Saturday, February 28, 2009

Out of Time

Not going to have time to look at all of tonight's games, so just a couple more and then done for the night, each to win 1 unit:


76ers +1.5 -102

Can't pass this one where you have 75% of wagerline on the Magic, the line going the other direction, and Philly playing at home. Considered the Bulls also, but that line has been all over the place to the point where I'm scared to get involved.


South Alabama +3.5 -102

Same story here with the betting and line movement. Only difference is that USA is on the road, but they're good enough to get the straight-up win anyway.

That's it. Have a good night, folks.

Late Afternoon

So far, so good. Two more, each to win 1 unit:

Temple +3 -106

Tennessee Tech +4 -107

Both of these look like coin flips. We'll take the points. Back later.

Not Much To Love So Far

After a couple of lousy days, the 3-0 Friday night results were nice to wake up to this morning. Only one for the early afternoon college games:

Cleveland State +7 -108, 1.08 units to win 1 unit

Butler has been a really public team this season, especially for a "mid-major" squad. Same story again today, but a very talented Vikings team coming to town looking to catch up a game in the Horizon conference standings.

Back later, I'm sure.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Friday Night Hoops

Been sitting in a seminar for the past 8-9 hours fighting to stay awake. Just a few for tonight:


Wizards +5 -101, 1.01 units to win 1 unit

Probably not the best idea to recommend putting hard-earned money on the train wreck of a team located in DC these days, but if the books are going to stand with the Wiz, we will also.

Nuggets +2 -101, 1.01 units to win 1 unit

I had to think almost 4 seconds before nailing this one down. There's just no good way to get away from this one. Lakers not that impressive lately, and the Nuggets appear to be somewhat healthy (that's a confident endorsement, right?).

College Basketball

Yale +3 -110 (WSEX), 1.1 units to win 1 unit

Mostly a play based on the betting and lack of line movement, but is it my imagination, or does Penn play worse at home than they do on the road? Weird.

That's it. Back in the morning.

Thursday, February 26, 2009


Four for college hoops tonight:

St. Joseph's +3.5 +100, 1 unit to win 1 unit

Virginia +3.5 +100, 1 unit to win 1 unit

UAB +4 -102, 1.02 units to win 1 unit

Santa Clara +10 -110, 1.1 units to win 1 unit

Going against some popular favorites (Gonzaga, Memphis, Xavier, Miami) on the road. Probably could guessed these plays yesterday before the lines came out.

Good luck everybody.

Thursday Night Hockey

A lousy night all around last night. Hoping to turn it around today, starting with these on the ice:

Anaheim +190, 0.5 units to win 0.95 units

Atlanta +266, 0.5 units to win 1.33 units

Ottawa +162, 0.5 units to win 0.81 units

St. Louis +138, 1 unit to win 1.38 units

Back later if I have time to look at hoops.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Wednesday Night Basketball

A lot of games tonight, but not many that look interesting. The picks:


Wizards +4.5 -101, 1.01 units to win 1 unit

Knicks +2.5 +106, 1 unit to win 1.06 units

Another night, another pair of unloved home dogs.

College Basketball

William & Mary +12 -101, 1.01 units to win 1 unit

I think I've picked William & Mary 63 times this season, and I'm something in the neighborhood of 0-63 so far. So, obviously, I'm a genius for picking them again. In a low-scoring game, maybe, just maybe, the Tribe can hang around within single digits.

Arkansas +4 -104, 1.04 units to win 1 unit

Is Alabama back to being overrated again? They go back and forth so much, it's hard to keep track.

Colorado +5 +103, 1 unit to win 1.03 units

The wagerline kids love Oklahoma State, but Colorado isn't so awful at home, taking both Texas and Kansas State to overtime recently.

That's it for tonight. Good luck everybody.

Wednesday Night Hockey

I don't see myself getting away from these, so might as well put them in now. Risking half a unit on each:

Kings +170

Islanders +238

Back later.


I direct my fellow DC-area sports fans and/or baseball dorks (which covers 95% of our readership) to the great website, which has posted this exciting rumor regarding its mission statement.

If this comes to pass, I wonder if the streets of D.C. will spontaneously erupt with massive celebration, just like they did on election night last fall.

Wednesday Tennis

Two for hump-day:

Dubai: I. Andreev -104 over D. Tursunov, 0.52 units to win 0.5 units

Opened as the underdog and has moved to the favorite overnight, which I always like to see. Match starting in about an hour.

Acapulco: A. Montanes -174 over D. Gimeno-Traver, 0.87 units to win 0.5 units

Definitely the better player. Match is not until late afternoon, but line moving fast and I've got a busy morning.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

I Am So Tired

So tired. Going with some unloved home dogs in hoops, and then whatever Florida's hockey team is called.


Thunder +7.5 -101, 1.01 units to win 1 unit

Bulls +2 -110, 1.1 units to win 1 unit

College Basketball

St. Johns +4 -108, 1.08 units to win 1 unit

Iowa State +2.5 -108, 1.08 units to win 1 unit


Florida +194, 0.5 units to win 0.97 units

Good luck everybody. I might not be able to stay awake until any of these games get started.....

The Bookmaker Fade List - 2/24/09

Didn't bother yesterday because there were so few games. Today's shopping list for squares, otherwise known as Bookmakers ten most popular bets today:

1. Magic
2. Bobcats
(this is almost certainly a mistake - should be Phoenix)
3. Pitt
4. Lakers
5. Cavs
6. FC Porto
7. LSU
8. Syracuse
9. Barcelona
10. Creighton

There's no chance that Bobcats isn't a typo, and that whoever typed it in over there meant to type Suns. For the first time I can remember, there are soccer picks in the top 10 (2 of them). I wonder if it's the playoffs or something. Other than that, just the usual square suspects - Lakers, Cavs, Magic - except for mid-major Creighton making the list. I was going to say "good for them" but since inclusion on the above list usually means the game is going to be closer than expected, the Bluejays would probably prefer not to be mentioned. Back later if I ever get out of the office tonight.

Tuesday Tennis

2-0 yesterday, which is nice. Three for Tuesday, lines from Matchbook:

Delray Beach: V. Spadea -148 over D. Gremelmayr, 0.74 units to win 0.50 units

Delray Beach: M. Baghdatis +104 over E. Gulbis, 0.50 units to win 0.52 units

Acapulco: F. Fognini +130 over M. Granollers, 0.50 units to win 0.65 units

Going mostly with the line moves here, with just a little subjective evaluation mixed in. Some manageable time zones in these two tourneys (Dubai started already at some ungodly hour) - I think Spadea starts around 11 AM Eastern, Fognini at 1:30 PM, and Baghdatis at 7 PM (in some cases, the exact start time will, of course, depend on when the previous match on the same court ends).

