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  1. #1
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    Default Wednesday's NBA Trends and Indexes - 5/31

    Trends and Indexes

    Wednesday, May 31

    Good Luck on day #150 of 2017!
    NOTE: As information becomes available, we will attempt to post the trends and indexes as soon as possible.Information is posted from what we believe are reliable sources.Any opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the posting member or BettorsChat.

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    Armadillo: Wednesday's six-pack

    Pac-12 basketball records, over the last four seasons:
    Arizona: 59-13 Pac-12, 8-4 NCAA
    Oregon: 53-19, 9-4
    Utah: 46-26: 3-2
    UCLA: 44-28, 6-3
    California: 39-33, 0-1
    Colorado: 35-37, 0-2
    Stanford: 33-39, 2-1
    Arizona State: 31-41, 0-1
    Oregon State: 26-46, 0-1
    Washington: 25-47, 0-0
    USC: 24-48, 2-2
    Washington State: 17-55, 0-0

    **********

    Armadillo: Wednesday's List of 13: Mid-week musings…….

    13) Best part of the Strickland/Harper shenanigans Monday night was Buster Posey totally declining to get involved. Usually, the catcher tries to keep the angry batter away from the pitcher, but Posey made no such attempt.

    Harper hit two very long home runs off Strickland in the ’14 playoffs (thats 2.5 years ago!!!) in their only two previous meetings. Guess something Harper did/said ticked Strickland off.

    12) I like watching baseball when they have the strike zone on the right side of the screen, so we can see if the umps miss any pitches. To me, it makes the broadcast a little better.

    11) Is Nick Markakis the best active player who has never been an All-Star? He has 1,945 hits, is a solid defender, has a .358 career OB%. You’d think he would’ve made one All-Star team.

    10) Jeb Bush is out as part of the group trying to buy the Miami Marlins; apparently he had “only $20M” of his own money involved in the project, not enough to make him a controlling partner, which is what he wanted.

    9) 10 of the 64 teams in the NCAA college baseball tournament are located in Texas.

    8) Nike stock fell 19% last year, is up only 4% this year; with the NBA Finals starting this week, Nike didn’t need Cavs-Warriors being overshadowed by Eldrick Woods’ DUI arrest. Nike does not sell golf equipment anymore, but they still sell golf clothes, which Woods endorses.

    7) Houston Astros are almost definitely going to be in the playoffs; I’m curious how they’ll deal with Josh Reddick playing against lefties (Price? Sale? Lester?) in playoffs/World Series.

    Reddick is a career .270 hitter vs righties, .220 vs lefties (.282 OB%). A’s once pinch-hit for him in the 4th inning of a big game because the opponent put a lefty in. So far this year he is 7-25 (.280) vs lefties; maybe the change of scenery has helped him. We’ll see.

    6) Kansas Jayhawks will have six transfers amongst their 13 scholarship players next winter; only three of them will be eligible next season. Makes team chemistry a little dicey.

    5) David Blatt went 83-40 as coach of the Cavaliers in the regular season, went 14-6 in playoff games and got fired. Now he coaches overseas; I think he had just enough ego to have been a really good college coach, but we’ll probably never know.

    Fact of the matter is, if Lebron James wakes up one day in August and wants Tyronn Lue fired, the man is as good as gone. Probably won’t happen, but it could.

    4) Not a big fan of playing the infield in; just doesn’t seem necessary, unless the runner on third is really fast. Playing fielders in opens up too many cheap hits that wouldn’t happen with a more traditional defense.

    3) Joe Niekro pitched in the major leagues for 22 seasons, had 973 career at-bats with a .156 BA and hit one home run— off his brother, Hall of Fame Phil Niekro.

    2) A Saudi prince lost $359M in six hours playing poker at a casino in Egypt; he also sold off five of his nine wives as a way to reduce his debt.

    I knew cats had nine lives; had no idea Saudi princes had nine wives.

    1) I don’t care what anyone says, Bob Uecker should’ve won an Oscar for best supporting actor for his role as Indians’ announcer Harry Doyle in Major League.

