas faced a stiff opening schedule though and I think a little home cooking is just what the doctor ordered. Trent Frazier leads the nightly charge and he’ll be eager to return to form after posting a combined 15 points over the last two games.
I’ll printout though that Ohio State has struggled in this spot for bettors, going just 9-10 ATS in its last 19 off a home win of ten points or more. Illinois on the other hand is 8-4 ATS in its last 12 after a loss by ten points or more.
I’m grabbing the points.
|12-04-18||West Virginia v. Florida -1.5||56-66||Win||100||14 h 46 m||Show|
My 8* Wipeout Winner is on Florida (9:30 EST).
WVU comes in contented after four straight wins.
The Gators lost 61-54 to Butler, but then bounced back to beat North Florida 98-66. This is Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden and i think the defensive minded Gators have the upper hand.
Overall Florida averages 71.7 PPG and it concedes 62.4.
West Virginia has indeed won four in a row, but against pretty middling competition (St. Joes, Valparasio, Rider and Youngstown State.) Overall the Mountainteers are averaging 86.4 PPG and conceding 75.9.
I’ll point out though that WVU just 6-14-1 ATS in its last 21 following an ATS win, while Florida is 7-2 ATS in its last nine neutral site games after scoring 80 points or more in its previous outing.
For all the reasons listed above, play on the Gators.
|12-04-18||Georgia State v. Alabama -7.5||Top||83-80||Loss||-105||12 h 16 m||Show|
My 10* Las Vegas Insider is on Alabama (8:00 EST).
Analysis posted at least six hours before game time.
Alabama comes in off an upset loss to UCF and I believe it’ll take its frustrations out on Georgia State.
The Panthers enter off a blowout loss to Liberty. But a little “home cooking” is just what the doctor ordered for the Tide to get back on track, as their only two losses have come on the road this year.
D’Marcus Simonds had 22 points, five assists and three boards in Georgia State’s loss to the Flames. Leading scorer Damon Wilson though was held to just four points.
The Tide have had a week off since their upset loss to the Golden Knights. It was a bad shooting night for the Tide, going 37.9 percent from the floor and 20.8 percent from range. Kira Lewis Jr. was a stand out in the defeat with 14 points, two boards and two assists.
I’ll point out though that Alabama is 4-0 ATS in its last four following a SU loss, while Georgia State is just 1-6 ATS in its last seven following a SU loss of more than 20 points and just 1-4 ATS in its last five road games vs. teams with winning home records.
The Panthers lack the size and depth to compete with this rested and focused Alabama side. But outside of Simonds, the visitors lack scoring punch and I have a hard time seeing the under-manned visitors keeping pace down the stretch.
Lay the points.
|12-04-18||Magic v. Heat -2||Top||105-90||Loss||-115||12 h 24 m||Show|
My 10* PERFECT STORM is on the Miami Heat (7:35 EST).
Orlando comes in off a 99-85 road win over Phoenix on Friday and I think it’ll stumble here with the extra time off and in this difficult venue.
The Heat enter off a confidence building 102-100 home win over Utah on Sunday.
Note that this is a revenge game as well for Miami after the Magic won 104-101 in the first meeting at home back in mid October.
Orlando is averaging 105.8 PPG and it’s conceding 108.1. Nikola Vucevic leads the way with 21 points, 11.3 boards and 3.8 assists per night.
Miami averages 108.2 PPG and it concedes 109.6. Hassan Whiteside is averaging 13.6 points, 13.9 boards and 2.9 blocks per game.
I’ll point out as well that the Magic are a terrible 3-6 ATS in their last nine when playing with three or more days of rest, while Miami is 13-4 ATS in its last 17 in trying to revenge a close loss of three points or less to an opponent.
Miami has won back-to-back games and I look for it to keep the foot on the gas here as well and to avenge the earlier loss to their division rival. Lay the points.
|12-02-18||Pelicans v. Hornets -3||Top||119-109||Loss||-101||9 h 24 m||Show|
My 10* Wipeout Winner is on the Charlotte Hornets (5:05 EST).
New Orleans enters off a 106-101 setback in Miami on Friday, while Charlotte comes in off a 119-111 home loss to Utah on Friday.
These teams haven’t played yet this season, but Charlotte does play with revenge here as well, as New Orleans has taken four straight in the series.
The Pelicans have now lost four of their last five. They come into this game averaging 117.7 PPG and conceding 116.5. Anthony Davis leads the way with 27.8 points, 12.7 boards, 4.6 assists, 2.74 blocks and 1.53 assists per game. While New Orleans is 7-5 SU on the road, note that it’s just 4-8 ATS in those contests.
Charlotte is back to .500 after its two game win streak was snapped by the Jazz, but the good news is that it still has a hold on the division lead. The Hornets average 114.7 PPG and they concede 110.4. Kemba Walker leads the nightly charge with 27.1 points and 6.2 assists per night.
I’ll point out as well that New Orleans is just 1-3 ATS in its last four as a road dog of six points or less, while Charlotte is 8-4 ATS at home and 4-1 ATS off an upset loss as a favorite.
For all the reasons listed above, play on the Hornets.
|12-01-18||Wake Forest +1 v. Richmond||74-84||Loss||-105||8 h 56 m||Show|
My 9* Late Breaking Play is on Wake Forest (7:30 EST).
Wake Forest enters off a 71-64 home win over Western Carolina and I think the Demon Deacons carry that momentum over here.
Richmond comes in off a 90-82 road loss to Georgetown and I think it’s primed for another letdown here as well.
Wake Forest averages 76 PPG and it concedes 74.3. Brandon Childress leads the nightly charge with 17.5 points and 4.7 assists per night, while Jaylen Hoard adds 16.8 points and 8.7 boards.
Richmond averages 72 PPG and it allows 75. Grant Golden leads the way with 20.3 points and 6.9 boards per game.
I’ll point out though that Richmond has struggled mightily in this spot for bettors, going just 1-3-1 ATS in its last five home games and only 1-5 ATS in its last six home games vs. a team with a road winning percentage of greater than .600, while Wake Forest is 7-2 ATS in its last nine after holding its previous opponent to 65 points or less.
The Spiders are dealing with significant injuries and I believe this continues to hurt them here as well. Play on Wake Forest.
|12-01-18||Warriors v. Pistons +5.5||Top||102-111||Win||100||12 h 12 m||Show|
My 10* Conf Crusher is on the Detroit Pistons (7:05 EST).
The Warriors welcome back captain Stephen Curry to the line-up, but I think the defending champs are still going to need some time to get back on track and gain their normal chemistry.
Most recently the Warriors come in off an exhausting 131-128 OT loss in Toronto, a game in which Kevin Durant went for 51 points.
The surging Pistons look to take advantage after their fourth straight win, most recently over Chicago in blowout fashion.
Golden State averages 116.5 PPG, while conceding 111.5. As mentioned off the top, having Curry back will clearly start to turn things around for the Warriors, but as also stated earlier, I do definitely fel that “instant chemistry” is out of the question in this one.
And that’s because the Pistons are firing on all cylinders, averaging 111.8 PPG and conceding 110.7. Blake Griffin leads the nightly charge with 25.1 points, 9.6 board and 5.1 assists per game.
I’ll point out as well that Golden State is just 3-7 ATS on the road this year, while Detroit is 6-2 ATS as an underdog.
For all the reasons listed above, grab the points.
|12-01-18||Nevada v. USC +5.5||Top||73-61||Loss||-105||10 h 37 m||Show|
My 10* Unranked Shocker is on USC (4:30 EST).
While an outright upset is obviously not out of the question, I will in the end recommend grabbing the points in a contest which I envision being decided by whichever of these hungry teams has its hands on the ball last.
Nevada comes in unbeaten after getting the better of Loyola-Chicago 79-65, while USC enters off a 75-65 home win over LBSU on Wednesday.
Nevada is averaging 90.1 PPG and it’s conceding 69. Caleb Martin leads the nightly charge with 21 points and 4.7 boards per game, while Jordan Carolina adds 17.7 points and 9.9 boards.
The Trojans won’t be going down without a fight today. They come in on top form having won three straight. USC averages 83.3 PPG and it concedes 71.6. Bennie Boatwright leads the team with 16.8 points and 6.4 boards per game.
I’ll point out as well that Nevada is just 4-5 ATS in its last nine after covering five of six of its last seven ATS, while USC is 3-1 ATS in its last four at home and 18-8 ATS in its last 26 after having won three of its last four games SU.
For all the reasons listed above, grab the points.
|11-29-18||Pacers v. Lakers -4.5||Top||96-104||Win||100||16 h 5 m||Show|
My 10* PERFECT STORM is on the LA Lakers (10:35 EST).
After back-to-back losses, the Lakers are the “hungrier” team tonight. Indiana on the other hand comes in contented after back-to-back road wins, including a 109-104 victory in Phoenix on Tuesday.
But Pacers star Victor Oladipo is sitting this one out with injury and I believe The King and company get back on track and take advantage.
Overall Indiana is averaging 106.5 PPG and it’s allowing 102.2. Oladipo leads the nightly charge with 21.4 points and 6.6 boards per game, but as mentioned off the top, he’s sitting this one out.
The Lakers are averaging 112.8 PPG and they’re conceding 112.9. James leads the way with 27.6 points, 7.9 boards and 6.7 assists per night.
I’ll point out though that Indiana has struggled against the better offensive teams in the league so far this season, going just 5-8 ATS vs. good offensive teams which average 106-plus points per night.
And note that the Lakers are a solid 4-2 ATS vs. teams with winning records.
For all the reasons listed above, lay the points.
|11-28-18||Spurs +4.5 v. Wolves||Top||89-128||Loss||-105||14 h 44 m||Show|
My 10* GAME OF THE WEEK is on the San Antonio Spurs (8:05 EST).
The Spurs enter off a 108-107 road win over Chicago on Monday, while the Wolves held on for a 102-95 road victory over the Cavs on Monday.
If recent history is any precedence, then the Spurs have to be liking their chance today as they’ve taken two straight in the series, including a 112-108 home victory in the first meeting back on October 17th.
San Antonio is averaging 109.6 PPG and it’s allowing 110.1. DeMar DeRozan is averaging 24.8 points and 6.3 assists per night.
Minnesota is averaging 109 PPG and it’s allowing 111.2. Karl-Anthony Towns is averaging 20.8 points and 12.2 boards per game.
I’ll point out thought that Wolves are just 6-8 ATS in their last 14 following a three games or more unbeaten streak, while the Spurs are already 6-3 ATS as an underdog this season.
After three straight wins and six in their last eight, this sets up as natural letdown spot for the home side in my opinion. Grab the points.
|11-28-18||San Diego +6 v. Ole Miss||86-93||Loss||-109||13 h 6 m||Show|
The second pick in my Superstar Triple Play is on San Diego (8*) 7:30 EST.
San Diego enters off a 76-58 home win over Jackson State, while Ole Miss was smashed 71-57 to Cincinnati in the title game of the Emerald Coast Classic.
The Toreros come in under the radar here in my opinion after three straight wins. San Diego averages 77.2 PPG and it concedes only 59.7. Isaiah Piniero leads the way with 22 points and 8.7 boards per game.
Ole iss is averaging 75.2 PPG and it’s conceding 68.6. Breein Tyree leads the nightly charge with 16.6 PPG.
I’ll point out though that the Rebels are a terrible 2-8 ATS in their last ten following an ATS loss, while the Toreros are 7-1 ATS in their last eight road games following three or more consecutive home games and 4-1 ATS in their last five non-conference contests.
I think San Diego has a legitimate shot at taking this one outright, but in the end I’m grabbing the points.
|11-28-18||Syracuse v. Ohio State -5.5||Top||72-62||Loss||-105||13 h 51 m||Show|
The third pick of my Superstar Triple Play is on Ohio State (10*) 7:15 EST.
Syracuse enters off a 77-56 win at home over Colgate, while Ohio State demolished Cleveland State 89-62 at home in its latest action.
The Orange have plenty of talent, but I have a hard time seeing the visitors matching pace down the stretch.
Syracuse averages 73.6 PPG and it concedes 64.6. Tyus Battle leads the nightly charge with 17.6 PPG.
Ohio Sate averages 81.3 PPG and it concedes only 58.3. That’s tied for 15th in the country. Kaleb Wesson leads the way with 14.7 points and 5.8 boards per game.
I’ll point out that Syracuse has struggled mightily in this spot as well for bettors for quite some time, going 0-9 ATS in its last nine following a SU win of more than 20 points.
The Buckeyes depth on both ends of the floor is the difference maker here.
Lay the points.
|11-28-18||Bradley -4 v. IUPU-Indianapolis||73-85||Loss||-102||13 h 37 m||Show|
The pick in my Superstar Triple Play is on Bradley (8*) 7:00 EST.
Bradley beat IUPUI last year and I think it’ll get the job done this season as well.
The Braves are 6-1, including wins over SMU and Penn State in Mexico to win the Cancun Classic. After that they won two straight, including an 86-70 victory over Chicago State on Saturday. Darrell Brown had 16 points in the one, while Elijah Childs added 12 points and 11 boards.
