Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Wednesday's Tip Sheet
By Josh Jacobs

There will be no rest in the NBA as another packed night will include a total of 10 games on the schedule. Only three teams playing this evening will bring with them a winning record on the road, while the rest of group has sputtered on opposing courts.

**Miami at Toronto**


The Heat will continue their quick, two-game road trip as they look to break an eight-game losing streak on Wednesday. Miami has been friendly to bettors, posting a 4-1 ATS run in its last five, but a 5-26 SU and 13-17-1 ATS record away from home has translated into a disaster at the window. The Raptors have gone 2-0 SU and ATS in two appearances against Miami this season (both games where road victories for Toronto). Although involved in a 2-8 SU and ATS slide, Toronto will look to continue playing strong defense that has allowed 97.7 PPG.
   
**Denver at Philadelphia**

Denver will enter Philadelphia for the second meeting of the season. Back on Jan. 6, the Nuggets rolled over the 76ers by the score of 109-96. In the last three head-to-head meetings in Philly, the Sixers have gone 0-3 SU and ATS at home. Denver has posted a 16-12 ATS performance versus teams with a losing record. With an 8-2 SU and ATS record in their last 10, the 76ers continue to hold the No. 7 seed in the East. On the other hand, Denver’s 40-26 SU record hasn’t guaranteed the team a trip to the playoffs (the Nuggets are tethering right outside the playoff bubble).

**Charlotte at Indiana**

Adding David Harrison to the list of players unable to perform because of injury, the Pacers are attempting to string together consecutive wins. It’s been over two weeks since Indiana claimed back-to-back victories. After dropping a head-to-head clash last season, Charlotte has rebounded nicely in games against Indiana. Beating the Pacers twice at home this season (and covering both contests), the Bobcats are looking to break a four game slide. Although the defeats have been mounting, eight ATS wins in the last 10 have been a friendly trend for gamblers. Offensively, Charlotte has scored a low 88.8 PPG in the last five.

**Washington at Orlando**


Orlando enters Wednesday’s feud with three straight wins against Washington under its belt dating back to April of 2007. Off one-day of rest, the Magic have compiled an impressive 23-14 ATS record this season. Looking for its ninth win in the last 10 games, Orlando is averaging 108.8 PG (in the last 10), scoring double-digit figures in eight of those hard fought contests. Picking up the steam is a Washington team that has improved its game play by manufacturing a 6-3 SU and 3-6 ATS performance in the last nine. Since Caron Butler returned to the starting lineup from injury, the Wizards are 2-1 SU but have burnt gamblers with an 0-3 ATS record.

**Atlanta at New Jersey**


New Jersey has dominated Atlanta in head-to-head matchups. In their last 10 meetings the Nets are 7-3 SU and 4-6 ATS. Four straight ATS wins before its last loss in early February benefited backers’ payrolls. The Hawks continue to hang inside the playoff bubble. Three wins in a row has benefited Atlanta, while New Jersey’s 3-7 SU record in the last 10 continues to keep this squad out of playoff contention by a hair (New Jersey is 1 ½-games out from snatching up the No. 8 seed). In their last three ‘Ws’, the Hawks have averaged 110.3 PPG versus the Nets 93.9 PPG produced in their last 10.

**Detroit at Cleveland**

The Pistons might have a tough fight in Cleveland even with a 22-12 SU record on the road and a 7-3 SU effort in the last 10. Since last year, the Cavaliers have been a hot 3-0 SU and ATS when hosting the Pistons at home. In their last meeting, Detroit literally trampled over the Cavs by the score of 109-74. The Pistons wrapped up the big win by out rebounding their counterpart 43 to 23, while shooting a blistering 58 percent from the field (versus Cleveland’s 40 percent shooting). The Cavaliers have struggled as of late, dropping three of their last four and getting outscored 100 PPG to their own 96.5 PPG.

**Houston at New Orleans**


The Rockets are a pure monster on the hardwood and at ticket windows. Minus the incredible run that Houston is in the midst of, a 14-3 ATS record in its last 17 road games speaks volumes. However, a New Orleans squad hitting the ‘over’ four times in the last seven and cashing tickets with a 6-2 ATS tab is just as impressive to the bankroll. Missing the last few games for the Hornets is David West (day-to-day with a sprained right ankle). The five-year forward out of Xavier is averaging 19.6 PPG with 9.1 RPG on the season. On the road, Houston is scoring only 95.9 PPG, but holding teams to just 93.1 PPG is a good reason for this team’s success on a nightly basis.

**Memphis at Minnesota**

Two teams with far from impressive records and on the court numbers are expected to tip-off at 8:00 p.m. EDT. The Grizzlies are a money draining 3-12 ATS in their last 15 but have countered that trend by going 10-0 ATS in their last 10 versus Minnesota. A 2-8 SU and 3-7 ATS performance in its last 10 has fouled the taste of bettors’ mouths, while a 3-0 record on the ‘under’ in the last three has proved that Memphis’ offense has been lethargic (98.2 PPG in the last five). Since Sebastian Telfair grabbed a seat on the bench with ankle problems, the Grizzlies have turned out a 3-2 SU and ATS record .

**Phoenix at Seattle**


A seven-game road trip to the East Coast is no easy task, but Seattle’s 1-10 SU (7-4 ATS) fall in the last 11 away games have proved that this team has had major problems on the road. Aside from the team’s lackluster performance, a 9-2 mark on the ‘over’ may settle you’re nerves. Going 1-4 SU before turning their game plan around for four straight wins, the Suns could be looking ahead with Houston, Detroit and Boston coming up on the schedule. Phoenix is 12-10 ATS on the road versus teams outside of its division. Off no days of rest, the Suns are a below average 5-8 ATS.

**Golden State at L.A. Clippers**

Golden State is one of the few teams playing on Wednesday that possesses a winning record on the road (18-14 SU, 16-16 ATS). The Warriors have posted a 17-14-1 performance on the ‘over’ when playing on the road this season, and an 8-2 SU, and a 5-5 ATS record in their last 10 is evidence of a club looking to enter the postseason with momentum. The Clippers are 6-9 ATS at home versus teams with a winning record. With Chris Kaman dealing with chronic back pain, L.A. has struggled down the stretch. The Clips have struggled with a 1-4 SU and ATS record with Kaman on the bench. Golden State is a weak 4-6 SU and 4-5-1 ATS versus L.A. in the last 10.

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Wolves owner disputes tanking
March 18, 2008

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -Kevin Garnett never had a bigger fan when he played for Minnesota than Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor. But it appears those days are over.

Taylor leveled some rare criticism at his former star on Tuesday, suggesting Garnett ``tanked it'' when he missed the last five games last year.

Taylor's remarks came after practice, as the Wolves' strong play down the stretch was being discussed. Taylor took exception to a local newspaper columnist who suggested it was time for the Wolves, who are 16-50, to start losing to improve their draft slot.

Taylor said the columnist ``said a little bit last year was that we sort of like tanked it. I don't think that. I don't like that so much. I don't like that.

``It was more like KG tanked it. I think the other guys still wanted to play.''

