Thursday Service Plays

Re: Thursday Service Plays

Evan Altemus

Selection:  UAB +4.5

Memphis survived a scare at UTEP in their last game, and the Tigers are back out on the road to face a very tough UAB team.  The Blazers almost shocked them last season, but the Tigers were able to escape with a one point win.  UAB has a tremendously strong home court edge.  They are 12-0 straight up on their home floor, including several blowout wins.  This game will be the biggest of the season for the Blazers, especially since they want to avenge a 13 point loss at Memphis from just a few weeks ago.  UAB matches up fairly well against Memphis, and their home statistics are significantly better, especially on defense.  The Tigers will suffer from experienced guard play in this game, as the Blazers love to play pressure defense.  That defense will be even more suffocating because of the motivation that UAB will play with.  Look for the Blazers to win this game outright or take it down to the wire. 

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Vegas Experts

Phoenix Suns at LA Lakers

Even if Steve Nash does play here (game time decision), go with the Lakers. Phoenix is 0-9 ATS after having won four of their last five games and let's take a look at exactly who the Suns have beaten during the Alvin Gentry era: the Clippers (twice), Oklahoma City and Charlotte. Those are three of the worst teams in the league. The Lakers are the best. Suns are just 3-8 ATS as a road dog this year. They have lost to the Lakers twice already this year.

Play on: LA Lakers

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Dwayne Bryant

Minnesota at Illinois
Play: Illinois -8

I talk a lot about embarrassment being a great motivator, especially for good teams. Illinois is a pretty damn good team and they should be plenty motivated tonight, for several reasons.

First, this is a revenge game for the Illini. They were hammered at Minnesota last month, 59-36. They shot just 29.4% from the field, were 2-of-16 from 3-point range, and were outrebounded 40-26. Needless to say, Illinois will be UP for this one.

Second, Illinois' last appearance on their home floor was also an embarrassment, as they were upset by Penn State, 38-33. Illinois shot just 30% from the field and 3-of-16 from 3-point range while not attempting a single free throw in the entire game. Combine this performance with their last outing vs. Minnesota and I'd say we have embarrassment x 2.

Minnesota is:

* 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games as a road underdog of 7 to 12.5
* 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 games after allowing less than 50 points in their previous game
* 0-5 ATS in their last 5 road games vs. a team with a home winning percentage of greater than .600
* 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games following a SU win of more than 20 points
* 3-11 ATS in the last 14 meetings
* 2-8 ATS in the last 10 meetings in Illinois

When looking at each team's home/road stats, we see that Illinois has HUGE edges in FG% (48% to 41.6%), points allowed (53.1 to 68.1), and 3-point defense (27.9% to 40.9%). Illinois also holds edges in points per game, 3-point %, free throw %, FG% allowed, and rebound margin.

Put it all together and it looks like major payback is in order tonight. I'll lay the wood with Illinois.

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Larry Ness

UAB +4.5 vs Memphis

I read some reports where people are claiming that this year's Memphis team is as good as last year's team, the one which owned a nine-point lead in the 2008 national championship game with only 2:12 remaining in regulation, yet lost in OT. Gone from that team are the NBA's No. 1 overall pick PG Derrick Rose (14.9-4.5-4.7), the team's leading score Douglas-Roberts (18.1) and one-half of that team's 6-9 duo, Joe Dorsey (6.9-9.5). There is little doubt that Calipari has another excellent team, as Memphis enters this game with the nation's No. 5 ranking, on a nation-best 18-game winning streak plus the Tigers own a 53-game winning streak over C-USA opponents (including C-USA tourney games). Freshman PG Evans (17.1-5.3-3.7) actually has better numbers than Rose, while he and fellow 6-8 freshman Withersponn (4.9) are joined by a bevy of returning players. The 6-9 Dozier (12.4-6.7) is having his best season with Memphis, the 6-6 Anderson (10.5-5.2-4.2) has been a complete player and the 6-10 Taggert (10.1-7.2) has been sound, if not spectacular. Veteran guards Mack (9.1), Sallie (4.8) and Kemp (3.7) all 'fight' for playing time. Is this year's team as good as last year's team? Well, last year's team barely 'escaped' Birmingham with a 79-78 win and this year's Tigers will be fortunate to "be so lucky." Mike Davis' team has put on a nice "closing run," entering this game having won NINE of its last 10 games, to move to 19-8 overall and 9-3 in C-USA. The Blazers sorely want an NCAA bid and a win over Memphis may be a MUST, when it comes to at-large consideration. UAB is nowhere near as deep as Memphis but in the 6-5 Vaden (18.3-5.0), PG Delaney (16.6-4.5-3.7), who's made the most of his medical redshirt, the 6-8 Kinnard (15.1-9.0) and Georgia transfer Toney (8.8-3.8), the Blazers could pull the upset. Desperate UAB (on that proverbial NCAA 'bubble') came closer than any C-USA foe in the past three years vs Memphis in last year's controversial one-point loss and I expect emotions to be running high at Bartow Arena on Thursday night. Take the points.

