Are You Betting Heat vs. Bulls Game 1?

I am not. While the Heat seem to be living up to the hype. I am not convinced yet. The Heat have relied on their big 3 (Wade, James, and Bosh) all season. That reliance has increased in the playoffs. In the regular season, the big 3 accounted for 69.4% of the Heat points shooting 50.3%. In the playoffs, they account for 73.6% of the Heat points, shooting 47.0%. Please note, defense is better in the playoffs and that may account for the shooting % difference. The bigger concern might be the rest of the team. The rest of the Heat team shot 44.1% in the regular season but have only shot 37.0% in the playoffs. [Note: The Bulls top 3 scorers average 60.8% of the teams regular season points and shot 47.0%. In the playoffs they average 60.4% of team points and shoot 42.6%. In the playoffs, the Bulls remaining players are shooting within 0.2% of their regular season average].

Related to the Heat reliance on the big 3, their assist ratio is even (assist ratio is offensive assist/defensive assist allowed), while the Bulls have a 1.21 assist ratio. This ratio difference accounts for 1.5 points per game in my simulations. [Another note: using the assist ratio in my model increases accuracy by 2%]. The Heat have played a mediocre Sixers team and a broken down Celtics team. They now face a young, athletic team that can play defense (they allow 42.1% shooting at home and out rebound teams 53 to 47).

As you can see in today’s simulations, my model favors the Bulls in game 1. There are no angles that make this a momentum or starred play (my model is 3.0% more accurate for momentum plays and 7.5% to 11.5% for starred plays depending if the adj sim or sim covers the point spread). Generally, I only play momentum and starred plays unless I can eliminate some specific uncertainty in the game. In this game, I am uncertain about the Bulls playoff experience and the step up in class (the Heat). The Bulls haven’t played great teams in the playoffs this year and have relied on huge games from Derrick Rose.

In summary, the concern about the Heat backup players and the Bulls playoff experience and step up in class leave me watching today’s game. I am also just watching the early game (Grizzlies at Thunder) as I have no momentum or angles to support a position and anything can happen in game 7. Sorry, I am not taking a position on a team, but they play the national anthem every day and there are always opportunities to find a good bet (I did like the Heat/Bulls Under before the line dropped from 182.5 to 180). If you are betting either game, good luck on whatever side you are on. I will post full NBA season model results once the season is complete.

Good Luck! Follow me on Twitter for all my model results and picks.

Advertisements

Bet of the Day – Miami Heat at Orlando Magic, Feb. 3, 2011

Miami Heat (+1) at Orlando Magic (-1), Over/Under 197

The Orlando Magic are apparently still on Lebron’s “list”. They were on his list in November when the Magic won by 9 at home. The Heat are 3.5 games ahead of Orlando in the division. Miami has won 3 straight. They are coming of an easy win over the lowly Cavaliers. Orlando lost last time out at Memphis. Both teams will be motivated tonight for a big game.

Miami (34-14) has played well on the road. They lost last time out in Orlando by 9 but won their first match up in Miami by 26. Miami averages 47.1% shooting with 51 rebounds and 6 steals per game on offense. On defense, they allow 42.6% with 50 rebounds and 7 steals per game. Miami is playing well and relatively healthy. They will need a big game to win on the road tonight.

Orlando (31-18) has been very good at home. They haven’t been great in recent games though. The Magic average 46.5% shooting with 52 rebounds and 6 steals per game on offense. On defense, they allow 44.3% shooting with 49 rebounds and 7 steals per game. The Magic are a bit banged up and have been inconsistent recently. Miami appears to be keyed in on this game; can Orlando put together a big game against a Miami team with momentum?

The Sagarin Ratings have Miami 95.83 and Orlando 93.99. With the 3.64 home advantage, the fair line is Orlando -1.8.

My NBA model has Orlando 96.02 and Miami 93.81 for 189.83 total points. Miami is a better shooting and more efficient offense. The teams are similar in defensive statistics but Miami is slightly more efficient. The key variance contributor is Orlando’s offensive shooting percentage. Orlando has to meet or beat their average shooting percentage against a good defense to win and cover tonight.

I don’t go against my line very often but tonight I am taking Miami plus the points. Here’s why. Orlando beat Miami by 9 in their last meeting. Miami is playing well and with momentum. Orlando isn’t playing consistently and has some nagging injuries. Miami seems to have this game circled. Both my line and the Sagarin line are very close to the actual line. Bet the Miami Heat +1.

Follow me on Twitter for all my picks. Good Luck!