KG, of course, is Garnett, who missed the last five games of the season with a leg injury and watched his team lose its final seven games. Garnett was traded in the offseason to Boston.

The Celtics were in Houston for a game against the Rockets, and Garnett was not immediately available for comment. His agent, Andy Miller, didn't immediately return a call seeking comment.

In his 12 seasons in Minnesota, Garnett's effort and determination endeared him to the state's basketball fans.

Last year wasn't the first time the Wolves have been accused of dumping games.

Two years ago, the team shut down Garnett for the final six games, which ended with center Mark Madsen hitting seven 3-pointers in a double-overtime loss to Memphis that ultimately ensured the Wolves would hold on to their lottery pick.

They traded a first-round to the Clippers in a deal for Marko Jaric, and needed to finish with a lottery pick in the top 10 to ensure they kept it. Minnesota lost four of its last five to ensure that happened.

The Wolves aren't the only team to come under scrutiny for tanking games in recent years. Memphis, which comes to the Target Center on Wednesday night, has received plenty of criticism for trading star Pau Gasol to the Lakers for a package of nondescript players, and Miami recently made the decision to bench Dwyane Wade for the rest of the season.

So far at least, the Timberwolves cannot be considered in that company this season They have won four of their last six games, and Taylor said it's more important for his team to build some positive feeling going into the offseason than to worry about ping-pong balls in the lottery.

``Why are we winning? We're winning for (the players), but the other thing is I think we're winning for the fans,'' Taylor said. ``I think we have to show the fans that, what I call it, there is a plan. That we're going to improve next year. And you can see where we were and this is where we're going and next year we're going to be a better team.''

With a young core including Al Jefferson, Ryan Gomes and Randy Foye, there is some optimism that better days lie ahead.

Which is one reason why some fans wouldn't mind seeing the Wolves drop a few games to end up with the No. 1 pick and a possible shot at Kansas State star Michael Beasley.

The Wolves head into Wednesday night's game tied with Memphis and Seattle for the second-fewest wins in the league, five ahead of Miami.

Gomes, for one, prefers to try winning.

``We have to worry about the guys that are here now and who we're playing for now,'' he said. ``We're playing for the 13 guys that are on our roster, our coaching staff, and the fans here. We can't think about who might be coming in here next year, a trade, or all that stuff. That's out of our control.''

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

NIT Tip Sheet

**UAB at VCU**

--Both of these teams had an excellent shot at the NCAA Tournament, only to lose costly games down the stretch. Las Vegas Sports Consultants opened Virginia Commonwealth (24-7 straight up, 17-10 against the spread) as a 4 ½-point favorite with a total of 130. As of Tuesday evening, most spots had VCU at six with a total of 131.

--Alabama-Birmingham (22-10 SU, 15-11 ATS) saw its NCAA Tournament hopes go up in smoke in its last two games. For starters, the Blazers went to Memphis for their regular-season finale and an opportunity to avenge a home loss to the Tigers, who they lost to after blowing a seven-point lead in the last two minutes three weeks before. Instead, John Calipari’s team dealt out a woodshed beating by a 96-54 score. Next, UAB lost 78-68 to Tulsa in the first round of the C-USA Tournament.

--VCU was a factor in last year’s Big Dance, beating Duke in the first round before losing to Pitt in overtime. However, the Rams went down in this year’s Colonial semifinals, losing a 56-54 decision to William & Mary.

--VCU is dealing with rampant speculation that LSU is closing in on second-year head coach Anthony Grant, who nearly left the Rams for Florida before Billy Donovan’s change of heart about bolting for the NBA.

--These schools have met the last two seasons with the home team winning each time. VCU won 53-44 as a nine-point ‘chalk’ last year, while UAB won 68-62 as a 10-point favorite the previous year. The ‘under’ has cashed in the last three head-to-head meetings.

--VCU posted a 13-2 SU record and a 7-5-1 ATS mark at home this year.

--UAB went 5-6 ATS as an underdog this season.

--The ‘under’ is 18-10 overall for VCU, 10-3 in its home games. On the other hand, UAB has watched the ‘over’ go 17-10 overall.

--The ‘over’ is on an 11-3 run for UAB, while the ‘under’ has cashed in five consecutive VCU games.

--Tip-off is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. Eastern on ESPN2.

**San Diego State at Florida**

--Florida (21-11 SU, 11-12 ATS) lost each of its last four games both SU and ATS to play itself out of the NCAA Tournament. The Gators, who had won three straight SEC Tournaments, showed up in Atlanta last week needing to win at least one game – probably two – to garner a 10th straight invite to the Big Dance.

--With its bubble hopes at stake, UF came out inexplicably flat against Alabama in the first round of the SEC Tourney, falling behind by 28 (42-14) at one point late in the first half. To their credit, the Gators mounted a furious rally and pulled to within 57-51 with 9:02 left, but ‘Bama’s Mykal Riley drained back-to-back 3-balls to halt UF’s comeback. The Crimson Tide eventually captured an 80-69 triumph as a 3 ½-point underdog.

--When the UF players returned to Gainesville, they found themselves locked out of the team’s $11 million practice facility. Billy Donovan has allowed the team to use the locker room this week, but practices have been moved to the second-floor court in the O-Dome where squads from Norm Sloan and Lon Kruger’s tenures used to practice. Also, players aren’t allowed to wear UF gear on campus this week.

--Donovan told GatorSports.com, "I think probably in some respects the confetti is still falling down around them. When you've had great, great success like we've had, I think it's very easy to become complacent and lose sight of how good things are around here, and have this attitude of well, I'm at Florida, this is what's going to happen."

--San Diego State (20-12 SU, 15-14 ATS) has failed to cover the spread in three straight games, including a 63-54 loss to BYU in the semifinals of the Mountain West Conference Tournament in Las Vegas.

--Steve Fisher’s team is 5-7 ATS as an underdog.

--UF has won 16 of its 20 home games, but the Gators are 5-6 versus the number at the O-Dome.

--The ‘under’ is 19-10 overall for the Aztecs, but the ‘over’ is 13-9 overall for the Gators, 7-4 in their home games.

--LVSC opened UF as a 9 ½-point favorite with a total of 140. Most spots had the Gators at 10 with the total down to 138 as of Tuesday night.

--ESPN2 will have the telecast at 9:00 p.m. Eastern.

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

For a change, Pitt streaking at the right time
March 19, 2008

PITTSBURGH (AP) -For all of its success the last seven seasons, Pitt never seemed to properly adjust its basketball calendar until this season.

Year after year, the Panthers - despite averaging 27 victories since the 2001-02 season - repeatedly peaked in February rather than March.

Even while reaching the Big East championship game seven times in this century, Pitt never seemed to be playing at its best when the NCAA tournament arrived.

With four wins in four days in the Big East tournament, all while playing with poise and confidence they've often lacked at this stage of the season, the Panthers are talking like a team that's convinced it can make a run at the first Final Four appearance in school history.

The Panthers (26-9) left Tuesday for their NCAA South regional game against Oral Roberts on Thursday, beginning what they hope is the first of three successive weekend trips out West.

