Category Archives: Predictions

The Favorites: Warriors 107 Utah 100

Last night’s Warriors win over the Jazz has had me at a loss for words for nearly a day. How to characterize this win?  It was an ugly win, to be sure.  Curry had one of the worst games of his career.  David Lee was lackluster, on the back-to-back. Vlad Rad was horrid. Udoh was OK, but gassed on his first road back-to-back at altitude.  Several non-shooters were brought off the bench, which for long stretches made the Warriors offense look like it was running in mud. Only great shooting nights from Dorell Wright and Reggie Williams, and a legitimate superstar performance from Monta Ellis kept the Warriors in this game, and ultimately got them over the hump. Continue reading

Pre-Season Wagers

This is going to be brief, because I didn’t see much of interest in the pre-season win totals.  But I did make a couple of bets, and in the tradition of this blog I want to play my cards face up for my readers.  I found it very interesting that the Warriors win total was 30.5 (-130 over [the juice on this bet has now gone up considerably, indicating betting interest on the over]) while the Washington Wizards win total was 32.5 (-130 over, EVEN under).  Are the Wizards, led by a rookie, and with the always unpredictable Gilbert Arenas playing a major role, really 2 games better than this Warriors squad, even accounting for the conferences?  I’m comfortable wagering a 5th round pick on Arenas to produce stats in fantasy basketball, but it’s quite another thing to wager money on him to produce wins.                                                            Continue reading

First Look: LA Lakers 105 Golden State Warriors 102

“You are doing the defense a favor when you post up Lee or Biedrins.” —  Mark Jackson

I couldn’t agree with Mark Jackson more.  We were told by the commentators to last night’s game that Keith Smart and his staff were raving about David Lee’s “surprising” abilities in the low post. (Surprising to whom?  Matt Steinmetz et al? They weren’t surprising to feltbot.)  Jackson went on to explain that despite Lee’s talent in the post, he is one of the greatest pick and roll players in the league, and that is how the Warriors should deploy him. I couldn’t agree more, as readers of this blog know.

And yet last night we were treated by Keith Smart to four quarters of watching the Warriors trying to post up Lee and Biedrins in the heart of the Lakers defense.  Why?  For well over three quarters, Smart ran literally no pick and rolls with Lee that were designed to get him a shot.  Instead Andris Biedrins was used almost exclusively to set the high picks, with Lee standing uselessly on the wings waiting for the ball that never came. Why?

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Showdown in Tinseltown: Celtics @ Lakers Game 6 Preview

I’ve posted this preview on Golden State of Mind.

Triangle Collapses, Celtics Square Series + Lakers @ Celtics Game 3

I’ve posted this piece on Golden State of Mind.

2010 NBA Finals Preview: Boston Celtics v. LA Lakers

Celtics  +160

Lakers  -180

Two correct calls in the Conference Finals have got me back in the black for these playoffs, although it would have been better if I hadn’t hedged my Celtics bet in the last game.  C’est la vie, I think it was the right play, and in sports wagering as well as in poker, all you can do is make the right play.  You can’t control that river card.

Now what to do in these Finals?  The pundits seem to agree that this time around the Lakers have what it takes to beat the Celtics. They point to the fact that the Lakers have added Andrew Bynum and Ron Artest to the core that faced the Celtics in 2008. They think Pau Gasol is now “tougher,” and that the Lakers now “know what it takes” to win in the finals.  They think the Celtics are going to miss a couple of key bench players from the 2008 Finals, Leon Powe and James Posey.

I’m not so sure. Jump for my opinion of the key factors in this series:

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Middle Alert: Orlando Magic @ Boston Celtics Game 6

You may remember that I bet on the Celtics in this series.  I still believe that they are the best team, but I am a little bit concerned about the injury problems that have surfaced in the last few games.  Big Baby Davis has been an important piece in the battle to contain Dwight Howard; he is concussed and down a few teeth, and may not be available.  Likewise Rasheed Wallace; he is a great player who has really stepped up his play, but he is now suffering severe back spasms. Kevin Garnett has slowed noticably; the knee that has bothered him all season may be on the verge of giving out.  And perhaps most importantly, Rajon Rondo has been slowed as well by back spasms.  Given these inherently unpredictable factors, I think prudence is the order of the day.

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Lakers dominate Suns; Celtics @ Magic, Game 2

I’ve posted this piece on Golden State of Mind.

Conference Championships Preview: Lakers v. Suns; Celtics v. Magic

Lakers  -360

Suns     +270

I’ve been betting against my heart and against the Suns every series so far this playoffs.  This series will be no different. I absolutely love Steve Nash — I watched virtually every one of his games with the Mavericks.  I love Alvin Gentry, the Suns coach.  I love Suns basketball, which is the closest you can get to Don Nelson basketball without having Nellie himself.  I was very impressed by how the Suns picked apart the Spurs in the last series.

But I don’t see any way they can beat the Lakers.  Here are the problems:

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Recaps and Previews: Magic and Lakers Sweep; Celtics @ Cavs for Game 5

I’ve posted this piece on Golden State of Mind.