Bradley has been sharp defensively as well, holding opponents to just 62.7 PPG on 38.5 percent shooting.
IUPUI is 4-2 and its off to its best start in nine years. The Jaguars have won two straight, most recently an 80-69 victory over Grambling on Saturday. Ahmed Ismail had 16 points and ten boards.
I’ll point out though that IUPUI is just 2-5 ATS in its last seven following a two games or more unbeaten streak, while Bradley is 12-5 ATS in its last 17 as s road fav between 0.5 and 6.5 points.
This is a bad matchup for IUPUI. Look for Bradley to pull away down the stretch.
|11-27-18||Lakers v. Nuggets -4||Top||85-117||Win||100||13 h 0 m||Show|
My 10* PERFECT STORM is on the Denver Nuggets (9:05 EST).
I like the Nuggets to avenge a 121-114 road loss in LA back on October 25th.
LA enters off a poor 108-104 home loss to Orlando, while Denver comes in off a confidence building 105-98 road win in Oklahoma City on Saturday.
LA had won seven of eight before Sunday’s loss. LeBron James was a bright spot in the setback, scoring 24 points and dishing out seven assists. Overall the Lakers are averaging 114.2 PPG and conceding 112.7.
Denver averages 109.9 PPG and it concedes 103.2. Big man Nikola Jokic scores 16.6 points per game average.
I’ll point out though that Denver is 8-3 ATS in its last 11 following an ATS victory, while LA is a poor 1-4 ATS in its last five when playing on one days rest.
The Nuggets are especially though at home, and they play with revenge here. I like Denver to pull away down the stretch for a comfortable ATS cover. Lay the points.
|11-27-18||Temple v. Missouri -3||Top||79-77||Loss||-105||13 h 54 m||Show|
My 10* Weekly Wipeout Winner is on Missouri (9:00 EST).
Temple comes in off a 76-59 win over Cal and I think it stumbles in this difficult non-conference road venue.
The Tigers on the other hand come in as the “hungrier” team after they fell 82-67 to K-State.
Temple averages 74.5 PPG and it concedes 65.7. Quinton Rose had 32 points in the win over the Golden Bears.
Missouri is averaging 63.6 PPG, but it’s allowing just 65.6. The Tigers numbers are skewed though in my opinion to open the season, due to the level of the competition.
I’ll point out as well that Temple is a poor 6-9 ATS in its last 15 after allowing 60 points or less, while Missouri is 9-5 ATS in its last 14 after allowing 80 points or more.
I think the hungrier team prevails and I believe the Owls finally have a letdown here. Lay the points.
|11-27-18||NC State +8 v. Wisconsin||75-79||Win||100||13 h 54 m||Show|
My 8* Underdog Shocker is on NC State (9:00 EST).
NC State enters off a 78-74 home win over Mercer, while the Badgers enter off a poor 53-46 loss to Virginia. These teams haven’t played each other since 2010 and in my opinion, I believe their a little more evenly matched than what the oddsmakers would like us to think.
NC State can score, and it’s the reason why I like the Wolfpack here. NC State averages 90.8 PPG, and it allows only 57.8. Torin Dorn had 19 points and nine boards in the latest win.
Off their first loss of the year, I think the Badgers are susceptible for another letdown here as well, Wisconsin averages 74 PPG and it concedes 57.8.
Additionally note that NC State is 12-6 ATS in its last 18 non-conference games.
NC State has nothing to lose here except its perfect record (6-0.) The Wolfpack may not win this one outright, but they have the defense and offense to keep it competitive. I’m grabbing the points.
|11-26-18||Rockets v. Wizards +4||Top||131-135||Win||100||12 h 41 m||Show|
My 10* Situational Stunner is on the Washington Wizards (7:05 EST).
The Rockets have been terrible of late and I think they’re going to stumble here in the Nation’s capital as well.
Houston enters off a 117-108 road loss to the Cavs, it’s second straight setback. The Rockets are clearly going to be “hungry” here, but Washington enters even hungrier.
The Wizards broke a three-game slide with a 124-114 home win over New Orleans and I believe they carry that positive momentum over here as well.
Houston is averaging 106.9 PPG and it’s conceding 107.9. Clearly that’s not a recipe for long-term success. The Rockets are led by James Harden with 30 points, 5.1 boards and 7.9 assists per game.
Washington is averaging 112.2 PPG and it’s conceding 117.2. That’s not a recipe for success either, but as stated above, I think the Wizards keep the foot on the gas after the slow start to the season and following their big win over the Pelicans.
Additionally note Houston is just 1-5 ATS this year after allowing 115 points or more in its previous contest, while Washington is 6-3 ATS in its last nine after scoring 120 points or more in a victory in its previous outing.
For all the reasons listed above, grab the points.
|11-26-18||Bucks -5 v. Hornets||107-110||Loss||-105||12 h 40 m||Show|
My 8* Las Vegas Insider is on the Milwaukee Bucks (7:05 EST).
Milwaukee comes in off a 135-129 home win over the Spurs on Saturday, while the Hornets enter off a loss in Atlanta just last night.
Charlotte’s late rally fell short last night and I think the Hornets are going to come in predictably “gassed” here after that losing effort.
Milwaukee took the first game between the clubs this year 113-112 on October 17th, but I’m expecting a much wider margin of victory here this time around.
The Bucks are the No. 1 offense in the league, averaging 121.7 PPG and they’ve been decent defensively, conceding 109.0. Giannis Antetokounmpo leads the nightly charge with an average of 27.2 points to go with 13 rebounds and 5.7 assists per game.
Charlotte is averaging 115.1 PPG and it’s conceding 110.2. Kemba Walkers leads the team with 28.6 points and 6.4 assists per game.
I’ll point out though that the Hornets are just 1-7 ATS in their last eight home games vs. teams with a winning road record, while the Bucks are 7-3 ATS in their last ten on one days rest.
For all the reasons listed above, play on Milwaukee.
|11-25-18||Miami-FL v. Seton Hall +6||81-83||Win||100||11 h 16 m||Show|
My 9* Late Breaking Play is on Seton Hall (10:30 EST).
Miami is 5-0 to open the year, while Seton Hall is 3-2. Both teams have won two games in the Wooden Legacy tournament to advance to the championship match-up tonight and I’m expecting an all out war until the final buzzer from these two hungry sides.
Miami held on for a tight 78-76 win over Fresno State to advance, while Seton Hall got the better of Hawaii 64-54.
The Hurricanes come into this one averaging 84 PPG and conceding 63. Chris Lykes leads the nightly charge with 19.6 points and 3.6 assists per game.
The Pirates average 71.2 PPG and they allowing 64.8. Myles Powell less the way with 25.8 PPG and I think he’ll prove a tough matchup for Miami.
Miami has a great and experienced starting five, but the Hurricanes are very thin after that. The team has been playing at such a high level for a long time now and it comes in off a last second victory. In my opinion, there’s no question this sets up as a classic “letdown” spot for these tired Hurricanes.
Seton Hall has more depth and I think it has a legitimate shot at taking this one outright. That said, grab the points!
|11-25-18||Knicks +8.5 v. Grizzlies||Top||103-98||Win||100||11 h 5 m||Show|
My 10* PERFECT STORM is on the New York Knicks (6:05 EST).
Even with Kristaps Porzingis in the line-up for the Knicks (he’s not, he’s still injured!), Memphis is still a much better team than New York across the board.
I won’t try to convince you otherwise either, I simply feel that the Grizzlies are going to get caught “looking past” their lowly non-conference opponent tonight.
Besides, the Knicks come in off a confidence building 114-109 home win over the Pelicans, while the Grizzlies enter off an exhausting 112-107 OT loss on the road to the Clippers on Friday.
New York has in fact won two straight. Overall the Knicks are averaging 108.9 PPG and conceding 114.3.
Memphis is averaging only 103.3 PPG, making up for it on the other end with the No. 1 defense, conceding only 100.8 points.
I’ll point out thought that New York is 8-2 ATS in its last ten non-conference road games in which it comes in on a two games or more SU unbeaten streak, while Memphis is just 1-4 ATS in its last five home games following an OT loss in which failed to score 110 or more points in.
No outright, but closer than expected. Grab all those points!
|11-25-18||Oklahoma State v. LSU -4||Top||90-77||Loss||-105||5 h 54 m||Show|
My 10* Tourney Takedown is on LSU (4:00 EST).
These teams are playing for third place in the AdvoCare Invitationals. Oklahoma State enters off a humbling 77-58 loss to Villanova and I believe the Cowboys will stumble again here as well.
LSU enters off a tight 79-76 loss in OT to No. 14 Florida State on Friday and I believe the Tigers come in hungry and focused off that near epic upset.
The Cowboys enter averaging 71.4 points and conceding 65. Cameron McGriff leads the nightly charge with 15 points and eight boards per game.
LSU is averaging 82.2 PPG and it’s allowing 71.8. Naz Reid is averaging 13.2 points and 4.2 boars per game.
I’ll point out though that LSU is 5-1 ATSin its last six following a SU loss, while Oklahoma State is just 2-6 ATS in its last eight after failing to score 60 points in its previous outing.
Lay the points and expect a rout.
|11-24-18||Celtics v. Mavs +2.5||Top||104-113||Win||100||13 h 19 m||Show|
My 10* Las Vegas Insider is on the Dallas Mavericks (8:35 EST).
The Celtics come in off a win and cover in Atlanta last night and I think they’ll suffer a predictable letdown here in the second game of the back to back against their lowly non-conference opponent. Previous to last night’s win Boston had lost three straight and five of seven.
Dallas on the other hand enters off a win as well, most recently outlasting Brooklyn 119-113. Harrison Barnes led the way in that one with 28 points. Overall though rookie Luka Doncic leads the Mavs with an average of 19.3 PPG.
Note as well that Boston is just 2-7 ATS in its last nine when playing the second game of a back to back against a non-conference opponent in which it scored over 105 points in the first game and emerged victorious as well, while Dallas is 5-1 ATS in its last six overall.
The oddsmakers are slow in recognizing how well Dallas is playing right now. The Mavericks benefit in facing the C’s on the second game of a back to back and while I obviously wouldn’t be shocked by an outright upset, I will in the end recommend grabbing the points in a contest which I envision coming down to whichever team has its hands on the ball last.
Grab the points.
|11-23-18||Blazers v. Warriors -1.5||Top||97-125||Win||100||13 h 21 m||Show|
My 10* WEST-CONF GAME OF THE YEAR is on the Golden State Warriors (10:35 EST).
The Warriors are facing their most difficult stretch in a long time. Golden State comes in having lost four in a row and captain Stephen Curry remains sidelined with injury.
A date against the Blazers, who have struggled away from friendly confines, is just what the doctor ordered for Kevin Durant and the two-time defending champs to get back on track with a big win.
Portland comes in off a 143-100 loss at Milwaukee, while Golden State fell 123-95 to OKC in its latest action.
The Blazers are averaging 114.2 PPG and they’re conceding 110.2. Damian Lillard leads the nightly charge with 26.4 PPG.
Golden State is averaging 115.4 PPG and it’s conceding 111.1. Durant is averaging 27.2 PPG.
I’ll point out though that the Blazers are a money-burning 4-5 ATS on the road this year, while Golden State is still 6-2 ATS in its last eight at home.
I think Durant and Klay Thompson come to play tonight and the supporting cast finally shows up as well. Lay the points.
|11-23-18||Tennessee +3.5 v. Kansas||Top||81-87||Loss||-109||15 h 11 m||Show|
My 10* Showdown is on Tennessee (9:30 EST).
No. 5 Tennessee is led by Grant Williams, who is averaging 22.5 PPG. He most recently had 24 points against Louisville in Wednesday’s semi final victory of the NIT Season Tip-Off.
Five players went on to score double figures for the Vols in the 92-81 win. Overall Tennessee is averaging 82.8 PPG and conceding just 60.
Kansas is allowing teams to hit 40.5 percent from behind the arc. The Jayhawks are terrible at defending the three-ball, but they make up for it on the offensive end by hitting 47.2 percent from range. The Jayhawks most recently rallied for a bit win over Marquette, getting 26 points from Dedric Lawson in the eventual 77-68 victory.
I’ll point out though that Kansas is just 2-5 ATS in its last seven following a SU win, while Tennessee is a strong 11-2 ATS in its last 13 after scoring 90 points or more in its previous contest.
While the outright win is clearly not out of the question, I’ll recommend to grab the points.
|11-22-18||Hawaii v. Utah -9.5||Top||90-79||Loss||-105||16 h 26 m||Show|
This is a 10* Tourney Takedown on Utah (11:30 EST).
Hawaii enters off an 85-68 victory over Northern Arizona at home, while Utah comes in off a 98-63 win over Mississippi Valley State on Thursday.
If recent history is any precedence though, then the Utes have to be loving their chances tonight to extend their win stark, as they’d cruise to an easy 80-60 home victory in this matchup last year in early December.