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Greg Shaker

Wake Forest / North Carolina St. Over 151

I don't have to tell you how Wake Forest likes to run the court and they do it very well with the #3 highest raw pace in the country and the #38 highest offensive efficiency as well. They have done the most damage right here at home where they are 7-3 OVER the mark. That style of play is getting better with each game at 5-0 OVER the last 5 played regardless of where they have dribbled the ball. The visitors do not put a large emphasis on defense and that is especially true when they travel, allowing 7 more points per contest, and right at 47% opponent shooting numbers. That is very poor indeed. The fact is, NC State is 7-1 OVER the mark in their last 8 lined games, they are in the bottom 1/2 of all division 1A teams in D Efficiency, but they are also the #42 Team in scoring efficiency. This is a high number to obtain but these two squads have done that already once this year with a 158 contest earlier this month. That game featured 123 shots taken. If we get the same kind of contest this one will be like a walk in the park. I think we will and I would play it up to 154.

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Jack Jones

Cavs/Rockets UNDER 186

When you look at how well both of these teams have been playing defensively lately, it's a surprise to me that this total is as high as it is.  The Cavs are giving up just 85.6 ppg over their last five, while Houston is allowing 85.6 as well.  Both teams are holding opponents to around 42% shooting and both teams have won every won of those games.  With the success each has been having slowing things down and playing solid defense, why do you think things will change tonight?  Play the UNDER when a team led their last game by 20 or more points at the half when playing an opponent who put up 60 or more in the first half of their last game.  52-16 (76.5%) since 1996

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

John Ryan

UCLA vs. Stanford
Play: UCLA -6.5

Ryan is 3-1 ATS w/ his top rated 15* Titan Plays this season. This one is in the ACC + can be seen on ESPN360.com. The play is reinforced by Ryan’s extensive winning research featuring a strong system + game dependent angles hitting 97% ATS for an incredible 30-1 ATS mark. Pay when the 15* Titan wins ATS. Ai Simulator 3* graded play on UCLA over Stanford slated to start at 10:30 EST. AiS shows a 70% probability that UCLA will win this game by 8 or more points. Supporting this graded play is a system that has gone 28-9 ATS for 76% since 1997. Play against dogs of 3.5 to 9.5 points off 2 or more consecutive losses as a favorite and is a marginal winning team posting a win percentage between 51% and 60% playing a winning team. UCLA is also 14-4 ATS (+9.6 Units) in road games when playing against a marginal winning team posting a win percentage between 51% and 60% after 15 or more games since 1997. Stanford is off 3 straight losses and have lost 7 of their last 9. They lost by 12 at Oregon State and were 4.5 point favorites and in their last game they lost at Oregon by 8 points and were 5 point favorites. UCLA suffered a significant letdown after defeating conference leader Washington on 2/19 losing then to WSU by just 1 point and were installed as 13.5 point favorites. In that game they shot 53%, but lacked any defensive focus. That will certainly be different tonight knowing they are nearing the month of March and simply need to playing better and better with each passing game. Stanford season is over. Take UCLA

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Tom Stryker

UCLA vs. Stanford
Play: UCLA -6.5

With losses in three of their last four games and a pair of road wars at Stanford and California on deck, UCLA needs to kick things up a notch. The Bruins were picked to win the Pac 10 before the season began and they'll need a lot of good fortune to accomplish that team goal.

