Wayne Root: When Superpowers Lose a Step



As I was studying two of the marquee TV games this weekend, Kansas State at Kansas Saturday Night on ESPN in the colleges, and the Miami Heat at the Oklahoma City Thunder early Sunday on ABC, I noticed that all four of these big name teams have struggled vs. recent expectations.

  • Kansas State started the season ranked as high as #3 in the country. They were supposed to be the new power of the Big 12. The reason Saturday Night's game was originally scheduled before the season started as a "GameDay" telecast was that it was going to be the "new" superpower against the "old" superpower. But, it turns out that Kansas State is nowhere near as good as everyone thought they'd be. They didn't just lose a step. They may have lost their shoes!
  • Kansas rose to near the top of the rankings because they were undefeated until last Saturday's home loss to Texas. That loss didn't come from clear out of the Kansas blue though. Look at what the Jayhawks have done against expectations their last several games...

Kansas (-10) had to go overtime to beat Michigan
Kansas (-9) only beat Iowa State 84-79
Kansas (-15) only beat Nebraska 63-60
Kansas (-3.5) demolished disappointing Baylor 85-65 (a cover)
Kansas (-7) lost to Texas 74-63
Kansas (-7) only beat Colorado 82-78

That's 1-5 ATS the last six games, with double digit non-covers in regulation against Michigan, Nebraska, and Texas. Earlier nailbiters against USC and UCLA had hinted that the Jayhawks had lost a step. There's no doubt now. They're still a good team, but they're not as good as people expected.

  • Miami in the NBA was projected by some to be the best pro team ever. Some oddsmakers were quoted as expecting as many as 70 wins back when "The Decision" was first announced. The betting markets were calmer than that, with 64 wins as a common projection in the regular season win total propositions. Currently, the Heat aren't even on pace to get 60 victories.

If the "big three" of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh aren't at 100% health, this team has trouble pulling away from people. Look at their recent results

Miami (-7) had to go overtime to beat Milwaukee
Miami (5) had to go overtime to beat Portland (a vultured cover)
Miami (-7) lost to the LA Clippers 111-105
Miami (+1.5) lost to Denver 130-102
Miami (+3) lost to Chicago 99-96 (push)
Miami (-5) lost to Atlanta in overtime
Miami (-10) beat Toronto 120-103 (cover)
Miami (-3) lost to New York 93-88

The betting markets didn't notice that Miami loses several steps when LeBron hurts an ankle, Wade gets migraines, or Bosh watches in street clothes.

  • Oklahoma City has a losing record against the spread heading into the weekend for the season. The team has stopped playing the intense defense that made them a threat to the Lakers last year in the playoffs. And, again, we have a team not living up to form recently

OK City (+5) lost to the LA Lakers 101-94
OK City (+3) lost to Denver 112-107
OK City (-8) beat New York 101-98 on a buzzer beater
OK City (+3) lost to New Orleans 91-89  (cover)
OK City (-5) had to go overtime to beat Minnesota

The pointspread misses aren't as extreme here. But, you can see that the Thunder have lost a step recently.

One of the keys to finding value...finding PERFECT PLAYS...and even finding SHOCK THE SYSTEM UPSETS is recognizing when a big name team has lost a step (or two, or five). Spend some time thinking about that this weekend as you watch so many big name college programs and pro franchises in marquee matchups. Who's playing well? Who's playing with a purpose? Who's just kind of showing up and hoping their talent is enough? And, obviously based on today's theme, "who's lost a step?"

I'll tell you who HASN'T lost a step. WAYNE ALLYN ROOT!

I've the only man in the legal betting industry to have a star on the Vegas "Walk of Fame." I'm steps ahead of everyone else!

I have some very big plays planned this weekend, and I could well be stepping out in one of those TV games I mentioned above. You can sign up for my service online or at 1-877-766-8946. If you want to try things out for awhile on a daily basis, game day selections go up a few hours before tip-off. Be prepared EARLY on Saturdays and Sundays because the games get started before lunch on the East Coast, and during breakfast out here in Las Vegas.

Based on the early lines, I'm anticipating the biggest basketball weekend so far this season for my clients. MAKE YOUR BIGGEST SCORE WITH WAYNE ALLYN ROOT!


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