Hawaii is averaging 72.7 PPG and it’s averaging 66.7. Zigmars Raimo leads the nightly charge with 16 points and 6.3 boards. The Warriors are horrible at the free-throw line, averaging only 59.5 percent.
Utah is averaging 80.7 PPG and it’s allowing 67.3. Sedrick Barefield leads the way with 12 points per game. The Utes aren’t great at the line, but much better at 68 percent.
Additionally note that Utah is 9-4-1 ATS in its last 14 following a SU win, while Hawaii is a poor 6-13 ATS in its last 19 vs. teams with a winning SU record.
Utah has six different players that score in double figures and I think that the Warriors will struggle to keep pace down the stretch.
Lay the points.
|11-22-18||Oklahoma State v. Memphis +2.5||84-64||Loss||-106||9 h 57 m||Show|
This is a 9* Situational Stunner is on Memphis (4:00 EST).
This is the first round of the AdvoCare Invitational.
Oklahoma State enters off a 70-58 win over Charleston, while Memphis enters off a big 109-102 double OT win at home over Yale.
So far the Cowboys are averaging 72 PPG, while conceding 61.3. Cameron McGriff leads the nightly charge with 17.7 points and 7.7 boards per game. Oklahoma State’s numbers are skewed a little because of early vanilla competition though in my opinion and note that it’s been terrible at the free-throw line this year, hitting only 63.2 percent.
Memphis bounced back from a loss to LSU with a big victory over the experienced Bulldogs. Overall the Tigers are averaging 87 PPG and conceding 82.3. Jeremiah Martin leads the way with 17.7 points per game in the early going.
I’ll point out as well that Memphis 5-0 ATS in its last five vs. teams with a winning percentage above .600, while Oklahoma State is just 1-4 ATS in its last five after two or more SU victories.
The Cowboys have struggled with consistency this year (blew a 24 points second half lead to lose to Charlotte and struggled to put away lowly UTSA.)
Memphis on the other hand has gone toe to toe with both LSU and Yale and I look for its depth and grit to prove to be the difference here.
Grab the points.
|11-21-18||Thunder v. Warriors -1||123-95||Loss||-105||15 h 44 m||Show|
My 8* Rivalry Rout is on the Golden State Warriors (10:35 EST).
The Warriors are dealing with many things right now. They’ve lost three in a row. Stephen Curry remains sidelined with injury. Also Kevin Durant and and Draymond Green have been fighting with each other publicly.
However, with a chance to put all of that non sense behind them with a signature beatdown victory at home, I look for Steve Kerr to have his troops ready.
OKC comes in with zero momentum after an upset loss to the Kings. Russell Westbrook, Paul George and Steven Adams looked pretty pedestrian against a young Kings’ team, perhaps in some small way they were looking ahead to this one. But Westbrook and George have not found their dominant form and I believe they’ll struggle again here in this difficult venue.
Durant is going to have to worry about dealing with Green in this one, as he’ll be sitting this one out, along with Curry again. Durant had 26 points, ten boards and six assists in his teams most recent loss to the Spurs. Klay Thompson had 25 points, two boards and two assists.
I’ll point out as well that OKC is just 1-4 ATS in its last five following a SU loss, while GS is 6-2 ATS in its last eight home games following a three games or more losing streak.
Durant and Thompson motivated at home are the difference makers. Play on the Warriors.
|11-21-18||Harvard v. San Francisco -6||57-61||Loss||-103||15 h 4 m||Show|
My 8* Las Vegas Insider is on San Francisco (10:00 EST).
Harvard has to make the long trek across country for this late night West coast trip and I think the Crimson will stumble.
Harvard most recently fell 76-74 in Rhode Island on Friday, while San Francisco remained unbeaten after an 84-52 win over LIU Brooklyn.
The Crimson average 74.3 PPG and they allow 73.5. Chris Lewis leads the nightly charge with 15.8 points and 2.3 blocks per night.
The Dons average 85.3 PPG and they concede just 49.5. Granted those numbers are somewhat skewed due to the level of some of the competition, but overall San Francisco has been excellent thus far. Charles Minlend leads the way with 15 PPG.
Note as well that San Francisco is 4-1 ATS in its last five at home and 7-2 ATS in its last nine following a SU win of more than 20 points.
The Dons experience proves to be the difference maker in the end in this one. Lay the points.
|11-21-18||Loyola-Chicago -4.5 v. Boston College||Top||66-78||Loss||-105||14 h 44 m||Show|
My 10* GAME OF THE WEEK is on Loyola Chicago (7:30 EST).
The Ramblers are 4-1 and the BC Eagles are 3-1.
This is the championship game for the Fort Myers Tip-Off from the Suncoast Credit Union Arena on Wednesday night. The Loyola Chicago Ramblers most recently posted an 82-66 win over Richmond to advance.
Lucas Williamson led the charge in that one with 23 points, while Marques Townes added 15 points. Overall the Ramblers are averaging 74.2 PPG.
BC enters the championship game off an 88-76 win over Wyoming, led by 38 points from Ky Bowman. Overall BC is averaging 76 PPG in the early going.
I’ll point out though that Loyola-Chicago is 7-1 ATS in its last eight neutral site affairs, while BC is just 2-5 ATS in its last seven non-conference contests and only 1-4 ATS in its last five vs. teams with winning records.
BC may have the best player on the floor in Bowman, but he can’t do it by himself. The depth the Ramblers bring to the table is the difference. Lay the points.
|11-21-18||Blazers v. Bucks -6||Top||100-143||Win||100||12 h 15 m||Show|
My 10* GAME OF THE WEEK is on the Milwaukee Bucks (8:05 EST).
No need to overthink this one.
The Blazers come in “gassed” after a much tougher than expected 118-114 win over the Knicks in New York last night.
The Bucks have been off since Monday after rallying for a 104-98 home win over the Nuggets on Monday.
Note that this is an in-season revenge game for Milwaukee after the Blazers posted a 118-103 home victory back on November 6th.
The Blazers are averaging 114.9 PPG and they’re conceding 107.9. Damian Lillard leads the nightly charge with 26.6 points and 6.1 assists per night.
The Bucks are averaging 120.1 PPG and they’re conceding 109. Giannis Antetokounmpo leads the team with an average of 25.9 points to go with 12.7 rebounds and 5.5 assists per game.
I’ll point out that Milwaukee is 8-1-1 ATS in its last ten at home and 4-1 ATS in its last five vs. teams with winning road record, while Portland is just 1-6 ATS in its last seven road games vs. teams with a winning home record.
For all the reasons listed above, lay the points.
|11-21-18||Utah Valley -3 v. Long Beach State||87-72||Win||100||11 h 15 m||Show|
My 9* Tourney Takedown is on Utah Valley (5:00 EST).
The 2-3 Utah Valley Wolverines get ready to battle the 2-3 LBSU 49ers at 5:00 EST in the MGM Resorts CBB tourney.
The Wolverines got back into the winners circle with a 72-65 win over Hartford on Monday. Conner Toolson led the way in that one with 12 points, four boards and three assists, while TJ Washington added 11 points, four assists and three steals.
LBSU enters off a tough 86-85 upset win over Ioan on Monday. It wasn’t pretty, as the 49ers would commit 24 turnovers. Temidayo Yussuf had 18 points, three boards and three steals.
Utah Valley sports plenty of veteran experience and note that it’s done well in this spot for bettors, going 6-2 ATS in its last eight none conference games and 3-1 ATS in its last four as a favorite, while LBSU has struggled in this spot, going only 15-21 ATS in its last 36 as an underdog and only 12-17 ATS in is last 29 non-conference games.
Lay the points, play on Utah Valley.
|11-20-18||Colorado v. San Diego -5||Top||64-70||Win||100||12 h 7 m||Show|
My 10* Situational Stunner is on San Diego (10:00 EST).
The Buffs enter off a tougher than expected 79-75 win over Nebraska-Omaha, while San Diego comes in off a 95-47 destruction of San Diego Christian.
If recent history is any precedence though, then the Toreros have to be loving their chances today as they’d win this match-up last year on the road 69-59.
So far the Buffs are averaging 89.5 PPG and they’re conceding 73. Namon Wright had 11 pints and four boards in the most recent victory.
San Diego is averaging 79.2 PPG, but the Toreros are allowing only 59. Isaiah Pineiro already has 53 points combined over the first two games.
I’ll point out as well that San Diego is 12-5 ATS in its last 17 non-conference games and 5-0 ATS in its last five following a SU win of more than 20 points, while Colorado is a poor 10-26-1 ATS in its last 37 following a SU win.
Lay the points.
|11-20-18||Pacific v. UNLV -3.5||70-96||Win||100||12 h 6 m||Show|
My 8* Las Vegas Insider is on UNLV (10:00 EST).
These teams are matched evenly on the offensive side of the court, but the Runnin Rebels have a distinct advantage defensively and I believe that’ll be the difference in the end in this particular matchup.
Pacific most recently won 83-76 vs. Idaho State, while UNLV posted a 74-61 home win over Oakland. Last year the Rebels won 81-76 in this game.
The Tigers are averaging 77.2 PPG and they’re conceding 72.5. Anthony Townes had 14 points and seven boards in the win over Idaho State.
The Rebels are averaging 65.3 PPG, but they’re conceding only 57.7. Shakur Juiston had 18 points and ten boards in the win over Oakland.
Note that the Rebels are 4-2 ATS in their last six following a two games or more unbeaten streak, while Pacific is just 2-5 ATS in its last seven vs. the MWC.
I think the Tigers’ struggle against UNLV’s suffocating defensive play. Lay the points.
|11-19-18||VCU v. Temple -2.5||Top||57-51||Loss||-105||12 h 24 m||Show|
My 10* Oddsmaker’s Error is on Temple (9:30 EST).
This is the second game of the Legends Classic from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, and in my opinion this spread could easily be a lot larger.
This s Fran Dunphy’s last year as head coach of the Temple Owls and he has 561 career wins under his belt. The team is gunning for 580 to send him off and so far Temple is out to a 4-0 start, most recently downing Maryland 81-67 on Friday. Shizz Alston Jr. leads the nightly charge with 21.5 points and he’s made 14 from range over his last three games alone. Overall the Owls are averaging 80 PPG and conceding 69.5.
VCU is averaging only 70 PPG, but it makes up for it on the other end by conceding only 58.3. Those numbers are skewed of ours because of some of the recent competition, most recently a 72-61 home win over Bowling Green.
I’ll point out though that VCU is just 2-5 ATS in its last seven neutral site affairs, while Temple is 13-3 ATS in its last 16 in the same position.
The Owls have faced the tougher schedule to this point and they have the better numbers across the board. Lay the points and expect a rout.
|11-19-18||Spurs v. Pelicans -7.5||126-140||Win||100||11 h 59 m||Show|
My 8* Las Vegas Insider is on the New Orleans Pelicans (7:05 EST).
I played on the Spurs last night in their win over the Warriors and I’m expecting a predictable letdown here against a hungry and rested Pelicans side.
I base my selections on many different things, but the Spurs have been inconsistent at the best of times this year and the second game of a back to back on the road after such a monumental victory spells “trap” in my opinion.
The Spurs are averaging 107.7 points per 100 possessions, while allowing 107.6 per 100 possessions. Clearly the margin for error is pretty slim.
The Pelicans are are averaging 112.4 points per 100 possessions, while allowing 110.6. Anthony Davis had 40 points, eight boards and eight assists in his team’s 125-115 win over the Nuggets on Saturday.
The Spurs have struggled in this matchup, covering just twice in the last seven in the series. I look for that trend to continue here. Lay the points.
|11-19-18||Old Dominion -4 v. Northern Iowa||53-54||Loss||-106||9 h 34 m||Show|
My 9* Daytime Dominator is on Old Dominion (3:00 EST).
This is part of the 2018 Paradise Jam tournament in the Virgin Islands.
Both teams come in at 2-2.
ODU enters off a 65-47 win over Kennesaw State, led by 14 points from Ahmad Caver. BJ Stith would go on to add 13 points and ten boards. Overall the Monarchs have been getting strong defensive play and are averaging 63 PPG.
Northern Iowa comes in off a 90-85 win over Eastern Kentucky. AJ Green led the way with 23 points, while Spencer Haldeman added 16. In the early going the Panthers are averaging 80.8 PPG.
But now UNI faces its stiffest defensive competition to date. Note as well that the Panthers are 0-6 ATS in their last six non-conference games, while ODU is 7-2 ATS in its last nine after holding its previous opponent to 50 points or less.
I’m banking on ODU’s experience and superior defensive play to prove to be the difference here. Lay the points.
|11-18-18||Warriors v. Spurs -2.5||Top||92-104||Win||100||13 h 19 m||Show|
My 10* Rivalry Rout is on the San Antonio Spurs (7:05 EST).
The Warriors lost in Dallas last night and I believe the under-manned defending champions are ripe for the picking here as well.
The Spurs come in hungry after a 116-111 road loss to the Clippers on Thursday. San Antonio though has had a few nights off to absorb the setback and I look for it to push the pace from start to finish here against the exhausted Warriors.