Technically speaking, this is an ideal spot for head coach Ben Howland's men. Two strong team situations favor UCLA. First, as a guest coming off two or more home games, the Bruins are a powerful 53-24-2 ATS including 22-5 ATS in this role in their last 27 battles. Second, on foreign courts running with four or more days of rest, Coach Howland's kids have played extremely well notching a stellar 21-5 ATS record.

Off a straight up loss, UCLA has posted wins in 21 of its last 24 and the Bruins stand 52-34 ATS on the road facing a foe that checks in without momentum off a straight up blemish. No one hates losing more than Coach Howland. Off that embarrassing defeat at Pauley Pavilion to Washington State, the well rested Bruins will be primed to make a run. Take UCLA.

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Scott Rickenbach

Cleveland Cavaliers @ Houston Rockets
PICK: Cleveland Cavaliers

This play narrowly missed my service play list today. There is some concern about whether Delonte West could be impacted by his sore wrist here. Yes, he looked great in his first game back, versus Detroit, but then he missed the next game, against Memphis, due to soreness in the wrist. He's now listed as probable for tonight and we expect a strong game from him.

Overall the Cavaliers are rolling and this is a classic case of getting line value because of historical data. The Cavs have had a history of struggles at Houston and, of course, the Rockets have been strong at home this season. That is keeping this line lower than it should be if you look purely at the match-ups here. We know that the Rockets have been playing well but one must also consider who they've been matched up with recently. Additionally, the Rockets new point guard Aaron Brooks will face a big test now as he faces one of the best defenses in the league. LeBron James and Company have a chance to make a big statement on the road in a nationally televised game. We do not see them letting this opportunity pass them by. Consider a small play on Cleveland minus the short number on Thursday night.

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Dennis Macklin

West Virginia at Cincinnati
Prediction: West Virginia

Just have to lay the points here with Huggies West Virginia outfit as he returns for the first time since getting run out of town four years ago. YOU KNOW Huggins will be especially red-assed after the Bearkats went to Morgantown last year and punked the Mounties 62-39 in WVU's worst effort of the year. WVU is playing great defense and won last three by DDs, they're 6-2 as a Big East fave, 2-0 on the road. Take West Virginia.

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Brian Hansen

Columbus Blue Jackets at Edmonton Oilers
Prediction: Edmonton Oilers

Edmonton is 5-1 its last 6 when playing against a team with a losing record in the 2nd half of the season. Columbus is 13-21 when revenging a loss vs. an opponent! Don't discount the home ice factor; great value on EDMONTON!

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Jeff Alexander

1 Unit on Michigan -2.5

Beating Purdue could be the key win that one last signature win that gets Michigan into the Big Dance, but I can't see it happening tonight as the Boilermakers are in hot pursuit of a Big Ten title at 1.5 games behind Michigan State. Purdue crushed the Wolverines 67-49 in the first meeting as it posed matchup problems all over the floor for Michigan. The Boilermakers are 8-2 ATS in the last 10 meetings and 4-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings in Michigan. Also, the favorite is 4-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings. The Wolverines are 3-7 ATS in their last 10 vs. Big Ten, 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games as an underdog of 6.5 or less, and 1-6 ATS in their last 7 games as an underdog period. The Boilermakers are 29-13-1 ATS in their last 43 vs. Big Ten. Take Purdue.

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Jake Timlin

Today's Selection

After a tough bracket buster loss to St. Mary’s it’s time for the Aggies to get back to dominating the league and Hawaii tonight.

