What Sharps Think about NBA Finals



Sharps (professional bettors) are trying to come up with ways to find value betting the Los Angeles Lakers in the NBA Championship series that starts Thursday Night.

  • They believe the Lakers are the better of the two teams.
  • They believe home court advantage makes the Lakers an even stronger side in the series (remember, many sharps liked the Lakers two years ago when Boston had home floor).
  • They believe the injury issues for Rajon Rondo will play a big role in this series, since Rondo was the key factor in getting Boston through the tough Eastern brackets.

The problem for sharps is that lines in Vegas and Reno are always stacked against the Lakers because there's so much local betting interest. Los Angeles is a virtual suburb of Las Vegas in betting terms. And, given how celebrities like to bet on big sports events, there's going to be A LOT of LA money coming into sportsbooks this week and next. Oddsmakers have to defend against that money by lifting the game lines and series prices. They charge a "tax" for the right to bet the Lakers, giving their employers the 11/10 edge on games plus a point or two that could certainly swing a game money-wise.

If you're a sharp, you don't want to pay a square tax!

You may think the Lakers are going to win the series. Do you want to lay -180 or higher for the privilege of betting them? A lot of guys laid the price two years ago and got spanked badly when it turned out the Lakers weren't ready for the more physical Celtics. This Lakers team is tougher, arguably MUCH tougher with the addition of Ron Artest. Still. Sharps are good about learning lessons. They'd prefer less expensive ways to back the Lakers.

What about laying 5½ points or so in Game One? The price on the Game One moneyline is -240. Neither one is a bargain from the Lakers perspective. That's getting close to where sharps switch over to Boston for value even if they like the Lakers to win the series. When game spreads get high, bets on Boston can still make money if the Celtics lose the series.

I honestly haven't seen a lot of sharp action this week in the baskets. Some guys took the plunge on the Lakers when it looked like Rondo would have trouble playing at 100%. Most are taking a wait and see attitude. The sharp money will come late. It might not come until Game Two Sunday. The guys who really like the Lakers are likely to step out when LA goes on the road. This is a team that plays well away from home, and the prices will be more affordable.

In short:

  • The sharps who believe in the Lakers don't like the early prices.
  • The sharps with an eye on Boston want to see Rondo's status.

I think it's going to play out this way. If Rondo is having trouble moving in the first game, and is clearly not going to be up to par this series...then we're going to see the lines adjust dramatically for the Lakers. Sharps will bet quick before the public drives the Lakers bandwagon even faster.

But, if Rondo is back to normal, then we'll probably have a "sharps vs. squares" battle where the sharps are betting Boston because of the "square tax" factored into the numbers...while the public is betting the Lakers because they don't care what the price is, they just want to root for Kobe Bryant.

It is possible for a series underdog to lose a series, but go 4-2 or even 5-2 against the spread if they're losing close games. There is a line in the sand where sharps who think the Lakers are the better of the two teams will still bet Boston for value. It wouldn't happen at +4, but it might at +6 or +7 in LA.

I'll do my best to keep you updated on the sharp thinking process through the finals. This has the feel of a "wait and see" series to me so far. I'll tell you what the sharps are doing as soon as I see it.

I've got some very strong opinions myself about this series. I expect to be involved aggressively with both sides and totals. You can take advantage of having a friend behind the line by calling 1-877-822-2276. You can also purchase my BEST BETS here at the website with your credit card.

Whether this is a series of twists and turns...or a straight line to a sweep...you can rest assured that the best information about the NBA CHAMPIONSHIPS will always come to you DIRECT FROM NEVADA!


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