Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday November, 29

Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday November, 29

Rocketman

Denver Nuggets vs. Golden State Warriors
Play: Denver Nuggets

The Denver Nuggets travel to Golden State to take on the Warriors on Thursday night. Denver is 8-7 SU overall this year while Golden State comes in with an 8-6 SU record on the season. Denver is starting to pick it up going 4-1 SU their last 5 games overall. Denver is 73-33 SU as a favorite the past 3 years. Golden State is 3-11 SU last 3 years as a home underdog of 3 points or less. Golden State is 1-9 ATS last 3 years after allowing 85 points or less. Denver is 6-2 ATS last 3 years overall vs Golden State. Denver is 5-0 ATS last 5 games overall. Denver is 44-20 ATS last 64 road games. Denver has the better team here. We'll recommend a small play on Denver tonight!

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday November, 29

Jeff Scott Sports

4 UNIT PLAY

Notre Dame/ Kentucky Over 134: Gonna go with a double dip on this game. Notre dame has been an excellent defensive squad this year, but I do believe that the Cats will get their share of points. Kentucky is a young but talented squad that has averaged 85.2 ppg on the year.  Defensively the cats have not been that great as they have allowed 67.6 ppg on the year. The did allow just 49 points to Lafayette, but have allowed 69 points or more in their other 4 games. Defense is where this team will struggle, especially tonight vs an Irish team that has averaged a healthy 73.7 ppg on 49% shooting this year.  This should be an fast paced game and a close game that should lead to a FT battle at the end. I expect the Irish to win, and I also expect 140+ points scored in this game.

3 UNIT PLAYS

NOTRE DAME -1.5 over Kentucky:  The Cats are a talented squad, but they are young and will struggle in the early season, especially in hostile venues and playing at Notre Dame can certainly be hostile. Kentucky did have a couple of blowout wins of late, but they also have showed their youth in close wins vs Maryland and Morgan State, plus their lone loss to Duke. This is not a normal Cats recruiting class that has a bunch of players that will go 1 year and then onto the pros. This is a youthful team that will go through growing pains. On the other side the Irish are very tough at home and with all 5 starters back from last year they should have enough to eek out a close win over the Cats tonight. KEY TRENDS--- The Wildcats are 5-15-1 ATS in their last 21 non-conference games, while the Irish are 17-5 ATS in their last 22 Thursday games, plus the favorite is 6-0 ATS the last 6 in the series.

Arkansas State -7 over Florida International: The Golden Panthers are off a horrible 8-21 and have fired NBA legend Isaiah Thomas. In to clean up the mess is Richard Pitino (son of Rick Pitino) it will not be easy in his first year as the Panthers must replace all 5 starters from last years horrid team. Their top returning player is Cameron Bell, who scored a mere 4 ppg last year. and he won't be eligible till Jan 1st.   On the other side we have a Red Wolves team that is loaded and ready for a bounce back year, after going 6-10 in Sun Belt play last year. The Red Wolves are led by perhaps the best backcourt in the Sun Belt with Edward Townsel (17.8 ppg), Trey Finn (9.5 ppg) and Marcus Hooten (8.6 ppg. All 3 are very good shooters and can knock down the 3 as well. The Red Wolves also have a big edge on the defensive end, where they have allowed just 63.8 ppg, while the Golden Panthers have given up 76.7 ppg. Too many edges for State in this one as they win going away.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday November, 29

Timothy Black

SETON HALL vs. LSU    
PLAY: LSU

The Tigers are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 home games and 9-4 ATS in their last 13 non-conference games. Also, LSU is 6-1-1 ATS in their last 8 games against a Big East opponent while Seton Hall is just 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 non-conference games. Seton Hall is just 1-2-1 ATS this season and playing in their first true road game I expect them to continue the slide.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday November, 29

Scott Delaney

After going 2-0 with my free picks last night, my free pick run is now at 42-21-2. Tonight I'm on the West coast with Loyola Marymount, out of the West Coast Conference, laying a slim number to Long Beach State.

Normally this would be an intangible we'd discuss on a Saturday, during the football season, but tonight's basketball game at Gersten Pavilion in Los Angeles will tip-off Homecoming Week. And why not against this team, as these two meet for the 26th time. Though the 49ers hold an 18-7 lead in the series, the Lions won in 2009 and 2010, both in overtime, and are 5-4 at home against the 49ers.

It's no surprising the line is this low, as four of the last 13 meetings have gone to overtime, with three others decided by three points or less. So why am I not worried about this game tonight, and concerned about another close one?