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    WNBA
    Dunkel

    Wednesday, May 31



    San Antonio @ Atlanta

    Game 657-658
    May 31, 2017 @ 11:30 am

    Dunkel Rating:
    San Antonio
    100.739
    Atlanta
    115.211
    Dunkel Team:
    Dunkel Line:
    Dunkel Total:
    Atlanta
    by 14 1/2
    167
    Vegas Team:
    Vegas Line:
    Vegas Total:
    Atlanta
    No Line
    N/A
    Dunkel Pick:
    Atlanta
    N/A

    Connecticut @ Washington


    Game 655-656
    May 31, 2017 @ 11:30 am

    Dunkel Rating:
    Connecticut
    106.493
    Washington
    119..974
    Dunkel Team:
    Dunkel Line:
    Dunkel Total:
    Washington
    by 13 1/2
    153
    Vegas Team:
    Vegas Line:
    Vegas Total:
    Washington
    No Line
    N/A
    Dunkel Pick:
    Washington
    N/A





    WNBA
    Long Sheet

    Wednesday, May 31


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    CONNECTICUT (1 - 4) at WASHINGTON (3 - 2) - 5/31/2017, 11:30 AM
    Top Trends for this game.
    WASHINGTON is 22-9 ATS (+12.1 Units) as a home favorite of 6.5 to 9 points since 1997.
    CONNECTICUT is 24-14 ATS (+8.6 Units) in all games over the last 2 seasons.
    CONNECTICUT is 20-10 ATS (+9.0 Units) as an underdog over the last 2 seasons.
    CONNECTICUT is 13-3 ATS (+9.7 Units) in road games in May, June, or July games over the last 2 seasons.
    CONNECTICUT is 6-0 ATS (+6.0 Units) on Wednesday over the last 3 seasons.
    CONNECTICUT is 6-0 ATS (+6.0 Units) in road games when playing with 2 days rest over the last 2 seasons.
    CONNECTICUT is 12-4 ATS (+7.6 Units) after a division game over the last 2 seasons.
    CONNECTICUT is 20-10 ATS (+9.0 Units) after allowing 75 points or more over the last 2 seasons.
    CONNECTICUT is 18-9 ATS (+8.1 Units) after scoring 75 points or more over the last 2 seasons.
    CONNECTICUT is 18-8 ATS (+9.2 Units) versus good offensive teams - scoring 77+ points/game over the last 2 seasons.
    WASHINGTON is 297-353 ATS (-91.3 Units) in all games since 1997.
    WASHINGTON is 33-54 ATS (-26.4 Units) in home games when playing with 3 or more days rest since 1997.
    WASHINGTON is 174-221 ATS (-69.1 Units) after a division game since 1997.

    Head-to-Head Series History
    WASHINGTON is 3-3 against the spread versus CONNECTICUT over the last 3 seasons
    WASHINGTON is 5-2 straight up against CONNECTICUT over the last 3 seasons
    5 of 7 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons

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    SAN ANTONIO (0 - 5) at ATLANTA (3 - 1) - 5/31/2017, 11:30 AM
    Top Trends for this game.
    SAN ANTONIO is 68-46 ATS (+17.4 Units) in a road game where where the total is greater than or equal to 150 since 1997.
    SAN ANTONIO is 55-36 ATS (+15.4 Units) in road games against Eastern conference opponents since 1997.
    SAN ANTONIO is 55-36 ATS (+15.4 Units) in road games in non-conference games since 1997.
    SAN ANTONIO is 18-6 ATS (+11.4 Units) after allowing 75 points or more over the last 2 seasons.

    Head-to-Head Series History
    SAN ANTONIO is 4-1 against the spread versus ATLANTA over the last 3 seasons
    SAN ANTONIO is 3-2 straight up against ATLANTA over the last 3 seasons
    4 of 5 games in this series have gone UNDER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons

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    WNBA

    Wednesday, May 31


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Trend Report
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    11:30 AM
    CONNECTICUT vs. WASHINGTON
    Connecticut is 1-4 SU in its last 5 games
    The total has gone UNDER in 13 of Connecticut's last 19 games when playing on the road against Washington
    The total has gone OVER in 10 of Washington's last 12 games when playing Connecticut
    Washington is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games at home

    11:30 AM
    SAN ANTONIO vs. ATLANTA
    The total has gone UNDER in 4 of San Antonio's last 5 games when playing on the road against Atlanta
    The total has gone UNDER in 4 of San Antonio's last 5 games on the road
    The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Atlanta's last 5 games when playing at home against San Antonio
    Atlanta is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games when playing at home against San Antonio


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    Last edited by StarDust Bum; 05-31-2017 at 11:31 AM.