Golden State is averaging 118.6 PPG and it’s conceding 110.8. Kevin Durant is averaging 27 points, 7.2 boards and 6.3 assists per game.
The Warriors are without star Stephen Curry and Draymond Green is questionable with a toe injury.
The Spurs are averaging 107.9 PPG and they’re conceding just 108.8. DeMar DeRozan averages 25.6 points and 6.3 assists per night.
I’ll point out as well that the Warriors are now a poor 2-6 ATS on the road this year, while San Antonio is already 4-2 ATS this season when playing with two days of rest.
The Spurs have lost three straight and five of six and they’ll be risking life and limb to score the victory here. Lay the points and expect a rout.
|11-18-18||UCF -1 v. Western Kentucky||Top||78-62||Win||100||13 h 44 m||Show|
My 10* Takedown is on UCF (6:30 EST).
I play against the UCF Knights on the College Gridiron last night and lost badly with Cincinnati. But I think the Knights are the correct call on the hardwood vs. the Hilltoppers of Western Kentucky in the championship game of the Myrtle Beach Invitational.
UCF beat St. Joe’s 77-57 on Friday, while the Hilltoppers bested WVU 63-57 Friday
The Knights shot 55 percent from the floor in their win Friday, led by 22 points from Terrell Allen. Overall UCF is averaging 77 PPG and allowing just 64.8.
WVU is riding a three-game win streak as well, but after Friday’s upset win over the Mountaineers, I’m expecting a predictable letdown here.
WKU is averaging 71.8 PPG and it’s conceding 68.
I’ll point out though that the Mountaineers are just 1-4 ATS in their last three after a three games or more non-conference unbeaten streak, while UCF is 6-1 ATS in its last seven non-conference games and 4-1 ATS in its last five neutral site affairs.
I think UCF wears down WVU and pulls away down the stretch for the comfortable ATS cover.
|11-17-18||St. Louis +6 v. Seton Hall||Top||66-64||Win||100||12 h 7 m||Show|
My 10* GAME OF THE WEEK is on St. Louis (8:00 EST).
While I wouldn’t be shocked by an outright upset here, I’ll recommend grabbing the points in a contest which I envision coming down to whichever team has its hands on the ball last.
Saint Louis is 3-0, most recently taking care of North Alabama 69-58. Javon Bess had 16 points and ten boards, leading four players in double figures in scoring. Note that the Billikens have five players with at least six assists and it also has a 1.64 assist-to-turnover ratio.
Seton Hall lost four starters from last year and it showed in a humbling 80-57 loss to Nebraska on Wednesday. Myles Powell was a bright spot with 24 points.
I’ll point out as well that Seton Hall is just 1-4 ATS in its last five following an ATS loss, while St. Louis is 14-5 ATS in its last 19 as a road underdog and 7-3 ATS in its last ten following an ATS loss.
This one has outright upset written all over it my opinion, but as stated off the top, I’m going to grab the points.
|11-17-18||Jazz v. Celtics -4||Top||98-86||Loss||-105||12 h 18 m||Show|
My 10* Situational Stunner is on the Boston Celtics (7:35 EST).
Both teams played last night. Utah fell 113-107 in Philadelphia and I think it’ll stumble here as well in this difficult road venue.
The Celtics slugged out with Toronto at home and eventually pulled away for the 113-107 victory.
The second game of a back-to-back is always difficult, but always much more so for the road team. I think fatigue will be a factor for the Jazz, who laid everything they had on the line last night to try and pull off the upset.
Clearly the Celtics had to work hard as well, but again, the “not travelling factor” is huge in this case in my opinion.
Furthermore note that Utah is just 34-40 ATS in its last 74 as an underdog, while Boston is 46-25 ATS in its last 71 when trying to revenge a loss against an opponent (Jazz claimed a 123-115 home win on Nov. 9th.)
All signs point to a rout, lay the points.
|11-16-18||Kings +7 v. Grizzlies||104-112||Loss||-105||13 h 8 m||Show|
My 8* Las Vegas Insider is on the Sacramento Kings (8:05 EST).
Memphis comes in off a big 116-113 road win over Milwaukee and I think it’ll have a predictable letdown here at home against its lowly opponent.
And that’s not good news facing this improved Kings side, which has had three whole nights off to prepare for this one after beating the Spurs 104-99 at home.
And if recent history is any precedence, then Sacramento has to be liking its chances tonight, because when these teams met last month, it was the Kings that posted the 97-92 home victory.
The Kings are averaging 114.5 PPG and they’re conceding 115.5. Sacramento got 22 points from Bogdan Bogdanovic in the most recent victory.
The Grizzlies are averaging only 102.2 PPG, but they’re conceding just 101.6. Big man Marc Gasol had 29 points in the big upset win over the Bucks.
I’ll point out though that Sacramento is 16-5 ATS in its last 21 when playing on three days rest and I believe this is going to be a big difference in the outcome of this one.
While I’ll stop short in calling for the outright upset, everything points to this one coming down to whichever team has its hands on the ball last. Grab the points.
|11-16-18||Jazz v. 76ers -3||Top||107-113||Win||100||12 h 7 m||Show|
My 10* GAME OF THE WEEK is on the Philadelphia 76ers (7:05 EST).
The Jazz come in off a deflating 118-68 road loss in Dallas and I think they’re ripe for the picking here as well.
Philadelphia enters off a 111-106 road loss to Orlando on Wednesday.
The Jazz come in averaging 107.4 PPG and conceding 108.9. Donovan Mitchell had led the way with 20.4 PPG so far, while Rudy Gobert has chipped in 15.9 points, 13.2 boards and 2.21 blocks per contest.
The 76ers return home and welcome the new acquired Jimmy Butler’s first home game. The 76ers are averaging 112.3 PPG and they’re conceding 112.8. Big Man Joel Embiid has been unstoppable so far, averaging 27.6 points, 13.4 boards and 2.13 blocks per game.
I’ll point out that Philadelphia is 4-1 ATS in its last five following an ATS loss, while the Jazz are just 2-7 ATS in their last nine after scoring 75 points or less in their last outing.
The 76ers are a “different” team at home, coming into this one undefeated thus far. And I look for that strong trend to carry over here in this favorable match-up.
Lay the points.
|11-16-18||Connecticut v. Iowa -4||Top||72-91||Win||100||7 h 31 m||Show|
My 10* Champ Game Crusher is on Iowa (6:30 EST).
Both teams are 3-0 to open the year. This is the championship game of the 2K classic from New York.
UConn got here by upsetting Syracuse 83-76 last night. Jalen Adams and Alterique Gilbert each had 16 points. Overall the Huskies are averaging 85.7 PPG.
I played on the Hawkeyes in their 77-69 upset victory over Oregon. Jordan Bohannon was a standout with 16 points, while Luke Garza added 12. Overall Iowa is averaging 85 PPG.
I’ll point out though that the UConn is just 1-4 ATS in its last five neutral site affairs and 3-9 ATS in its last 12 non-conference games, while Iowa is 6-0 ATS in its last six neutral site games and 5-2-1 ATS in its last eight non-conference contests.
I think the Hawkeyes find a way to get the job done at the end of the night.
Play on Iowa.
|11-15-18||Oregon v. Iowa +4||Top||69-77||Win||100||14 h 9 m||Show|
My 10* Takedown is on Iowa (9:30 EST).
The No. 13 Oregon Ducks take on the Iowa Hawkeyes in the semi finals of the 2K Classic at MSG tonight.
Oregon enters off an 81-47 victory over Eastern Washington, while Iowa comes in off a 93-82 win at home over Green Bay.
The Ducks are aerating 82.5 PPG and allowing 52. Bol Bol leads the nightly charge with 17.5 points, 12.5 boards and 3.5 blocks per game.
Iowa would love to pull of the upset obviously to reach the championship game. The Hawkeyes come in averaging 85 PPG and conceding 72.5. Tyler Cook averages 14.5 points and seven boards per game.
I’ll point out as well that Oregon is just 7-10 ATS in its last 17 neutral site affairs, while Iowa is a solid 6-4 in all neutral court contests.
This one has the feel that whichever team has its hands on the ball last will find a way to get the job done in the end. Grab the points.
|11-15-18||Warriors v. Rockets -1.5||Top||86-107||Win||100||14 h 14 m||Show|
My 10* Rivalry Rout Gold is on the Houston Rockets (8:05 EST).
Golden State knocked off the Rockets in the playoffs last year. Chris Paul was injured in Game 5 and Houston wasted a 3-2 lead.
The Warriors return to Houston without leader Stephen Curry and I think that Paul and company will lay the hammer down from start to finish.
Note that Houston did take two of three in the regular season last year, including a 116-108 victory at home in the final one back on January 20th.
Golden State enters averaging 120.7 PPG, while conceding 111 per night. Kevin Durant is averaging 27.5 points, 7.3 boards and 6.5 assists per game.
Houston enters averaging 103.2 PPG and it’s allowing 106.7. James Harden is averaging 27.3 points, 5.6 boards and 7.7 assists per game.
I’ll point out as well that Golden State is just 2-4 ATS on the road, while Houston is now 3-1 ATS in its last four vs. teams with winning records.
Houston can move back to .500 with a win today. It comes in on top form having won five of the last seven. After a slow start the Rockets have returned to form on both ends of the floor, so their early season numbers are skewed after the slow start.
Play on the Rockets.
|11-15-18||UCF v. CS-Fullerton +4||68-52||Loss||-104||8 h 37 m||Show|
My 8* Daytime Dominator is on CS Fullerton (2:00 EST).
UCF enters off an 89-79 home loss to FAU, while CS Fullerton posted a 106-53 win over non-division 1 West Coast Baptist.
UCF is now 1-1, averaging 81.5 PPG and conceding 75. BJ Taylor had 29 points in a losing cause to FAU.
CS Fullerton is 1-1, getting 35 points from Kyle Allman Jr. in the opening win. Over two games the Titans have averaged 100 points per game and conceded 77.5.
I’ll point out that UCF is just 2-4 ATS in its last six neutral court contests, while CS Fullerton is 19-12 ATS in its last 31 as an underdog and 7-4 ATS in its last 11 after allowing 60 points or less.
Grab the points and expect a “nail biter.”
|11-14-18||Blazers v. Lakers -2.5||117-126||Win||100||16 h 54 m||Show|
My 8* Las Vegas Insider is on the LA Lakers (10:35 EST).
I don’t think that the home court advantage can be overlooked as a very real deciding factor.
LA comes in on top form as it’s won three straight after Sunday’s victory over Atlanta.
Portland has won four in a row, but after knocking off the Celtics at home in its latest, I think it’ll stumble in its first game on the road.
Portland is conceding 106.2 PPG, ranked fifth overall. Jusuf Nurkic had 17 points and 17 boards in his teams victory over the C’s.
LA’s issues are on the defensive end of the floor, but LeBron James and company have no problems at all scoring. James finished with 26 points, seven boards and four assists in the victory over Atlanta.
The Lakers are 3-1 ATS this year against teams with winning records and already 3-1 ATS when playing with two days of rest.
Blazers’ star player Damian Lillard will likely play, but he’s still playing through a minor injury today. Look for James to take advantage and lay the points.
|11-14-18||Seton Hall +8.5 v. Nebraska||Top||57-80||Loss||-110||13 h 48 m||Show|
My 10* PERFECT STORM is on Seton Hall (7:30 EST).
I’m not calling for an outright upset, but I think the Pirates have what it takes to keep this one competitive until the final moments.
Seton Hall lost most of its starting line-up from last year, but it returns one and the Pirates opened with a convincing 89-49 win over Wagner to open the year. Myles Powell had 30 points, going 5 of 7 from range, while Michael Nzei had 11 points and seven boards.
The Pirates were on a five game win streak against the Big Ten before falling 71-65 to Rutgers last December.
Nebraska missed out on the Tournament last year, but it’s opened the season with back to back blowout wins. Can anyone say letdown spot?!
The Huskers have held both opponents to under 40 points, but I think the step up in competition today will catch Nebraska off guard.
I’ll point out as well that Seton Hall is 7-2 ATS in its last nine non-conference road games as an underdog in the +7.5 to +10.5 points range.
For all the reasons listed above, play on Seton Hall.
|11-13-18||Rhode Island v. College of Charleston -1.5||55-66||Win||100||11 h 56 m||Show|
My 8* Las Vegas Insider on the College Of Charleston (7:00 EST).
I think Rhode Island comes up short in this tough non-conference mach up.
The Rams lost several key figures over the offseason that contributed to their back-to-back NCAA Tournament teams (which includes head coach Dan Hurley, who went to UConn.)
The Charleston Cougars though went to the tournament for the first time since 1999 last year and they return several key members, including Grant Riler, who averaged 18.6 PPG and Jarell Brantley, who added 17.3.
Charleston most recently beat Western Carolina 73-70 with Riler leading the way with 28 points.
The Cougars are averaging 104.9 PPG per 100 possessions and they’re allowing 99.9 points per 100 possessions.
Rhode Island did open the year with a win over lowly Bryant on Tuesday, taking down the Bears 97-63. Fatts Russell had 21 points. So far the Rams have averaged 103.4 points per 100 possessions, while giving up 97.4 points per 100 possessions.
