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NBA Betting News and Notes

NBA Betting News and Notes

NBA Betting News and Notes

Each week, we look back on the NBA betting scene and give you the best –and worst – basketball bets, as well as some spots to keep an eye on with the upcoming schedule.

For the week of Feb. 3-9.

Hottest ATS

Boston Celtics (3-0 SU, 3-0 ATS)

The Celtics have covered in six straight games since G Rajon Rondo was lost to a season-ending ACL injury. Avery Bradley and veteran Jason Terry have filled in admirably in Rondo’s absence but Boston’s schedule gets tougher in coming weeks. The Celtics host the Nuggets Sunday, are at Charlotte Monday for the second half of the back-to-back, and then welcome the Bulls Wednesday before heading west for a five-game tour after the All-Star festivities.

Coldest ATS

Milwaukee Bucks (0-3 SU, 0-3 ATS)

The Bucks have failed to cover in six consecutive games, posting a 1-5 SU record in the process. Milwaukee enjoys four of its next five games at home where it has a 10-14 ATS record. Up next are the Wizards, who boast the best ATS mark in the league (30-17-2) and have covered in four straight contests.

Best over

Memphis Grizzlies (1-3 SU, 3-0 over/under)

The Grizzlies have been an awesome under play (19-29-1 O/U) all season long, but that hasn’t been the case over their last three games. Memphis is known for its usually stout defense (90 ppg) but a temporary lapse over its past three contests (97.3 ppg) has led to three straight over plays. The team dynamic has changed since the departure of Rudy Gay, but the Grizzlies face five consecutive sub-.500 opponents beginning Sunday when Minnesota comes to town.

Best under

Philadelphia 76ers (2-1 SU, 0-3 over/under)

The Sixers have finally tightened the screws on defense and gone low in five straight games. Philadelphia has played a ton of home games recently and has been holding opponents to 81 points over its last seven – 14 points less than its season average (95 ppg). The Sixers have one last home affair with the Clippers Monday before hitting the road prior to the All-Star break.

Scouting the schedule:

The San Antonio Spurs should benefit from the upcoming All-Star break more than any other team. Not only will it give the Spurs’ old legs a rest, but it breaks up their current season-long nine-game road trip. San Antonio is off to a 1-1 SU and ATS start on the trip and keep in mind the Spurs are a decent over play away from home with a 15-11-1 O/U mark.

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Five NBA Teams Keeping Over Bettors In The Black

NBA scoreboards have been humming over the past seven days, with big scores handing over bettors even bigger paydays. Since last Saturday, NBA games have posted a collective 30-21 over/under count.

While that doesn’t seem like much to the casual basketball fan, the betting public recognizes that the over is hitting at more than 58 percent in that seven-day stretch. And 58 percent is like striking oil for sports bettors. On the year, the NBA boasts a 370-362 over/under count (50.55 percent) heading into Saturday’s action.

More than a few teams are trending toward the high side of the total in recent games - even some which have been steady under plays all season. Here are five clubs cashing in the most for over bettors in recent games:

Indiana Pacers (4-1 over/over last five, 6-2 over/under last eight)

When the Pacers are playing over, you know something is up. Indiana is the perfect storm of under plays, ranking among the worst in offense and best in defense. But the Pacers, who average just 92.8 points per game, are scoring 102.75 points a night in their last eight. That offensive surge could get a boost from the return of SF Danny Granger before the All-Star break.

Denver Nuggets (6-0 over/under last six, 9-1 over/under last 10)

The Nuggets have been the hottest team in the NBA, coming up big not only for spread bettors but also fans of the over. Heading into Saturday, Denver rides an eight-game winning streak and has played above the number in seven of those games. The Nuggets are averaging an insane 115 points a night during this streak and have topped the 120-point plateau three times in those games.

Golden State Warriors (4-0 over/under last four, 8-1 over/under last nine)

Winning over plays is nothing new to Warriors fans. The franchise has lived by an offense-first philosophy for the better part of a decade and 2012-13 is no different. The Warriors’ lack of defense is as much to blame for those high scores as well. Golden State has allowed opponents to score over 119 points during their current three-game road trip, which ends in Dallas Saturday. Most notably, they gave up 140 points to Houston earlier this week.