You see for Utah State they are clearly the class of the WAC this year and it shows thanks to their 12-1 league record.  Even better the Aggies are unbeatable at home sitting at 15-0.  Well that takes up to tonight’s game and in a series where the Aggies have dominated by winning 4 of the last 5 meetings, including a road 16 point win on the islands already this season.

Meanwhile, for Hawaii the mainland has always been a problem and it has been this year once again as the Warriors are just 2-5 in true road games.

Well due to Logan, Utah being one tough place to play this year I look for the Aggies to more than take care of business tonight as they sweep the season series with a 20 plus point blowout.

All Utah State minus the points!

PICK: Utah State Aggies

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Drew Gordon

West Virginia at CINCINNATI +4' 

Coach Huggins returns, and while he may be looking forward to visiting some of his old haunts, his team will have their work cut out for them tonight against a highly motivated Bearcats sqaud. Cincinnati has lost their last two games (to the cream of the Big East crop no less), and are now primed and ready for the bounce back, and I say it comes tonight and here's why:

First, West Virginia has hardly been consistent on the road, losing 4 of their previous 5 roadies before destroying sorry-ass Rutgers Sunday. True, those losses also came against the top-tier of the Big East, but regardless, the Mountaineers showed me enough flaws in their road play to happily back the home dog in this one.

What flaws? Well let's start with an offense that seemingly goes to sleep when they travel! I'm willing to overlook offensive struggles at Louisville or at Pitt, but scoring 53 points at Marquette or 61 points at Syracuse is unexcusable! The Bearcats defense at home is excellent, allowing 65 ppg on just 40% shooting, and I expect we'll see the WVU offense sputter once again here tonight.

Then of course, there's the Cincy offense against this Mountaineers defense, which at first glance looks like a mismatch. But having recently watched the Bearcats, I can tell you their offense is playing extremely well of late, shooting an impressive 49% from the field (and 44% from 3-point) over their L5 games! True, they struggled against Louisville in their last one, but that's even more motivation for them to come back and redeem themselves in front of their home fans in this one! In the end, look for Vaughn and this Bearcats sqaud to circle the wagons at home, and take advantage of a Mountaineers squad that's been vulnerable in hostile territory.

Take Cincinnati plus the points over West Virginia in this college hoops match up.

3♦ CINCINNATI

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Wunderdog

Game: St. Mary's at Pepperdine
Pick: St. Mary's -14

This is a most difficult spot for Pepperdine as they will face a very good St. Mary's team that is fighting for their NCAA Tournament lives. The Waves just have no talent and have lost their last two games by an average of over 30 points per game. St. Mary's is sailing along at 21-5 on the season, and simply have the better athletes. The Gaels will massacre the Waves off the boards, and they have shown when they do, they get the money. St. Mary's is now 20-7 ATS against teams with a losing record, and are a perfect 4-0 when making the trip to Malibu over the last four years. I'll ride with St. Mary's in this one.

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

BEN BURNS

St. Louis Blues @ Dallas Stars
PICK: Dallas Stars

The Stars are off back to back losses. However, those losses came vs. the Black Hawks and the Sharks, two of the top four teams in the West. Today, they take a step down in class to face the Blues, who rank just 13th in the conference.

The back to back losses will ensure the Stars don't take them lightly though. Additionally, Dallas will be extra motivated to avenge an embarrassing 6-1 loss, suffered at St. Louis, back in mid-October.

Even with the recent losses, the Stars are still a stellar 26-10 their last 36 games played in the month of February. During that same stretch, they've gone 35-22 when coming off a game in which they scored one goal or less and an even better 40-22 when playing a home game with an over/under line of 5.5. They're 8-1 the last nine times they were a host in this series and they should be able to bounce back with a victory here. Consider laying the wood.