``I think we've got a team that's built for this tournament,'' guard Keith Benjamin said Tuesday. ``There's no jitters or anything like that. Nobody's scared and nobody cares who we play. Everybody wants to play the best teams in the country.'``'

If they beat Oral Roberts and either Michigan State or Temple in Denver, the Panthers would travel to Houston next week for the South regional. The weekend after that is the Final Four in San Antonio.

To win a regional for the first time - none of their past six NCAA qualifiers advanced past the round of 16 - the Panthers may have to do exactly what Benjamin said: beat some of the country's best teams.

The South regional looks to be the strongest, with six of the 16 teams finishing in the final Associated Press Top 25 poll: No. 2 Memphis, No. 7 Texas, No. 10 Stanford, No. 17 Pitt, No. 18 Michigan State and No. 25 Marquette.

If the Panthers defeat Oral Roberts, they conceivably could face a ranked team in every remaining game in the tournament, beginning Saturday with the Spartans.

Then, should they win that game, the Panthers could face two Top 10 teams in Houston, with Memphis and former Pitt assistant John Calipari looming as their potential opponent in the regional semifinal and either Texas or Stanford after that.

Beating No. 13 Louisville, No. 25 Marquette and No. 8 Georgetown in as many days in New York last week may have given the Panthers the confidence to pull it off.

Pitt has won five in a row and seven of eight and is 18-5 with point guard Levance Fields in the lineup. Of those five defeats, one came in the Dec. 29 game at Dayton in which he broke a foot and three others came immediately after he returned seven weeks later.

``I think we performed as well as anybody during championship week,'' Fields said. ``We've just got to continue that.''

Field agrees the last two Pitt teams may have peaked early, but that this team appears to be playing its best exactly when it wanted to be.

``It's definitely a good feeling, going in the way we are,'' Fields said.

Last year, Pitt (29-8) lost at home to Louisville late in the season before being beaten twice by Georgetown in barely two weeks' time, including a 65-42 loss in the Big East final.

Two years ago, the Panthers (25-8) lost four of eight going into the tournament and didn't make it to the round of 16, losing to Bradley 72-66 in the second round. In 2005, the Panthers (20-9) lost five of their final seven. In 2003-04, they went 31-5 and won the Big East regular season title, yet three of their five defeats occurred after Feb. 28.

``I think we have everything it takes to make a deep run,'' Fields said.

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Duke looks to overcome surprising lack of success in NCAA tourney
March 19, 2008

DURHAM, N.C. (AP) -DeMarcus Nelson has played on two Duke teams that advanced to the regional semifinals of the NCAA tournament.

For this year's Duke team, that makes him the unquestioned voice of experience.

Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski has won more NCAA tournament games than anyone in the sport's history. But his team this year has a surprising lack of postseason success on its roster: Seven of the 10 players in the rotation have never won a game in the NCAAs.

Entering the first round of the West Regional on Thursday against 15th-seeded Belmont in Washington, the two juniors and one senior at No. 2 seed Duke (27-5) are providing additional leadership as they chase the first Final Four of their careers.

``We have to lead first, with the guys (who) have experience, upperclassmen that have been in the position,'' said Nelson, the team's only senior on scholarship. ``But at the same time, the younger guys have to come into the tournament excited. They should have a lot of enthusiasm, bring a lot of energy, and the older guys should be the ones poised, very confident and leading the younger guys. So we should have a pretty good blend, and they should go hand-in-hand.''

A lack of NCAA experience would seem unthinkable at the elite program that under Krzyzewski has captured three national titles, reached 10 Final Fours and won at least one NCAA tournament game every postseason from 1997 until last season. This is Krzyzewski's 24th tournament appearance, and his 68 victories are the most of any coach in Division I history.

Juniors Greg Paulus and David McClure were part of two of those wins in 2006, when the top-seeded Blue Devils reached the round of 16. Nelson also was on the 2005 team that advanced out of the first weekend before falling in the regional semifinals, but he was still in high school in 2004, the last time Duke reached the Final Four.

The Blue Devils have three freshmen and four sophomores, the latter of whom have no NCAA tournament experience outside of last year's upset loss to Virginia Commonwealth in the first round.

``Our freshman and sophomore class has not won an NCAA game, so they're excited,'' Krzyzewski said. ``I've got to be as excited, although I've been part of over 60 NCAA wins. That's what I get. Forget about what any of (the experts) predict for us. It really doesn't make any difference, as long as we are able to understand those type (of things) and I'm able to create that internal environment for our guys.

The players and coaches also are coming to grips with the fact that playing at Duke means chasing the ghosts of Christian Laettner and Grant Hill. The Blue Devils' consistently high level of success through the years means undefeated starts, top-five rankings and long winning streaks no longer catch anybody off guard.

``There will never be a (Duke) team that surprises, because of our name,'' Krzyzewski said. ``I'm not knocking it (but) they would be written up differently. Just like last year's team with no seniors, (a record of) 22-11, it's a down year, whereas other people have freshmen and sophomores and they make the NIT and it's a great year.

``That's what happens, so I have to make sure that (the players) know how I feel and we feel about them. No one's started the year talking about us winning the national title, but when we won, no one really wants to talk about that that much. And then you lose. That's the cycle we're in.''

Sophomore guard Jon Scheyer is eager to accept that challenge and make up for last year's shortcomings - most notably, how VCU's Eric Maynor pulled up and knocked down the game-winning jumper over him to give the Blue Devils their first one-and-done in the NCAAs since 1996.

``We haven't won a game in the NCAA tournament (and) that's something I've always dreamed about,'' Scheyer said. ``Playing in the tournament and winning games, going to Final Fours. For me and I know for ... my class, we're definitely really excited about playing in it this year.''

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Back in tournament, George Mason overcomes hurdles as mid-major
March 19, 2008

FAIRFAX, Va. (AP) -Having to make way because Taste of Chaos was taking over the practice floor just wouldn't fly at a lot of brand-name programs. At mid-major George Mason, it's no big deal.

On Monday, the Patriot Center was occupied by a heavy metal concert, so the Patriots practiced at a small gym down the road. Of course, at 5 p.m., they had to clear the court for the university's men's volleyball team.

On his way out, coach Jim Larranaga congratulated the volleyballers for their recent victory over top-ranked Penn State. No sense getting bitter about things.

``We definitely deal with more,'' Larranaga said. ``We're playing a lot more road games. We have a lot more travel. ... It takes a special kind of student-athlete'' to be successful at a mid-major program.

George Mason returns to the tournament this year with two of the same starters from its Final Four appearance in 2006 - seniors Will Thomas and Folarin Campbell.

While Patriots' fans now have high expectations, Larranaga said that on a national level the team must again prove itself to skeptics.

``They think it was a fluke,'' Larranaga said. ``What most observers and fans don't understand is that the difference between the high-level and mid-major levels is really referring to programs that have more money.''

In 2006, the NCAA selection committee was criticized after George Mason received an at-large bid and an 11th seed. Some said power conference schools like Michigan and Maryland were more deserving, while others said Hofstra, which beat George Mason twice, should have received the bid.

This year, the Patriots played their way in by winning the Colonial Athletic Association tournament. Though Larranaga encourages his team to avoid the chatter, players say they've heard the criticism that automatic qualifiers are stealing bids from more deserving teams.

