Monthly Archives: October 2009

Valley of the Sun: Suns 123 Warriors 101

Hmm… maybe that line wasn’t so ridiculous.

The Suns are clearly a much better team right now than the Warriors.  Yes, the Warriors got a horrible whistle in the first half, which makes it hard to win against anybody.  Yes, they shot 42%, which shouldn’t happen often.  Yes, they turned the ball over 22 times against a defense that is among the worst in the league, which is uncharacteristic.  And yes, it was a road game. But still it can’t be denied that the Suns were the far better team.

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Pre-Game Jitters: Suns

The Suns are -7 against the Warriors at home tonight, a line that is every bit as ridiculous as the opening game line making the Warriors -6.5 against the Rockets.  I liked the Rockets in the first game, and I like the Warriors in this game.

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Small Ball Wins: Rockets 108 Warriors 107

Unfortunately, my Pre-Game Jitters pretty much captured the story of this game.  This was a nightmare matchup for the Warriors.  It is not easy for a team that is searching for its identity to face one of the best defensive teams in the league in their first game of the season.  And that is what this Houston team is. They executed a beautiful defensive game plan, which caught the Warriors in its snare in a disastrous third quarter.  On offense, their undersized front-line proved a Don Nelson axiom: Very talented power forwards will almost always beat less-talented centers.  And Trevor Ariza went unguarded much of the night and nearly matched his career high for points.     Continue reading

Pre-Game Jitters

The Warriors are huge -6.5 point favorites in their home opener against the Rockets.  Can this line be right?  I don’t think it shows enough respect to the Rockets.  They are, after all, a proud team, a team that knows how to win, and knows how to win in the playoffs.  They also know how to win without Yao. Didn’t they go on a 10 or more game run without him last year?  They have an indescribable chemistry that comes from having a lineup full of competitors, like Scola and Hayes and Landry and Battier and now Ariza.   Continue reading

More Pre-Season Bets

I pulled the trigger on two more pre-season bets today, betting the Lakers to win more than 61.5 games, and the Spurs to win more than 54.5.  I expect the Lakers to win 70, and the Spurs 60 if they remain reasonably healthy.  The Celtics were a little more difficult to bet, with a line of 56.5, but I probably could have bet them as well.  With the additions of Rasheed Wallace and Marquis Daniels they simply cannot be challenged in the East.     Continue reading

Bonus Coverage: Thoughts on Opening Night

Opening night!  I watched the TNT doubleheader.

Celtics 95 Cavs 89: The Cavs had their hearts ripped from their chests and eaten raw in front of their homecourt fans on opening night.  Now they have to play another 81 games with the certain knowledge that they are going nowhere this year.  The Celtics own the East.     Continue reading

Why the Clippers are the Clippers

Today brings the sad news that Blake Griffin has fractured his kneecap and will miss at least 6 weeks.  This obviously will greatly affect the poor Clippers’ chance of making the playoffs.  And even more obviously, saves me from making my bet on the Clippers win total.  My heart bleeds for Ralph Lawlor, Bill Simmons, and Clippers fans everywhere.

On the other hand, this is  a positive development for the Warriors, and my wallet.  It makes that eighth seed a little easier to get to. And it makes the Warriors Bet a little easier to win.

And one other thing:  We now have the leading candidate for Rookie of the Year.

The Wild, Wild West: Battle for the 7th and 8th Seeds

I’ll end the suspense now, and give you my prediction for the final standings in the Western Conference:     Continue reading

The Wild, Wild West: The Middle Seeds

I don’t think there’s any doubt that the 2010 Western Conference Champion will be the Lakers or the Spurs.  Here’s how I see the four teams below them: Denver, Portland, Utah and Dallas.

Denver

Denver put a scare into the Lakers in last year’s playoffs.  But that’s over: the Artest pick-up will put an end to the competitiveness of the two teams.  Last year’s Lakers simply had no way to guard Carmelo Anthony. Walton was too slow, and both Ariza and Kobe got steamrolled by Anthony’s size and power. As I noted in my Lakers preview, Anthony will not be steamrolling Ron Artest.     Continue reading

Important Update on The Warriors Bet

PLEASE NOTE:  I have found a couple of places online that offer a line of 33.5 wins at -120.  If you bet a 34.5 win line you should get +110.  My hunch is that the 34.5 win line is slightly better because of the juice.  I have bet both lines, but more on the 33.5 line because I prefer using the sites where that is offered.