  4. #4
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    NBA
    Dunkel

    Thursday, June 1



    Cleveland @ Golden State

    Game 701-702
    June 1, 2017 @ 9:00 pm

    Dunkel Rating:
    Cleveland
    127.934
    Golden State
    140.845
    Dunkel Team:
    Dunkel Line:
    Dunkel Total:
    Golden State
    by 13
    233
    Vegas Team:
    Vegas Line:
    Vegas Total:
    Golden State
    by 7
    225 1/2
    Dunkel Pick:
    Golden State
    (-7); Over





    NBA
    Long Sheet

    Thursday, June 1


    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    CLEVELAND (63 - 32) at GOLDEN STATE (79 - 15) - 6/1/2017, 9:00 PM
    Top Trends for this game.
    CLEVELAND is 3-12 ATS (-10.2 Units) in road games in non-conference games this season.
    GOLDEN STATE is 106-88 ATS (+9.2 Units) in all games over the last 2 seasons.
    GOLDEN STATE is 99-84 ATS (+6.6 Units) as a favorite over the last 2 seasons.
    GOLDEN STATE is 85-64 ATS (+14.6 Units) in home games over the last 3 seasons.
    GOLDEN STATE is 53-33 ATS (+16.7 Units) in all playoff games since 1996.
    GOLDEN STATE is 32-23 ATS (+6.7 Units) after a win by 10 points or more this season.
    GOLDEN STATE is 63-48 ATS (+10.2 Units) after 3 or more consecutive wins over the last 2 seasons.
    GOLDEN STATE is 26-15 ATS (+9.5 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record this season.
    GOLDEN STATE is 17-8 ATS (+8.2 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record - 2nd half of the season this season.
    GOLDEN STATE is 23-13 ATS (+8.7 Units) versus good offensive teams - scoring 106+ points/game this season.
    GOLDEN STATE is 24-11 ATS (+11.9 Units) versus good offensive teams - scoring 106+ points/game - 2nd half of the season over the last 3 seasons.

    Head-to-Head Series History
    GOLDEN STATE is 10-9 against the spread versus CLEVELAND over the last 3 seasons
    GOLDEN STATE is 11-8 straight up against CLEVELAND over the last 3 seasons
    12 of 17 games in this series have gone UNDER THE TOTAL over the last 3 seasons

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------




    NBA
    Armadillo's Write-Up

    Thursday, June 1


    Golden State is 12-0 in playoffs, Cleveland 12-1. Teams meet in NBA Finals for third straight year; Cavaliers rallied from down 3-1 LY to win title. Cleveland is 5-2 in last seven series games; they won two of last three games in Oakland, but lost 126-91 here in January. Under is 6-2-1 in last nine series games. Cleveland is 7-0 on road in playoffs; they led by 21 in only playoff game they’ve lost this spring. Over is 6-3 in last nine Cavalier games, Golden State covered five of its last six games; they’re 2-4 vs spread at home in playoffs. Warriors’ last five games all went over the total.




    NBA

    Thursday, June 1


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Trend Report
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    9:00 PM
    CLEVELAND vs. GOLDEN STATE
    The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Cleveland's last 6 games when playing on the road against Golden State
    Cleveland is 2-5 SU in its last 7 games when playing on the road against Golden State
    The total has gone OVER in 4 of Golden State's last 6 games at home
    The total has gone OVER in 5 of Golden State's last 5 games


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

  5. #5
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    Beware Cavs bettors: NBA Finals rematches have not gone well for defending champions

    There have been eight NBA Finals rematches since 1970 and only once has the team that won the first encounter gone on to prevail a second time.

    Repeating as NBA champion has proven difficult in the past - and it's even harder when defending champs face the team they beat in the Finals the year before.

    Entering Thursday's opening game between the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers (which is the first time two teams have met in the final for three straight years), there have been eight NBA Finals rematches since 1970 - and only once has the team that won the first encounter gone on to prevail a second time. This strangely runs counter to the six instances prior to 1970 in which teams met in an NBA Finals rematch. In those cases, the defending champion went 5-1.