Bet of the Day – Dallas Mavericks at Miami Heat, Dec. 20, 2010

Dallas Mavericks (+7) at Miami Heat (-7), Over/Under 192

Yesterday’s bet, Saints at Ravens, was a loser.  Back to the NBA today for the Mavs at Heat. The Mavs beat the Heat by 11 points in their late November game.  The Heat will be tough to beat a 2nd time and at home.

Dallas (21-5) is coming off a nice home stand; winning 5 of 6.  They have been excellent on the road (8-1).  Tonight they face a much improved Heat team since their previous meeting.  The Mavs average 47.9% shooting with 49 rebounds and 7 steals per game on offense.  On defense, they allow 43.5% shooting with 48 rebounds and 7 steals.

Miami (21-8) have won 12 straight games (last loss was the Mavs game).  There are still concerns with the supporting cast.  Mike Miller could return this week, but don’t expect much from him until their current win streak ends.  The Heat average 47.6% shooting with 51 rebounds and 7 steals on offense.  On defense, they allow 42.4% shooting with 49 rebounds and 6 steals.  This is a key home game for Miami, expect their best tonight.

In Dallas’ 6 game home stand, they only played one team above .500.  They won that game by 6 pts.  During Miami’s current 12 game winning streak, they have played 4 teams above .500.  The Heat won those games by an average of 14.75 points.

The Sagarin Ratings have Dallas 96.55 and Miami 96.13.  With the 3.23 home advantage, the fair line is Miami -2.81.  According to pregame.com, 60% of spread bets are on Dallas and 86% of total bets are on the Over.  While the majority of bets are on Dallas, the point spread has moved from Miami -6 to Miami -7.

My NBA model predicts Miami 95.40 over Dallas 88.65 for 184.05 total points.  The teams have nearly identical offensive statistics.  Miami has an advantage in rebounding and they play better defense.  The key variance contributor is Dallas’ field goal shooting percentage.  Dallas has to shoot at or above their average to win and cover tonight.

Tonight I am taking Miami.  Here’s why.  Miami lost by 11 last time against the Mavs; they are a better team now and will look to make a statement.  This is a key game between two road trips for Miami.  Dallas is coming of a solid home stand and starts the first of 3 tough road games.  Bet on the Miami Heat -7.

Follow me on Twitter for all my picks.  Good Luck!

Bet of the Day – Miami Heat at New York Knicks, Dec. 17, 2010

Miami Heat (-5) at New York Knicks (+5), Over/Under 210

Yesterday’s bet, 49ers at Chargers, was a winner.  Back to the NBA tonight.  The Heat haven’t lost since Nov. 27th.  The Knicks have only lost 1 game since the same date but this is their 2nd BIG game this week.

After a few early stumbles, the Heat (19-8) are now rolling.  They play 3 games over the next 4 nights (includes the Knicks and Mavs).  The Heat average 47.5% shooting with 50 rebounds and 7 steals per game on offense.  On defense, they allow 42.5% shooting with 49 rebounds and 6 steals per game.  The Heat are an efficient team on offense and defense.  Miami will be looking to take advantage of a Knicks’ team coming off a hard-fought loss on a big stage tonight.

The Knicks (16-10) finally have some buzz again.  Amare Stoudemire (26.7 PPG, 9.1 RPG, and 2.0 BPG) is a leading candidate for MVP.  He scored 30+ points in the last nine games.  The Knicks average 47.1% shooting with 47 rebounds and 8 steals per game on offense.  On defense, they allow 47.4% shooting with 52 rebounds and 8 steals per game.  This Knicks have their hands full tonight, but shouldn’t lack motivation.

The Sagarin Ratings have Miami 95.73 and the Knicks 90.59.  With the 3.34 home advantage, the fair line is Miami -1.8.

My NBA model has Miami 100.05 over New York 86.57 for 186.62 total points.  The Heat are the better shooting and rebounding team.  On defense, the Knicks allow a higher shooting % and are less efficient.  The key variance contributor is the Knicks defensive shooting % allowed.  The Knicks will have to keep Miami well below their shooting average to win tonight.

Tonight, I am taking the Heat.  Here’s why.  The Knicks are coming off a tough home loss.  This is their 3rd straight game against a .600+ team.  Miami is a better shooting and defensive team.  I modeled the game at Miami -13.48.  Bet on the Miami Heat -5.

Follow me on Twitter for all my picks.  Good Luck!