``Coach L ... tells us not to listen, but it's kind of hard not to listen,'' said junior John Vaughan, who had a medical redshirt two seasons ago. ``A lot of the analysts try to pound on the mid-majors.''

Vaughan said the Patriots are going into the tournament not with a chip on their shoulders, ``but a feeling of confidence. We know we play with anybody we face.''

Larranaga and the players have some ambivalence about constant references to the 2006 team. They believe their experience will be a benefit this year, and they regard it as the ultimate compliment when people ask, ``Who will be this year's George Mason?''

But most of the players from that team are gone, and this year's team wants to guard against living in the past.

``We want to talk about now,'' Thomas said. ``We're a different team now. The Final Four, that was two teams ago.''

Thomas said he believes the Patriots are still flying under the radar as they approach their first-round game Thursday against fifth-seeded Notre Dame.

``People haven't seen us play on TV. They don't know what to expect from us,'' he said. ``We have to keep proving ourselves over and over again until we are on ESPN twice a week.''

Said Larranaga: ``That (Final Four) run was very, very special and I don't think anyone can duplicate it, because even they do, it's the second time'' it's been accomplished.

While he believes the experience the Patriots gained in 2006 will be helpful, he was careful not to overstate its importance.

``Having experience is good. But we didn't have it two years ago and we were able to play well,'' Larranaga said.

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

NBA Today

Detroit at Cleveland (8 p.m. EDT). The Central Division-leading Pistons can just about wrap up the division with a victory over the second-place Cavaliers.

STARS

- Kobe Bryant, Lakers, scored 29 points to lead Los Angeles to a 102-100 win at Dallas.

-Amare Stoudemire, Suns, scored 25 points in Phoenix's 111-98 win over Portland.

- Kevin Martin, Kings, scored 34 points to help Sacramento to a 122-105 victory against Golden State.

CAUGHT 22

Houston's 22-game winning streak was ended by Boston in a 94-74 loss Tuesday night. The Rockets hadn't lost since a 97-89 defeat to Utah on Jan. 27 and put together the NBA's second-longest winning streak. It ended 11 victories shy of the 1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers, who won 33 in a row.

OFFENSIVE BURST

Detroit beat the Denver Nuggets 136-120 on Tuesday night. The Pistons hadn't scored 130 points in regulation since beating Denver 130-116 on March 8, 2000. The Pistons scored a season-high 73 points in the first half, getting at least four points from 10 different players.

SNAPPED

Miami snapped an 0-for-March streak with a 112-106 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday night. The Heat had lost eight in a row.

STRONG IN DEFEAT

Dirk Nowitzki had 35 points, 11 rebounds and a season-high five blocks, but Dallas lost to the Los Angeles Lakers 102-100 on Tuesday night. ... LaMarcus Aldridge had 31 points and eight rebounds in Portland's 98-111 loss to Phoenix.

SPEAKING

``Our names will be mentioned there with Hall of Fame people. We have something to tell our kids.'' - Houston's Rafer Alston after the Rockets ended their 22-game winning streak with a 94-74 loss to the Lakers on Tuesday night.

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Washington Wizards vs. Orlando Magic

- The fans at Amway Arena will be treated to a game between the Washington Wizards and the Orlando Magic when they take their seats on Wednesday.

Oddsmakers currently have the Magic listed as 8-point favorites versus the Wizards, while the game's total has not yet been posted.

The Wizards fell 105-96 to the Hawks last time out, as 5.5-point favorites at home. The 201 points made it OVER the posted total of 200.

Antawn Jamison scored a game-high 25 points, and hauled down nine boards in the loss.

The Magic exploded for 31 points in the fourth quarter on Monday, as they slid past the Cavaliers 104-90. The Magic covered the 6.5-point spread, but the combined score fell UNDER the posted total of 203.

Dwight Howard scored 23 points and grabbed 13 rebounds for a double-double in the win, and Rashard Lewis added 21 for the Magic.

Current streak:
Orlando has won 5 straight games.

Team records:
Washington: 33-33 SU, 37-28-1 ATS
Orlando: 45-24 SU, 43-24-2 ATS

Washington most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 5-5
Before playing Miami are 2-8
After playing Atlanta are 6-4
After a loss are 5-5

Orlando most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 5-5
Before playing Philadelphia are 6-4
After playing Cleveland are 5-5
After a win are 8-2

A few trends to consider:
The total has gone OVER in 5 of Washington's last 5 games
Washington is 7-1 ATS in its last 8 games on the road
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Washington's last 6 games on the road
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Washington's last 5 games when playing on the road against Orlando
Orlando is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games
Orlando is 9-1 SU in its last 10 games at home
Orlando is 18-3 SU in its last 21 games when playing at home against Washington
Orlando is 8-1-1 ATS in its last 10 games at home

Next up:
Washington at Miami, Friday, March 21
Orlando home to Philadelphia, Friday, March 21

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Denver Nuggets vs. Philadelphia 76ers

- The Denver Nuggets and the Philadelphia 76ers will both be trying to pick up a win on Wednesday when they battle at Wachovia Center.

Oddsmakers currently have the 76ers listed as 3-point favorites versus the Nuggets, while the game's total has not yet been posted.

The Nuggets lost 136-120 to the Pistons last time out, as 5-point road underdogs. The combined score sailed OVER the posted total of 212.

Carmelo Anthony scored 27 points in a losing effort for the Nuggets.

Andre Miller had 32 points and seven assists to lead the 76ers over the San Antonio Spurs 103-96 on Saturday night.

Philadelphia cashed in as 2.5-point home underdogs as the teams played over the 180-point total set by sportsbooks.

Current streak:
Philadelphia has won 3 straight games.

Team records:
Denver: 40-27 SU, 35-32 ATS
Philadelphia: 33-34 SU, 37-29-1 ATS

Denver most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 6-4
Before playing New Jersey are 7-3
After playing Detroit are 4-6
After a loss are 6-4

Philadelphia most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 4-6
Before playing Orlando are 8-2
After playing San Antonio are 2-8
After a win are 6-4

A few trends to consider:
Denver is 7-3 ATS in its last 10 games when playing Philadelphia
Denver is 4-2 SU in its last 6 games when playing Philadelphia
Denver is 1-7 SU in its last 8 games on the road
Philadelphia is 11-1 ATS in its last 12 games at home
Philadelphia is 9-1 SU in its last 10 games at home
Philadelphia is 7-1 SU in its last 8 games
Philadelphia is 7-1 ATS in its last 8 games

Next up:
Denver at New Jersey, Friday, March 21
Philadelphia at Orlando, Friday, March 21

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Charlotte Bobcats vs. Indiana Pacers

- The Charlotte Bobcats and the Indiana Pacers will both be gunning for a victory on Wednesday when they meet at Conseco Fieldhouse.

Oddsmakers currently have the Pacers listed as 6-point favorites versus the Bobcats, while the game's total has not yet been posted.

The Bobcats were tore apart 98-90 by the Grizzlies last time out, as 3-point favorites. The 178 points fell UNDER the posted total of 206.