Monday, February 23, 2009

Monday Night NBA

Gonna start being more picky about the NBA games until the bad luck turns around a little. Just one for tonight:

Clippers +4 -106, 1.06 units to win 1 unit

Yuck. Huge (HUGE) public support for the Warriors on the road, which is weird enough by itself. Hopefully, the horrendous bashing the Clips have experienced at the hands of the Suns and Blazers the last few games has created some value here.

I was considering Tennessee-Martin in the college games, but the betting has turned around during the afternoon. Probably a pass.

Monday Tennis

As usual, three tournaments kicking off on Monday. A couple of first-round picks:

Dubai: F. Santoro -120 (WSEX) over V. Hanescu, 0.6 units to win 0.5 units

Delray Beach: C. Rochus -120 (WSEX) over R. Karanusic, 0.6 units to win 0.5 units

Put a little red mark next to these on my sheet when they both opened as underdogs at Pinnacle last night. This morning, they have both swung to the favorite which goes along with what I was thinking.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Dear Gambling Gods

I would like to win at least one of these four games today.


Bobcats +6.5 -105, 1.05 units to win 1 unit

Timberwolves +9.5 -104, 1.04 units to win 1 unit

College Basketball

Northwestern +6 -106, 1.06 units to win 1 unit


Minnesota +180, 0.5 units to win 0.9 units


Saturday, February 21, 2009

Two More Losers

Not going our way today. Two more college basketball picks, and then done for the night:

Cal State Fullerton +7 -110 (WSEX), 1.1 units to win 1 unit

Northern Colorado +3 -104, 1.04 units to win 1 unit

That's it. Back tomorrow.

Late Afternoon Additions

Having some computer issues, so I'll do these quickly:


Sixers +3.5 -103, 1.03 units to win 1 unit

College Basketball

Loyola-Chicago +1.5 +102, 1 unit to win 1.02 units

Georgia +10 +100, 1 unit to win 1 unit

Florida International +13 -110 (WSEX), 1.1 units to win 1 unit

Back later. Probably.

Early Afternoon Hoops From The Volunteer State

I didn't wake up this morning looking to find 3 picks from schools located in the same state, it just worked out that way:

Tennessee +3 +104, 1 unit to win 1.04 units

Patrick Patterson might try to play, but he's not 100%. If they can keep Meeks under 60, the Vols have a good shot to steal this one.

Tennessee Tech +5.5 -108, 1.08 units to win 1 unit

Ball State has coped decently without the injured Anthony Newell, but sooner or later it's going to catch up with them. Daniel Northern has a big game today.

Vanderbilt +8 -105, 1.05 units to win 1 unit

So, Florida goes to Vandy and beats them by 25 points in the last game, but now at home, they're only favored by 8? Puh-leeze. Who are they kidding?

Back later as time permits. Is that really what the Tennessee state flag looks like? For some reason, I find that bizarre.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Thank God It's Friday Basketball

Not too many interesting looks tonight. The few, the proud, the Friday night hoops picks:

College Basketball

Harvard +5 -106, 1.06 units to win 1 unit

You have the boorish manners of a Yalie! Good shooters on this Crimson team, and Princeton has been slipping lately.


Bobcats +2 +101, 1 unit to win 1.01 units

HUGE support for the Magic by the squares - the Skip To My Lou era begins. Bobcats finally healthy and playing at home.

Hawks +4.5 +100, 1 unit to win 1 unit

Two teams that stayed out of any trading deadline deals yesterday. Betting and line movement say the Hawks keep this one close.

Passed on the Thunder after the Amare news and the Bulls because of yesterday's trades which I haven't had a chance to even look at yet. Daddy really needs a winning night in the NBA sometime in the next month or two. Good luck everybody.

Friday Night Hockey

Last night was the first losing night in hockey in 11 days. Not too shabby. Getting this one in now because the line has been dropping steadily:

Lightning +188, 0.5 units to win 0.94 units

Are the Hurricanes all of sudden this good? I'm seriously asking because I have no idea. The line move would suggest that they are not. Back later with everything else.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Thursday Night Hoops

Running late as usual. The picks:


Pistons ML -107, 1.07 units to win 1 unit

College Basketball

Charlotte +6.5 -105, 1.05 units to win 1 unit

Oregon +6 -102, 1.02 units to win 1 unit

Idaho State +3.5 -109, 1.09 units to win 1 unit

Northern Colorado +11 +106, 1 unit to win 1.06 units

The usual suspects: public big on the other side, but the books are taking a stand with the picks listed above. For half a second, I actually thought about Gonzaga -35 but chickened out. Good luck everybody.

Pomeroy Rankings- A Significant But Not Final Word

Some readers may remember my inquiry/obsession with the accuracy of the Pomeroy rankings. Specifically, I inquired here as to whether they overvalued reams that play at a very slow tempo or undervalued teams that play at a quick tempo.

Well, apparently I'm not the only one who was asking this question, because the Basketball Prospectus people did some great work on the topic. As you can see from this article unless you are stat-phobic like Hambone, the data suggests that if anything, fast-tempo teams are overvalued relative to tournament performance and slow-tempo teams are undervalued.

I do have one quarrel with the methodology here. My concerns about Pomeroy (I don't think it's accurate to call them criticisms) were that it missed the boat only with respect to the very slowest or very fastest teams, and only with the elite teams who play a lot of garbage time, since that's the only time a disparity in garbage time might be significant enough to affect the rankings.

Therefore, I'm not sure that dividing the tournament field into four tempo "quartiles" really does the trick. Put another way, using this year's tempo numbers: if they did this study on the 2009 tournament, UNC and Davidson would both potentially qualify for the top quartile of tempo teams with 6 or better seeds in the tournament, while Wisconsin and Arizona State would be in the last quartile of tourney teams with 6 or better seeds. My concern was not that a team like Davidson has played a lot more garbage time than Wisconsin, but rather that UNC has played a lot more garbage time than a team like Arizona State. it wasn't the quartiles I was concerned with, because on the whole I think the garbage time comes close to averaging out when you're talking about teams with 21-11 records. It's the teams with the 29-4 records where I think you'd see the disparity. And this is the most important thing to study, since those are the teams you most want to be able to compare to one another.

Anyway, I think they did a great job here and I understand the sample size problems with running these numbers using only the elite teams, but it does leave some lingering questions. And also, the fact that found that the slowest tempo teams were undervalued when they used the 1-6 seeds and divided the field into quartiles suggests that even if they reduced the teams in the analysis to the elite and to the slowest and fastest, there probably still wouldn't be a problem. But it's worth making this point here.

Also, it still leaves open the question of why there's not some easy, automatic cut-off point for the data that goes into the efficiency numbers. Certainly anything that happens in the last three minutes of a 30 point blowout is tainted. I guess maybe it's just too difficult to parse out and exlude that data out of hundreds of games a week. Understandable, certainly.

Finally, a reminder- this is just typical Grover nitpicking. I continue to use and love the Pomeroy numbers alongside the Sagarin numbers, and you should too.