Phoenix Suns (4-1 over/under last five, 6-2 over/under last eight)

The Suns’ current over run has more to do with their recent opponents than the team itself. Phoenix has played Oklahoma City, New Orleans, Memphis, Golden State and Dallas in the last five games. Those teams have a combined 19-6 over/under record in each of their last five games. The Suns offense isn’t putting much of a dent in those totals, scoring only 93.6 points in that five-game span. Phoenix finishes a home-and-home with the Thunder as hosts Sunday.

Memphis Grizzlies (3-0 over/under last three, 7-2 over/under last nine)

It seems Rudy Gay’s offense isn’t the only thing the Grizzlies are missing. In the five games since dealing their leading scorer, Memphis is averaging just 91 points and giving up an average of 94.8 points against. Those defensive numbers are nearly five points more than the Grizzlies’ top-ranked D’ has allowed this season. This over stretch is a complete 180 for the top under bet in the NBA - 19-29-1 over/under heading into the weekend.

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NBA All-Star Break Could Cool Down These Red-Hot Teams
By Jason Logan

The NBA All-Star break puts the regular season on hold for four days as the best and brightest in the league are showcased.

This brief hiatus is a blessing to some teams and a burden for others. Teams with injury concerns or clubs stuck in a losing rut can sometimes get caught looking ahead to the break while squads building momentum see the four-day layoff as a nasty speed bump.

Here are three teams that may not be the same after the All-Star Weekend on Feb. 18.

Los Angeles Lakers (24-27 SU, 21-29-1 ATS)

You may think L.A. is counting the days until the All-Star break, with injuries to Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol leaving the frontcourt short. However, the Lakers have finally gained traction after spinning their tires most of the year.

Heading into Sunday, Los Angeles has won seven of its last nine outings to pull to within three and a half games of the eighth spot in the West. With some tough games versus Miami and the Clippers on deck, wins are more important than rest. Just ask Kobe Bryant.

Denver Nuggets (32-18 SU, 30-20 ATS)

Heading into Saturday, the Nuggets have strung together eight straight victories (7-1 ATS) and have won 14 of their last 16 outings (10-6 ATS). Denver is closing in on a top-3 spot in the West as a result. That momentum takes it into a four-game road trip before the break, with stops in Cleveland, Boston, Toronto and Brooklyn.

With no players selected to the Western Conference All-Stars, the Nuggets could care less about the break. If anything, it allows their Western rivals a chance to catch their breath before the stretch run.

Cleveland Cavaliers (15-34 SU, 23-25-1 ATS)

The Cavs are playing some of the best basketball in the NBA right now, winning six of their last eight (6-2 ATS) including an upset over Oklahoma City last weekend. An extended homestand gives Cleveland a shot at building more momentum before the break, hosting Denver, Minnesota, and San Antonio.

New additions Wayne Ellington and Marreese Speights have been instant contributors and Kyrie Irving is back on his game after a hand injury. The four-day break comes at a bad time for a young team finding its chemistry.

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Best and Worst NBA Bets in Second Game of Back-to-Backs

Many handicappers look to back-to-back game situations for an edge, mostly planning to fade teams taking the court for the second straight night.

However, when it comes to the NBA, betting on teams in back-to-back games – the first and second installments – should be avoided like the plague. Heading into Wednesday night, teams playing their first game of a back-to-back are 181-206-11 ATS while teams on the back end of two in a row are 187-198-7 ATS.

This isn’t a trend solely reserved for this season. During the lockout shortened schedule last year, teams playing a back-to-back situation went 285-323-9 ATS in the opening game and 303-308-6 ATS in the finale.

While back-to-back games seem to be the kiss of death for NBA bettors, there are a few teams that excel against the spread in that situation. No team is really burning down the books in the first stop of back-to-backs (Oklahoma City 6-1-3 ATS) so let’s focus on the second game.

Here are the best and worst NBA bets in the second game of back-to-backs:

Stats and records as of Feb. 13.


Washington Wizards (11-2 ATS, 2-11 SU)

The Wizards are making ATS alchemy out of their terrible record. Washington is an NBA best 31-17-2 ATS heading into Wednesday and a good chunk of those profits have come in the second game of back-to-backs.

