|Date||Match Up||Rating||Score||Result||Profit||Lead Time||Analysis|
|01-20-19||Hurricanes v. Oilers +107||7-4||Loss||-100||19 h 7 m||Show|
The Oilers opened their three-game homestand in unimpressive fashion losing 5-2 to the Flames on Saturday. Look for Edmonton to bounce back today against Carolina. The Oilers haven't lost back-to-back home games all season when playing without rest. The Hurricanes have lost their past two games - and the games haven't been close. Carolina fell by four goals to the Rangers and by three goals to the Senators. Carolina is giving up an average of 3.7 goals during its past seven games. The Hurricanes have surrendered at least three goals in each of their last seven games. Edmonton has beaten Carolina four of the last five times at home.
|01-20-19||Suns v. Wolves -10||114-116||Loss||-113||18 h 34 m||Show|
Minnesota had been playing well. That was before the Timberwolves' last two games - a road loss to the 76ers and home loss to the Spurs this past Friday. But now the Timberwolves drop way down in class hosting the Suns, who are 4-19 SU, 10-13 ATS on the road. This is the Suns' finale of a four-game road trip. It marks their fourth game in six days and second in two days. The Suns don't have much quality depth and they may have lost two players during their 135-115 road loss to Charlotte on Saturday night. Star rookie center Dandre Ayton suffered an ankle injury and reserve forward Richard Holmes hurt his foot. Minnesota is averaging 112.8 points in its last five games. Phoenix is allowing 125.6 points in its last three games. Karl-Anthony Towns is averaging 24.8 points this month. He could be in line for a monster performance if Ayton can't play. The Timberwolves should not lack motivation. They have a revenge factor having lost 107-99 to the Suns in Phoenix on Dec. 15. The teams also meet again on Tuesday in Phoenix. So the Timberwolves understand the urgency of holding court at home.
|01-20-19||Patriots v. Chiefs UNDER 56||Top||37-31||Loss||-110||97 h 37 m||Show|
I understand why the oddsmaker set a total this high. There were 83 points scored when the teams met in Week 6 with the Patriots winning, 43-40. The Patriots also looked great in steamrolling the Chargers this past Sunday, 41-28.But this matchup is going to be much different. It is going to be far more lower scoring than perceived. Let's start with a weather element. Kickoff is set for 6:40 p.m. Kansas City time. By that time, temperatures are forecast to be around 10 degrees, possibly lower. If the temperatures reach single digits it would make it the coldest playoff game in the history of Arrowhead Stadium. The Chiefs' offense is less explosive without Kareem Hunt, their best running back. The Patriots' defense is underrated. It has a bend-but-don't break nature. Only six teams gave up fewer points than the Patriots, although playing the Jets, Bills and Dolphins twice each padded those defensive statistics. However, part of Bill Belichick's genius is his ability to see things on film and learn from a previous matchup. Look for the Patriots to be in proper position to thwart Patrick Mahomes, playing in his first NFL title game, and the rest of the Chiefs. Kansas City isn't going to get any cheap points against such a well-coached defense. If Belichick has a hidden wrinkle that Mahomes hasn't seen, he will unleash it here. Another reason the total opened so high is because the Chiefs surrendered the second-most yards in the league and also the second-most passing yards. But Kansas City's defense is entirely different at home. The Chiefs gave up an average of 34.6 points on the road, but just 18 points per game at Arrowhead. And that's not including the Chiefs' playoff victory against the Colts last week. The Colts could manage just a single touchdown on offense against the Chiefs. The Patriots are not explosive like they have been in past seasons. Losing Josh Gordon to suspension and Rob Gronkowski becoming just a shell of his former self because of injuries have weakened New England's offense. Even with Gordon, the Patriots averaged only 21.6 points in their road games. That's the lowest total in Tom Brady's career. Brady did not have one of his better seasons. The Patriots rely on the running of Sony Michel and short passes now. The key to stopping Brady is having a strong pass rush without resorting to blitzes. The Chiefs can do that because they have three excellent pass rushers, Chris Jones, Dee Ford and Justin Houston. That trio combined to record 27 1/2 sacks.