    With the Warriors are near -300 favorites to avenge their loss to the Cavaliers in last years finals, here’s a look at the previous eight NBA Finals rematches, and how both teams fared:

    1973 NBA Finals: Los Angeles Lakers vs. New York Knicks

    1972 result: Lakers win in five games
    1973 result: Knicks win in five games

    This series was an exact flip of the previous year's result. In 1972, the Knicks won the opener but lost the next four games. A year later, it was the Lakers prevailing in Game 1 but proceeding to drop four in a row. None of the games were decided by more than nine points, with four of them won by five points or fewer. Only twice did a team reach 100 points over the final four games following the Lakers' 115-112 victory in Game 1.

    1979 NBA Finals: Washington Bullets vs. Seattle SuperSonics

    1978 result: Bullets win in seven games
    1979 result: SuperSonics win in five games

    Weirdly, this series followed the same pattern as the first one on this list. The Bullets captured Game 1 at home, but didn't win another game the rest of the finals. Seattle took Games 2 and 3 by double digits before outlasting Washington in overtime in Game 4 and wrapping things up in enemy territory three days later. The schedule might have taken its toll on the Bullets, who needed seven games to win both of their earlier playoff series.

    While sharps wager on Warriors, public bets pull for Cavaliers in NBA Finals: Live From Las Vegas
    Early sharp money jumped on the Warriors odds to win the NBA Finals, but public money is siding with LeBron and the Cavs, keeping ticket count very close. We talk NBA Finals betting and Game 1 odds with Jeff Stoneback of The Mirage sportsbook in Las Vegas.

    1983 NBA Finals: Los Angeles Lakers vs. Philadelphia 76ers

    1982 result: Lakers win in six games
    1983 result: 76ers win in four games

    The league-best 76ers gleefully exacted their revenge on a stacked Lakers team that had rolled past them a year earlier, sweeping the purple and gold en route to their third championship. That Moses Malone-led Philadelphia team crushed the opposition in the playoffs, running a 12-1 record while averaging better than 110 points per game in the four-game rout of Los Angeles. It was the first time in NBA history that a finals rematch resulted in a sweep.

    1985 NBA Finals: Boston Celtics vs. Los Angeles Lakers

    1984 result: Celtics win in seven games
    1985 result: Lakers win in six games

    The Lakers were on the good end of an NBA Finals rematch this time around, bouncing back from a heart-breaking seven-game finals defeat a year earlier to prevail in one of the most entertaining and high-scoring championship series in league history. The teams combined to average 114.5 points per game in the Finals, with the winning team averaging nearly 122 points per victory. It marked the first time in history the Lakers had beaten the Celtics to win the title.

    1989 NBA Finals: Detroit Pistons vs. Los Angeles Lakers

    1988 result: Lakers win in seven games
    1989 result: Pistons win in four games

    After squandering a 3-2 series lead against the Lakers in the 1988 Finals - and losing the final two games by combined four points - the “Bad Boy” Pistons weren't about to make the same mistake in the rematch. Detroit scored between 105 and 110 points in all four games, capturing the first two at home before capping the sweep with a pair of victories in L.A. The sweep capped an incredible run for the Pistons, who went 15-2 in the postseason. The Lakers were 11-0 entering the Finals.

    In a NBA Championship loaded with star power, who will win NBA Finals MVP?
    There's a surplus of star power on the court when the Cavaliers and Warriors mix it up in the NBA Finals. That means plenty of potential betting value when it comes to NBA Finals MVP odds. We look at the faves and live long shots on the board.

    1998 NBA Finals: Chicago Bulls vs. Utah Jazz

    1997 result: Bulls win in six games
    1998 result: Bulls win in six games

    A handful of teams challenged the Bulls in the NBA Finals, but the Jazz were the only opponents to do so in consecutive seasons. And both times, the Hall of Fame tandem of John Stockton and Karl Malone came up just short in defeating the Michael Jordan-led Bulls. The 1998 title series was one of the lowest-scoring Finals in the modern era: Only twice did a team exceed 90 points, while the Jazz here held to a laughable 54 points in a Game 3 blowout loss. Every single game finished Under the total, with the deciding Game 6 boasting a low number of 177.5 points. The Bulls also covered in four of six games, including all three in Utah.