I’ll point out though that Charleston is 6-2-1 ATS in its last nine against teams with winning SU records, while Rhode Island is just 2-5 ATS in its last seven in the same position.
The Cougars depth and experience wins the game. Lay the points.
|11-13-18||Western Michigan +4 v. Oakland||Top||85-77||Win||100||11 h 55 m||Show|
My 10* Situational Stunner is on Western Michigan (7:00 EST).
WMU comes in off a 90-64 road loss to Ole Miss, while the Golden Grizzlies fell flat in an 87-86 setback at home Toledo.
Note that this is a revenge game for the Broncos after Oakland posted a 78-73 road win over WMU last year.
Over two games this year the Broncos have so far averaged 76.5 PPG, while holding their opposition to 73.4. Josh Davis has so far posted 26 points over the two contests.
Oakland is averaging 78.2 PPG and it’s allowing 76.2. Jaevin Cumberland scored 14 points in the loss to the Rockets.
I’ll point out though that that Golden Grizzlies are just 1-12 ATS in their last 13 at home and 0-5 ATS following an ATS victory, while WMU is 5-0 ATS in its last five following a SU loss of more than 20 points.
For all the reasons listed above, play on Western Michigan.
|11-12-18||Spurs -3 v. Kings||Top||99-104||Loss||-108||15 h 49 m||Show|
The third pick of my Superstar Triple Play is on the (10*) San Antonio Spurs (10:05 EST).
San Antonio comes in off an impressive 96-89 home win over Houston and I think it carries that momentum over here against a Kings team which is already running out of gas after a hot start to the year, most recently falling 101-86 at home to the Lakers.
San Antonio broke a two-game slide and it’s now averaging 109.5 PPG, while conceding 107.9. LaMarcus Aldridge averaged 18.3 points in three games vs. the Kings last year and he had 27 points and ten boards in the most recent win.
Sacramento has lost three of its last four. The Kings average 115.3 PPG and they concede 116.8.
Note that Sacramento s also just 1-4 ATS the last five in this series, while the Spurs are a sharp 5-1 ATS in their last six vs. the Western Conference.
San Antonio appears to be back on track defensively, which spells trouble for Sacramento tonight.
Lay the points.
|11-12-18||Utah v. Minnesota -7.5||Top||69-78||Win||100||14 h 43 m||Show|
My 10* GAME OF THE MONTH is on Minnesota (9:00 EST).
Utah opened with a 75-61 win over Maine on Thursday, but it’s clearly going to have its hands full here against a Golden Gophers team which comes in off a convincing victory itself on Opening night.
In my opinion, this one has “blowout” written all over it.
The Utes were led by Sedrick Barefield, who had 18 points. Donnie Tillman added 15. Utah held Maine to 40 percent shooting and held a 42-26 rebounding advantage.
Note though that the Utes are just 4-13 in non-conference road games since 2011/12.
The Golden Gophers smashed Omaha 104-76, as Amir Coffey shined with 18 points, four assists and two steals. Dupre McBreyer was another standout with 17 points.
Note that the Gophers are 46-4 at home in non-conference games once 2013, winning 20 of the last 21.
I’ll point out as well that Utah is just 10-11 ATS in its last 21 as an underdog, while Minnesota is 23-17 ATS In its last 40 as a favorite.
Lay the points.
|11-12-18||Jazz -2.5 v. Grizzlies||96-88||Win||100||13 h 49 m||Show|
The second pick of my Superstar Triple Play is on the (8*) Utah Jazz (8:05 EST).
Utah enters off a momentum building 123-115 home win over Boston on Friday, while Memphis comes in off a 112-106 OT victory at home over Philadelphia.
Note that this is a “double revenge” game for Utah, as Memphis has already taken both meetings so far this season, including a 110-100 road victory on November 2nd.
Utah is averaging 111.6 PPG and it’s conceding 109.9. Donovan Mitchell leads the nightly charge with 22.3 points, while Rudy Gobert adds 16.4 points, 13.3 boards and 2.33 blocks per night.
Memphis is averaging only 103.1 PPG, but it makes up for it on the other end of the floor, holding the opposition to 101.1 PPG. Mike Conley leads the way with 18.1 points and six assists per night.
I’ll point out thought that the Jazz are 4-1 ATS in their last five following a SU win, while Memphis is just 2-7 ATS in its last nine following an OT victory in which it scored 110 points or more in previously.
Look for the revenge minded Jazz to pull away down the stretch.
|11-11-18||Vanderbilt +2.5 v. USC||Top||82-78||Win||100||9 h 43 m||Show|
This is a 10* play on Vanderbilt (9:00 EST).
Both teams come into this one at 1-0, as USC routed Robert Morris and Vandy smashed Winthrop.
Vanderbilt is led by Darius Garland, who had 24 points, four assists and two steals in the season opening victory. Simi Shittu was a stand out as well with 18 points, ten boards, two blocks and two steals.
USC is led by Kevin Porter Jr, who had 15 points and five boards in the win over Robert Morris. But note that the Trojans were sloppy, committing 15 turnovers, a result of point guard Jordan McLaughlin being absent. Last year he was the Pac 12 assists leader.
These are two evenly matched teams, but Vanderbilt plays with revenge after a 93-89 OT loss last year in Nashville. USC’s top player Bennie Boatwright did not play in the opener and if he does get the call tonight, his overall health is still a concern.
I like Garland to lead his team to a victory, but that said, I’m going to grab the points in the end.
|11-11-18||Bucks v. Nuggets -3||Top||121-114||Loss||-110||14 h 47 m||Show|
My 10* Weekend Wipeout Winner is on the Denver Nuggets (8:05 EST).
Two teams which started off the year red hot have come back down to Earth of late. However, I don’t think that that home court advantage can be overlooked as a very real deciding factor in this particular match-up.
Milwaukee enters off a loss to the Clippers just last night, a game which went to OT. Can anyone say “letdown spot?” This is the finale of the Bucks longest West coast trip of the year (already won at Golden State) and in my opinion, I think Milwaukee gets caught looking ahead to a couple of well deserved days off.
The Nuggets on the other hand will be out to atone for a 112-110 loss at home to the lowly Nets on Friday.
Milwaukee is averaging 121.2 PPG and allowing 107.6. Giannis Antetokounmpo is averaging 25.6 points, 12.9 boards and 5.7 assists per game.
Denver actually comes in off back-to-back losses, so “focus” for the home side is not something we have to worry about.
Denver averages 109.6 PPG an fit concedes just 102.1. Nikola Jokic averages 17.6 points, ten boards and seven assists per game.
I’ll point out as well that Denver is 4-1 ATS in its last five home games vs. teams with a winning road record, while Milwaukee is just 2-7 ATS in its last nine road games against a team with a winning home record.
The Bucks come in “gassed” at the end of their trip, and playing at “Mile High” against a determined Nuggets team proves to be too much once it’s all said and done.
Lay the points.
|11-10-18||Lakers -5.5 v. Kings||Top||101-86||Win||100||15 h 50 m||Show|
My 10* GAME OF THE WEEK is on the LA Lakers (10:05 EST).
This is an important game for the Lakers, who also have a game at home tomorrown night against the Hawks. I think LeBron James and company put the foot on the gas from start to finish in this one as they try to sweep these two games and start to move in a positive direction.
LA enters off a 114-110 win over the Wolves on Wednesday, while Sacramento comes in dog tired after last night’s 121-110 victory over Minnesota last night.
The Lakers can score, averaging 118.5 PPG, which is ranked third in the league. The defense is the issue, allowing 119.1 PPG. While the Kings are an “up-tempo” style of team, LA does catch a break here catching the home side playing the second game of the back-to-back.
The Kings are averaging 117.5 PPG and they’re conceding 118.8. De’Aaron Fox has been superb, averaging 18.7 points and 7.3 assists per game.
I think it’s important to note though that Sacramento is just 2-9 ATS in its last 11 against the division, while LA is 8-3 ATS in its last 11 vs. divisional opponents.
Lay the points and expect a rout.
|11-10-18||Loyola Marymount v. UNLV -4||Top||61-50||Loss||-110||15 h 45 m||Show|
My 10* GAME OF THE WEEK is on UNLV (10:00 EST).
UNLV improved to 20-13 last season and I think it’ll “bring the heat” on Opening night.
Loyola Marymount was 11-20 last year and the Lions haven’t had a winning season since 2012.
The Rebels have three capable seniors in Noah Robtham, Kris Clyburn and Shakur Julston. Last year Julston averaged 14.6 points and ten boards per game.
The Lions are already 1-0, coming into this one contented off a 75-43 win over lowly Westcliff. Previous to last year’s disastrous overall start, Loyola Marymount actually went 15-15. But last season was a major step back, especially against the conference, finishing 5-13 in league play.
The Rebels have the more experienced senior group of players and on opening night, I think that’s going to be more than enough to take care of the “thin” Lions. Loyola Marymount shot only 35.7 percent from behind the arc in their opening victory, which isn’t going to get the job done tonight.
I’m banking on a blowout. Lay the points.
|11-09-18||Yale -3 v. California||76-59||Win||100||16 h 13 m||Show|
The third pick of my Superstar Triple Play is on Yale (9*) (11:00 EST).
This is the 2018/19 Pac-12 China Game in Shanghai. This is the season opener for both teams.
Yale comes in with plenty of veteran leadership this year and I ultimately believe that that factor will prove to be the difference maker on Opening night “across the pond.” Miye Oni averaged 15.1 points and six boards last year, while Alex Copeland averaged 11.2 PPG. Overall 95 percent of their offensive production from last year returns for the Bulldogs.
Yale has a 42-14 Ivy League record over the last four years and it’s won two league titles in that time.
Cal posted only eight wins last year and it’s once again in re-building mode this season for the most part as well.
The Bears were one of the worst shooting teams in the country and also one of the worst at turning it over. Paris Austin, a Boise State transfer, is expected to bring some stability to the back-court.
Note though that Cal is just 4-11-1 ATS in its last 16 neutral site affairs, while Yale is 8-3 ATS in its last 11 neutral site games.
This one has blowout written all over it, lay the points.
|11-09-18||Arkansas v. Texas -6.5||Top||71-73||Loss||-108||13 h 34 m||Show|
My 10* Rivalry Rout is on Texas at 7;00 ET.
Arkansas and Texas will renew their old Southwest Conference rivalry Friday in the Armed Forces Classic at Fort Bliss in El Paso, Texas returns FOUR of five starters from last year and has a game under its belt, a 71-59 victory against Eastern Illinois. As for Arkansas (playing its season-opener), the Razorbacks lost 79.6 percent of their scoring and 64.7 percent of their rebounding from last year.
The Razorbacks lost eight players, including five of their top six scorers, from last season's 23-win NCAA Tournament team. All-SEC first team selection Daniel Gafford ( sophomore forward) averaged 11.8 & 6.2 last season is one of just three scholarship players returning. Meanwhile, PG Jalen Harris, who redshirted last season after transferring from New Mexico, is the only Arkansas guard with any Division I experience. The good news for the Razorbacks is that there are some impressive recruits coming in, including 4-star players Isaiah Joe, Ethan Henderson and Keyshawn Embery. We'll see.
The Longhorns finished just 19-15 last season, after blowing a 14-point second-half lead against Nevada in the team's first NCAA contest. Texas does return four of five starters but the loss was a big one, as the 7-0 Bamba (12.9-10.5-3.7 BPG) was the sixth pick of the NBA Draft. However, Texas not only returns four starters but the Longhorns have six freshman. Its crop of freshman was ranked EIGHTH nationally by 247Sports.
Both schools own quality head coaches. Arkansas' Mike Anderson has led UAB, Missouri and now Arkansas, to NCAA berths plus is one of just four current Division I coaches with 15-plus years of experience and no losing seasons. Roy Williams, Tom Izzo and Mark Few are the others. That's pretty sweet company! Texas' Shaka Smart was an impressive 163-56 (.744) at VCU, leading the Rams to the CBI championship in 2010 (his first year as a head coach) and then to the NCAA Final 4 in 2011, as an 11-seed. He's taken the Longhorns to the "Big Dance" in two of his three years at Austin but his overall record was just 50-50 entering the current season.
Nobody is saying Smart needs to win in 2018-19 to keep his job but I bet plenty of Texas people are "thinking it!' Texas has much more experience plus the Longhorns have a game under their belt. The El Paso site is pretty much a home game and as noted above, the Razorbacks have a ton of rebuilding to do. Maybe James Street (or for that matter, Randy Peschel) will be in the stands? If you don't know those names, you are too damn young! Lay the points with Texas.
|11-09-18||Missouri v. Iowa State -8||59-76||Win||100||12 h 13 m||Show|
The first pick of my Superstar Triple Play is on Iowa State (8*) (7:00 EST).
Missouri lost Michael Porter Jr. to the NBA, but the Tigers return several key players, including Jeremiah Tillmon and Kevin Puryear. Missouri got 19 points and ten boards from Mark Smith in the opener vs. Central Arkansas. Overall it was a poor shooting game though, as the team would combine to go just 3 of 18 from beyond the arc.
