Friday, May 2, 2014

NBA Playoffs: Spurs vs Mavericks Pick ATS - 5/2/14

When I got home this evening ready to settle in for the Warriors-Clippers game, I quickly checked the early scores and saw that the Pacers had forced Game 7 and the Thunder were well on their way to doing the same. "2-0 heading into the night game," I thought to myself, proud that we'd bounced rather than digging a deeper hole. Then I remembered that although we thought OKC would win, we thought it would be wiser to take the points. Nonetheless, thanks to an incredible, heart-fueled, foul-trouble plagued, awful free throw shooting infested, unexpected heroes filled battle in Oakland, we salvaged a 2-1 ATS night and notched another top confidence pick on our NBA playoff belt.

Man, what an amazing first round of the post-season. With only the Miami Heat and the Washington Wizards having secured second round playoff spots, we are now looking at the possibility of the remaining six series going the distance. On Wednesday night, the Thunder, the Pacers, and the Warriors all lived to fight another day, and Thursday brings us another trio of potential elimination Game 6's. Which teams can push the higher seeds to the brink? Will Brooklyn have enough in the tank? Does Dallas have another Hail Mary in their playbook? Does Houston have a problem, or will a Game 6 win in Portland be enough to launch them into the second round? 

NBA Playoff Record to Date: 23-19 ATS

Top Confidence Picks: 7-4 ATS

Marco and I are using the odds we get from our friends at 1Vice, which we highly recommend for your online sports betting action. They have terrific customer service, great sign up bonuses and free play, and fast payouts. They were also kind enough to send us an odds page, which we've included at the bottom of The Spread Zone. 

Toronto Raptors (+5) over BROOKLYN NETS: At this point in the series it's hard to offer compelling new statistics. They would have to something along the lines of "Since their last playoff appearance, Toronto is undefeated when playing the same team for the sixth time in eleven days." The truth is they are also win-less in said situation. The Raptors don't fare well after SU wins 1-5-1 ATS, but they have done extremely well (25-12-1 ATS) on one day of rest. Brooklyn, on the other hand, has played dominated teams with a +.500 winning percentage (11-2 ATS), but are a predictable 0-5 ATS at home of late. The Raptors probably won't be able to close out this series on the road, but they'll put a scare into Nets fans around the world.

San Antonio Spurs (-3) over DALLAS MAVERICKS: For a moment it looked as though the Dallas Mavericks would erase the horrific memories of losing to the 2007 Golden State Warriors as a #1 seed by beating this year's top seeded Spurs. It also appeared for a moment as though the Spurs were going to go all 1990's Atlanta Braves - again - by posting a stellar regular season before failing to make a deep post-season run. Now it appears as though the Mavs will go back to the drawing board and the Spurs will go on to the second round. Although Dirk Nowitzki plays his best ball in elimination games against the Spurs, averaging 31 and 11, the Spurs play their best under Coach Pop in elimination games against everyone with a 30-11 record. The fact that Dallas has covered all 5 games in this series should sway us to the home dog, but instead it gives us even more confidence that the Spurs end this series tonight.

PORTLAND TRAILBLAZERS (-3.5) over Houston Rockets: Backs against the wall, faced with elimination, will the Houston Rockets manage to win on the road and force Game 7? Better yet for our interests, will they manage to cover? We think neither. Check out these stats - there's no good reason for us to pick Portland, except that the psychology of elimination games is unlike any other.

  • Rockets are 7-1-1 ATS in the last 9 meetings in Portland.
  • Over is 13-3 in the last 16 meetings.
  • Rockets are 11-5-1 ATS in the last 17 meetings.
  • Underdog is 5-1 ATS in the last 6 meetings.
  • Road team is 5-1 ATS in the last 6 meetings. 

If Houston doesn't get off to a good start and the Rip City home crowd starts to get rocking, the Blazers run away with this game early and fend it off late. That's just the way we see this game unfolding.

Top Confidence Pick: Although the Blazers know they can win in Houston, we like them to close this thing out tonight. Stats and trends be damned, give up the small chalk and take Portland (-3.5)

May the Spreads Be With Us All,

Vinny and Marco

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