|01-20-19||Rams +3.5 v. Saints||26-23||Win||100||91 h 10 m||Show|
The Saints hosted the Rams back in Week 9. The Rams were 1 1/2-point road favorites. Now look at the spread. There's a difference of four points, which I don't see between these two teams. These are the two best teams in the NFC deserving of meeting in the title game. But in my view the Rams are slightly better and that isn't negated by the Saints being home. It was huge for the Rams that they played earlier this season in the Superdome. They now have more of an idea of what to expect. Yes, the Saints beat the Rams, 45-35. But the score was tied 35-35 and the Rams had a chance to deliver a knockout blow to the Saints. They didn't do it - this time. The Saints are at their best inside their dome. But a fast-track, carpet field without weather conditions is helpful for the Rams, too. They are explosive with reliance on speed. Jared Goff is far better when not affected by bad weather. Take away their road loss to the Bears in cold weather and the Rams would be averaging 36.6 points a game. This is the first time LA is getting points all season. The Saints are going to have to score a ton of points to win and even more to cover the spread. Lost in the glare of the Saints' playoff victory against the Eagles was New Orleans losing defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins. He suffered a torn Achilles. That's a huge defensive loss for New Orleans. Rankins finally was living up to his vast potential with eight sacks while playing the run well. Sean McValy is a coaching genius. I rank him as the best coach in the NFC. He had the vision to make the Rams more of a physical team instead of just a finesse passing team. He did this on a fly, too, implementing that late in the season. The move paid off against a Cowboys defense that is better than the Saints defense. The Rams ran for 273 yards against a Cowboys defense that ranked fifth versus the run. On the flip side, the Rams held NFL rushing leader Ezekiel Elliott to 47 yards rushing on 20 carries. LA has a trump card on defense: Aaron Donald. He's the most dominant defensive lineman in football. He's be operating against Audrus Peat, who is playing with a broken hand. Donald can disrupt the Saints offense just by himself.
|01-20-19||Illinois v. Iowa UNDER 158||71-95||Loss||-105||2 h 38 m||Show|
These teams have a history of going Under when playing in Iowa and I see that continuing here. I can see Illinois' freshmen having problems against the Hawkeyes' defense at this venue especially coming off a high-scoring home win. The Under has cashed the last four times the Illinis have gone against an above .500 opponent. Iowa is off an upset road victory against Penn State. The Under has cashed eight of the last 10 times Iowa has played after it won its previous game.
|01-19-19||Northern Colorado v. Weber State -4||64-78||Win||100||11 h 2 m||Show|
These are the two best teams in the Big Sky Conference. Weber State is 6-0 versus Northern Colorado during the past three seasons in regular season action. The Wildcats, though, have revenge. Northern Colorado ended their season in the Big Sky Conference Tournament last season. That game was played at a neutral site. Weber State has won 86 percent of its conference home games under Coach Randy Rahe. The Wildcats have a size advantage and the superior defense. Weber State doesn't lack for scoring averaging 82.6 points and is a strong defensive rebounding team so it can limit Northern Colorado's second chance opportunities.
|01-19-19||Heat -2.5 v. Bulls||Top||117-103||Win||100||17 h 58 m||Show|
Miami is 0-2 on its current four-game road trip. The Heat meet the Bulls here before concluding their road swing against the revenge-minded Celtics on Monday. This is the spot for the Heat to make sure they don't go 0-4 on this trip. Chicago is 0-9 in its last nine games. The Bulls just completed an embarrassing 0-5 road trip with a 30-point loss to the Nuggets this past Thursday. The Bulls come back home for the first time in nearly two weeks at low ebb and suffering a key below-the-radar injury. Chicago rookie forward Wendell Carter Jr. suffered a thumb injury this week that is going to sideline him two-to-three months. The 6-foot-10 Carter was coming on averaging 10.3 rebounds and 7 rebounds per game. More important, he gave the Bulls their only physical presence in the paint. His toughness is going to be missed especially against a rugged, defensive-minded team such as Miami. The Heat surrender the fourth-fewest points in the league. The Bulls are last in scoring. Miami lost 98-93 to the Pistons Friday night. The Heat made 5-of-19 free throws (26.3 percent) in that game setting a franchise-record for worst free throw shooting in a game with a minimum of 15 attempts. Miami isn't a good free throw shooting team mainly because of Hassan Whiteside, the worst free throw shooter in the league. But missing 19 of 24 free throws is absurd. The Heat also didn't have Josh Richardson, their leading scorer, in their loss to the Pistons. Richardson missed the game due to illness. It's obviously a plus if he plays. But even if he doesn't I like the Heat. Their Friday starting group of Whiteside, James Johnson Rodney McGruder, Justise Winslow and Tyler Johnson had only played two minutes together all season. Now they would get to start a second straight game within 24 hours. The Bulls lost to the Heat as four-point home underdogs, 103-96, when the teams met on Nov. 23. The Heat didn't have starting point guard Goran Dragic for that game either. Chicago has lost its last four games at United Center. Three of those losses were by 17 points to the Nets, 28 to the Magic and 25 to the Timberwolves.