Derek Anderson shot 7-for-10 from the field with 17 points in the loss.

Mike Dunleavy dropped a game-high 36 points in leading the Pacers to a 110-98 win over the Knicks on Monday. The Pacers covered the 7.5-point spread at home, but the 208 points fell UNDER the posted total of 215.

Dunleavy finished with six rebounds and four assists, while Danny Granger chipped in with 26 points for the Pacers.

Current streak:
Charlotte has lost 4 straight games.

Team records:
Charlotte: 24-43 SU, 29-36-2 ATS
Indiana: 26-41 SU, 30-35-2 ATS

Charlotte most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 6-4
Before playing Miami are 3-7
After playing Memphis are 5-2
After a loss are 2-8

Indiana most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 5-5
Before playing Minnesota are 9-1
After playing New York are 7-3
After a win are 2-8

A few trends to consider:
Charlotte is 5-0 ATS in its last 5 games when playing on the road against Indiana
Charlotte is 8-2 ATS in its last 10 games
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Charlotte's last 5 games when playing Indiana
Charlotte is 9-3 ATS in its last 12 games when playing Indiana
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Indiana's last 5 games when playing Charlotte
Indiana is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games when playing at home against Charlotte
The total has gone OVER in 7 of Indiana's last 10 games
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Indiana's last 6 games at home

Next up:
Charlotte home to Miami, Saturday, March 22
Indiana home to Minnesota, Friday, March 21

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Miami Heat vs. Toronto Raptors

- The Miami Heat and the Toronto Raptors will both be gunning for a victory on Wednesday when they meet at Air Canada Centre.

Odds aren't yet posted for this game, so check back later for the opening line and total.

The Heat roared back with 42 points in the fourth quarter on Tuesday, as they defeated the Bucks 112-106. The Heat won the game as 9.5-point underdogs, while the 218 points made it OVER the posted total of 202.

Jason Williams led the way with 21 points and 10 assists, while Chris Quinn added 17 off the bench.

The Raptors fell 96-79 to the Jazz last time out, as 14-point underdogs on the road. The combined score fell UNDER the posted total of 213.

Jose Calderon shot 6-for-12 from the field with 16 points and seven assists for the Raptors.

Current streak:
Toronto has lost 5 straight games.

Team records:
Miami: 12-54 SU, 24-41-1 ATS
Toronto: 34-33 SU, 35-32 ATS

Miami most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 6-4
Before playing Washington are 3-7
After playing Milwaukee are 6-4
After a win are 1-9

Toronto most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 4-6
Before playing Cleveland are 5-5
After playing Utah are 4-6
After a loss are 4-6

A few trends to consider:
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Miami's last 5 games when playing Toronto
Miami is 6-2 SU in its last 8 games when playing on the road against Toronto
Miami is 14-6 SU in its last 20 games when playing Toronto
Miami is 1-8 SU in its last 9 games
The total has gone OVER in 6 of Toronto's last 7 games at home
Toronto is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games when playing Miami
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Toronto's last 5 games when playing Miami
Toronto is 5-2 SU in its last 7 games at home

Next up:
Miami home to Washington, Friday, March 21
Toronto at Cleveland, Friday, March 21

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Atlanta Hawks vs. New Jersey Nets

- The Atlanta Hawks and the New Jersey Nets will both be trying to pick up a win on Wednesday when they battle at Izod Center.

Oddsmakers currently have the Nets listed as 1½-point favorites versus the Hawks, while the game's total has not yet been posted.

The Hawks dominated the second half to earn a 105-96 victory over the Wizards last time out, as 5.5-point road underdogs. The 201 points made it OVER the posted total of 200.

Mike Bibby tossed in 23 points to lead the Hawks, while Al Horford added 12 points and 15 rebounds in the win.

The Nets lost 112-96 to the Bulls last time out, as 6.5-point underdogs. The combined score made it OVER the posted total of 200.

Vince Carter led the Nets with 22 points, four rebounds and five assists.

Current streak:
Atlanta has won 3 straight games.

Team records:
Atlanta: 29-38 SU, 32-35 ATS
New Jersey: 28-39 SU, 26-40-1 ATS

Atlanta most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 3-7
Before playing Orlando are 6-4
After playing Washington are 7-3
After a win are 5-5

New Jersey most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 5-5
Before playing Denver are 3-7
After playing Chicago are 4-6
After a loss are 5-5

A few trends to consider:
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Atlanta's last 5 games
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Atlanta's last 5 games on the road
The total has gone OVER in 13 of Atlanta's last 19 games when playing New Jersey
Atlanta is 4-2 SU in its last 6 games
New Jersey is 11-1 SU in its last 12 games when playing at home against Atlanta
New Jersey is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games when playing Atlanta
New Jersey is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games when playing Atlanta
New Jersey is 7-2 SU in its last 9 games at home

Next up:
Atlanta home to Orlando, Saturday, March 22
New Jersey home to Denver, Friday, March 21

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Detroit Pistons vs. Cleveland Cavaliers

- The Detroit Pistons and the Cleveland Cavaliers will both be trying to pick up a win on Wednesday when they battle at Quicken Loans Arena.

Oddsmakers currently have the Pistons listed as 1-point favorites versus the Cavaliers, while the game's total has not yet been posted.

The Pistons defeated the Nuggets 136-120 last time out, and covered the 5-point spread at home. The combined score sailed OVER the posted total of 212.

Richard Hamilton tossed in 24 points for the Pistons, while Rasheed Wallace added 21 points with five rebounds and six assists.

The Cavaliers were defeated 104-90 by the Magic last time out, as 6.5-point road underdogs. The combined score fell UNDER the posted total of 203.

LeBron James shot 11-for-22 from the field with a game-high 30 points with nine rebounds and six assists in a losing effort.

Current streak:
Detroit has won 3 straight games.

Team records:
Detroit: 49-18 SU, 37-29-1 ATS
Cleveland: 38-30 SU, 32-36 ATS

Detroit most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 5-5
Before playing Washington are 8-2
After playing Denver are 5-5
After a win are 6-4

Cleveland most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 5-5
Before playing Toronto are 6-4
After playing Orlando are 4-6
After a loss are 7-3

A few trends to consider:
The total has gone UNDER in 11 of Detroit's last 13 games when playing on the road against Cleveland
Detroit is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games
The total has gone UNDER in 19 of Detroit's last 25 games when playing Cleveland
Detroit is 7-3 SU in its last 10 games on the road
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Cleveland's last 5 games at home
Cleveland is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games at home
Cleveland is 8-1 ATS in its last 9 games when playing Detroit
The total has gone UNDER in 11 of Cleveland's last 13 games when playing at home against Detroit

Next up:
Detroit at Washington, Sunday, March 23
Cleveland home to Toronto, Friday, March 21

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Memphis Grizzlies vs. Minnesota Timberwolves

- The fans at Target Center will be treated to a game between the Memphis Grizzlies and the Minnesota Timberwolves when they take their seats on Wednesday.

Oddsmakers currently have the Timberwolves listed as 7-point favorites versus the Grizzlies, while the game's total has not yet been posted.