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

GoodFella

Washington St. -1.5 vs Arizona

Arizona beat Washington St. 66-56 back on Jan. 31st AT Arizona as 4 pt favs, & Arizona also won AT Washington St. last season, 65-55, & Wazzu will definitely be looking for payback tonight. Washington St. is coming off a huge upset win AT UCLA (82-81) on Saturday & I think that win carries over to tonight's home game vs Arizona. Washington St. has not been good at home lately, goin just 2-5 SU & ATS their L/7 home games, as they have lost by 2 pts in each of their L/2 home games, vs Oregon St. & USC. Arizona is coming off a 2 pt loss to in-state rival Arizona St. at ASU on Sunday & Arizona is now 3-8 ATS their L/11 road games vs a team with a winning record. Arizona is also just 1-7 ATS L/8 games they have been a road dog of .5 to 6.5. Something of concern for Arizona tonight is their lack of depth, & the amount of minutes that their 3 best players have logged recently. Buddinger has played al 40 minutes in Arizona's L/5 games, Hill has played all but 3 minutes in AZ L/6 games, & Nic Wise has played 40 minutes in 6 of the L/10 games & has been on the bench for just 11 minutes in AZ L/10 games. Wazzu is also the 7th best FT% team in the nation at 79.4%, & Arizona is shooting just 64% their L/5 games from the line, so a close game gives Wazzu the edge here as well as the home crowd edge. I really think the road win over UCLA will give this Wazzu team the confidence they need to come away with a much needed home conference win tonight & I look for a 5-7 pt win from them tonight.

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

==================================================


EZWINNERS.COM - FREE SELECTION


Game: Cleveland Cavaliers @ Houston Rockets


(702) Houston Rockets +2.5

The Rockets have been playing very well winning five straight
games and eight out of their last ten. The team chemistry of the
Rockets is actually much better without T-Mac and Houston can
match up about as good as anyone can on LeBron with Artest
and Battier. Rockets win here!


2009 Free Selections Record  32-24  (57.1%)

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Free Selection from Totals4U
Thursday's free selection: Purdue Boilermakers - 2 1/2

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Dave Price

1 Unit on West Virginia -4.5

Cincy has endured back-to-back tough defeats to Pitt and Louisville and now it gets a WVU team that I feel is still underrated. The Mountaineers are coming on strong and I look for them to embarrass the Bearcats tonight, just like they embarrassed the Mountaineers last season. Cincy came to WVU and won 62-39 last season and don't think for a moment that Bob Huggins will let his boys forget. The Bearcats are just 2-9 ATS in their last 11 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600 and the Mountaineers are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games as a favorite. Lay the number!

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Re: Thursday Service Plays

Rob Homyak

Phoenix at L.A. Lakers
5 units on L.A. Lakers

Play ON LA LAKERS against the spread in All games versus poor defensive teams - allowing 99+ points/game - 2nd half of the season
The record is 27 Wins and 8 Losses for the last two seasons (+18.20 units)

Oddsmakers currently have the Lakers listed as 9?-point favorites versus the Suns, while the game's total is sitting at 237.

Steve Nash dropped 22 points to lead the Suns past the Bobcats 112-102 on Tuesday night.

Phoenix covered as 7-point home favorites as the teams played under the 223.5-point total posted by oddsmakers.

Kobe Bryant poured in 36 points to lead the Lakers past the Thunder 107-93 on Tuesday night.

Los Angeles covered as 9-point road favorites as the game played under the 221.5-point total listed by sportsbooks.

Los Angeles is 5-2 SU and ATS in the last seven clashes in this rivalry, winning the most recent meeting 115-110 in December, but failing to cash as a healthy 13?-point home chalk. The road team is on a 4-0 ATS run, and the Suns are 12-5 ATS in their last 17 visits to Staples Center.

The Lakers are 6-17 ATS in their last 23 starts on one day?s rest, and they are on a 2-6 ATS skid in Pacific Division play, but along with their current 9-4 ATS run, they are on further pointspread upticks of 4-0 on Thursday, 5-1 after a double-digit win, 6-2 after a spread-cover and 10-4 after putting up more than 100 points.

The Suns are 4-1-1 ATS in their last six games against Western Conference foes, but they are on pointspread declines of 0-7 on Thursday, 1-6 against teams with a winning percentage above .600, 7-21-1 after a spread-cover, 4-10 after a SU win and 11-24-2 after scoring more than 100 points.

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