Toronto Raptors (9-2 ATS, 6-5 SU)

Bettors looking to cash in on the Raptors’ second-game success have a shot when Toronto visits New York Wednesday.  The Raptors beat Denver Tuesday but failed to cover, dropping to 3-8-1 ATS in the first game of back-to-backs.

Memphis Grizzlies (8-4 ATS, 7-5 SU)

Memphis is also among the best all-around bets in the league, with a 29-21-1 ATS record heading into the All-Star break. The Grizzlies have turned to their second-ranked defense to get the job done in the second half of back-to-backs, going 4-7-1 over/under in those situations.


Milwaukee Bucks (4-10 ATS, 5-9 SU)

The Bucks are just under the breakeven mark when it comes to covering the spread, at 24-26 ATS heading into Wednesday. They’ve dropped four in a row SU and ATS, including the second stop of a back-to-back at Utah last Wednesday.

Phoenix Suns (4-10 ATS, 2-12 ATS)

The Suns have kept backers in the red for most of the season, lugging a 21-29-3 ATS record into the All-Star break. Phoenix could be missing Steve Nash’s motor in those second games of back-to-backs. Last year, the Suns finished 12-9 SU and ATS in the same situation.

Philadelphia 76ers (3-10 ATS, 3-10 SU)

With no true go-to guy and a laundry list of injuries, the Sixers have come up short when the going gets tough in the second game of back-to-back outings. Philadelphia’s next two-game string is on Feb. 23 and 24 when it hosts Miami and visits New York.

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Best NBA Over/Under Bets In Second Game of Back-to-Backs

One of the biggest debates when handicapping the second game of back-to-back game situations is: which will suffer more, offense or defense?

According to the betting stats for back-to-back NBA games this season, teams tend to lack offensive pop when playing in the second half of a back-to-back.

Heading into Wednesday, teams are 203-185-10 over/under in the first game of back-to-back contests and 185-203-4 over/under when playing for the second straight night. (Six teams play the second of a back-to-back Wednesday night).

This trend was especially evident during the lockout-shortened NBA season last year, where teams taking the court for the second game in two nights posted a 278-324-15 over/under count.

A few teams are trending toward the over and under in the first game of back-to-backs this season (Houston 11-5 o/u, Utah 4-10 o/u), but the real value lies with betting totals in the second half of two-in-a-rows.

Here are the NBA’s best over and under bets in the second game of back-to-backs:

Stats and records as of Feb. 13.


Golden State Warriors (12-4 over/under, 10-6 SU)

The Warriors are mainstays when it comes to the over, posting a league-best over mark of 33-18-1 ATS heading into the All-Star break. It's a one-eighty from last season when Golden State was 6-13 over/under in the second game of back-to-backs last year.

Los Angeles Clippers (10-4 over/under, 9-5 SU)

A recent nine-game “Grammy” road trip had the Clippers playing back-to-back games twice, with the over cashing in both times in the second stop, at Washington and Philadelphia. Los Angeles heads into the break on back-to-back games, playing Houston Wednesday and the Lakers Thursday.

Denver Nuggets (9-3 over/under, 4-8 SU)

The Nuggets have been the hottest over bet no matter what the situation. Denver has topped the total in eight of their last nine overall and close out a back-to-back stint in Brooklyn Wednesday. The funny thing: The Nuggets are just 6-7 over/under in the first game of back-to-backs this season.


Chicago Bulls (3-10 over/under, 6-7 SU)

Without Derek Rose putting the offense on his back, the Bulls have dug in with defense in the second night of back-to-back games. Chicago is the third best under play in the NBA at 22-29, and recently stayed below the number in the second-game situation at Utah last Friday.

Washington Wizards (3-9-1 over/under, 2-11 SU)

Washington and the under is a profitable parlay when handicapping the second stop of back-to-back outings. The Wizards are 11-2 ATS in that situation and have stayed below the total most nights anyways, at 20-28-2 over/under.

Los Angeles Lakers (3-8 over/under, 4-7 SU)

Betting against the struggling Lakers has been profitable so far this season, so why not double-down on the under the next time the aging “Super Team” takes the court for the second night in a row? Los Angeles recently went under at Charlotte in this same situation last Friday.

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