The Grizzlies held Bobcats to 33 points in the second half in a 98-80 win on Monday, as 3-point home underdogs. The 178 points fell UNDER the posted total of 206.

Mike Miller led the way with 18 points and 13 rebounds for a double-double in the win. Juan Carlos Navarro tossed in a team-high 21 points for the Grizzlies.

The Timberwolves pulled ahead for good with a dominating the fourth quarter on Monday night, and defeated the Clippers 99-90. The Timberwolves covered the 7-point spread, but the combined 189 points fell UNDER the posted total of 197.

Al Jefferson had a double-double for the Timberwolves, tossing in 22 points and grabbing 14 rebounds.

Team records:
Memphis: 16-50 SU, 27-39 ATS
Minnesota: 16-50 SU, 32-33-1 ATS

Memphis most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 7-3
Before playing New York are 4-6
After playing Charlotte are 3-4
After a win are 0-10

Minnesota most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 5-5
Before playing Indiana are 5-5
After playing LA Clippers are 5-5
After a win are 3-7

A few trends to consider:
Memphis is 5-1 ATS in its last 6 games when playing Minnesota
Memphis is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games when playing Minnesota
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Memphis's last 5 games when playing on the road against Minnesota
Memphis is 9-4 ATS in its last 13 games when playing on the road against Minnesota
The total has gone OVER in 5 of Minnesota's last 6 games
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Minnesota's last 5 games when playing at home against Memphis
Minnesota is 18-5 SU in its last 23 games when playing at home against Memphis
Minnesota is 4-2 SU in its last 6 games

Next up:
Memphis at New York, Friday, March 21
Minnesota at Indiana, Friday, March 21

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Houston Rockets vs. New Orleans Hornets

- The division rival Houston Rockets and New Orleans Hornets are set to renew hostilities on Wednesday when they meet at New Orleans Arena.

Odds aren't yet posted for this game, so check back later for the opening line and total.

The Rockets were crushed 94-74 by the Celtics last time out, as 4.5-point favorites at home. The 168 points fell UNDER the posted total of 180.

Mike Harris shot 6-for-10 from the field with 12 points and six rebounds in the loss.

The Hornets outscored the Bulls by 20 points in Monday's 108-97 victory. The Hornets covered the 4-point spread at home, while the combined score was a PUSH against the posted total of 205.

Chris Paul led the Hornets with 37 points and 13 assists, while Peja Stojakovic added 21 points in the victory.

Team records:
Houston: 46-21 SU, 39-26-2 ATS
New Orleans: 45-21 SU, 40-25-1 ATS

Houston most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 4-6
Before playing Golden State are 5-5
After playing Boston are 7-3
After a loss are 6-4

New Orleans most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 4-6
Before playing Boston are 5-5
After playing Chicago are 4-6
After a win are 6-4

A few trends to consider:
Houston is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games on the road
Houston is 22-1 SU in its last 23 games
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Houston's last 6 games on the road
Houston is 5-0-1 ATS in its last 6 games on the road
New Orleans is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games at home
New Orleans is 5-0 ATS in its last 5 games at home
The total has gone OVER in 4 of New Orleans's last 5 games when playing at home against Houston
New Orleans is 6-2 SU in its last 8 games

Next up:
Houston at Golden State, Friday, March 21
New Orleans home to Boston, Saturday, March 22

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Phoenix Suns vs. Seattle SuperSonics

- The Phoenix Suns and the Seattle SuperSonics will both be gunning for a victory on Wednesday when they meet at KeyArena.

Odds aren't yet posted for this game, so check back later for the opening line and total.

The Suns had six players reach double figures on Tuesday, as they ran past the Trail Blazers 111-98. The Suns covered the 4.5-point spread, while the 209 points fell UNDER the posted total of 210.5.

Shaquille O'Neal scored 16 points and hauled down 15 rebounds for a double-double in the win.

The Sonics lost to Denver 168-116 as a 15-point underdog last time out. The combined score went OVER the posted over/under total (212).

Kevin Durant led the Sonics with 23 points and Chris Wilcox had 17 points and 12 rebounds in the loss.

Current streak:
Phoenix has won 5 straight games.
Seattle has lost 8 straight games.

Team records:
Phoenix: 45-22 SU, 32-33-2 ATS
Seattle: 16-51 SU, 32-34-1 ATS

Phoenix most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 6-4
Before playing Houston are 8-2
After playing Portland are 7-3
After a win are 5-5

Seattle most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 5-5
Before playing LA Lakers are 2-8
After playing Denver are 3-7
After a loss are 1-9

A few trends to consider:
Phoenix is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Phoenix's last 5 games when playing Seattle
Phoenix is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games when playing Seattle
The total has gone UNDER in 13 of Phoenix's last 16 games when playing on the road against Seattle
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Seattle's last 5 games when playing Phoenix
Seattle is 6-1 ATS in its last 7 games when playing Phoenix
The total has gone OVER in 9 of Seattle's last 11 games
The total has gone UNDER in 13 of Seattle's last 16 games when playing at home against Phoenix

Next up:
Phoenix home to Houston, Saturday, March 22
Seattle at LA Lakers, Friday, March 21

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Golden State Warriors vs. Los Angeles Clippers

- The Golden State Warriors and the Los Angeles Clippers will both be trying to pick up a win on Wednesday when they battle at STAPLES Center.

Odds aren't yet posted for this game, so check back later for the opening line and total.

Golden State lost 122-105 to the Kings last time out, as 3.5-point favorites on the road. The combined 227 points fell UNDER the posted total of 229.

Baron Davis shot 9-for-18 from the field with 24 points and eight assists in the loss.

The Clippers lost 99-90 to the Timberwolves last time out, as 7-point road underdogs. The 189 points fell UNDER the posted total of 197.

Corey Maggette threw in a game-high 34 points in the loss for the Clippers.

Current streak:
Los Angeles has lost 4 straight games.

Team records:
Golden State: 41-25 SU, 28-38 ATS
Los Angeles: 21-45 SU, 28-38 ATS

Golden State most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 5-5
Before playing Houston are 7-3
After playing Sacramento are 7-3
After a loss are 10-0

Los Angeles most recently:
When playing on Wednesday are 3-7
Before playing Portland are 5-5
After playing Minnesota are 3-7
After a loss are 2-8

A few trends to consider:
Golden State is 8-3 SU in its last 11 games
Golden State is 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games when playing LA Clippers
The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Golden State's last 9 games when playing LA Clippers
Golden State is 4-10 SU in their last 14 games when playing LA Clippers
LA Clippers are 5-0 SU in their last 5 games when playing at home against Golden State
LA Clippers are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 games when playing at home against Golden State
The total has gone UNDER in 8 of the LA Clippers last 11 games at home
LA Clippers are 10-4 SU in their last 14 games when playing Golden State

Next up:
Golden State home to Houston, Friday, March 21
LA Clippers at Portland, Friday, March 21

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

History has been kind to NCAA basketball tournament favorites

Since the tournament began seeding teams in 1979, 21 of 29 champions have been seeded No. 1 or No. 2. UCLA is listed as 7-2 favorites to win it all.