Because I think the Lions are going to embrace being at home, after opening the season 3-3, including going 1-2 at the Carrs/Safeway Great Alaska Shootout to end a 20-day road swing.

And leading the charge tonigt inside Gersten will be upperclassmen Anthony Ireland (23.5 ppg, 6.7 rpg, 4.3 apg), a junior who was named Preseason All-WCC after earning First-Team All-Conference a year ago, fifth-year senior Ashley Hamilton (13.5 ppg, 7.5 apg), who averaged over 11 points and 5.6 rebounds a year ago, junior Godwin Okonji (5.2 ppg, 3.3 rpg), who has led the team in blocks the last two years, Ayodeji Egbeyemi (12.8 ppg, 5.8 rpg), a junior who has started all six games this season, and redshirt junior Alex Osborne (3.5 rpg).

I like the makeup of this team, and looking ahead to conference play, I wouldn't be surprised to see Gonzaga and St. Mary's in a heap of trouble when they visit L.A. to face LMU in the Lions' den.

I know Long Beach has faced some stellar competition - it lost to North Carolina and Arizona - but this is also a tired and weary 49ers team that may not be able to keep up in the second half once the Lions make their run.

I'm going to side with the low chalk here and play the home team.

2♦ Loyola Marymount

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday November, 29

Chuck O'Brien

Swept the free card last night with winners on Temple and Ohio State. Tonight I'm back at it in the college ranks, and am taking the points with Fordham, a home underdog, to Manhattan.

We just watched a battle of the Gotham City with Brooklyn and New York doing battle in the NBA. Tonight it's the annual "Battle of the Bronx" in Fordham's historic Rose Hill Gym, and something tells me the Jaspers are walking into a trap here. Last season Manhattan embarrassed the Rams, as it used a stifling defense to force a season-high 20 turnovers in an 81-47 win.

Though Fordham is 1-4 on the season, make note Manhattan is just 1-3 on the year, and hasn't been any more promising than the Rams. And be aware, this is Fordham's home opener, as it's played two on the road and three on a neutral court.

The home team has won and covered the last three meetings, while the straight-up winner has covered five in a row in this series.

I'm siding with the home dog here.

3♦ FORDHAM

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday November, 29

Craig Davis

Tonight's free play is Florida at home over Marquette.

Tonight I expect the Gators to rout Marquette as I believe these are two teams headed in opposite directions.

The 7th-ranked Florida Gators are unbeaten so far and face a Marquette team that no one is really sure what to think about. They were a lot better than people thought they'd be last year, but they lose a couple of all Big East players to the NBA and now what?

Granted, Florida lost Bradley Beal to the Wizards, but it hasn't affected Billy Donovan's team whatsoever. They have reloaded and are going to be a force in the NCAA Tournament.

Marquette's lone loss this year was versus Butler (72-71) during the Maui Invitational, but there's a reason Vegas has listed this line at 10 or 11... because they know how good Florida is and how Marquette can get frustrated by good defense. Remember how Indiana was giving 10 points to NOrth Carolina and it seemed a bit high? The Hoosiers rolled to an easy win and cover. I see the same tonight.

Florida is off to a 5-0 start for the eighth time in 17 seasons under head coach Billy Donovan, and every win this year has been by double figures. The Gators are 4-0 at home, and their most recent triumph came against in-state rival Central Florida, 79-66. They will eventually run into someone who will challenge them, but I don't think that's tonight.

Take Florida as your free play of the day.

3♦ FLORIDA

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday November, 29

Jeff Benton

42-28 free play run coming into Thursday.

Your Thursday freebie is the Under in Louisville-Rutgers tonight from New Jersey.

Let's face it, this game tonight for the right to participate in a BCS bowl game in January is going to be played close to the vest, and there just won't be many points scored.

Louisville is coming off an overtime Under (how rare is that?) at home against Connecticut, and the Huskies defense is quite similar to the stingy Rutgers defense that the Cardinals will be facing tonight on the road.

Cardinals QB Teddy Bridgewater broke his left wrist in last week's loss, and will have to play tonight out of the shotgun as he protects his dinged non-throwing hand. Expect the Rutgers defense to key on that fact and make their living tonight getting after the compromised Bridgewater.

Louisville and Rutgers played to a 16-14 final last season in Kentucky, and a carbon copy final score is very much in line tonight, as the Scarlet Knights to come into this home finale having played Under the total in three straight games and five of their last seven overall.

The vaunted Knights defense has allowed 15 points or less in eight of eleven games this year,  and seven of their ten lined affairs have held Under the listed total.