Iowa State was just 4-14 in Big 12 play last season, but anything short of a tournament spot this year would be considered a disappointment. Iowa State opened with a 79-53 win over Alabama State, as four players would go on to score in double figures, led by Michael Jacobson with 17. So far Iowa State is averaging 111 points per 100 possessions so far this season, while allowing 93 per 100 possessions.
The Tigers lost Jontay Porter to injury and I think he’ll be missed here against a Cyclones team looking to send a message. Lay the points.
|11-09-18||Stanford v. NC-Wilmington +2.5||72-59||Loss||-110||12 h 13 m||Show|
The second pick of my Superstar Triple Play is on NC Wilmington (8*) (7:00 EST).
The Cardinal were 19-16 last year and they opened this season with a 96-74 home win over Seattle on Tuesday.
NC Wilmington was just 11-21 last season and it enters hungry after a 97-93 OT road loss to Campbell in its opener.
Last year Stanford averaged 75.9 PPG and it conceded 74.9. KZ Okpala had 29 points in the season opening victory.
Last year UNC Wilmington averaged 79.4 PPG and it conceded 83.4. Ty Taylor II had 29 points in the season opening loss including six three-pointers.
I’ll point out though that Stanford is just 2-7 ATS in its last nine non-conference road games after scoring 95 points or more in a victory in its previous outing.
I think the “hungrier” team is NC Wilmington. The Seahawks return plenty of talent and in a contest which i see coming down to whichever of these teams has its hands on the ball last, I’m going to grab the points.
|11-08-18||Rockets -4.5 v. Thunder||Top||80-98||Loss||-109||14 h 18 m||Show|
This is a 10* TNT Explosion on the Houston Rockets (8:05 EST).
Houston has won three straight on the road, most recently a 98-94 win over Indiana on Monday. With two whole nights off to prepare, I look for the Rockets to come out on top here.
OKC most recently beat Cleveland 95-86 on the road on Wednesday, but with a return home to friendly confines, I’m expecting a predictable letdown here.
Note that Houston does play with a bit of revenge here as well, as the Thunder took two of three in the season series last year.
The Rockets are averaging 105.3 PPG and they’re allowing 110.1. Of course those numbers are skewed due to the lousy overall start. Houston has started to turn things around of late, led by James Harden is averaging 27.8 points, five boards and 8.2 assists per night.
OKC is averaging 113.2 PPG and it’s allowing 111.3. Russell Westbrook is leading the way with 24.1 points, 8.3 boards and 8.9 assists per game.
I’ll point out though that the Thunder are in fact just 1-4 ATS in their last five home games vs. teams with winning road records, while Houston is 6-2 ATS in its last eight road games against teams with a winning home record. This is the second game of a back-to-back set for OKC and I believe it comes in “flat footed.”
Lay the points.
|11-07-18||Wolves v. Lakers -5||Top||110-114||Loss||-110||14 h 50 m||Show|
My 10* play is on the LA Lakers at 10:35 ET.
Inconsistency has plagued both the T-wolves and Lakers early on.
Minnesota has yet to win on the rod this season plus the team has been dealing with Jimmy Butler's "moods."
Butler has been demanding a trade since the preseason and has sat out every other game since the win against the Lakers last week.
He wouldn't discuss his status for Wednesday's game.
LBJ and the Lakers are also still trying to find their groove and they trailed 41-17 after the first quarter on Sunday en route to losing 121-107 to the Raptors in a contest in which Toronto was missing star forward Kawhi Leonard (not a good sign).
However, the bottom line is this.
LA is a poor defensive team but the Lakers can score (118.9 PPG and 49.4 FG percentage both rank 3rd in the NBA) and the T-wolves are allowing 118.5 PPG in going 0-6 SU & 1-5 ATS away from Target Center so far.
10* on the Lakers.
|11-07-18||76ers v. Pacers -2.5||100-94||Loss||-109||11 h 21 m||Show|
My 9* play is on the Ind Pacers at 8:05 ET.
Yes, the 6-5 Philadelphia 76ers will eventually win on the road, but when?
They've been unable to do so yet (0-5 SU & ATS) plus with FOUR of their five losses away from home coming by at least 15 points, they've barely been competitive.
Sunday's dreadful 122-97 loss at Brooklyn featured an NBA-high 28 turnovers!
The 7-4 Indiana Pacers are off a 98-94 home loss to the Rockets, a defeat which ended a run of three straight wins. Victor Oladipo scored 28 points in the defeat to record his NBA-leading 10th straight game with at least 20 points (he's averaging 23.0 PPG).
The Pacers are allowing just 99.4 PPG at home, while the 76ers are giving up a whopping 122.4 PPG on the road.
Noting that Indiana has won EIGHT straight meetings at home against Philadelphia makes the Pacers a 9* play.
|11-06-18||Duke +2 v. Kentucky||118-84||Win||100||14 h 2 m||Show|
My 9* Champs Classic play is on Duke (9:30 EST).
Duke posted a 29-8 record last year and a 13-5 record in ACC action, while the Wildcats went 26-11 with a 10-8 record in SEC action.
Both teams feature plenty of new faces, but I think the depth and skill that Duke brings to the table will be just too much for the Wildcats to hang with on Opening Night.
Duke lost its top five scorers from last year, but it recruited Zion Williamson and RJ Barrett, who are considered two of the best talents in the country. It also features 6 foot 8 forward Cam Reddish and leading scorer Marquez Bolden also returns. Last year the Blue Devils averaged 84.4 PPG and allowed 69.6.
Kentucky comes into the new season ranked No. 2. The Wildcats lost many big names to the NBA over the offseason, but they still feature plenty of talent as well in Quade Gren and PJ Washington. Last year the Wildcats averaged 76.8 PPG and allowed 70.2. That was ranked 116th overall.
I’ll point out as well that the Blue Devils are 10-4 ATS in their last 14 non-conference games and 11-5 ATS in their last 16 neutral site affairs.
Kentucky returns just 31.5 percent of its scoring from last year and on Opening Night, I think the Blue Devils will take advantage.
|11-06-18||Florida +4 v. Florida State||Top||60-81||Loss||-108||15 h 8 m||Show|
My 10* CBB TIP OFF OPENER is on Florida (9:00 EST).
Florida has won 27 straight season openers but it’ll have its hands full here. In a contest which I envision being decided by whichever team has its hands on the ball last, I’m going to grab the points.
Note that this is a big time revenge game as well for the Gators after the Seminoles embarrassed them 83-66 in Gainesville last year.
Three starters return for the Gators though, a team which averaged 75.8 PPG. KeVaughn Allen averaged 11.0 points last year.
FSU is predicted to finish seventh in the difficult 15-team ACC this year. The Seminoles also return three starters. One of those starters though, Phil Cofer, won’t be playing tonight because of a foot injury. Cofer averaged 12.8 points and 5.1 boards last year.
This one is very evenly matched, but I think the absence of Cofer is a significant one for the Seminoles. The Gators play with revenge and I think they’ll keep this one competitive until the final moments.
Grab the points.
|11-05-18||Celtics +2.5 v. Nuggets||Top||107-115||Loss||-103||14 h 21 m||Show|
My 10* PERFECT STORM is on the Boston Celtics (9:05 EST).
Boston will look to be the first team in the league to knock off the Nuggets at home. Denver looks primed for a letdown in my opinion after four straight victories and facing this tough nosed defensive visiting side.
The Nuggets already have some big wins under their belts, including over the Warriors, Pelicans and Jazz, but this sets up as a classic “letdown” spot in my estimation facing the non-conference opponent tonight (despite it being the Celtics). Nikola Jokic had just single digits scoring in the win over the Jazz, but he’d post ten boards and 16 assists as well.
Boston comes in in a foul mood after a last second-three pointer cost them against the Pacers most recently. Kyrie Irving had 18 points, six boards and three assists in the setback.
I’ll point out though that the road team is 4-1-1 ATS the last six in this series, while the underdog is 3-0-1 ATS the last four in the series.
Also note that Boston is 20-8 ATS in its last 28 against teams with a winning percentage above .600.
For all the reasons listed above, grab the points.
|11-04-18||Grizzlies v. Suns +4||Top||100-102||Win||100||13 h 27 m||Show|
My 10* Wipeout Winner is on the Phoenix Suns (8:05 EST).
What do you base your selections on? As a professional handicapper I base my picks on many different things.
This one sets up great from a situational stand point for the Suns and it’s one I’m primarily basing this particular selection.
The Grizzlies are 5-2 overall and they come in having won three straight. But with a date at Golden State tomorrow night, Memphis is expected to rest people tonight and clearly it’s not going to be able to help itself in getting caught “looking ahead” to that much more high profile contest.
The Suns clearly don’t have that luxury though, as they come in having lost seven straight. They also play with revenge after falling to Memphis earlier in the season.
Note that Memphis is just 10-19 ATS in its last 29 on the road and only 6-8 ATS In its last 14 after three or more consecutive SU victories, while Phoenix is 31-20 ATS in its last 51 after three or more consecutive SU losses.
It’s do or die, now or never for Phoenix. Expect an outright, but grab the points.
|11-02-18||Thunder v. Wizards -3||Top||134-111||Loss||-105||28 h 14 m||Show|
My 10* Las Vegas Insider is on the Washington Wizards (8:00 EST).
The Oklahoma City Thunder got off to a slow start, but they go into Charlotte on a two game win streak on Thursday night.
The Thunder come to the Nation’s capital “dog tired” here to face a Wizards team which comes in desperate after a 1-6 start, including going 0-2 at home. But a favorable matchup here against a “flat-footed” Thunder side, combined with a very “winnable” game against the Knicks on Sunday could have the Wizards completely turned around by the end of the weekend.
It’s essentially a “do or die” game for the Wizards in my estimation and I expect the home side to “answer the call.”
I’ll point out as well that the Thunder are just 2-7 ATS in their last nine in the second game of a back to back in which its playing on the road, while Washington is 8-4 ATS in its last 12 after a four games or more unbeaten streak.
Lay the points and expect a blowout. Play on the Wizards.
|11-01-18||Bucks v. Celtics -3||Top||113-117||Win||100||13 h 26 m||Show|
My 10* Eastern Conf. Showdown is on the Boston Celtics (8:05 EST).
The Bucks are 7-0, most recently coming in off a very satisfying 124-109 home win over Toronto. The Celtics are 5-2 and they enter off a 108-105 home win over Detroit.
Milwaukee is averaging 120 PPG and it’s conceding 104.1. Giannis Antetokounmpo did not play against the Raptors, but he’s been given the green light to go here. So far Anteokounmpo has averaged 25 points and 14.2 boards per game.
Boston is averaging 102.4 PPG, while conceding an NBA-best 97.6. Kyrie Irving had his best game of the season last time out, finishing with 31 points.
Note that Boston is 17-5 ATS in its last 22 at home and 14-3 ATS in its last 17 home games against teams with winning road records, while Milwaukee is still just 1-6 ATS in its last seven on the road and 3-8 ATS in its last 11 against teams with a winning percentage above .600.
All good things have to come to an end. I expect the Celtics’ league leading defense to finally throw a “monkey wrench” into the Bucks’ hot offensive start.
Lay the points.
|10-31-18||Mavs v. Lakers -6.5||Top||113-114||Loss||-123||15 h 17 m||Show|
My 10* Situational Stunner is on the LA Lakers at 10:35 ET.
To put it mildly, the "LBJ era" is off to a slow start in the City of Angels. The Lakers are still learning how to play with their new superstar and they'd really like to figure out how to win the close games. 2-5 Los Angeles lost its third game by four points or less Monday night at the Minnesota Timberwolves and all five losses have come by single digits. LA will host the 2-5 Mavericks at Staples Center, who also desperate for a win after dropping their past four games (all by single digits!. Dallas did push the San Antonio Spurs to overtime Monday before losing 113-108, but also committed a season-worst 23 turnovers.
Dallas 'limps' in 0-4 away from home, averaging just 104.8 PPG. Sure, the Lakers are only 1-2 at home but they are averaging 126.0 PPG at Staples. With "all hands on deck" ( Lakers are back to full strength after starting SF Brandon Ingram completed a four-game suspension & backup PG Rajon Rondo a three-game ban for their roles in a fight with the Houston Rockets on Oct, 20), look for a 15-point win!
From a trend based stand point, note that LA is 8-3 ATS in its last 11 home games against teams with road winning percentages under .400, while Dallas is just 2-6 ATS In its last eight against clubs with losing records.
Lay the points.
|10-31-18||Pistons +2.5 v. Nets||119-120||Win||100||12 h 20 m||Show|
My 8* Las Vegas Insider is on the Det Pistons at 7:05 ET.
Brooklyn comes in dejected here after falling 115-96 against the Knicks on Monday. It was the Nets third straight loss.
