College Hoop Coaches Struggling in Transition to NBA
Wayne Root: College Hoop Coaches Struggling in Transition to NBA
I won't have much of a chance to talk about the NBA here in my web articles until after the New Year when football winds down. But, I wanted to direct your attention to something very interesting that's been happening through the first quarter of the NBA season.
*The Oklahoma City Thunder hired Billy Donovan away from the Florida Gators in college basketball to coach Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. It was understood that Scott Brooks wasn't a very good "playoff" coach once he ran into good X's and O's opponents. Great talent can dominate lesser teams...but it gets outsmarted when championships are on the line! OKC decided a new man could take them to the next level. But...they went after a new man who was known at being bad at X's and O's in the colleges!
*The Chicago Bulls hired Fred Hoiberg away from the Iowa State Cyclones in college basketball to build an offense for one of the most boring pro hoop teams. Fans (and management) were tired of losing in the playoffs because of inept offenses. Sure, defense is important...but defense by itself can't win in the NBA. Particularly the current analytics-driven NBA where teams spread the floor and hit three-pointers. The problem here is that Hoiberg's only "trick" was outshooting opponents from three-point land in home games. That's what Iowa State was known for. They'd play great at home (with some home cooking from refs) but fall apart at other sites. Remember when they were the first major team knocked out of the Dance this past March?
So...we had good teams taking gambles on college coaches out of frustration...but gambling on guys who were probably ill-suited to finding pro success. As I write this Wednesday afternoon:
Oklahoma City is 8-13 against the spread
Chicago is 6-12 against the spread
These are still teams who are likely to make the playoffs. They have winning records straight up. But, the market certainly overrated the impact these coaches were likely to have. Bringing in Donovan and Hoiberg were likely net minuses...while oddsmakers either didn't make a change to their Power Ratings, or incorrectly lifted Power Ratings because they didn't know the weaknesses of the college coaches.
That's one of the big differences between smart handicappers and generic oddsmakers! Winners know the ins and outs of the various betting sports, and can anticipate what's likely to happen a lot more than half the time (better than the break-even point). Oddsmakers tend to focus on numbers, and are "reactive" after a development has taken place. Should these OKC and Chicago trends continue, the line will slowly drift to the right spot.
As I've said before...the only man with a star on the "Walk of Fame" here in Las Vegas is always a few steps ahead of the linesmaker. If one ever gets his own star, it will naturally be a few steps behind mine!
Some strategies to keep in mind as you handicap through December...
*Look for early developments in the NBA that oddsmakers are being slow to react to
*Look for early developments in college hoops that oddsmakers are being slow to react to
*Look for developments in the college football bowl games where you can anticipate a reaction to a coaching change, an injury, a "snub," or whatever that will allow you to find an edge.
YOU should be proactive while the oddsmakers are reactive. That's what separates you from them. It's what gives you a chance to make BIG MONEY as a Las Vegas bettor.
Or, you can take the easy way out and sign up with THE KING OF LAS VEGAS WAYNE ALLYN ROOT! You can always purchase my BEST BETS in all sports right here at the website with your credit card. If you have any questions about which of my services best suits your individual needs, please talk to one of my representatives in the office at 1-877-ROOT-WINS.
December is a great month for sports bettors because there are so many games on the board and so many important and interesting influences in play. Admit it...you were thinking so much about football that you hadn't even considered this coaching angle in the NBA. Very few of you have been taking advantage of it. If anything, you probably bought the media hype about how "winners" like Donovan can be successful anywhere...or that an "offensive guru" like Hoiberg is exactly what the Bulls needed. They're a combined 14-25 against the spread so far!
Back with you over the weekend to talk about the Oakland/Denver game in the NFL. The Raiders are a "local" team here in Nevada...which makes them one of my "local" teams. And, Denver has a chance to earn a first round bye despite the absence of Peyton Manning. So much to talk about with that game!
Whatever the sport, every day brings another big game. That means it's time for you to go to W.A.R. alongside WAYNE ALLYN ROOT!
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