It is common in Western societies to believe the 13th day of the month to be unluky when it falls on a Friday. In fact, scholars cite references to such ideologies dating as far back as the 19th century. Even today, there is evidence that such thinking impacts human behaviors. For instance, the Stress Management Center and Phobia Institute estimates that 17-21 million American suffer from paraskevidekatriaphobia. Further, separate research finds that in the U.K. the likelihood of hospitalization resulting from traffic accidents rises by 52% on Friday the 13th. Finally, a Netherlands study concludes that Friday the 13th is actually a safer than random day, as people, alert to the day's ominous reputation, 1) are either particularly diligent when undertaking risky activities or 2) seek to avoid risk altogether and stay home.
We hope such psychology is at work today, as we believe we can profit from irrational herding. Consistent with this premise, we enter tonight's competition confident in the three lines that our approach has highlighted as compelling values.
Cleveland Cavaliers -5.0 (-120) @ New York Knicks
Utah Jazz ML (-115) @ Orlando Magic
New Orleans Pelicans @ Toronto Raptors u206.5 (-105)
(Notes: We booked the Cavs -5 at a reasonale premium this morning. The line is currently -6.5 (-110) at several shops; our model calls for a Cleveland cover even at this higher chalk. Separately, we opted to support the Jazz via the moneyline, however, the model is favorably disposed toward Utah -1.5.)
We are well alert to the possibility that our best laid intentions might go terribly awry on this menacing evening, however, we suffered a 1-3 showing just yesterday. Based on our track record, it appears as likely that any short-term misfortunes directed our way unfolded yesterday, and that we are due to rebound tonight.