Last night the Pistons fell 108-105 in Boston and while I wouldn’t normally play on a team in the second game of a back-to-back, in this case I’m making an exception. We’re only two weeks into the season, so fatigue is simply not going to be a factor at this point of the season for this World class athletes. In fact, the extra playing time is beneficial in my opinion to continue work things out on both ends of the floor.
If recent history is any precedence, then Detroit has to be loving its chances today as well, as it’s won three straight in this series, including a 103-100 victory in the first meeting at home on October 17th.
The public is quick to back the Nets here in my opinion. They’ve lost three straight and play with revenge, but quite simply this is a horrible match-up for them.
The Pistons are averaging 110.6 PPG and they’re allowing 112. The Nets are averaging 106.6 PPG and they’re conceding 111.1.
Brooklyn is just 4-10 ATS in its last 14 at home, while Detroit is 6-2 ATS in its last eight on the road and 8-3 ATS in its last 11 against teams with a winning percentage below .400.
Summing up. Beating the Nets back on Oct 17 began Detroit's first 4-0 start since the 2008-09 season. The rematch comes with the Pistons off consecutive losses but quarter c
both have come against the Celtics (the East's best team?). Drummond (18.2 & 15.2 on the year) helped the Pistons open the season with a 103-100 win by getting 24 points and 20 rebounds against the Nets. It was his fifth game with at least 20 rebounds against the Nets and his second 20-20 game against Brooklyn The Nets enter on a three-game slide and during that streak, Brooklyn is getting out-rebounded 146-123 and overall, is among the league's worst teams in rebounding at 43.0 per game (24th). The Pistons nearly overcame a 14-point deficit last night in Boston but won't need any fourth comebacks here, as they top the Nets for the SIXTH time in the last seven meetings.
|10-29-18||Blazers v. Pacers -3.5||Top||103-93||Loss||-110||11 h 20 m||Show|
My 10* GAME OF THE WEEK is on the Indiana Pacers (7:05 EST).
Portland finally stumbled after a great start, falling 120-111 in Miami on Saturday and I think it’ll have its hands full here as well with a Indiana team coming off a 119-107 road win over the Cavs on the weekend.
Note as well as this does in fact set up as a “double revenge” scenario for the Pacers after the Blazers took both meetings last year.
Overall Portland has averaged 122.4 PPG and allowed 117.2. Damian Lillard is averaging 33.8 points and 6.6 assists per game.
The Pacers are averaging 111.7 PPG and they’re conceding just 102.8. Victor Oladipo is leading the nightly charge with 21.8 points, 5.3 boards and 1.5 steals per game.
Additionally note that Indiana is 6-1 ATS in its last seven after allowing 100 points or more in its previous game, while Portland is just 1-5 ATS in its last six on the road and only 1-4 ATS in it last five when playing on one days rest.
Indiana has looked very strong at home in the early going and I expect that trend to continue here. Lay the points,
|10-24-18||Grizzlies -2.5 v. Kings||Top||92-97||Loss||-105||16 h 50 m||Show|
My 10* GAME OF THE MONTH is on the Memphis Grizzlies (10:05 EST).
Memphis looked terrible in a season Opening loss, but it’s looked fantastic in two victories since and I think the “under-the-radar” Grizz can keep the momentum rolling in this favorable situation.
Sacramento has struggled with defensive consistency early and it comes in “dog tired” here after last night’s 126-112 setback at Mile High Denver just last night.
The Grizz enter off an impressive 92-84 win over Utah, as guard Mike Conley had 23 points, seven boards and four assists.
The Kings are averaging 125.6 PPG, but they’re about to face their stiffest defensive test to date. After completely shutting down dynamic Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell, we have a hard time seeing Kings’ leading scorer De’Aaron Fox having much success today either.
Memphis comes in having gone 18-10 ATS in its last 28 off an upset win as an underdog and I think it’s getting little respect in this spot.
The Kings are “hungry” for a win, but the Grizzlies will be taking nothing for granted at this point after last year’s disastrous campaign.
The Grizzlies’ offense catches a break here facing the league’s worst defense. Lay the points with confidence.
|10-21-18||Warriors v. Nuggets +3.5||Top||98-100||Win||100||28 h 11 m||Show|
My 10* GAME OF THE WEEK is on the Denver Nuggets (8:00 EST).
Denver destroyed the Suns at home last night and I think it’ll carry that momentum over here.
It’s the start of the season, so the “fatigue” factor on the second game of the back-to-back is a “non-factor” in my opinion.
Golden State has won its first two games of the regular season, including a thrilling buzzer-beater over Utah on Friday. But I think the Warriors will stumble in the thin air of Mile high on Sunday night.
Steph Curry and Kevin Durant combined for 69 points in the win over the Jazz. It was a bitter fight to the end and Golden State is clearly “lucky” to have won it on a tip back from Jonas Jerebko at the buzzer. DeMarcus Cousins and Andre Igoudala remain on the sidelines injured.
The Nuggets got a triple-double from Nikola Jokic last night with 35 points, 11 assists and 12 boards. Denver has plenty of talent and I think it’ll take the two-time defending champs down to the wire.
I’ll point out as well that Golden State is just 50-51 ATS in its last 101 after scoring 115 points or more in its previous contest, while Denver is 40-30 ATS in its last 70 as an underdog.
Grab the points, play on the Nuggets.
|10-20-18||Spurs +4.5 v. Blazers||Top||108-121||Loss||-105||26 h 7 m||Show|
This is a 10* PERFECT STORM on the San Antonio Spurs (10:05 EST).
The Blazers come in off an opening night victory over LeBron James and the Lakers and I believe they’ll suffer a predictable letdown here.
San Antonio will look to take advantage and to build off its opening night win over the Wolves.
DeMar DeRozan had 28 points in his first game for San Antonio, while LaMarcus Aldridge had 21 points and 19 boards.
The Blazers got 24 points from guard Nick Stauskas off the bench in their win over the Lakers. Portland would go on to earn the victory despite being edged 34-12 in fast break points.
I’ll point out though that San Antonio is 7-3 ATS in its last ten as an underdog, while Portland is just 17-23 ATS in its last 40 after allowing 115 points or more.
This one has the feel of whichever team that has its hands on the ball last is going to be the one to come out on top. Grab the points.
|10-19-18||Warriors v. Jazz +2.5||Top||124-123||Win||100||28 h 5 m||Show|
The third pick of my STP is on Utah Jazz 10* (10:35 EST).
Both teams won their openers. Golden State beat OKC 108-100 at home (without Russell Westbrook in the line-up), but it certainly wasn’t pretty, committing 21 turnover and shooting only 26.9 percent from three-point range.
Stephen Curry was a bright spot in the win with 32 points, nine assists and eight boards.
Utah enters off a 123-117 win over the Kings on Wednesday. Donovan Mitchell and Joe Ingles would go 7 of 16 from three-point land and big man Rudy Gobert was 7 of 9 shooting with 15 boards and three blocks.
I’ll point out though that Golden State is a poor 16-21 ATS in its last 37 when playing with two days rest, while Utah is 5-2 ATS in its last seven after allowing 115 points or more.
I look for Utah to return to form on the defensive side this evening. Grab the points.
|10-19-18||Hawks v. Grizzlies -7||117-131||Win||100||26 h 36 m||Show|
The second pick of my STP is on Memphis Grizzlies 8* (8:05 EST).
A couple of bottom feeders go head-to-head here and I don’t think that the home court advantage can be overlooked as a very real deciding factor.
The Hawks lost 126-107 in New York in their Opener. Taurean Prince was a standout with 21 points, six boards and six assists.
ATL though would commit 24 turnovers which would lead to 29 Knicks’ points.
Memphis also comes in off a “dud,” falling 111-83 in Indiana on Wednesday. Marc Gasol finished with a weak 13 points.
So where is the advantage? Note that ATL is just 25-30 ATS in its last 55 after a loss by ten points or more, while Memphis is 9-6 ATS in its last five after scoring 85 points or less.
The Grizzlies have the advantage at home and I believe they’re the team to bounce back here. Lay the points.
|10-18-18||Heat v. Wizards -4.5||113-112||Loss||-110||25 h 17 m||Show|
My 8* PERFECT STORM is on the Washington Wizards (8:05 EST).
This is the second game of a back-to-back for Miami, which just played and lost in Orlando last night. The Heat are an older team and while it’s still just the second game of the season, I do indeed believe that fatigue will be a factor here.
Miami will now look to take advantage in its opening game of the year in front of the home town crowd after finishing in eighth in the East last year.
Note as well that Miami is dealing with several injuries to open the year, including to James Johnson, Dion Waiters, Wayne Ellington and Justise Winslow.
Last year the Wizards averaged 106.6 PPG and conceded 106. Bradley Beal led the team with 22.6 PPG last year, as star guard John Wall missed significant time with injury. Wall is back and he’s joined by free agent signings Austin Rivers, Jeff Green, Thomas Bryant and Dwight Howard.
I’ll point out as well that Miami is just 1-5 ATS in its last six against the Eastern conference, while Washington is 5-2 ATS in its last seven home games.
Miami is tired and injured. The Wizards are rested and focused.
Everything points to a rout, lay the points.
|10-17-18||Pelicans v. Rockets -7.5||Top||131-112||Loss||-107||27 h 11 m||Show|
My 10* Oddsmakers Error is on the Houston Rockets (8:05 EST).
New Orleans will once again be in the thick of things when the playoffs roll around. Anthony Davis is an MVP candidate and he’s supported by Jrue Holiday and now Julius Randle.
I’ll point out though that the Pelicans have lost each of their last three regular season openers.
Houston has improved its overall win total in each of the last three years. A trip to the NBA Finals likely would have happened last season if point guard Chris Paul hadn’t have gone down, but he’s back and healthy and ready to go. The team only got deeper with the addition of Carmelo Anthony as well.
I’ll point out as well though that New Orleans is just 2-5 ATS inits last seven in its last seven in Houston.
I think the Rockets send a message to the rest of the league with a decisive lop-sided blowout on Opening Night. Lay the points.
|10-17-18||Heat -2.5 v. Magic||101-104||Loss||-107||26 h 12 m||Show|
My 8* SITUATIONAL STUNNER is on the Miami Heat (7:05 EST).
Miami had 44 wins last year and it was knocked out of the first round of the playoffs by the 76ers. Dwayne Wade is back and so too is big man Hassan Whiteside, who comes into the campaign fully healthy. The Heat also have all star Goran Dragic.
Orlando starts a new era under head coach Steve Clifford. The Magic have a lot of new faces this season, so they’ll once again be leaning heavily on Nikola Vucevic and Aaron Gordon.
I’ll point out as well that the Magic are just 2-5 ATS in their last seven at home.
Miami has won five of its last six regular season openers and all signs point to another victory here. Lay the points.
|10-17-18||Nets +5 v. Pistons||100-103||Win||102||26 h 12 m||Show|
My 8* LAS VEGAS INSIDER is on the Brooklyn Nets (7:05 EST).
The Nets will be desperate for a better season after managing just 28 wins last year. D’Angelo Russell was a bright spot with 15.5 points and 5.2 assists per game, while Rondae Hollis-Jefferson wavered 13.9 PPG. Jeremy Lin is gone and big man Kenneth Faried has arrived.
Detroit was just 39-43 last year. Blake Griffin led the way with 19.8 points, 6.6 boards and 6.2 assists per game, while Tobias Harris averaged 18.1 points and 5.1 boards per contest.
Opening night and anything can happen. Neither team is “hungrier” than the other at this point of the season, but note that despite their poor overall record, Brooklyn was a money-making 35-17 ATS in its last 52 on the road.
Also note that the road team is 5-0 ATS in its last five in this series.
I’m expecting a hard-fought battle until the end. Grab the points.
|06-08-18||Warriors v. Cavs +6||Top||108-85||Loss||-110||38 h 2 m||Show|
My 10* PERFECT STORM is on the Cleveland Cavaliers (9:05 EST).
The Golden State Warriors head into Game 4 of the NBA Finals sitting at 72-29 overall this year, while the Cleveland Cavaliers are 62-40.
I had a play on Cleveland in Game 3 and it would unfortunately come up “just short.” With their backs against the wall and desperate to avoid the embarrassing sweep, I look for the Cavs to at the very least keep this one close enough to comfortably sneak in through the back door with what I believe to be a very healthy spread afforded to them in this “do or die” situation.
What more can be said about these teams which literally hasn’t been said about a million times at this point by every sports broadcaster, handicapper or “couch surfer” over the last four years.
This is the fourth straight year that these teams have met in the Finals, and while the cast of characters remains the same for the Warriors (for the most part), as LBJ goes, so goes Cleveland.
Suffice it to say, the strengths and weaknesses of these teams/players is well known to even the most casual basketball fan.
And so for this selection, I won’t bother breaking down individual player match ups, or re-cap the numbers/stats that the star players from each side posted in Game 3.
Instead I’m focusing on the overall “situation” and some strong ATS trends that completely support this selection.
It’s hard to imagine the Warriors having a “letdown” at this point of the whole thing, but there is absolutely no question whatsoever that this does indeed set up as a classic “letdown” spot for the visitors. With the knowledge that they’ll be able to “easily” wrap this one up at home in Game 5, I predict this “mental lapse” will in fact occur.
