NBA Betting News and Notes

NBA Betting News and Notes

NBA Playoffs Round Two
By Marc Lawrence
Playbook.com

With the top seeds having flexed their muscle in the opening round of the NBA playoffs, it’s one to Round Two where a series upset or two is always in the realm of possibility.

Here are four solid moneymaking angles from my powerful database that have withstood the test of time throughout 2nd round playoff action, along with a few tempting team trends. All results are ATS and since 1991, unless noted otherwise. Enjoy.

Thou shall not lay points into a No. 1 seed

One golden rule in this round applies to top seeds, namely: never lay points against No.1 seeds.

That’s because inferior teams are just 16-27-1 ATS when playing points into No. 1 seeds since 1996. Worse, if the No. 1 seed is off a SU and ATS loss, lower seeded favorites are just 3-10 ATS.

And if the lower seeded favorite beat the top seed and covered the spread by nine or more points, they dip to 1-10 ATS.

Tripped out favorites

Teams that take it on the chin three times in a row do not fare well when laying points in Round Two.

That’s confirmed by the fact that teams laying points off three consecutive losses that are 3-13 ATS in these games.

Worse, if they dropped their last game straight up as a favorite these teams generally fall off the map and out of the playoffs, going 3-7 SU and 0-10 ATS.

Role reversals

You may not be comfortable changing roles in a relationship, but NBA teams in this round of the playoffs certainly are.

Round Two dogs (or picks) off a straight-up loss as a favorite are a 58% ATS proposition, going 32-23 ATS.

When changing roles off back-to-back SU and ATS losses, these pick-of-the-litter plays bark to the tune of 12-6 ATS, including 11-1 ATS if they own a win percentage of less than .675 on the season.

Running on empty

Home favorites that scored well below their average (77 or less points) in their previous game tend to fuel up the next game in this round.

That’s evident by a sparkling 21-9-1 ATS mark by Round Two favorites that tallied 77 or fewer points in their last game.

Put these favorites up against .625 or greater opposition and they top off at 16-3 ATS, including 13-1 when laying four or more points.

Tantalizing playoff trends

Chicago: 5-1-1 ATS 2nd round versus .696 greater opponent

Golden State: 0-3-1 ATS 2nd round off a win

Indiana: 0-5 ATS 2nd round favorite off ATS win 18 or more points

Memphis: 0-3 ATS 2nd round vs opponent off loss

Miami: 7-0 ATS 2nd round off DD loss

New York: 5-1 ATS 2nd round DD dogs

Oklahoma City: 0-5 ATS 2nd round off win 20 or more points

San Antonio: 8-1 ATS 2nd round HF’s more than 8 points

There you have it. Rock-solid betting theories you can hang your hat on throughout the 2nd round of this year’s NBA playoffs.

Use your head and play accordingly.

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Re: NBA Betting News and Notes

Be Cautious Of Blowouts                      
By Jim Feist  05/15/2013
Playbook.com

The NBA playoffs are in full swing, which means overall the better teams are battling each other. This is different from the regular season when many nights great teams are playing bad teams and bad teams are playing worse one. Astute sports bettors should pay very careful attention to blowouts.

For instance, after losing Game 1 at the Lakers a year ago, 103-88, the Nuggets covered in a close one in Game 2, 104-100, by changing strategy and going uptempo in the second half. They got beat on the glass in the first game, but showcased more low post hustle in Game 2 where they outrebounded the taller Lakers.

That's nothing new. Two years ago the Lakers blew out the Hornets in Game 3, 100-86, then the a different New Orleans club showed up the next game, winning straight up as a +5 dog. Three years ago after losing Game 1, the Celtics stunned the Cavaliers in Game 2, 104-86, at Cleveland as an underdog. At one point they led 91-66. A big part of the story was Rasheed Wallace, who had been called out by Coach Doc Rivers after a lousy opener, but added 17 points off the bench.

Incensed, the Cavaliers had a few days to stew about the embarrassing home defeat, then went to Boston for Game 3 and blew out the Celtics, 124-95. It was Boston's worst home playoff defeat in history and the Cavs shot 59%. The fans booed when Boston left the court at halftime down 65-43. Series over? No. Boston then won the next three games, including a blowout of their own, 120-88 with Cleveland fans booing their team!

Overall, blowouts are less expected this time of the year. Oddsmakers are anticipating that the majority of teams want to be here and will play all out for 48 minutes keeping things relatively close.

This year's Hawks/Pacers series is a good example. Indiana destroyed Atlanta in the first two games, 107-90 and 113-98, only to get blown out in Game 3, a 90-69 Hawks rout. What happened in Game 2 meant nothing in predicting Game 3. It wasn't just home court that turned the trick but some subtle changes. The Hawks changed up their lineup - inserting 7-footer Johan Petro at center and bringing 3-point specialist Kyle Korver off the bench - after getting manhandled on the road. With more favorable matchups and a lot more energy, Atlanta looked like a different team.

Playoff teams have some talent or star players, which also makes closer, more competitive games likely, especially as the playoffs move along. Still, one-sided games can happen for a variety of reasons. Seven years ago the Spurs positively trashed the Kings in Game 1, 122-88. The stats on the game were frightening, with San Antonio shooting 57% and holding the Kings to 39%, while winning the battle of the boards 51-32.

However, a funny thing happened in Game 2: the Kings showed up. They showed up with a vengeance, too, taking the Spurs to overtime before a wild 128-119 loss, though the angry dog still covered. Public perception can be such that many were thinking the Spurs were going to destroy the Kings even worse in Game 2. However, the veteran Kings were embarrassed and angry. A very different team showed up for Game 2, one that was motivated by the blowout.

The point is, don't easily dismiss teams that get routed. If they have talent, are well coached, or have strong leadership, they can bounce back and look like a very different team the next game. Another factor to consider is defense. Many teams that make the postseason know how to play defense and in a blowout loss, perhaps a team simply had a bad defensive game. Or, the opponent was doing something that they couldn't adjust to. Though after watching game films, adjustments are made, which is why they can look very different.

Adjustments and motivation can spur a team in a bounce-back role, as well as the fact that they simply had a bad game. Even handicappers have to learn not to overanalyze certain situations. The important point is not too read too much into a single, one-sided game. The playoffs only increase competitive fire and passion with teams facing each other over and over again, making adjustments and revenge spots even more acute. You may recall the NBA Finals seven years ago, when two blowouts were followed by close nail-biters, with the dog covering. Dallas won Game 2, 99-85, but the next game Miami won by a basket. In Game 4, the Heat rolled by 24 points, only to see Game 5 go into overtime and decided by one point.

One season the Celtics danced all over the Pacers in a 102-82 Game 1 rout. Boston players made foolish comments after the game about how they were already thinking about advancing to the next round! In Game 2, a very different Indiana team showed up in an 82-79 win as a road underdog. They eventually won the series, too. Every dog can have his day in the NBA playoffs, so be careful: one-sided blowouts can be very different the next encounter.

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