Bet of the Day – Miami Heat at Utah Jazz, Dec. 8, 2010

Miami Heat (+1) at Utah Jazz (-1), Over/Under 189

Yesterday’s bet, Memphis vs. Kansas, was a winner.  Back to the NBA tonight for the Heat and Jazz rematch.  The Jazz overcame a 19-point deficit to win the game.  Tougher spot for the Heat in Utah.

Miami (14-8) has reeled off 5 straight wins.  But those wins haven’t come against the toughest competition.  The Heat average 47.1% shooting with 49 rebounds and 7 steals per game on offense.  On defense, they allow 42.9% shooting with 50 rebounds and 6 steals per game.  Miami is an excellent shooting team and decent on defense.  They face an equally good shooting team in Utah; their defense will need to improve for a road win.

Utah (16-6) is playing well.  They won 8 of their last 9 games.  In that loss against Dallas, they were completely flat.  They have only played once since Friday.  Expect a rested and motivated team tonight.  The Jazz average 46.4% shooting with 49 rebounds and 8 steals per game on offense.  On defense, they allow 42.9% shooting with 51 rebounds and 7 steals per game.  Utah is slightly more efficient than Miami.  They will need to control the ball and avoid turnovers to win.

The Sagarin Ratings have Utah 94.93 and Miami 94.43.  With the 3.04 home advantage, the fair line is Utah -3.54.  According to pregame.com, 85% of spread bets are on Miami and 78% of the total bets are on the Over.  The point spread has moved from Utah -2 to -1.  The Total opened at 189 and is teetering between 189 and 188.5.

My NBA model predicts Utah 94.7 and Miami 93.1 for 187.8 total points.  Miami is a slightly better shooting team.  Utah gets more attempts.  On defense, they are nearly identical but Utah is slightly more efficient.  The key variance contributors are each team’s shooting efficiency.  Miami will need to shoot above their mean percentage to win the game.

Tonight, I am going against the public and taking the Jazz.  Here’s why.  Utah is playing well and rested.  Utah is very good at home; Miami hasn’t proven they can win big games on the road.  These teams are very even statistically, home court gives Utah an advantage and the betting value.  Bet on the Utah Jazz -1.

Follow me on Twitter for all my picks.  Good Luck!

Bet of the Day – Utah Jazz at Miami Heat, Nov 9, 2010

Utah Jazz (+10) at Miami Heat (-10), Over/Under 192

Yesterday’s bet, Steelers at Bengals, was a loser.  Decent day on Twitter picks, 3-1.  Not many big games today, so going with the Jazz and Heat.

The Jazz (3-3) started the season with 2 ugly losses.  They have won 3 of the last 4.  The Jazz are shooting 45.5% from the floor while averaging 51 rebounds and 7 steals per game.  They allow 42.6% shooting with 55 rebounds and 9 steals.  The Jazz have a strong rotation of bigs that will cause problems for the Heat.  The Jazz came back from an 18-point halftime deficit in their last game.  Expect a big effort against the Heat.

The Heat (5-2) are starting to live up to the hype.  There is some fallout from this hype.  They are getting everyone’s best game; that will likely continue tonight.  The Heat average 46.7% shooting from the floor with 50 rebounds and 8 steals per game.  They allow a low 40.4% shooting with 50 rebounds and 7 steals per game.  The Heat have played a below average schedule so far.  Wade and LeBron will get their points tonight; but the Heat need a big game from their post players.

The Sagarin Ratings have Miami 97.48 and Utah 90.40.  With a 2.29 home advantage, the fair line is Miami -9.57.  This is very close to the point spread.

My NBA model predicts Miami 100.6 over Utah 91.6 for 192.2 total points.  Both teams have similar offensive statistics; Miami is a more effective 3-pt shooting team.  Miami is more efficient on defense.  The key variance contributors are Utah’s offense and defensive shooting percentage.  To win/cover, Utah has to play near or above their mean shooting % and near or below their shooting % allowed.

Tonight, I am taking the road dog.  Here’s why.  Utah is improving; they finished their last game very strong and come into this game with confidence.  Utah will be motivated and rested.  Miami is still vulnerable in the post; Utah has solid post players.  Bet on the Utah Jazz +10.  Don’t take the bet below +10.  [Update:  The line has dropped to +9 since I wrote the original post this morning.  If you couldn’t get Jazz +10, here is an alternate bet.  Bet a 2-team teaser with Jazz +14.5 and Knicks +11.  I will use the Jazz +10 for my record keeping on the site.]

Follow me on Twitter for all my picks.  Good Luck!

%d bloggers like this: