Oct 28 NBA Picks Includes Pair Bet on DAL@PHO
Our sole side play in opening day of the NBA season paid, as Cleveland was indeed able to stay within striking distance at Chicago -- despite missing their star Guard Kyrie Irving. Our bias in favor of road dogs remains as our system has identified three away teams on tonight's 12-game calendar for whom we are happy to take points.
Indiana Pacers +5.5 (-108) @ Toronto Raptors
We see the Raptors as about 3 points better than the Pacers at Air Canada Centre tonight. While the Pacers ranked 23rd in scoring last season, we expect the addition of Monta Ellis, along with a rejuvenated Paul George to provide adequate scoring punch to garner the game 1 cover.
Dallas Mavericks +5.0 (-110) @ Phoenix Suns [Upgraded to DAL + 6.0] After failing to secure much-hyped and uber-athletic Center, DeAndre Jordan, in the wake of Tyson Chandler's departure, the Mavs were ultimately forced to settle for former Milwaukee Buck, ZaZa Pachulia -- indeed a serviceable, if unathletic, big man. Other roster changes in Dallas included the addition of declining Point Guard Deron Williams and sharpshooter Wesley Matthews at the 2 position. But after a series of essentially lateral moves, we don't expect much improvement over last year's performance.
Fortunately, for Dallas supporters Phoenix is in a similar predicament following the parting of ways with Isaiah Thomas and Goran Dragic last year and Marcus Morris in the offseason. The Suns did land Tyson Chandler, however the pickup on defense is likely offset by diminished offense ability.
After accounting for Chandler Parsons' absence, we do not think Phoenix is 5 points better than Dallas -- even at home. To this point, two of the factors in our stable call for Dallas to win outright, while our composite indicator makes Phoenix about 1 point favorites.
San Antonio Spurs +4.5 (-110) @ Oklahoma City Thunder
While a healthy OKC team is always formidable, we think as highly of the new-look Spurs -- now that superstar Forward, LaMarcus Aldridge, appears set to assume the mantle of primary offensive option. Jeff Sagarin's Power Ratings make these teams virtually even on a neutral floor. Thus, by this approach, the Thunder's entire advantage owes to the value of home court. One predictive algorithm in our lineup sees the Spurs winning outright, while the others call for a 3-4 Oklahoma City win.
After our two totals plays split yesterday we are left striving to achieve profitability today. Our system highlights three over/under plays for Wednesday's action, in addition to the spread picks indicated above.
Cleveland Cavaliers @ Memphis Grizzlies o186.5 (-105)
Our Cleveland @ Memphis play opened with a total of 191.5 (according to SportsInsights), before bettors bid the number down to current levels. The line has since rallied back to 188. exhibting line value versus where we placed our wagers. As always, this pick also finds validation in each input (independently) in our multi-factor totals prediction model.
Dallas Mavericks @ Phoenix Suns u202.5 (-105)
We cited a study yesterday that indicated a tendency for over/under lines to be overinflated in the early going of NBA seasons. The paper's authors identified a winning strategy of betting every UNDER where at least 1/2 point of closing line value was realized. DAL@PHO opened with a total of 206.5, implying 4 points of closing line value to UNDER backers.
Washington Wizards @ Orlando Magic u205.0 (-107)
Washington @ Orlando opened with a lower total (negative line value). We are not overly concerned about this line moving against us though, as we place more emphasis on our quantitative assessments than to more generalized trends and tendencies. A requisite among our plays is that all factors in our suite of indicators must achieve unanimity. As such, we feel our plays are well-based before considering changes in the betting line. To illustrate this thinking in action, the total for yesterday's Pelicans @ Warriors game opened at 210.5, 4.5 points below the closing line, yet the UNDER still cashed in -- with with a couple of Steph Curry longballs to spare.
Our work calls for an aggregate total in the 196 ballpark. The most aggressive prediction expects a combined 200 points -- well below the 205 threshold.