A handicapper factors in a ton of information when making their plays. Some poor over spreadsheets and just bet the data, some look for situations they feel can be exploited or ones that aren’t baked into the line already. Some just have a feeling.
I like to have a mix bag when it comes to my plays. I use data, situations, and my own feeling about the games. In the end though I want the pick to be a reflection of me and who I am as a handicapper. It’s a form of expression if you will and a feeling you have once that bet is placed. Here are a few picks I feel good about.
Virginia Tech is (-19) coming off two very nice wins against Iowa, who they crushed, and Ole Miss. Tonight they welcome Radford and then the Maryland-Eastern Shore Hawks before their big showdown at Kentucky on December 16th. I know 19 is a lot of points but Virginia Tech is undefeated at home and they have another tune-up game before Kentucky I don’t see them looking ahead. Also the way this team plays 19 points will be easier to cover than other teams since the Hokies really don’t have any other speed at which they play then fast. VT averages 73 possessions per game, only 10 possession short of the leader which is the Citadel and 7 more than Radford. Look for a fast up and down game from Virginia Tech
The Florida Gators (-16.5) were flat out embarrassed at home by their rivals Florida State. Now they won’t get another crack at the Seminoles unless their paths meet in March but what they can do is take out their frustrations on Loyola-Chicago. The trick for the Gators is not to rely too much on the 3 point shot. That got them in trouble against FSU. I think they will look to go inside more and shoot better tonight.
If you have been following me you know I use a system for the NBA. This system is based on a few advanced stats that I weight differently on any given night. The system is very dynamic so it’s not uncommon for me to back one team and then go against them the very next night. My system doesn’t care what team is playing or the situation; it’s pure data. It’s up to me to factor in injured players, situations, the line, and many others.
Atlanta Hawks (+6.5) at Orlando Magic. The Hawks score better then the Magic in almost every category I track. I love it when that happens to a dog.
Like the Hawks the Bulls score better than the Pacers (-9.5) in my model but we all know that the Bulls are awful and the market is just now catching up to the Pacers who are 15-9 ATS and 8-2 ATS in their last 10. 9.5 might be an over adjustment but I’m okay with it. The under (208) is live in this as well since the Bulls don’t have a legit scorer and are only averaging 95 ppg.
LBJ and the Cavaliers (-12.5) go for their 13 win in a row against the Sacramento Kings who are 29th in scoring and offensive efficiency. Need I say more?
I’m counting on the Knicks (-2) having Porzingis back for their home tilt against Memphis who is just completely lost without Conelly and a lame duck coach. Zing will bring energy and confidence to this young Knicks squad that should get it done at home.
Here is another game where my system favors Dallas over the obvious choice Celtics (-8.5) at home. Again sometimes you have to factor in the eye test when it comes to the NBA and the Celtics are just flat out better. They not only have a better effective FG% than Dallas but they’re just shy of 80% ATS. The over (201.5) is in play as well as both these teams average just over 100 ppg.
Denver (+5) is getting points at a New Orleans team that is missing their best player. That means its up to Boogie to stay focused and deliver. Fat chance. Love Denver in this spot.
Anytime I’m backing the Greek Freak I’m happy. This guy can flat out get it done and can take over a game at any moment. I don’t see anyone from Detroit being able to stop him. Bucks (-4) at home is a solid play.
Spurs (-7.5) welcome Miami without their best player in Whiteside. We know Pop is great ATS but without Whiteside Miami has no interior defense, no re-bounder, and no go to scorer. The Spurs should cover easily.
Minnesota (-5.5) is taking their show on the road to visit the struggling Clippers. I know the T-Wolves have their 4th quarter issues but no team is worse in the 4th than the Clippers not to mention they are without their best player. I see another collapse in the 4th by both teams of course but Minnesota should have a big enough lead to still cover.