    2014 NBA Finals: San Antonio Spurs vs. Miami Heat

    2013 result: Heat win in seven games
    2014 result: Spurs win in five games

    San Antonio didn't take kindly to suffering the first finals defeat in franchise history a year earlier, putting together a 62-win regular season before defeating Dallas, Portland and Oklahoma City in their first three playoff rounds en route to a hotly anticipated finals rematch. The Spurs then proceeded to crush the defending champions, boasting the highest average point differential (+14) in the history of the Finals. All four of their victories were by 15 or more points. San Antonio finished 4-1 ATS while making quick work of “The Big Three”.

    2016 NBA Finals: Golden State Warriors vs. Cleveland Cavaliers

    2015 result: Warriors win in six games
    2016 result: Cavaliers win in seven games

    After seeing LeBron James carry Cleveland to a pair of finals victories almost completely by himself in 2015, Cavaliers fans had to be pleased with seeing a much healthier version of their team head into a championship rematch with the Warriors. But things didn't start out so well, as Golden State jumped out to a... well, I'm sure you know what that series lead was. Cleveland became the first team to rally from 3-1 down to win a NBA Finals, and was the first team since 1978 to win a finals Game 7 away from home. The Cavs covered in four of the seven games and were +175 underdogs to win the series.

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    Basketball bettors need to know these refs are blowing the whistles in the NBA Finals

    Referee John Goble posted the ninth-lowest O/U rate of any official to work 30 or more games this season, and his scoring average also sat in the bottom quadrant.

    The NBA has named the 12 referees that will officiate the 2017 NBA Finals between the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers that gets underway Thursday night in California.

    Here are some regular-season statistical betting nuggets associated with each official (ATS records listed are for home team):

    Tony Brothers

    ATS record: 37-32-2
    O/U record: 36-35
    Points per game: 211.9

    Brothers was pretty much down the middle in both ATS and O/U trends during the regular season, and has a similar track record in the playoffs. Home teams are 5-5 with Brothers on the floor during the postseason.

    Mike Callahan

    ATS record: 31-39-3
    O/U record: 39-34
    Points per game: 209.5

    Home teams covered at a lower-than-average rate with Callahan toting the whistle. That has been even more pronounced during the postseason, with the host side winning just 40 percent of the games in which Callahan has worked as a main official with a scoring differential of -1.7 points per game.

    James Capers

    ATS record: 42-30-0
    O/U record: 40-32
    Points per game: 211.9

    The Warriors will be thrilled to see Capers on the floor for the majority of the season, as his games provided a significant advantage to home-side ATS bettors. Road teams have earned 52.4 percent of the foul calls with Capers on the floor in the playoffs.

    Danny Crawford

    ATS record: 32-40-0
    O/U record: 39-32
    Points per game: 209.9

    Like Callahan, Crawford has been less kind to the home team, a trend that has continued in the playoffs. Of the eight games he has worked as a main official, the home team has won just two of them and is carrying a -4 points per game differential to date.
    In a NBA Championship loaded with star power, who will win NBA Finals MVP?
    There's a surplus of star power on the court when the Cavaliers and Warriors mix it up in the NBA Finals. That means plenty of potential betting value when it comes to NBA Finals MVP odds. We look at the faves and live long shots on the board.

    Marc Davis

    ATS record: 25-49-1
    O/U record: 40-33
    Points per game: 213.45

    Two things were apparent when Davis was on assignment this season: The home team almost certainly didn't cover, and fans were treated to high-scoring games. Strangely, however, the trend has reversed in the playoffs, with home teams winning Davis-worked games at a 70-percent clip while drawing just 46.9 percent of the foul calls.

    Scott Foster

    ATS record: 38-41-1
    O/U record: 41-39
    Points per game: 213.62

    Foster comes closest to the breakeven point of any official working the NBA Finals, with no discernible ATS or O/U betting edge either way. Not surprisingly, home teams are 5-6 in his games so far in the postseason.

    John Goble

    ATS record: 39-39-1
    O/U record: 34-42
    Points per game: 207.61

    Goble posted the ninth-lowest O/U rate of any official to work 30 or more games this season, and his scoring average also sat in the bottom quadrant. Teams are averaging a pedestrian 204.6 points in the nine playoff games he has worked.

    Ed Malloy

    ATS record: 38-28-1
    O/U record: 36-29
    Points per game: 212.52

    Malloy was the eighth-friendliest referee to the home side - at least from an ATS perspective - during the regular season, with host teams enjoying a +4.37 point differential in his games. Teams are averaging better than 215 points in his playoff assignments.