Thursday Hockey Blowout

I am still baffled by how well the hockey picks have performed so far, and the lucky ride is likely to end at some point, but it sure takes the edge off the lame NBA season to see that we're up 10 units in a sport we know nothing about. Today, there are 7 picks that meet our uninformed criteria. Unfortunately, since we don't know anything about the sport, we don't have any subjective way of narrowing down the list. So, tonight's ridiculous number of NHL picks, all risking half a unit:

Sabres +144
Islanders +142
Canadiens +164
Lightning +180
Blues +122
Oilers +136
Kings +310
(yes, that's +310)

If we can get just 2 out of those 7, I'll go to bed relieved that this wasn't the stupidest thing I've ever done. Do not try this at home.

Thursday Afternoon Tennis

I'm still not sure Haas was a smart move yesterday. The line move was clearly in his favor, but Querrey is really coming on lately. Luckily, the +200 dog winner in the other match took the sting off of that loss. Today, from Marseilles:

M. Llodra +138 over P. Mathieu, 0.5 units to win 0.69 units

Mathieu was the big dog winner for us yesterday, so I'm biting the hand that fed me today. A real toss-up talent-wise in my opinion, so when you factor in the decent line drop overnight, we end up backing another French underdog this afternoon.

There could be another for tonight if I have time to look, but it's doubtful. Oh, and screw you Colorado State. What kind of assholes lose by 10 points in overtime as 8.5-point underdogs? Overtime is only 5 minutes long, for God's sake! Pathetic. That one was in the bag. The only good thing about it was that I very quickly got over my disappointment with Air Force losing by 12 as 10.5 dogs.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Wednesday Night & No Clever Headline

Damn. Ended up ahead in tennis today, but after getting the big underdog (Mathieu), the favorite (Haas) completely shit the crisper. Not even close. On to the major sports:


76ers +1 -105, 1.05 units to win 1 unit

Warriors +5 -113, 1.13 units to win 1 unit

Betting and line movement (or lack thereof). The Kings were going to be on this list, but with the Miller/Salmons trade, we pulled it off the table.

College Basketball

Marshall +4.5 +102, 1 unit to win 1.02 units

Betting + line drop + possible false move(?) + home dog + deep bench = pick. I am good at math.

Air Force +10.5 -106, 1.06 units to win 1 unit

I don't think I've won a pick on the Falcons all season, so this is a really clever move.

Colorado State +8.5 +104, 1 unit to win 1.04 units

Utah is the most popular road favorite on the board today, so we'll take the unloved home dog.

Idaho +6 +101, 1 unit to win 1.01 units

Boise State is by far the most popular side on wagerline today with almost 80% support. No surprise we're on the other side.

Wyoming +7 -107, 1.07 units to win 1 unit

Not sure why the public likes UNLV on the road so much tonight. Won't be a surprise if the Cowboys win straight up.


Islanders +196, 0.5 units to win 0.98 units

Kings +136, 0.5 units to win 0.68 units

Flip a coin with these, they could go either way. Hopefully, we'll get one of them.

Good luck everybody.

The Bookmaker Fade List - That's More Like It Edition

OK, after yesterday's bizarre list, this one looks much more like I would expect:

1. Nuggets
2. Magic
3. Hawks
4. Notre Dame
5. Lakers
6. Suns
7. Florida State
8. Bulls
9. LSU
10. Cavaliers

Lots of big-name square favorites - I feel better now. At the moment, we're almost definitely going to be on the opposite side of at least 3 of those NBA games. Gonna watch the lines for a couple of hours just to be sure.

Wednesday Afternoon Tennis

At least, I think they're this afternoon.

T. Haas -150 over S. Querrey, 0.75 units to win 0.50 units

P. Mathieu +200 over G. Monfils, 0.5 units to win 1 unit

Line movement with a little subjective opinion tossed in. Back with the real sports later.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

"I Laid My Bed, Now I Have To Sit On It"

That's one of the gems I just heard from A-Fraud a few minutes ago in his press conference. That's awesome. OK, trying to wrap some things up and actually go out for a couple of beers after work, so no time for rambling (and there was much rejoicing!). Risking one unit or to win 1 unit on each of these:

College Basketball

Missouri State +7.5 -103

New Mexico +6.5 +100


Bobcats +8.5 -104

Thunder +3 +106

Nets +6.5 -102

Hawks +8.5 -103

And, as well as the hockey has been going, nothing I really like tonight. Vancouver was the closest one, but not going to force it. Good luck everybody. Back later for Wednesday tennis if I have time.

The Bookmaker Fade List - Twilight Zone Edition

Some of these look odd to me today:

1. Michigan State
2. Spurs
3. Hawks (wagerline has 66% Lakers, which makes much more sense)
4. Kentucky
5. Hornets
6. Timberwolves (never expected to see them on this list, especially without AJ)
7. Austin Peay
8. Maryland (another odd-looking one)
9. Bucks (and another)
10. Bruins

This is the first BM fade list that really has me scratching my head. Are the Hawks really getting the 3rd most action at that book on the road against the Lakers? I'm very skeptical. Speaking of fades, The Todd really likes Kentucky and Clemson tonight, which is also weird because The Todd is almost always in sync with the fade list, but the list is on the other side of the Clemson game. I think the correct fade is Clemson (ranked team, at home, etc.). I need a drink.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Tuesday Tennis

One pick from each of the 3 ATP tournaments going on around the world:

Copa Telmex: F. Fognini -134 over P. Andujar, 0.67 units to win 0.50 units

Open 13: F. Santoro +128 over J. Benneteau, 0.5 units to win 0.64 units

Morgan Keegan: C. Rochus -126 over D. Young, 0.63 units to win 0.50 units

As usual, I don't have time/energy to figure out the time zones and such, so no idea what time any of these matches actually start tomorrow.

Monday Night Hoops

Pulled that hockey winner out of my ass earlier. Two for college basketball:

Marist +2.5 -102, 1.02 units to win 1 unit

Texas A & M +1.5 +106, 1 unit to win 1.06 unit

On both of these, going against the public and following the line move.

If I find time, hopefully can take a look at some tennis matches for tomorrow morning.

Afternoon Hockey

Just realized that this game starts at 2 PM Eastern:

Islanders +182, 0.5 units to win 0.91 units

Line move isn't very helpful, but the Islanders are playing at home and are better on both sides of the power plays. Worth a shot here getting +182.

Back later with hoops.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Just Five For Sunday

The results (9-6) were good yesterday, but once I added them all up, we picked 15 basketball games yesterday, which sounds like a lot for one day. Posting them 3 or 4 at a time, sometimes you don't realize how many games you're involved in until you add them up later. Today, just 5 in college basketball:

Virginia +8.5 -101, 1.01 units to win 1 unit

Line looks pretty short considering UVA is at the bottom of the ACC barrel, and Clemson's demolition of Duke is still fresh in people's minds.

