THE BEST IN HORSE RACING AND NBA
WITH KENTUCKY DERBY AND PLAYOFFS SATURDAY
What a great day in the world of sports!
As you longtime readers know, JIM HURLEY has absolutely owned the Kentucky Derby over the years. You've read all about his build-up for the Run for the Roses elsewhere at the site. We just wanted to provide a quick reminder that all of these packages are available for the big race today from NETWORK:
*Pay just $20 for the Winner, Exacta, Trifecta, and Superfecta of the big race. In the last 25 years, JIM HURLEY has nailed 14 winners, 14 Exactas, and an astounding 7 Trifectas for monster payoffs.
*Pay just $50 for the full 13-race ticket at Churchill Downs so you can build your bankroll through the day then really score big in the grand finale.
*Pay just $125 for the full Saturday cards at Churchill Downs, Belmont, Arlington Park, and Hollywood Park (or pick any two for $75, or any three for $95) for a true horse racing smorgasbord that will provide thrills all day long.
*If you're just a casual fan who only watches the Triple Crown races, pay only $50 today to lock yourself in for the Winner, Exacta, Trifecta, and Superfecta for the Kentucky Derby, Preakness, and Belmont.
You can take care of business here at the website, or call the office at 1-800-323-4453.
Now on to basketball. It's been DAYS since Oklahoma City, Memphis, Miami, and Boston have taken the floor. All four teams could use the break.
*BOSTON was dealing with injuries all over the roster. A mid-series layoff came just at the perfect time.
*MIAMI has the big picture in mind, and is pacing themselves for the long haul. This series is much less likely to tire them out if they can cost through the calendar this easily.
*MEMPHIS played a lot of games in a short amount of time because of the quick turnaround from facing San Antonio to Oklahoma City. They started to look tired in the second half of Game Two in this series.
*OKLAHOMA CITY was showing signs of playing out of control in each of the first two games. You don't win in the playoffs while hyperventilating!
It will be very interesting to see if the layoff changes anything, and if fresh legs and better health shows up more on offense or defense. Let's crunch the numbers from last TUESDAY to get a refresher course on both series.
GAME THREE: OKLAHOMA CITY at MEMPHIS
Series tied 1-1
Vegas Line: Memphis by 3, total of 200
We see a substantial switch here from Oklahoma City -7 and -6.5 in the first two games. Sometimes there is a 10-point swing in a playoff series, representing a home court advantage of five points. Typically, this happens when both teams are respected at home by bettors. Memphis earned that respect in their victory over San Antonio. The total has jumped from 194.5 and 197.5 in the first two games because the pace and shooting has been above expectations. The games actually landed on 215 and 213. Anticipating the impact of the layoff could prove particularly profitable on the total.
GAME TWO STATS
OKLAHOMA CITY 111, MEMPHIS 102
Shooting Percentage: Memphis 44%, Oklahoma City 53%
Three-Pointers: Memphis 4/11, Oklahoma City 8/14
Free Throws: Memphis 28/34, Oklahoma City 27/33
Rebounds: Memphis 38, Oklahoma City 34
Turnovers: Memphis 16, Oklahoma City 16
Vegas Line: Oklahoma City by 6.5, total of 197
Notebook: This was a bounce back game for Oklahoma City after dropping the opener. Stats from a game like this aren't necessarily predictive for what's ahead. Remember that Orlando won a home bounce back against Atlanta but still ended up losing the series with unimpressive form. It's important to note that Oklahoma City was +12 on three-pointers in a game they only won by nine. That's probably a stat they'll have to win consistently to survive the series. It's not a good sign for the Thunder that they were outrebounded at home, or committed 16 turnovers. That suggests trouble if the treys aren't falling.
For its part, Memphis has to re-focus its defensive efforts. They're not going to advance if the Thunder keep shooting that well from the floor. We'll give them the benefit of the doubt because they were tired and had already broken serve on the road. Memphis better not let complacency set in.
With two young teams like this, it's the intangibles that are likely to determine who wins and covers most games. Who's going to stay calm, and who's going to panic? Who's going to play with maturity late in close games, and who's going to try to force things that aren't there? Which role players are going to step up if the main scoring threats cancel out? Which head coach is going to make the right decisions in uncharted waters?
We'll be working very closely with our sources in this series to answer THOSE questions. You get those right, and you're going to win a lot of side and totals bets. If you don't have a read on them, there's no reason to even try picking a winner.
GAME THREE: MIAMI at BOSTON
Boston leads 2-0
Vegas Line: Boston by 3, total of 182.5
We have an eight point move here from Miami -5 down in South Beach. That suggests that the market sees home court being worth four points with this group. But, it also suggests that oddsmakers think Miami -5 was the 'right' line even though they went on to win by 9 and 11 points. If those final scores are a better barometer of this matchup than the Vegas guesses, then Miami should be a small road favorite. If the margins were a result of Boston being banged up and not being able to use Shaquille O'Neal, then maybe Boston -3 is still too low after a long layoff. The total is rising from 180.5 and 181 up to 182.5 because we've seen good three-point shooting and plenty of free throws in the first two games. They landed on 189 and 193.
GAME TWO STATS
MIAMI 102, BOSTON 91
Shooting Percentage: Boston 43%, Miami 45%
Three-Pointers: Boston 6/11, Miami 7/16
Free Throws: Boston 17/22, Miami 27/36
Rebounds: Boston 38, Miami 44
Turnovers: Boston 11, Miami 10
Vegas Line: Miami by 5, total of 181
Notebook: Seemingly everyone who mattered for Boston was banged up in this one. So, the stats above may not reflect best expectations for the rest of the series. That being said, Miami is likely to win free throws because they attack the basket more. Miami is capable of holding their own on treys if their role players keep contributing the way they have so far. Miami is probably going to win the turnover battle more often than not because Boston is turnover prone. Boston REALLY needs to shoot well from the floor! Can they do that four times in the next five games?
Our sources in Boston have been following the injury situation very closely. If Boston is ready to go...and brings peak intensity to this must-win game, then they can be the right side at this line. But, if the injuries are too serious, and the players KNOW it...then Miami just might march to a 4-0 series sweep. The elements in play here create the potential for one of the easiest covers of the year in either direction!
So, DON'T MAKE A MOVE UNTIL YOU HEAR WHAT JIM HURLEY HAS TO SAY! You can purchase today's NBA PARLAY here at the website with your credit card. Be sure you're back tomorrow for previews and plays in Chicago/Atlanta and Lakers/Dallas. This is a great weekend to SHOOT THE MOON because of the NBA, the KENTUCKY DERBY, and MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL. Something very special is brewing for NETWORK today in the bases, and it might be in one of the marquee TV games.
If you have any questions about combination packages for this weekend of the full Spring, call us at 1-800-323-4453.
Saturday is going to be a day at the races...a day with the bases...and a day in the faces of Vegas oddsmakers when JIM HURLEY'S NETWORK gets the money in all sports!
This article is part of the VSM MASTERS SERIES presented by VegasSportsMasters.com and JimHurley.com. For more information on JIM HURLEY'S handicapping packages, call 1-800-323-4453.
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