    While sharps wager on Warriors, public bets pull for Cavaliers in NBA Finals: Live From Las Vegas
    Early sharp money jumped on the Warriors odds to win the NBA Finals, but public money is siding with LeBron and the Cavs, keeping ticket count very close. We talk NBA Finals betting and Game 1 odds with Jeff Stoneback of The Mirage sportsbook in Las Vegas.

    Ken Mauer

    ATS record: 33-38-1
    O/U record: 35-36
    Points per game: 212.26

    Home teams didn't see much of a boost with Mauer in the fold, and that has been equally true so far in the postseason; they're just 3-5 S-U with him on the court, with an ugly -5.1 point differential in those eight games.

    Monty McCutchen

    ATS record: 39-36-1
    O/U record: 36-40
    Points per game: 213.00

    McCutchen has been letting them play in seven games as a main official, calling just 37.9 fouls per game; home teams are 5-2 in those contests. In five games as part of another official's crew, nearly 48 foul calls per contest are being made.

    Derrick Stafford

    ATS record: 31-39-2
    O/U record: 40-31
    Points per game: 209.64

    It might seem surprising given his regular-season ATS track record, but Stafford has been a home team's dream so far in the playoffs. The host side is a combined 8-1 SU in the nine games he has worked either as a main official or as part of a crew.

    Zach Zarba

    ATS record: 30-40-1
    O/U record: 34-37
    Points per game: 212.44

    No official working the NBA Finals has been harder on host-team infractions than Zarba, who is calling 52 percent of his fouls in the postseason on the home side. That hasn't affected the home-team win rate, which sits at 70 percent through Zarba's 10 games.

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    Favorites dominate Game 1 of the NBA Finals, betting underdogs bite back in Game 2

    The NBA Playoffs have been about as predictable as an episode of Scooby-Doo, with the Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors meeting in the finals for the third straight year. And it would seem betting the NBA Finals is just as easy to foresee, given the ATS results for Games 1 and 2 over the past 26 years of postseason basketball.

    Heading into Thursday’s championship series opener, the favorite is 17-9 ATS in Game 1 since 1991 (65 percent) – including red-hot runs of 14-4 ATS since 1999 (78 percent) and 11-1 ATS since 2005 (92 percent).

    The Warriors, who are 7-point home chalk for Game 1 Thursday, have covered in each of the last two Game 1 meetings with the Cavs in the NBA Finals: winning 108-100 as 6-point Game 1 favorites in 2015 and 104-89 as 6-point Game 1 favorites in 2016.

    NBA Finals Game 1 favorites have given their opponents an average of -6.25 points per game since 1991, which is pretty much on par with the Warriors’ Game 1 line. Those faves have edged their finals foes by an average score of 97-88.8 in that 26-year stretch, covering by 1.95 points per game.

    The predictability doesn’t stop with Game 1. The second installment of the NBA Finals series has seen that above Game 1 betting trend flipped on its ear, with underdogs bouncing back with a stronger performance in Game 2. That’s left Game 2 favorites to go just 9-16-1 ATS (36 percent) the previous 26 postseasons, including a 2-7 ATS mark since 2008.

    While spreads haven’t varied too much between Games 1 and 2 - -6 in Game 2 since 1991 – favorites are only winning by an average score of 98.11-92.92, an edge of just 5.19 points per game. Shrinking that down over the past nine postseasons, that final score tightens to 98.67-95.11 with an average spread of -5.39. Perhaps even more shocking is the fact the underdog has won Game 2 outright a dozen times in the past 26 seasons.

    Now, the Warriors did manage to cover the 6.5-point spread in Game 2 versus the Cavaliers last season, winning a 110-77 rout, but fell ATS in Game 2 of the 2015 finals, losing 95-93 to LeBron James & Co. as 7.5-point home chalk. Game 2 of the 2017 NBA Finals is scheduled for Sunday, June 4.

    As for Games 3 and 4, which we know will happen regardless of results, betting favorites are 10-14-1 ATS (with one pick’em in 2004 finals) and 12-12-1 ATS in Game 4 (with one pick’em in 2004 finals). As you can see, these trends start to balance out as the series goes on.

