Vegas has caught on to how the defending champs score runs. Harry How/Getty Images
As One Shining Moment plays for the last time in our heads for the season, we look to other sports to fulfill our degenerate needs for action. Here are 5 random thoughts that can help you along your gambling ventures.
1) Betting Baseball
When wagering on Baseball, things work a little different than in other sports. Lineups are not released until closer to the first pitch making it harder to take advantage of "early" lines. Taking certain things into factors such as umpires, pitching rotations, ballparks, and teams giving players days off are all things to keep an eye on. Baseball has a ton of variables; you must stay on top of it to be successful.
2) Baseball Home Field Advantage?
When betting sports, we put a tremendous amount of emphasis on Home Field advantage. Especially in the NFL, where playing at home is usually worth 3 points to the handicap, but when betting on the MLB, playing at home may not play as much of an impact.
As you can see, in the regular season, Baseball carries the least amount of advantage of playing as the home team, while the NBA leads the way where teams hosting win 59.9% of the time.
In the postseason, however, things change, and the NFL takes the front, and home teams win 64.7% of the time.
3) Hottest MLB team to start the season
The season has just begun, and the journey is long-drawn, the Hottest teams thus far:
Tampa Bay 4-1-0
NY Mets 3-1-0
Best Over-Under Records
San Diego 3-1-0
As of 10:41 PM 4/3
The Hometown Defending Champion Astros (feels great to say that) have come out scorching hot as expected. The Astros are 5-1 vs. the Runline, and straight up. When the Astros win, they do it in fashion and cover the run line by an average of 1.7 runs.
The Over/Under in Astros games are 3-3 thus far, and much has to do with the inflated totals books are setting as traps knowing the public has caught on to this team's bats. A better strategy could be to bet Houston's Team totals separately, as they have scored 6+ in their last four games.
4) Rockets Playoff Run Update
A few weeks ago, I wrote a piece on what the best strategy to profit on the Rockets down the stretch is. At the time, you could get the Rockets in the +180/+210 range. Earlier this week, Bovada tweeted that for the first time all season, the Warriors weren't favored to win the title by themselves. Both Houston, and Golden State now sit at +120 giving merit to the mechanical parlay strategy I spoke about. If and when these two giants collide in the Western Conference Finals, the odds you get by rolling over the initial amount round by round will profit substantially higher odds than the current +120.
5) Poker tip of the week
A problematic situation you can catch yourself in on a poker table can be that of falling victim to an over-aggressive player. When playing vs. one of these table bullies you must:
A) Play position carefully, ideally you want to be sitting behind them, being you would like them to act first.
B) When involved in hands with the "hyper raiser," try and find yourself raising more often, rather than calling the villain's hands. To stop an aggressive player, you must take command of the hand when the time is right. When executed correctly, a good old fashion check-raise can be enough to get the bully off your back. Play the game, don't let the game play you.
For any question or comments reach me @JerryBoKnowz on twitter.
Zion Williamson had 27 points and nine assists, and the New Orleans Pelicans defeated the struggling Houston Rockets 127-105 on Thursday night for their eighth victory in nine games.
“We know what the stakes are,” said Williamson, who — if he remains healthy — is on track to compete in his first NBA playoff games this spring.
The latest victory improved the Pelicans to 34-22, good for fifth in the Western Conference.
Williamson, who has missed most of his first four seasons with injuries, has played in 45 games this season, leads New Orleans in points per game with 22.5, and looks rested after not being selected for last weekend's NBA All-Star festivities.
“At this point, I've got to win," Williamson said when asked about the opportunity to compete in some of the highest-stakes games of his career in coming weeks. "That's the only way to show people.”
Playing without high-scoring wing Brandon Ingram, who sat out with a non-COVID illness, the Pelicans got highly productive nights from their other four usual starters.
CJ McCollum scored 28 points, Jonas Valanciunas had 20 points and 14 rebounds, and Herb Jones had 17 points and a career-high seven steals for New Orleans, which led 63-50 at halftime and by as many as 29 points during the second half.
“Herb brings it every night — he really does — on both ends of the floor,” Pelicans coach Willie Green said of Jones, whose highlights included a driving dunk as he was fouled, three 3s and an alley-oop lob to Williamson. “When he has nights like tonight, where he's guarding everybody and getting steals, getting deflections, getting blocks, rebounding the ball, shooting the ball well, you can see how important he is to this group.”
Alperen Sengun had 20 points and nine rebounds for Houston, which has lost six of seven and played the last eight minutes with its starters on the bench.
"You have to take a little pride in guarding your matchup and knowing their tendencies and where they want to get to," Rockets coach Ime Udoka said. “Especially Williamson – that’s what he does, forces his way to the basket; I think the blow-bys and straight-line drives were a little too easy for him.
"Even when we doubled him at times, he still beat the double teams,” Udoka added. “Our starters weren’t as sharp as we needed to be.”
Rookie Amen Thompson, the fourth overall pick in last summer's NBA draft, scored a season-high 22 points. Jalen Green added 10 points for the Rockets.
Green inserted Trey Murphy III into the starting lineup for Ingram. He scored 13 points, but the career 39% 3-point shooter struggled with his accuracy, missing 8 of 10 from deep.
The final meeting of the regular season between the Southwest Division rivals was a chippy one. Officials called 39 total fouls — 21 on the Pelicans — and had to step in to break up a brief fourth quarter scrum that resulted in technical fouls for Valanciunas and Reggie Bullock Jr.
“That's part of the game and I think there was a little frustration (from Houston), based on the score,” Green said. “But for us, it's being the more mentally tough team in between the lines. No matter what happens, we're not backing down from anybody.”
The Pelicans tied their season series with the Rockets at 2-2, thanks in part to the 28th double-double this season by Valanciunas, who did most of his scoring inside, but also hit both 3s he attempted.
Williamson, who routinely handles the ball and initiates the offense like a guard, had his fifth game this season with at least nine assists.
“We’re seeing Zion get better and better as the season progresses,” Green said. “This is what happens when you put the ball in his hands, especially early.”
Rockets: Host Phoenix on Friday.
Pelicans: Host Miami on Friday.