South Florida +13.5 +100, 1 unit to win 1 unit

Another line that looks suspiciously low. There surely has to be some value here after Notre Dame's destruction of Louisville in their last game.

Towson +11 -110 (WSEX), 1.1 units to win 1 unit

Line not budging despite the public betting on Drexel. Towson shoots better as well, but of course the last time I said that about a team, Iona went out and scored only 39 points in that game.

Illinois-Chicago +1 -110 (WSEX), 1.1 units to win 1 unit

Line just dropped from 1.5 which seals the deal for us. Pomeroy's stats have Ill-Chi favored by one today.

Miami(FL) +8 +101, 1 unit to win 1.01 units

Like Notre Dame, UNC is coming off a very public, impressive victory, so there's likely to be value here. 71% of the wagerline crowd on the Heels, but the books are taking a stand with the Canes.

That's probably it for the day. Considered Colorado in the NHL just on principle (+320!), but that's probably not the smart way to do business.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Late-Night Basketball

The rest for Saturday night:

Marshall +12 -107, 1.07 units to win 1 unit

San Jose State +5 -104, 1.04 units to win 1 unit

San Francisco +17 +104, 1 unit to win 1.04 units

That's it. Good night everybody.

Early Evening Hoops & Hockey

Really scrambling today. A few more for tonight:

College Basketball

Rice +7.5 -103

Brown +1.5 -110 (WSEX)

Rutgers +11 +105

Tulane +14.5 -112


Columbus +142, 0.5 units to win 0.71 units

Maybe back later for the late games, but no promises.

Mid/Late Afternoon

Too many picks, but couldn't weed them out any better than this. Either risking 1 unit or to win 1 unit:

Elon +6 +102

Kansas State +1 -110 (WSEX)

Georgia +10 +104

Air Force +19 +104

Iowa +5 -102

Southern Miss +12.5 -103

Haven't even looked at tonight's games yet. Hopefully, will find time later.

It Begins

Not much to love in the early college basketball games. Playing just these two so far:

Georgetown +4.5 -105, 1.05 units to win 1 unit

I think Georgetown has officially made the jump from overrated to underrated. Betting, line movement, and Ken Pomeroy say Hoyas today, as weird as it looks.

Evansville +5.5 +100, 1 unit to win 1 unit

Big public support for the Braves, but the line has held steady. Go Purple Aces.

Back later with the rest.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Jason Voorhees Approved These Picks

Come on, you knew a cheeseball like me would have to make a Friday the 13th reference at some point today. Hoops and hockey for Friday night:

College Basketball

West Virginia -4.5 -104, 1.04 units to win 1 unit

Line just keeps going up and up.

Iona +2 -105, 1.05 units to win 1 unit

Lost on Iona in their last game where I think they scored a total of 39 points. I'll give them one more chance.


Risking 0.5 units on each one:

Buffalo +150

St. Louis +154

Vancouver +158

I would really like to get at least one of those, please. Good night everybody.

Do You Know The Way To San Jose?

Yep, after seeing Tsonga on the Bookmaker fade list, it was a probably a foregone conclusion that Nadal was going to beat him. For tonight, from the SAP Open in San Jose, CA:

S. Querrey +164 over J. Blake, 0.5 units to win 0.82 units

T. Haas +262 over A. Roddick, 0.5 units to win 1.31 units

In both cases, we're going with the line moves and against players who seem to have a habit of bowing out of tournaments a round or two earlier than expected.

Back in a little while with hoops (probably losers) and hockey (probably winners).

The Bookmaker Fade List - 2/13/09

The top ten most popular bets on Bookmaker today:

1. Villanova
2. Butler
3. J. Tsonga
4. Princeton
5. Bruins
6. Canadiens
7. Red Wings
8. Sharks
9. Rangers
10. Canucks

Well, this is what happens when the NBA is on its All-Star Break: 3 college games, 6 hockey games, and a freaking tennis match. Makes me want to jump on Rafael Nadal in the match starting 10 minutes from now, but I think I'll pass. The Todd is embarrassed about his 0-3 yesterday, so probably no fades from him today. Hey, we're 1-7 in college hoops the last 2 days and we're not embarrassed to keep throwing them out there. I think that just proves that we have no shame.

Early Afternoon Tennis

It seems like tennis and hockey are the only sports that are winning for us the past couple of days, so took the time this morning to find a few in the quarters and semis of the three tournaments going on around the world today:

Brasil Open: J. Acasuso +146 over T. Robredo, 0.5 units to win 0.73 units

Acasuso just beat Robredo last week at the Movistar Open, and Robredo hasn't beaten anybody so far in this tournament to make me think that he should all of sudden be this big of a favorite today.

ABN AMRO: J. Benneteau +270 over G. Monfils, 0.5 units to win 1.35 units

A couple of Frenchmen on the hard courts. A couple of impressive wins for Benneteau already in this tournament (F. Lopez, N. Davydneko), and although Monfils is a better player, I don't think he's this much better. Line has been dropping this morning.

Unless I've screwed up the time zones (which happens all the time), there will probably be something else for the late afternoon. I'll look at them around lunchtime.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Thursday Night Potpourri

Running late as usual. The picks, quickly:

College Basketball

Northwestern +2 -105, 1.05 units to win 1 unit

San Francisco +3.5 +109, 1 unit to win 1.09 units

Idaho +5 -110 (WSEX), 1.1 units to win 1 unit

Cal State Fullerton +7.5 +102, 1 unit to win 1.02 units


Mavericks +4 -112, 1.12 units to win 1 unit


Ottawa +208, 0.5 units to win 1.04 units

Minnesota +256, 0.5 units to win 1.28 units

Good luck everybody.

The Bookmaker Fade List - 2/12/09

The top ten most popular bets at Bookmaker today:

1. Louisville
3. Gonzaga
4. Blazers
5. Illinois
6. Celtics
7. Bulls
8. St. Joseph's
9. Buffalo
10. Utah State

With only 3 NBA games on the ticket, a lot more college teams on the fade list today than usual. The Todd really likes Illinois, Gonzaga, and UCLA.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Professionals

The rest for Wednesday night:


Jazz -1 +102, 1 unit to win 1.02 units

Clippers -5 -103, 1.03 units to win 1 unit

Two favorites? I feel like I've sold my soul to the devil.


Ottawa +156, 0.5 units to win 0.78 units

Phoenix +194, 0.5 units to win 0.97 units

Um. It's hockey. What do you want me to say?

Good luck everybody.

College Hoops Wednesday

Looks like a busy afternoon brewing, so getting the college picks in now:

St. John's +8.5 +104, 1 unit to win 1.04 units

Cincy won by 11 points at MSG, but they're only favored by 8.5 at home? Fishy, fishy, fishy.

SMU +7 -102, 1.02 units to win 1 unit

I thought SMU would be better than 7-14 at this point when I looked at them before the season started. A big line move toward the home team despite big public support for Houston.