    Looking past the given four games, Game 5 chalk is 11-11 ATS since 1991 postseason, Game 6 faves are 6-10 ATS, and Game 7 favorites are 3-2 ATS in those deciding contests the past 26 seasons.

    The 2017 Warriors and Cavaliers have been cash cows for basketball bettors riding them through the postseason. Cleveland enters the finals with an 8-4-1 ATS mark while Golden State is 8-4 ATS – a combined 67 percent win rate against the spread during the NBA Playoffs.

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    Ten need-to-know basketball betting notes for the NBA Finals

    Open up the beer fridge, pass the Pringles and turn up the “Roundball Rock”: the NBA Finals tipoff on Thursday when the Golden State Warriors host the Cleveland Cavaliers. Before you place your finals wagers, take a look at these 10 need-to-know betting notes:

    • Twitter trolls are having all sorts of fun reminding the world that ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith is 0-6 in his last six NBA Finals predictions. NBA oddsmakers have done better, but not as well as you might guess. The series underdog is batting .500 in the last 10 Finals. The 2006 Heat, 2008 Celtics, 2011 Mavericks, 2012 Heat and 2016 Cavaliers all won despite wearing the dog tag.

    • LeBron James-led teams are 18-5 straight up against Kevin Durant-led squads since KD entered the league in 2007. That includes the 2012 Finals when the two squared off and LeBron got the best of Durant in five games. As far as ATS, James’ sides are 15-8 ATS against Durant’s teams.

    • There’s a reason the sweep always pays the best. There have been only eight sweeps in the 70-year history of the NBA Finals. That works out to an 11.4 percent chance. There have been 17 five-game series (24.4%), 25 six-gamers (35.7%) and 20 series that went to Game 7 (28.6%).

    • James was the best player in five of the last six NBA Finals. Oddsmakers list him as the favorite for most points and assists in the series and have him as the third fave for most rebounds. He has four career finals MVP awards and the only other player in this series with one on his resume is Andre Igoudala – and his really should have been given to James. With all this said, James is still listed as the third favorite (+240) to win the finals MVP behind Durant (+200) and Stephen Curry (+210).

    • If you like to play first-half bets, Golden State is probably your best option. The Warriors are the best first quarter team in the postseason in terms of net rating (+32.1 points per 100 possessions) and are +112 in point differential in first halves. The Cavs, on the other hand, are the best third quarter team in the playoffs with a +25.8 net rating. Cleveland has trailed in three games by double digits but came back to win each one.

    • A lot has been written already about the Game 1 total but just a reminder: the number at 225.5 is the largest total in recorded betting history of the NBA Finals. It’s a 14.5-point jump from the Game 1 total in last year’s Finals. Golden State’s offense is in better shape with a healthy Curry and Durant taking Harrison Barnes’ spot. Cleveland’s offense is much improved compared to last year’s edition. All that being said, the increase in stakes, competition and rivalry should equal lower-scoring games. The Under is a combined 7-4-2 in the last two finals matchups between these two sides.

    • The Game 1 spread (7 points) is the largest in the NBA Finals since 2007 when the LeBron-led Cavs were getting 7.5 points against the San Antonio Spurs. The Spurs won and covered in that game and swept the Cavs in the Finals.

    • Heading into Thursday’s championship series opener, the favorite is 17-9 ATS in Game 1 since 1991 (65 percent) – including red-hot runs of 14-4 ATS since 1999 (78 percent) and 11-1 ATS since 2005 (92 percent). But Game 2 favorites are only 9-16-1 ATS (36 percent) the previous 26 postseasons, including a 2-7 ATS mark since 2008.

    • Going back to the 1990-91 season, NBA Finals games have a 54-80-5 Over/Under record (59.7 percent Unders). And since 2000, the NBA Finals has pumped out a 36-48-5 O/U count (57 percent Unders). Focusing specifically on Game 1 of the NBA Finals over the past 26 years, the Under has been a profitable 9-15-1 O/U since 1991. That Game 1 trend is 3-9-1 O/U since the 2004 finals.

    • Golden State was 25-5 SU versus Eastern Conference opponents this season, but just 14-14-2 ATS. The Warriors were a great Under bet in non-conference contests, with a 9-21 Over/Under mark. Cleveland stumbled against the Western Conference, with a 16-14 SU and 11-18-1 ATS mark, going 16-14 Over/Under in those games.

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