Expect to hear the crowd chanting "DEE-FENSE, DEE-FENSE" many times tonight, and expect the defense to be bringing the heat on a chilly November night in North Jersey.

Louisville-Rutgers to hold Under..

3♦ LOUISVILLE-RUTGERS UNDER

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday November, 29

Chris Jordan

Went 2-0 with the freebies last night, scoring with Kent State and Bradley. Tonight I am back on the hardwood with a free winner on Indiana-Purdue plus the number against Kansas City.

IUPUI comes in after a dominating performance against IU-East, as the Jaguars used a 19-0 first half blitz en route to an 87-54 win on Monday night. Junior P.J. Hubert came off the bench to score a career-high 22 points and senior John Hart added 15 points in limited minutes.

Coach Todd Howard has his troops playing well to start the season, and now in opening up Summit League play, I think he's going to lead his team to a road win behind his staunch defense. The Jaguars limited IUE to just 31.1 percent shooting and 2 of 17 (11.8 percent) from 3-point range, while they also won the glass 51-41, improving to 3-0 this season and 13-4 all-time under Howard when outrebounding the opposition.

The Jags should be fired up to outplay IUE, as they're 19-14 all-time against the Kangaroos. The Jaguars lost 64-62 in Kansas City last season, but could've won the game on the merits of Alex Young's 26-point effort.

Let's take a shot here with IUPUI here.

3♦ IUPUI


My second freebie for Thursday night is going to be out of the NBA, as I'm laying the points with the Denver Nuggets in Oakland, against the Golden State Warriors.

Just because the Nuggets stroll into Oaktown after a loss doesn't mean they won't be able to pull off a win on the road. Prior to losing Monday in Utah, the Nuggets reeled off four straight wins. And for some, those fans in Denver, I'd venture to say they think they should've won in Salt Lake City after building a 16-point lead. Denver also shot a season-high 54.8 percent and outrebounded the Jazz 38-31.

Because the Nuggets lost, I wouldn't be surprised if they're in avenge-mode, looking to take their collapse out on Golden State. They won't be short of confidence, as they've taken 11 of 14 in the series, including the last three by an average margin of 18.7 points.

That doesn't bode well for a Golden State team that has yielded a league-high 106.8 points per game over the last three seasons. The Nuggets roll in on ATS win streaks of 7-2 in this series overall and 4-1 the last five times they've visited Oakland.

Lay the points with Denver.

3♦ DENVER

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday November, 29

Matt Rivers

Thursdays comp play will be to back the Denver Nuggets as the small road favorite tonight at Golden State.

Already the third meeting of the young season for these teams, and the Nuggets have been able to both win and cover the first two showdowns.

Denver taking it 102-91 on the 23rd at the Pepsi Center, and winning a double-overtime affair in Oaktown back on November 10th. Those wins put the Nuggets at 7-3 straight up the last ten series meetings, and also pushes George Karl's club to 7-2 against the spread the last nine meetings.

The Nuggets have been starting to find a rhythm here at the end of the first month, as they come to Golden State having won four of their last five, and they have covered in all five of those games.

With Bogut still missing for the Warriors, decided paint advantage tilts towards the visitors tonight.

Nuggs to make it 3-for-3 both straight up and against the spread this year versus the Warriors.

4♦ DENVER

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Thursday November, 29

Anthony Redd

Today's Complimentary Winner

Early season showdown in Miami tonight as the Heat (-5') host the Spurs.

Miami has won four in a row since falling in LA to the Clippers two weeks ago, but the foes have been less than stellar as they've downed the Nuggets, Suns, Bucks and Cavaliers. In fact when I look at the Heat's schedule this year, I see losses to the Knicks, Grizzlies and Clippers in their three biggest games of the season.

San Antonio arrives with a five-game winning streak dating back to its own loss to the Clippers two weeks back. But all five wins have come on its current road trip, which ends tonight as they've defeated the Celtics, Pacers, Raptors, Wizards and Magic to improve to 9-1 on the season.

Now I know the Heat are 5-0 at home this season and have won 28 of their last 30 in Miami in regular season play, but this is too big of a number against a hot San Antonio squad that's remembers getting pounded in each of its last two visits to South Beach, losing my 30 in March of 2011 and 22 last January.

Miami is averaging 104.8 points a game, second best in the league, but the Spurs are only giving up 95.1 an outing.

This is a three-point game, so cast your fate with the hot road dog.

1♦ SAN ANTONIO

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