The Warriors are an amazing team there is no doubt, and this is just a horrible “matchup” for James and the Cavaliers. But I think the stage is set for an upset here.
(Additional supporting ATS stats added shortly)
While I’ll stop short in calling for the outright upset, everything finally points to a “nail-biter” in Game 4.
Grab the points, play on Cleveland.
|06-06-18||Warriors v. Cavs +5||Top||110-102||Loss||-110||61 h 55 m||Show|
My 10* LEGEND is on the Cleveland Cavaliers (9:05 EST).
I had a play on Golden State in Game 1 and then I decided to skip Game 2.
However Game 3 sets up perfectly for the Cavaliers, who I believe will finally get over the hump and at the very least, earn the ATS cover with the handful of points they’ve been afforded.
Obviously this series could easily be tied at 1-1 if the Cavs’ JR Smith didn’t have a brain-lapse at the end of Game 1. Golden State was fortunate to earn the extra period and then LeBron James would run out of gas at the end.
It was reported after that loss that the Cavaliers locker room took the setback incredibly hard. And that was evident in Game 2, as Golden State took control of the pace early and then never looked back. James posted a triple-double, but it wasn’t enough as the rest of his team struggled with consistency.
However the Cavaliers are not out of it yet. Cleveland went down 2-0 to Boston in the Eastern Conference Finals, before then rebounding in a big way in Game’s 3 and 4 at home.
And I’m now banking on that same “magic” working for the Cavaliers here with their backs against the wall.
Stephen Curry set an all time NBA Finals record with nine 3-pointers in Game 2 and clearly the defending champs have to be feeling pretty good about themselves. But Golden State has looked susceptible this post-season, as Houston pushed the Warriors to the brink in the Western Conference Finals. I think a letdown is imminent for Golden State here.
I’ll point out as well that Cleveland is 5-1 ATS in its last six after back-to-back SU/ATS losses, while Golden State is just 2-7 ATS in its last nine after scoring 120 points or more in its previous contest.
In conclusion: Only 20 teams have ever recovered from an 0-2 deficit in the playoffs to win a series but an LBJ-led team has been responsible for three of those comebacks. The latest came in the Eastern Conference Finals of 2018 against Boston, when the Celtics won the first two games at TD Garden but James and the Cavaliers took the series in seven, winning Game 6 at home and then Game in 7 in Boston.
All know that the Cavs and Warriors are meeting in a fourth straight NBA Finals and Cleveland is set to host its fourth Game 3 in that span. After splitting two OT games in 2015, the Cavs won Game 3 by a 96-91 score, but then lost three in a row. The following year, trailing 0-2, the Cavaliers hammered the Warriors by 30 ponts in Game 3 and eventually won the series for their first championship, rebounding from a 3-1 deficit. Last June, the Cavaliers were on the verge of winning another Game 3 but blew a six-point lead over the final 3:09 and lost, 118-113.
So here we sit, with the Cavs down 0-2 for a third straight year. Iquodala (knee) has been upgraded to questionable for Game 3 but he hasn't played since Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals and it seems like stretch to think that he'll play a significant role. Shaun Livingston made his five field-goal tries for 10 points to give Golden State a lift in the first half of Game 2, after making all four of his shots Thursday. JaVale McGee scored 12 points, making all six of his shots in his first career NBA Finals start in Game 2 as Kerr made a lineup switch that proved spot on. He is 8-of-9 shooting so far. Think those two will shoot that well here in Cleveland?
Golden State's "Core Four" is devastating but not unbeatable. For Cleveland, if not now, when?
|05-31-18||Cavs v. Warriors -11.5||Top||114-124||Loss||-109||68 h 55 m||Show|
My 10* PLAYOFF GAME OF THE YEAR is on the Golden State Warriors (9:00 EST).
The Cavaliers have LeBron James, but not much else. The King has already lost to the Warriors in two of three Final appearances and while he may be able to pull off another upset overall in this series, I don’t think the Warriors will stumble at home in Game 1.
James has already gone on record as saying that he normally uses Game 1 of a series as a “feeler.” The Cavaliers are horrible defensively, especially around the perimeter. Golden State looks more susceptible than it’s ever been, but this is a horrible matchup for James and company.
Give the Warriors’ defense credit as well in Game 7 and throughout the series with high-scoring Rockets.
The cast of characters from both teams is well known to even the most casual basketball fan (and that includes both their strength’s and weaknesses), so I’m not going to bother breaking down any individual player match ups here.
I will point out though that the Cavs are just 2-6 ATS in their last eight overall in this series, while the Warriors are 4-1 ATS in their last five at home in this series.
Also note that home teams in Game 1 of the NBA Finals are 17-3 SU over the last 20 years and over the last 15, have gone 13-2 SU/ATS.
Golden State won both regular season meetings against the Cavs, albeit before Cleveland overhauled its lineup at the end of the year.
To this point LBJ has been able to carry his team in the postseason. However, James now faces the most “complete” team in the entire league.
In my opinion, everything points to a major ATS “b-l-o-w-o-u-t” for the home side in Game 1.
Lay the points, play on the Warriors.
|05-28-18||Warriors v. Rockets +6.5||Top||101-92||Loss||-110||21 h 24 m||Show|
My 10* WCF Game 7 WINNER is on the Houston Rockets (9:05 EST).
I had a play on the Warriors in Game 6, but I think the Rockets will at the very least take Game 7 right down to the wire as these two hungry teams battle for a right to play for the NBA Championship.
Whether Chris Paul plays or not, I think Houston has a legitimate shot at taking this one outright. So am I suggesting to “sprinkle a little on the money line?” I am in fact. However, the sharp play here is the points in my opinion.
The Rockets will be doubling down defensively this evening as they look to duplicate their Game 4 and 5 success. The Warriors were able to take care of business on their own floor in Game 6, but Golden State has shown many “cracks in the armor” this season and everything points to another possible letdown here as well.
Golden State is shooting 47.1 percent from the floor in the playoffs, including just 34.7 percent from range. Klay Thompson exploded for his best effort in the postseason in Game 6 with 35 points.
Houston is averaging 43.8 percent in the postseason, including just 35 percent from long-distance. James Harden was a bright spot in a losing cause last time out with 32 points, seven boards and nine assists.
I’ll point out though that from a trend based stand point, there’s no question that this one favors the home side, as note that Golden State is just 18-25 ATS this year after scoring 115 points or more, while Houston is 9-6 ATS this season after allowing 115 points or more.
For all the reasons listed above, play on the Rockets.
|05-27-18||Cavs +2.5 v. Celtics||Top||87-79||Win||100||37 h 57 m||Show|
My 10* ECF GAME 7 WINNER is on the Cleveland Cavaliers (8:35 EST).
I played on the Cavs in their Game 5 loss in Boston and then I came back with them again in Game 6. While recent history would suggest that the Celtics should be the savvy call here (note that the home team has both won and covered in every game in this series thus far,) I’m expecting history to be re-written tonight, as LeBron James will look to cement his place as the greatest player in the history of the game.
James was unstoppable in Game 6, posting 46 points, 11 rebounds and nine assists. Kevin Love was lost early in the first quarter, but it wouldn’t matter as James completely took over and the rest of his teammates provided the rest.
The Celtics have been an unbelievable story to this point, advancing to Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals without Kyrie Irving or Gordon Hayward, arguably their best players. Boston’s future is clearly bright.
But LBJ is all about making and breaking history and trends and I simply can’t see “The King” losing against these young Celtics.
(additional supporting ATS trends to be added shortly)
My hat goes off to the Celtics. Bravo. But sorry guys, you’re in the path of a true juggernaut, a machine which will settle for nothing less than a trip to the NBA Finals.
Grab the points, play on Cleveland.
|05-26-18||Rockets v. Warriors -11.5||Top||86-115||Win||100||26 h 35 m||Show|
My 10* PERFECT STORM is on the Golden State Warriors (9:05 EST).
With Chris Paul out for the Rockets, I expect the desperate Warriors to put the foot on the gas from start to finish in Game 6 and to finish with a similar result as to their Game 3, 41-point beatdown victory.
So far Houston is shooting 44.4 percent from the floor in the playoffs, including only 34.7 percent from range. Paul had 20 points, seven boards and six assists in the Game 5 victory before then aggravating his ham-string, forcing the dynamic point guard to have to miss this crucial contest. Eric Gordon was another bright spot with 24 points off the bench.
Golden State is shooting 46.9 percent from the floor in the playoffs and only 34.1 percent from range. Kevin Durant had 29 points in the latest setback, while Stephen Curry added 22.
I’ll point out though that Golden State is 6-2 ATS in its last eight off an upset loss as a favorite, while Houston is just 1-2 ATS this year off an upset win as an underdog (and only 7-18 ATS in the same position over the last three seasons.)
Houston has the momentum, but the loss of Paul is unbelievably significant. Golden State can smell the blood in the water and suffice it to say, I’m expecting a rout once the final horn sounds.
Lay the points, play on the Warriors.
|05-25-18||Celtics v. Cavs -7||Top||99-109||Win||100||38 h 33 m||Show|
My 10* Las Vegas Insider is on the Cleveland Cavaliers (8:35 EST).
Most everyone that’s actually making a wager on the Cavaliers will be banking on the fact that the home side has completely dominated in every game of this series thus far.
For whatever reason the Cavs’ role players and bench are unable to perform on the road, while it would seem none of the Celtics are able to perform at a high level and get over the hump away from friendly confines either.
And I do indeed believe we’ll see this trend carry over again here. LeBron James was reportedly “dead tired” after Game 6, something that “The King” would take as an offense.
James is arguably playing the best basketball of his entire 15 year career right now and I think he’s going to put on a classic performance in this one, attacking early and often and throughout.
When they were up 2-0 and heading to Cleveland, it set up as a natural letdown spot for the Celtics in Game 3. And so too does it now in Game 6, as Boston will collectively have it in the back of its mind that it will still have one last chance to clinch the series in front of the home town crowd, a place which to this point in the playoffs has pretty much been “automatic” for it.
I’ll point out as well that Boston is just 1-4 ATS in its last five road games overall, while Cleveland is 4-0 ATS in its last four home games against a team with a road winning percentage of greater than .600.
I base my picks on many different things. This particular one doesn’t have anything to do with individual player match ups. For all the reasons listed above though, lay the points with confidence.
Play on the Cavaliers.
|05-23-18||Cavs v. Celtics||83-96||Loss||-109||25 h 14 m||Show|
My 9* PERFECT STORM is on the Cleveland Cavaliers (8:35 EST).
So far it would seem that the home floor advantage will be significant in this series. While the trend has carried over through the first four games of this series, I do now finally expect “The King” and company to find a way to punch one into the win column in Game 5.
Cleveland is so far shooting 46.3 percent in the playoffs, including only 34.9 percent from range. LeBron James has been unstoppable after his Game 1 sub-par performance and he had 44 points in the latest victory. Kyle Korver added 14 of the bench.
Boston is shooting 44.4 percent from the floor in the postseason, including 35.2 percent from range. Jaylen Brown was a bright spot in the latest setback with 25 points, while Terry Rozier added 16 points, six boards and 11 assists.
I’ll point out though that Cleveland is 9-6 ATS the last three years in the conference finals and 6-2 ATS in its last eight after scoring 110 points or more, while Boston is just 4-5 ATS the last three years in the conference finals and only 2-3 ATS in its last five after allowing 110 points or more.
I think Cleveland’s role players finally show up on the road and I expect James to continue his historic push for another NBA Finals appearance.
Play on Cleveland.
|05-22-18||Rockets +9 v. Warriors||Top||95-92||Win||100||46 h 59 m||Show|
My 10* Las Vegas Insider is on the Houston Rockets (9:05 EST).
Golden State took Game 1, but Houston answered in Game 2 with a resounding victory.
The Rockets though were once again grounded in Game 3, looking more like a deer caught in the headlights than a basketball team. But with that awkward contest out of the way, I believe the “real” Rockets show up for Game 4 as they try to avoid the dreaded 3-1 hole.
Houston took two of three games in the regular season series from the Warriors, including the teams’ respective very first contests of the year (in Golden State.)
The Warriors’ played much more aggressively in Game 3 and they were able to slow down the Rockets’ role players. But Houston is very well coached and I expect it to make the necessary adjustments to keep Game 4 much more competitive.
It’s safe to say that Houston will be pushing the pace of this one in an attempt to combat Golden State’s more aggressive style. I think it’ll be successful in doing just that.
Boston looked unstoppable over the first two games of its series at home, before then coming out and laying an egg in Game 3 in Cleveland and there’s no question that there are parallels between the East/West Conference Finals.
As mentioned above, the playoffs are all about “adjustments” and there’s no reason not to think that the West leading Rockets won’t be able to come up with a much more effective game-plan in this one.
And I’m absolutely banking on that happening. Outright victory? It’s possible.
But in a contest which I envision being decided late, in extra time, or by whichever team has its hands on the ball last, I’m grabbing as many points as I can. Play on the Rockets.
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