The NCAA men's basketball tournament has a reputation for big upsets, but the key to March Madness for bettors is to support favorites when it comes to picking the eventual national champion.

Since the tournament began seeding teams in 1979, 21 of 29 champions have been seeded No. 1 or No. 2 and only three teams seeded higher than eighth have even reached the Final Four.

That's why on most betting boards, future odds for this year's tournament lean heavily on top-seeded teams UCLA, North Carolina, Kansas and Memphis.

The Bruins are listed as 7-2 favorites to win it all, followed by the Tar Heels at 9-2, Jayhawks at 5-1 and Tigers at 8-1, quality lines when you consider that every other team in the tournament faces double-digit odds or greater.

But there are a couple of "long-shot" teams attracting support to pull off an upset, and they are perennial powers Duke, Georgetown, Louisville and Texas.

According to Sportsbook.com's most recent tournament line, the Blue Devils -- who have reached the Final Four 10 times under Coach Mike Krzyzewski -- are at 15-1, with the Hoyas and Cardinals at 12-1 and the Longhorns at 10-1.

Note: Southern California's three other tournament teams are big-time longshots: USC is 40-1, San Diego is 400-1 and Cal State Fullerton is not listed on most boards.

For first-round games, Georgetown has gained the most support to cover its point-spread line, according to Wagerline.com's consensus betting list.

The Hoyas, favored by 16 points over Maryland Baltimore County, have been picked by 78.25% to beat the spread against the Retrievers.

USC is another team getting strong money play, according to theSpread.com's betting chart. The Trojans, who are favored by 2 1/2 points over Kansas State, have gained 77% of the bets against the spread as of Tuesday afternoon.

It's a much different story for UCLA, which is favored by 33 points over Mississippi Valley State. The Bruins have been selected to cover the spread against the Delta Devils by only 41%, according to theSpread.com's betting chart.

latimes.com

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

UAB (22-10, 15-11-1 ATS) at VCU (24-7, 17-10-1 ATS)

Alabama-Birmingham, seeded second in the Conference USA tournament, tumbled in Thursday’s quarterfinals, falling to Tulsa 78-68 in overtime as a three-point chalk. That setback followed a 94-56 blowout loss at Memphis to end the regular season. Prior to those two SU and ATS defeats, the Blazers had won five in a row (4-1 ATS).

Virginia Commonwealth, thought to be among one of the last teams left out of the NCAA Tournament, also fell victim to the upset bug as the Colonial Athletic Association’s top seed. The Rams lost to William & Mary 56-54 on March 9 laying 12 points in the tournament semifinals, halting a 5-0 SU run (4-1 ATS).

These two teams share a little history, having met six times over the past eight seasons, with UAB going 4-2 (3-2-1 ATS). Most recently, though, VCU posted a 53-44 home win, pushing as a nine-point favorite early in the 2006-07 season. And the year prior, UAB won 68-62 at home but failed to cover the 10-point spread.

The Blazers are 4-1 ATS in their last four after a pointspread setback and 5-2-1 ATS in their last eight against the CAA.

The Rams are on several positive ATS runs, including 5-0 after a SU loss, 4-0-1 against Conference USA teams, 5-1 on Wednesday, 4-1 after a non-cover and 11-5 against teams with a winning SU record. In addition, VCU is 17-5-2 ATS in its last 24 non-conference outings and 21-10-1 ATS in its last 32 overall.

The over for UAB is on streaks of 9-2 overall, 7-0 on Wednesday and 6-0 following a SU loss, though the under is 35-17 in the Blazers’ last 52 roadies. For VCU, the under is on a 5-0 tear overall and is also 10-2 in its last 12 at home and 5-2 in its last seven in non-conference action, but the over is 20-7 coming off a loss and 11-5 in Wednesday matchups.

ATS ADVANTAGE: VCU


Charlotte (20-13, 18-11-1 ATS) at Nebraska (19-12, 11-12 ATS)

Charlotte, as a No. 6 seed, reached the Atlantic 10 Conference semifinals last weekend before losing to eventual tourney champion Temple 60-45 Friday as a 2½-point underdog. The loss ended a 5-0 SU and ATS streak by the 49ers, including a last-second, 75-73 win over Rhode Island to open the A-10 tourney and a 69-65 upset of third-seeded UMass as a four-point pup in the quarterfinals.

Nebraska lost to second-seeded Kansas 64-54 Friday in the Big 12 quarterfinals, but cashed as a 14½-point pup for its fourth straight ATS triumph (2-2 SU). The Huskers are on a 7-1 ATS spree, going 5-3 SU in that span.

The 49ers are 6-14-2 ATS on the highway versus teams with a winning home record, but they carry positive ATS trends of 6-0 following a pointspread loss, 4-1 against winning teams, 7-2 in Wednesday contests, 6-2 after a SU loss and 9-1-1 against teams with a winning percentage above .600. Finally, the 49ers are 11-3 ATS as a ‘dog of less than 10 points this season.

The Huskers are also on a handful of ATS upticks, including 4-0 in Lincoln, 6-1 against winning teams, 5-1 after a SU loss and 5-1 following a spread-cover.

For Charlotte, the under is on runs of 4-0 overall (all on the highway) and 4-1 on Wednesdays, but the over is 5-1 in its last six outside the A-10 and 4-1 coming off a SU loss. For Nebraska, the under is 7-3 in its last 10 Wednesday matchups.

ATS ADVANTAGE: NEBRASKA


San Diego State (20-12, 15-14 ATS) at Florida (21-11, 11-12 ATS)

Florida, the two-time defending national champion, takes a big step down in class with its appearance in the NIT. But the Gators earned the demotion, going 0-4 SU and ATS in their last four games, including Thursday’s 80-69 loss to Alabama as a 3½-point chalk to open the Southeastern Conference tournament. Florida went 3-7 in its last 10 games and was even worse against the number (2-8).

San Diego State reached the Mountain West semifinals before losing to top-seeded BYU 63-54 Friday getting 6½ points, its third straight ATS setback (1-2 SU). The Aztecs are 4-6 SU and ATS in their last 10 starts overall, with the straight-up winner cashing in eight of those contests.

The Gators are on negative pointspread streaks of 0-6 in in Gainesville, 0-4 following a SU loss and 2-6 following a non-cover, but they are 24-9-1 ATS in their last 34 non-conference games and 13-3 ATS in their last 16 postseason tournament contests.

The Aztecs are 17-8-1 ATS  in their last 26 when coming off a SU loss and 6-2 ATS in their last eight on Wednesday, but they are in the midst of ATS downturns of 1-4 overall, 2-5 on the highway, 0-4 against winning teams, 0-4 outside the Mountain West and 1-7 in postseason tournaments.

The under is on a 5-1 streak for San Diego State and is 6-0 in its last six in non-conference action, but the over is 7-1 in the Aztecs’ last eight after a SU loss. For Florida, the over is 10-1 after a SU loss, 5-1 in Gainesville, 4-1-1 overall and 11-4 outside the SEC.