Duke +1.5 -101, 1.01 units to win 1 unit

We have really mixed feelings about this one. We've probably watched every game these teams have played over the past 20+ years, and between the two of us, including undergraduate and graduate, we have 3 combined degrees from these schools. So, if there's any doubt, we typically opt to pass on any games involving Duke and UNC. However, looking at this line, we can't let this one go by tonight where every indicator is pointing to the home team. Public loves UNC, but the line has moved the other way. Pomeroy's system predicts Duke winning by 5 points, and Sagarin has Duke by 4. UNC is #1 on Bookmaker's most popular bets today. Also, there's a guy named Todd who comments on a different blog (I'm gonna call him "The Todd" because in my mind that's how I imagine he would introduce himself) who loves UNC tonight. The Todd always has strong opinions on the squarest sides and he is pretty much always wrong. I love The Todd. I wish he would start writing his own blog.

San Diego State +5 -106, 1.06 units to win 1 unit

Almost made this a 2-unit play. As usual with our picks, the public loves Utah, but the line is not moving the same way. Pomeroy has SD State ranked higher than Utah. A really deep team getting points tonight. Go Aztecs.

If there's time, back later with any additions to this list or NBA/NHL picks.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Tennis For Night Owls

Nice underdog win for Mathieu this afternoon at +246. Really got my hopes up after Montanes (+174) won the first set in his match, but then he lost the next two. Like I said earlier, though, I'm happy with getting one of the two. I can't swear to it, but I think this next one starts at 6 or 6:30 AM Eastern Wednesday:

M. Llodra +102 (Matchbook) over I. Karlovic, 0.5 units to win 0.51 units

I've been watching this line move at Pinnacle for a couple of days now, but there's no more Pinnacle for Americans, so I waited until lines started popping up at other books before posting it. Line has moved very steadily toward Llodra in this one, so we're taking a shot with the defending champion in this event at a good price.

Stuck At The Office

Don't have any of my notes with me, so this will be brief. In hoops tonight, each either to win 1 unit or risking 1 unit:

College Basketball

Hofstra +1.5 -107

Loyola-Chicago +4 -110

Missouri State +6 +103

Depaul +1 -101


Pacers +6.5 -104

Nets +4.5 +103

Thunder +12 -103

There might be some decent dogs in hockey tonight, but didn't have time to look. Good luck everybody.

First PECOTA Projections Released

As I told Hambone, this feels like Christmas Day to me. Should I go just ahead and kill myself now?

Here they are.

As regular readers know, The Man says I can't look at wagering lines at work. There will obviously be a lot of updates to follow, including extensive work on Win Total wagering. But for now, Hambone was kind enough to forward Pinnacle's World Series futures to me so I could get started. A couple initial thoughts that will likely turn into half-unit or quarter-unit plays at some point:

Oakland A's at +3832 looks like value to me. They've got a good chance to win the AL West by default as much as anything else. Semi-regular readers of like myself know that the Angels front office hasn't made a lot of noise about replacing the production they lost when Teixeira walked. In fact, the scuttlebutt suggests that the A's are as likely to sign Dunn or Abreu as the Angels, so there may be value in acting on this one very soon. Also, if the A's are in the running come July, you have to like the idea of having Billy Beane on your side, trying to find the #4 starter that they desperately need.

The Diamondbacks at +2604 are the other one that jumps up and grabs you, as PECOTA has them winning the NL West by a good margin. Obviously, there is cause for concern from the Dodgers, whose current projection puts Juan Pierre in LF instead of, say, Manny Ramirez. So it's safe to say that the Dodgers might pick up a few games, and the D-Backs might even lose one or two, if L.A. find someone more productive than Pierre to run out there every day. Still, 90 wins from PECOTA is 90 wins from PECOTA- that kind of squad can take a run at the wild card even if it misses out on the division. This team is under the radar, and a great value at that number. They'll get decent production from almost every spot, with potential for breakout seasons from a number of young stars. And in my opinion, they have the best starting pitching rotation in the National League. And before you laugh, check the PECOTA projections for Max Scherzer.

I still like the Indians, even at +2224 instead of the 30-1 I fell in love with so long ago. However, even though my prediction that PECOTA would call the AL Central for the Indians by a decent margin was correct, I'm not as enthusiastic about them as I once was. Most significantly, I don't like the fact that they lean so heavily on Hafner, with 600 PAs. I worry that the mechanisms of PECOTA, which uses comparables from different eras, might get thrown out of whack by a guy who was in all likelihood using PEDs. If he stops using, his comparables would obviously continue to produce at a higher level than he will. Still, I find it difficult to believe that a guy like Carmona is gonna put up a 1.54 WHIP, so it probably all evens out in the end. And evening out in the end is the reason that the teamwide PECOTA projections are so incredibly accurate.

Tuesday Afternoon Tennis

I said in yesterday's early post that the line movement pointed to Vassallo-Arguello, but of course I passed, and of course, he won. Frustrating. Two big underdogs for today:

ABN AMRO: P. Mathieu +246 over R. Gasquet, 0.5 units to win 1.23 units

Brasil Open: A. Montanes +174 over JC Ferrero, 0.5 units to win 0.87 units

In both cases, we're backing a longshot where I subjectively think the talent gap is narrower than the lines would suggest, and where the line has moved steadily in that direction also. If just one wins, it will be a good day.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Maybe Getting 'Em In Early Was a Bad Idea

Don't love the line moves on the first 2 games that I posted earlier, but not buying them back. The rest of a slow Monday night:

College Basketball

Tennessee-Chattanooga +2 -116, 1.16 units to win 1 unit

Public likes Samford, but line has moved the other line. Sagarin has this one even (or actually Samford by half a point) and Pomeroy has Chattanooga by 1.


Clippers ML -102, 1.02 units to win 1 unit

Public likes the home team (Bobcats), but the line has fallen pretty dramatically. The Clips have very quietly gotten healthy for the first time in a long time.

Grizzlies -3 -110 (WSEX), 1.1 units to win 1 unit

The recreational bettors are falling over themselves to play the Hornets, but I'm not sure they're paying attention. If they looked at the injury report, would they really be putting their hard earned money on the line with Antonio Daniels, Ryan Bowen, and Sean Marks in the starting lineup instead of Chris Paul (injured), Tyson Chandler (injured), and David West (suspended).

Back later if I have time to look at tennis for tomorrow.

Getting 'Em In Early

A couple of college hoops games jumped out at me this morning and I've seen nothing to change my mind since. So, let's go ahead and put them on the record:

West Virginia +7.5 +109, 1 unit to win 1.09 units

Public likes the home team Panthers, but the line has either held steady or dropped to 7.5 at some books. Pomeroy has this one by only 5 points and I'm hoping all them fancy numbers add up to a close game tonight.

Iona +1 -103, 1.03 units to win 1 unit

Down to a Pick at some books, but as usual, Matchbook is giving us better option here. Iona has been a good road team lately, while the Jaspers have not been overly impressive at home. Iona also has the better shooters. Road team gets the W.

