Nick: What Sharps Think about NBA Conference Finals
DIRECT FROM NEVADA WITH NICK BOGDANOVICH
WHAT SHARPS ARE THINKING ABOUT
BOSTON/ORLANDO, PHOENIX/LA SERIES
It's fairly easy to determine what the sharps (professional wagerers) are thinking about series prices in Las Vegas because the public doesn't bet them much!
If you see a move on the moneyline, that's generally a sharp move. So far, we've seen two fairly clear moves, though one has started coming back toward the opener.
Both favorites opened at -300 to win the series (Orlando in the East, the LA Lakers in the West). The underdogs were getting +260 on the return (Boston in the East, Phoenix in the West).
As we go to press:
*Orlando, which had been bet down to -260 (support for Boston) is now sitting at -280. So, there were definitely some sharps who liked the Celtics...but the price dropped so low that Orlando money came into the mix.
*Los Angeles is now -350, which represents support for the Lakers. Now...this one can get tricky because the public will bet the Lakers in pretty much anything! Remember, Kobe and Company are a virtual home town team in Las Vegas and Reno. That move does reflect a combination of sharp and square action. Los Angeles looked so good in the Utah series that Lakers fans are confident they'll win this round and don't mind laying a high price. Some sharps laid -300, but they wouldn't lay the prices you're seeing now.
So, in terms of the overall series, slight sharp support for Boston and the Lakers at the opening prices. Orlando is getting enough respect that the Boston support didn't end up moving the line too far.
What about the individual games set for Sunday and Monday?
*Orlando opened at -6.5 and 190. I'm currently seeing -6 and 189, which is sharp support for Boston and the Under. Not overwhelming support...but enough to move the numbers a touch. Squares don't bet opening lines, then generally wait until game day. So, this is clearly sharp action.
*The Lakers opened -6.5 and 212. I'm currently seeing -6 and 210.5, which is also a dog and Under move. The biggest move so far is the Under in this particular game. Should the public come in on the favorites on game day in either of these matchups (which is fairly common), sharps would get involved again at +6.5 or better. Sharps are definitely looking to fade the Lakers in Los Angeles...as this group has trouble holding onto big home court leads.
We're not seeing heavy action early on. Sharps like to work their way into a series unless they have GREAT information about a particular player or team. And, frankly, sharps have been kind of hit or miss so far in the playoffs this year. The Wise Guys usually like to bet with the ebb and flow of a series. The second round saw a lot of sweeps without much back and forth at all. I know a few Wise Guys who were cursing Atlanta, San Antonio, and Utah last week.
Were you among the people cursing? Let me show you how to win! My position right in the middle of the legal sports betting markets allows me to get you the best plays at the best prices. I'm an oddsmaker. I'm a Sportsbook Director. I'm a big bettor. I'm a handicapping contest winner in the most prestigious Nevada events. I know what the sharps are betting because I'm taking their action. I know what the squares are betting because I'm telling them which way the restroom is after they make their plays.
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