ATS ADVANTAGE: FLORIDA and OVER


New Mexico (24-8, 22-8-1 ATS) at Cal (16-15, 15-13 ATS)

New Mexico was on a torrid late-season run, but Thursday’s 82-80 overtime loss to Utah as a 3½-point favorite to open the Mountain West tournament derailed the Lobos’ NCAA hopes. Before that loss, New Mexico was on an 8-1 SU and ATS tear, with the straight-up winner cashing in all nine games. In fact, the winner has gone 17-0 ATS in the Lobos’ last 17 outings.

California got drilled by top-seeded UCLA 88-66 in the Pac-10 quarterfinals Friday, failing as a 13-point ‘dog to end a three-game ATS surge (1-2 SU) that included an 84-81 win over Washington as a two-point chalk to open the tournament. The Golden Bears are on a 2-8 SU slide, going 5-5 ATS in that stretch.

These two teams met twice early this decade, with Cal going 2-0 (1-1 ATS). The Golden Bears won 71-62 as a 10½-point home favorite in November 2001, then won and cashed in a 76-68 road win giving one point a year later.

The Lobos are riding positive ATS streaks of 5-0-1 on Wednesday, 4-0 on the highway, 13-3-1 in non-conference play, 4-1 versus the Pac-10, 5-2 against winning teams and 15-7 after a pointspread loss. In addition, the SU winner is on an eye-popping 21-0-1 ATS run in New Mexico’s last 22 overall.

The Golden Bears are 6-0 ATS in their last eight Wednesday tilts and 6-2 ATS in their last eight outside the Pac-10, but they are on an 0-8 ATS freefall in Berkeley and are 1-7 ATS in their last eight at home following three or more consecutive road games.

The “over” trends are heavy for both these teams, including 20-8-1 for New Mexico overall, 8-1-1 for New Mexico on the highway, 5-1-1 on Wednesdays and 4-1 in non-conference play. For Cal, the over is 35-16-1 in its last 52 overall, 8-0 following a non-cover, 4-0 after a SU loss, 6-1 at home and 5-1-1 in non-conference action.

ATS ADVANTAGE: OVER


Detroit (49-18, 37-29-1 ATS) at Cleveland (38-30, 32-36 ATS)

The Cavaliers will try to extend their seven-game home winning streak when the rival Pistons come calling at Quicken Loans Arena.

Cleveland has dropped three of its last four both SU and ATS, including Monday’s 104-90 loss at Orlando as 6½-point underdogs. The lone win in the last four was Sunday’s 98-91 home victory over the Bobcats, though the Cavs failed to cash in that one as 7½-point favorites.

Detroit has won five of its last six overall (3-3 ATS), including back-to-back blowout home wins over the Hornets on Sunday (105-84) and the Nuggets on Tuesday (136-120). The Pistons easily cashed in both contests and are 3-0 ATS in their last three after going 1-10 ATS in their previous 11.

Cleveland rallied to beat the Pistons in last year’s best-of-seven Eastern Conference Final in six games (6-0 ATS) after falling behind 2-0. Detroit won the only meeting this season, though, rolling to a 109-74 victory back in November as a nine-point home chalk. That ended an eight-game ATS series winning streak for the Cavs. The home team is 7-1 SU (4-4 ATS) in the last eight series clashes, and the underdog is 13-4 ATS in the last 17.

The Pistons are 11-5-1 ATS on the second night of back-to-backs, but just 2-6 ATS on the road against teams with a winning home record. Meanwhile Cleveland is 17-6 ATS in its last 23 against the Central Division but 0-5 ATS in its last five home games against teams with a winning road mark. Also, the Cavs are just 4-3 ATS during their seven-game home streak.

The under is 11-2 in the last 13 meetings in Cleveland and 22-6 in the last 28 series battles overall. The under is also 10-1 in the Pistons’ last 11 on no days’ rest, 39-16-1 in their last 56 as a road ‘dog, 5-0 in the Cavs’ last five at home, 4-1 in the Cavs’ last five on one day of rest and 21-6 in their last 27 against teams with a winning record.

ATS ADVANTAGE: UNDER


Houston (46-21, 40-26-1 ATS) at New Orleans (45-21, 40-25-1 ATS)

A night after their 22-game winning streak came to an end against the Celtics, the Rockets look to get back on the winning track tonight against the Hornets in a critical Southwest Division matchup in the Big Easy.

Houston’s streak – the second longest in NBA history – ended with a thud Tuesday night, as the Celtics rolled to a 94-74 victory as a 4½-point underdog. The Rockets, who got outscored 54-34 in the second half last night, went 19-3 ATS during their incredible run, and they’re still 13-2 ATS in their last 15 overall and 6-1 ATS in their last seven on the highway. Going back even further, Rick Adelman’s squad is on a 36-16 ATS roll.

New Orleans is 6-2 SU and ATS in its last eight overall, including a 108-97 win over the Bulls on Monday as a four-point home chalk. The Hornets are 7-0 SU and ATS in their last seven in front of the home fans and 18-6 ATS in their last 24 in New Orleans.

These division rivals have already squared off three times this season with the Rockets taking the last two as part of their 22-game win streak. Houston got the win on March 8 106-96 as a 6½-point home favorite and also blew out the Hornets 100-80 as a four-point road pup on Feb. 22. Despite those two results, the Hornets are still 6-3 ATS in the last nine meetings, while the underdog 17-5 ATS in the last 22 clashes and the road team 10-3 ATS in the last 13.

Houston is on ATS runs of 14-3 on the highway, 8-0 on the road against teams with a winning home record and 6-0 on the second night of back-to-backs. Meanwhile New Orleans is on ATS streaks of 36-17-1 on Wednesdays, 4-1 against the Western Conference and 5-2 when coming off a day of rest.

The under is on streaks of 13-6 for the Rockets on back-to-back nights, 17-5 on the road against teams with a winning home record and 5-1 on the highway overall. Conversely, the Hornets have “over” trends of 9-4-1 against the Western Conference, 12-5-2 at home and 6-1 on Wednesdays.

ATS ADVANTAGE: NONE

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Re: Betting News and Notes - Mar.19

Lakers don't expect to have Bynum back until first round of the playoffs
March 18, 2008

DALLAS (AP) -The Lakers have finally put a timetable on the return of Andrew Bynum: probably the first round of the playoffs.

Bynum has been out since Jan. 13, when he dislocated his left kneecap and bruised a bone landing on a teammate's foot while going for a rebound. The Lakers haven't been more specific about his recovery than saying he would be out for at least eight weeks.

But before the Lakers played the Mavericks on Tuesday night, coach Phil Jackson said he's not expecting the 20-year-old center to return until the playoffs begin the weekend of April 18-19.

``It's all about swelling, the pounding you take day to day,'' Jackson said. ``He continually battles that. So it could be a couple, three weeks before he's doing some things on the court.''

Going into the Mavs game, Los Angeles was 20-10 without Bynum, helped by the addition of Pau Gasol. The Lakers would probably rather not wait until the postseason to get them playing together, but it looks like they might not have a choice.

In his third year, Bynum is averaging 13.1 points, 10.2 rebounds and 2.06 blocked shots. He was leading the NBA in field goal percentage (63.6 percent) and was among the best in rebounds and blocks when he got hurt.

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