Considering Chattanooga also, and if we decide to make that one a pick, we'll post it late this afternoon with the NBA games. Three tennis tournaments starting today, but nothing that looks like a pick (line move says Vassallo-Arguello this afternoon in Brazil, but I'm not sold). Looking at the early lines, I'd be surprised if there aren't any first round picks in those tournaments for the Tuesday games. Back later.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Spending Sunday With The Saints

Great day yesterday, now we'll see if the luck goes the other way today. Hopefully, by picking 2 schools named after saints, we'll get some divine intervention:

College Basketball

UNC-Charlotte +2.5 +105, 1 unit to win 1.05 units

Huge support for the road favorite, but the line is holding pretty steady.

St. John's +10.5 -109, 1.09 units to win 1 unit

Same story as with Charlotte. The Johnnies look like a completely different team at MSG than on the road. Double-digit home dogs always picque our interest.

St. Louis +5.5 +100, 1 unit to win 1 unit

Three in a row where the line's holding steady despite solid betting numbers for their opponent.


Cavaliers -5 -105, 1.05 units to win 1 unit

I'm really excited to play the Cavs for the first and probably last time this season. Tired of the mouth-breathers getting all the Lebron fun. Big Z is back but nobody seems to be talking about it.

Timberwolves +4 -104, 1.04 units to win 1 unit

The public loves the Hornets tonight, but I wonder if they've taken the time to look and see that the Hornets are starting Ryan Bowen and Antonio Daniels. Yikes.


Nashville +150 (WSEX), 0.5 units to win 0.75 units

Line dropped overnight. Defense! (clap)(clap) Defense! (clap)(clap) Goaltending and penalty killing give the Predators a good chance to pull the upset today.

That's probably it from me today. Good luck everybody.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Saturday Night

No time for rambling. The rest of the picks:

College Basketball

Duquesne +6 +100, 1 unit to win 1 unit

New Mexico State +6.5 +104, 1 unit to win 1.04 units

Wright State +2 -104, 1.04 units to win 1 unit

Florida International +1.5 +108, 1 unit to win 1.08 units

UTEP +4 +101, 1 unit to win 1.01 units


Clippers +6.5 -106, 1.06 units to win 1 unit

Nets +2.5 -106, 1.06 units to win 1 unit


Toronto +192, 0.5 units to win 0.96 units

Florida +176, 0.5 units to win 0.88 units

Los Angeles +174, 0.5 units to win 0.87 units

Whew. That all, folks. Enjoy.

Southern Living

Haven't gotten to tonight's games yet, but there's still not a lot to love about today's card. Two dogs in the Southern Conference for the late afternoon:

Furman +6 +102, 1 unit to win 1.02 units

Another unpopular home dog with whom the books seem to be making a stand. The fact that Chattanooga won by 27 points when these two teams played in Chattanooga earlier this season makes this 6-point spread look all the more fishy.

College of Charleston +17 -112, 1.12 units to win 1 unit

Public on those lovable Davidson Wildcats, but the line has moved the other way. Charleston doesn't have a star like Curry, but they have a much deeper bench, and they're going to need all the bodies they can get on the defensive end. It doesn't seem possible that Davidson could continue to hit 3-pointers at home at a 47% clip. Hopefully, today is the day they start coming back to Earth.

Back later after I find time to look at tonight's games.

Early Saturday Hoops - Not Much There

Nothing looking all that great in the early part of today's card. Just two decent-looking home dogs:

Rider +5 -102, 1.02 units to win 1 unit

Line holding steady, public support for Siena, home team getting 5. This one just squeaks in.

Auburn +3 +104, 1 unit to win 1.04 units

Don't love the little half-point move I'm seeing at other books, but the support for Tennessee out there is huge. If Kovortney Barber can hit just 50% of his free throws, the Tigers (or War Eagles, if you prefer) have a shot at winning this one at home.

Hopefully, there will be more good spots in the later games.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Laid-Back Friday Night

Not much going on tonight. The picks:


Clippers +4.5 -105, 1.05 units to win 1 unit

The Clippers have really sunk to a new low when the Grizzlies have 70% support against them at wagerline. The Grizzlies, for God's sake! With Baron and Zach back, maybe the Clips have a chance to keep this one close. Or maybe they'll lose by 25 points.

Kings +2.5 +101, 1 unit to win 1.01 units

Holy shit, this one is ugly. Wow.

College Basketball

South Florida +9 -107, 1.07 units to win 1 unit

We didn't really have any choice about this one. Home team getting 9 and the line not budging all day, despite 72% on Marquette. Pomeroy says 8. Unavoidable.


Columbus +170, 0.5 units to win 0.85 units

I'm trying to think of something clever to say here. Too tired. Just imagine I said something witty (for the first time ever) and then chuckle a little bit. I appreciate your cooperation.

The Bookmaker Fade List - 2/6/09

The ten most popular bets today according to Bookmaker, and as you might have guessed on a Friday, almost completely comprised of NBA games:

1. Magic
2. Celtics
3. Marquette (the only non-NBA game)
4. Nuggets
5. Grizzlies
6. Raptors
7. Warriors
8. Blazers
9. Jazz
10. Hawks

The list went 4-6 yesterday, but the way the squares have been cleaning up in the NBA this season, I wouldn't be surprised to see it go 7-3 tonight. We won't be on the same side on any of these, and definitely will be on the opposite of a few, you know, because we're gluttons for punishment.

Friday Afternoon Tennis - "Movie Star" Edition

3-0 yesterday including 2 underdogs, one of which (Stakhovsky) paid +212. Nice. Now that I've sufficiently jinxed myself, our first pick from the Movistar Open in Chile. I'm pronouncing that "Movie Star" but maybe I'm just an ignorant gringo:

P. Cuevas +114 (Matchbook) over P. Capdeville, 0.5 units to win 0.57 units

When the line initially dropped from +125 to +117 at Pinnacle, I was definitely expecting to post this play last night. But, when I went back and looked a couple of hours later, the line had unexpectedly jumped back up +128. This morning, I wake up to find it has moved the opposite direction, so we're back in business. Here are the notes I made on each player during limited work breaks yesterday:

P. Cuevas - Decent clay-court player from Uruguay (Uruguay?). Semi-finalist here last year. Impressive win over #3 seed Montanes (world rank = #40) in the last round.

P. Capdeville - Eh? Only potential edge is that he's playing in his home country.

So, there you have it. Getting the underdog money on a player I think is a little bit better. That's about all you can ask for. I believe this match is scheduled to start around 5 PM Eastern, but I can't promise that.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Five for Thursday

I've got some extra tennis money that I need to get rid of, so here are 5 college hoops picks for Thursday night:

Youngstown State +7.5 -103, 1.03 units to win 1 unit

Loyola-Chicago already beat Youngstown by 11 points in Youngstown's gym earlier this season, but they're only favored by 7.5 against them at home? Fishy, fishy, fishy. Even with the earlier victory, Pomeroy's numbers have Loy-Chi winning by 6.

