Dangerous Days For NBA Dogs
Wayne Root: Dangerous Days for Dogs in the NBA
If you've been paying attention to the NBA in recent days, you know that there's been some very ugly basketball being played at the professional level. There's also been some high end stuff from championship contenders. But, for the most part...
*Many bad teams are trying to lose for draft position
*Many mediocre teams are just playing out the string
*Many CONTENDERS have some troubles they haven't fixed
*Many CONTENDERS without troubles are COASTING anyway
You're lucky if there are one or two games per night that feature two teams playing head-to-head who care about the result and are going all out to win. In those games, you can apply traditional handicapping approaches to try and determine if the underdog is worth an upset call, or if the favorite is so talented that they'll control their own destiny.
Otherwise, picking winners is more about evaluating the motivation/chemistry of teams involved...and then deciding if the market price properly reflects what's most likely to happen on the court.
As THE KING OF UPSETS, I obviously have my eye on potential scenarios where the underdog is positioned to win the game straight up. You have to rule out so many tanking and disinterested teams that it become a very short list! Here are the best angles to pursue...
*Take PLAYOFF-BOUND teams or PLAYOFF CONTENDERS when getting points against superior opponents who appear to be saving themselves for the postseason. Here, you are going to get energy, effort, and usually some talent (except in parts of the East) trying to win your bet for you...against an opponent that doesn't care about the result. This, right, here is the single best category for upset calls. Some might argue it's the only category you should pursue for upset calls right now!
*Take YOUNG teams who still appear to be trying as underdogs except against the true elites of the league. The Utah Jazz were in this category for a few weeks, though they might have run out of gas the past few days. Utah wasn't a playoff contender, but they hadn't thrown in the towel on the season either. Young coach...young stars...enjoying a chance to make a statement about what might happen next season. Can you find anyone else who fits this category? Don't be afraid to look further down in the standings in either conference. There is some value to be found.
*Take DIVISIONAL RIVALRY underdogs if you can find indicators that the team is going to be showing up for that particular game. Even some of the tankers are showing up for hated rivals. That will be the one good game they play in the next two weeks! You can pick your spots here because oddsmakers are really just putting up soft guesses across the league right now and hoping for the best. There's so much lethargy across the league, that any reason for an underdog to bring energy is often enough to get the cover, with straight up victories coming more often than casual fans have noticed.
If you prefer the overall approach of emphasizing underdogs in your betting (because lines are usually stacked against favorites due to "public" betting tendencies), it's very important that you learn to recognize the best times to be aggressive, and the best time to pull back. Right now in the NBA, you have to pull back and be very cautious about the underdogs you invest in. If they don't care about getting a result, YOU'RE not going to be getting results!
Once the playoffs begin, you can be sure that most underdogs on the board will be giving 100%. Though, I am honestly concerned that some lower-half qualifiers are going to be so discouraged about their chances that they may just take their medicine and go home. Who in the East is going to have a chance vs. Cleveland in the first round? Will the eventual #8 seed in the West have any real shot vs. Golden State? In the middle of the pack though, we may see a series or two where underdogs cover every single game.
If you'd like some help picking NBA winners each night, as we transition from March Madness to April and May action, you can purchase my BEST BETS right here at the website with your credit card. If you have any questions about which of my long term programs best suits your individual needs, please talk to my representative in the office at 1-877-ROOT-WINS. Call during normal business hours this week to find out about long term packages that include the NBA Playoffs and Major League Baseball.
I'll have another report later this week to look at upset potential in this weekend's Final Four action. Notre Dame almost shocked Kentucky Saturday in Cleveland. Will somebody else be able to get the job done? Next week, I'll talk about early season baseball just as Opening Day is providing thrills across the land. It's a great time to be a sports bettor! Which means...it's a great time for YOU to go to W.A.R. alongside WAYNE ALLYN ROOT!
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