Oregon State +4 +100, 1 unit to win 1 unit

The Beavers have been playing very well since the Presidential Inauguration of their coach's brother-in-law. Coincidence? I think not!

New Mexico State +11 +101, 1 unit to win 1.01 units

Public on Utah State (Sports Interaction says 89%, which seems a little much, but still), but line hasn't budged all day.

Santa Clara +5.5 -107, 1.07 units to win 1 unit

Very disappointing season for San Diego, and I don't see them recovering with Johnson out for the season. Public still loves them, though, probably in part because they already beat Santa Clara at Santa Clara this year.

Washington State +4.5 -105, 1.05 units to win 1 unit

Here again, big support for Stanford but no line movement. There's big money coming in on Wash. St. and/or the books are taking a stand with Wash. St. Either way, I'd rather be on their side than the squares. Pomeroy has Stanford winning by only 2, Sagarin says 4.

No NBA (nothing looks good) or NHL (didn't have time to look) tonight, so this is likely it, except that there could be a tennis pick for tomorrow posted later (gonna see what the lines do for a couple of hours). Good luck everybody.

The Bookmaker Fade List - 2/5/09

Otherwise known as today's Top Ten Most Popular Bets according to Bookmaker. It looks like the list would have gone 5-5 yesterday for a small loss at the standard Bookmaker -110 juice. If you are a super-duper-square, you are playing these today:

1. Lakers
2. Sixers
3. Rhode Island (this one seems strange to me)
4. Illinois
5. Xavier
6. Penn State
7. Butler
8. Bruins
9. Mavericks
10. Stars

The city of Dallas snags two spots in the Top Ten today. The Cowboys homers must have reloaded their accounts. Back after work.

Last-Minute Thursday Morning Tennis

Well, that Garcia-Lopez match I posted Tuesday night finally got started while I was sleeping last night and ended up a winner. This morning, two from Zagreb, Croatia:

M. Zverev +122 (Matchbook) over V. Hanescu, 0.5 units to win 0.61 units

Already cashed a nice underdog win on Zverev in the last round, so maybe pushing my luck here. Zverev is a good hardcourt player, but I think we're getting value here because nobody has ever heard of him. Line has dropped overnight which makes me think somebody in the know likes Zverev also. Hanescu always more comfortable on the clay courts than on today's surface (indoor hardcourt). Zverev has some good wins last year on this surface (Ferrer, Kohlschreiber), and I'm counting on him to advance.

S. Stakhovsky +212 (Matchbook) over I. Karlovic, 0.5 units to win 1.06 units

The unknown player versus the #3 seed who has one of the most feared serves in all of tennis (it helps that Karlovic is 6-foot-10). Of course, you wouldn't know unless you did a little poking around that Stakhovsky is actually the defending champion at this event and beat Karlovic on his way to the title last year. Getting +200 seems like a stretch here.

Apologies for the late notice, I think the Zverev match starts in about an hour and a half, and then Stakhovsky/Karlovic at around 11 AM Eastern. Couldn't stay up last night to watch the lines, and just got my first chance to see how they moved a few minutes ago. But, if it's a pick, it's a pick, and it goes on the blog. Have a good day, folks.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Wednesday Basketball

Running very late, obviously. My apologies in advance for no explanations. I have them, just no time to type them. All of these are either risking 1 unit or to win 1 unit depending on the juice:

College Basketball

Marshall +1 +100

West Virginia +1.5 -110

Miami(FL) +2 +107

Providence +1.5 +119

Delaware +1 +102

Auburn +1 -110 (WSEX)


Raptors +7.5 -105

Knicks +5.5 -104

Tennis pick (Garcia-Lopez) posted last night is still active but was postponed by rain until tomorrow. Maybe back with another one for tomorrow, but don't know if I'll have time to look for one. Good luck everybody.

Getting Out in Front of PECOTA

The 2009 PECOTA numbers are trickling out. The player cards will be released soon, which means the team projections will follow within a couple of weeks, although they will presumably wait until the free agent dust is settled. Those of you who were around last year my recall the pro-Rays, anti-Mariners feeding frenzy that occurred at the books after the projections came out, and the subsequent loss of value on both. It ended up not mattering much in the end. But since I only handle MLB and pro football around here, I thought it might be worth taking an early look at it this year, before the numbers come out. For now, I'm only considering futures bets, since the win total numbers won't be out for quite a while. So it's all about teams that will exceed expectations. We'll get to the Angels later.

Anyway, what we're looking for are teams whose 2008 third-order records suggest that they are better than their results and who have a ton of young talent that should improve in 2009. Divisional assignments is also a factor. For example, there's dozens of things to like about the Orioles (most of them affiliated with Matt Wieters), but three very big hurdles in their way.

I've already brought up the Indians, who at one point were 30-1 to win the World Series and who have a great core of young talent. The other teams whose pythagorean expectation numbers suggest that they were, for lack of a better word, "unlucky" in 2008 include the:

Blue Jays (again, the AL East problem comes up here)

Let's ignore the Blue Jays for now because of the AL East issue (we'll look at them again when the win total lines come out), and set aside the Dodgers for now because they are looking at as much as 20 Wins Above Replacement Player worth of free agents at the moment. And I don't need any help talking about the Nats' farm system, as my horrified fiancee can tell you.

Any Tigers, Mariners, Braves or Padres fans out there who can tell us a little something about their young talent? Anyone else who has a sneaking suspicion PECOTA is going to love their team in 2009? Anyone spot an outlier on the futures lines for one of these teams at one of the online books? Feel free to post in the comments or email us at the address provided on the web site. We think the site works best when we're getting feedback from all the smart people out there.

The Fade List

Otherwise known as the Top Ten Most Popular Bets on Bookmaker Today:

1. Wake Forest
2. Cavaliers
3. Lakers
4. Syracuse
5. Notre Dame
6. Mavericks
7. Suns
8. Boston College
9. Duke
10. Magic

I'm considering tracking these for a while and see how they do. Presumably, they won't do very well at all, but considering the NBA success that the squares are having this year, I'm not 100% confident in that. But, if you have a workplace filter that lets you see our site, but not wagerline or other consensus sites, at least maybe this gives you a head start on thinking about what teams you do not want to be backing tonight (unless, of course, you're a square, and you think that just backing the lines that seem too good to be true is the way to long-term success, and in that case, this list probably looks like it's full of LOCKS for tonight).

The Broncos Offseason Workouts Are Awesome

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Tennis In South Africa

A tiny profit Tuesday thanks to the nice underdog win with Zverev. Thank you, Mr. Zverev, for bailing me out of that bone-headed play on Cipolla, which I still played like a total square after acknowledging that the line movement was signaling to go the other way. Stupid. For Wednesday:

G. Garcia-Lopez -166 (Matchbook) over L. Mayer, 0.83 units to win 0.50 units

Prior to this tournament, Mayer had only played two ATP-level matches in his life (you read that correctly, 2 matches ever), and he's not quite ready for prime time against a much more experienced player. Line has been inching upwards all evening, so I'm locking it in now before it goes any higher. Don't see anything else that looks good, which is sad considering there are 3 tournaments going on right now, but don't want to force anything - it's a long season. Good night everybody.

Tuesday Night and I Need A Drink

Probably gonna leave some money out there tonight, because my brain is completely fried after a very difficult day. The picks:

College Basketball

Ohio State +1.5 +108, 1 unit to win 1.08 units

Can't believe the public is on the road favorite in this game. That line move down from +2 sealed the deal.

Hofstra +11 +100, 1 unit to win 1 unit

The consensus on Mason isn't significant, but the full point drop combined with Sagarin's prediction of George Mason by only 9 (even after giving Mason 4 extra points for home court advantage) squeaks this one in.


Raptors +10 +104, 1 unit to win 1.04 units

If you want free money, just bet on the Cavs every game no matter what the spread is. Seriously, that's how easy it's been for the fools out there this year. Of course, maybe we look like the fools by consistently beating our head against the Cavs' wall, while the too-good-to-be-true backers are counting their money.

76ers +3 -102, 1.02 units to win 1 unit

The Celtics probably won't miss KG. He's really not that important, right?


Atlanta +190, 0.5 units to win 0.95 units

Some day one of these big underdogs is going to win. Maybe.

Holy crap, I wish I worked at a sportsbook today so I could see the thousands of Celtics/Cavs parlays coming in. The squares are probably lined up to bet their "entire account" on such a "sure thing." Jesus, I hate this hobby sometimes. Back later if I see anything in tennis for tomorrow (a very tiny profit earned on today's games).

Monday, February 2, 2009

Tuesday Tennis

I have no idea what the time zone differences are for these tournaments and made no effort to figure it out, so you're on your own. For all I know, they could start at 3 AM or tomorrow afternoon. The picks:


F. Cipolla -130 (Bookmaker) over M. Chiudinelli, 0.65 units to win 0.50 units

The line movement would suggest that I'm wrong on this one, so probably should pass. But, Cipolla should beat the qualifier rather easy on the hardcourt tomorrow.


M. Zverev +174 (BetUS) over A. Seppi, 0.50 units to win 0.87 units

OK, line movement here is much better and is favoring the German (Zverev). He is a good hardcourt player, but because Seppi is the #6 seed, we're getting a good number here even though this is not Seppi's preferred surface.

S. Bolleli -130 (Matchbook) over V. Troicki, 0.65 units to win 0.50 units

Bolleli made the semi-finals here last year on the indoor courts, but to be fair, he was beaten in the semi-finals by the same guy (Stakhovsky) that beat Troicki in the 2nd round. Still, Bolleli is definitely the better overall player and the line has been growing over the past several hours, so somebody out there agrees with me.

S. Stakhovsky -110 (WSEX) over D. Hrbaty, 0.55 units to win 0.50 units

The 30-year-old Hrbaty has a more recognizable name after his long career, but his best days are behind him. A good surface for his young Ukrainian opponent, and, oh yeah, I almost forgot to mention that Stakhovsky is the defending champion at this event.

For basketball/football, most books will have the exact same lines for most of the games, but in tennis, it really pays to shop around and have multiple outs. As you can see, each of those four lines was found at a different sportsbook, and the differences among the books were pretty significant for a couple of those matches. And if you're not American and can use Pinnacle, those are often the best lines out there (dammit). Good night everybody.

Groundhog Day in the NBA

Hey, that sort of rhymes, which is always a good sign. Or is it a bad omen? Can't remember. The picks:

Knicks +6 -104, 1.04 units to win 1 unit

I know Andrew Bynum feels like he's repeating the past over and over again. Sucks for him. Even with him out, this line is way too fishy to pass.

Bobcats +6.5 +109, 1 unit to win 1.09 units

The Gerald Wallace injury is significant for Charlotte, but Utah is really hurting with Deron, Boozer, and AK47 all on the shelf tonight. The injuries are baked into the line, but the point was that Wallace's injury doesn't scare me into passing this one after looking at the crippled team on the end of the court. Seventy percent still like the Jazz, but after rising earlier in the day, the line took a big tumble down this evening. False move? Survey says: could be.

College and NHL picks were up this afternoon. If I find time to look at the overnight tennis matches, it's possible I'll find something and post it. Otherwise, have a good night everybody.

P.S. Pinnacle had these odds up earlier today:

Will Hambone post a cheesy picture referencing the fact that it's Groundhog Day today?

Yes -9500
No +8800

Monday Night & No More Football

At least, not for another 6 months or so. College hoops and hockey for tonight:

College Basketball

Wisconsin-Green Bay +1.5 -109, 1.09 units to win 1 unit

Around eighty percent of the bets coming in on Butler, but the line is holding steady or even dropping at the sportsbooks. The first of two nice-looking home dogs tonight.

Baylor +1 -107, 1.07 units to win 1 unit

Down to a pick at some places. Pomeroy and Sagarin both have the Bears winning this one at home tonight.


St. Louis +262, 0.5 units to win 1.31 units

Like I've said about other hockey games before, the favorite in this game is better, but not THIS much better.

Back later with NBA and anything else that jumps out at me. I'm guessing the Knicks are going to end up as a play, but I'm gonna wait and see what the line does this afternoon. Didn't have time to look at the tennis matches today (Super Bowl party last night), but might be able to look at the ones to be played early Tuesday morning and post later tonight.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Super Sunday - Non-Football Picks

All the games are early today. It's almost like something big is going on tonight that nobody wants to compete with. Weird. The picks:


Timberwolves +13 +101, 1 unit to win 1.01 units

The betting numbers and line movement make this a pick, but the Celtics will probably win by 30, so decide for yourself how much of a masochist you are.

College Basketball

Missouri State +10.5 +109, 1 unit to win 1.09 units

Another one that looks so wrong, it has to be a pick. Bears need to keep the pace slow and pound the ball inside to all those big bodies to stay close.

Montana State +5 -101, 1.01 units to win 1 unit

Line dropping fast even with heavy support for the visiting Vikings. Pomeroy has Portland State by 4, and I think the home dog has a real chance at the straight-up victory.


Ottawa +212, 0.5 units to win 1.06 units

Ability difference between these two teams doesn't look this big to me. Ottawa much better killing penalties. Line continues to fall despite almost 70% of wagerline-type folks on the Caps.

Nashville +136, 0.5 units to win 0.68 units

Cut and paste Ottawa notes here.

Super Bowl pick on the Steelers already up a couple of days ago. Might be adding one on the total, but Grover is having computer issues. Enjoy the big day, folks.