|01-19-19||Sharks v. Lightning OVER 6.5||3-6||Win||100||8 h 14 m||Show|
The oddsmaker could have opened this game at 7 - and it still likely would go Over. San Jose is the No. 3 goal scoring team in the NHL. Tampa Bay is No. 1. The Sharks have scored three or more goals in 18 of their last 19 games, including the past 12. They have reached four or more goals 12 times during this span. Tampa Bay is sure to be pumped after losing 4-2 to Toronto in its last home game. That loss followed a three-game road trip. The Lightning are now more comfortable at home. Prior to that game, Tampa Bay had scored 5.1 goals per game during its last seven home games. These teams have a strong Over history, too, going 12-3-1 above the total during the past 16 matchups.
|01-19-19||Florida International v. Marshall -8.5||97-105||Loss||-105||9 h 47 m||Show|
This is going to be a track meet. I see Florida International being slow here after coming from 16 points down with 12 minutes to pull off a stunning, 77-76, upset road win against Western Kentucky this past Thursday. The Golden Panthers were 10-point underdogs in that game. Marshall is unbeaten in Conference USA at 4-0. They are 4-0 the past four times facing the Golden Panthers, covering five of the last six meetings.
|01-18-19||Pelicans v. Blazers -2.5||Top||112-128||Win||100||22 h 39 m||Show|
Both matchup-wise and situationally the Trail Blazers hold key edges. Portland plays better defense than the Pelicans, who rank 27th in scoring defense, and also is the stronger rebounding team ranking No. 3 in the category. The Trail Blazers are playing well, too, winning seven of their last 10. Anthony Davis is an absolute monster up front, but Portland big man Josuf Nurkic is playing the best ball of his career coming off a triple/double and the Trail Blazers hold a backcourt edge with Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum. As for the spot, Portland has a strong home-court. The Trail Blazers have won 19 of their 26 home games this season covering 62 percent. New Orleans is a bad road club losing 18 of its 24 away matchups while going 9-14 (39%) ATS in those games. This also is the Pelicans' fourth road game in seven days. Being bad on the road and weak defensively is a tough combination for the Pelicans to overcome. The Trail Blazers have defeated the Pelicans in 13 of the last 15 regular-season games, including 132-119 at home on Nov. 1 in the lone meeting between the teams this season. Davis, though, did not play in that game. Don't look for the Trail Blazers to take the Pelicans lightly, however. Portland still has bitter memories of the Pelicans sweeping the Trail Blazers in the first round of the playoffs last season.
|01-18-19||Maple Leafs v. Panthers +130||1-3||Win||130||9 h 15 m||Show|
The record shows Florida to have lost seven straight games. A closer look at the record indicates the Panthers have lost six of those games on the road and four of those defeats were by one goal. The Panthers' one home game during this span was a 4-3 overtime loss to the Blue Jackets. So Florida is not getting outclassed most of the time. The Panthers own a winning home mark on the season and are back in friendly territory desperate to gain their first victory of 2019. They are in a great spot to achieve an upset win here. Toronto just upset the Lightning, 4-2, at Tampa Bay on Thursday in a huge victory. The Maple Leafs are in a letdown spot and playing without rest. There's a good possibility, too, that backup goalie Garret Sparks will be in net for Toronto. He has a 3.00 GAA. The Maple Leafs return to Toronto following this matchup. This has been a home team series with the host winning 10 of the past 11 times. Florida has defeated Toronto four consecutive times at home.
|01-18-19||St. Joe's v. St. Louis -8.5||57-68||Win||100||6 h 13 m||Show|
St. Louis is the superior team and on a nice run winning five in a row. St. Joe's upset Davidson in its last game. However, prior to that, the Hawks had dropped four in a row. The Hawks are just 2-6 ATS in their last eight games and are down their second-leading scorer, Lamarr Kimble, who recently suffered a hand injury.
|01-17-19||BYU v. Pepperdine +3.5||87-76||Loss||-109||7 h 49 m||Show|
Lorenzo Romar is doing an outstanding job with Pepperdine. The Waves have covered 10 of their 16 lined games, including going 5-1 ATS at home. Word is BYU could be missing its third leading scorer with guard Jashire Hardnett dealing with a hand injury. The Cougars have been brutal on the road covering just one of their last 11 away matchups. They have lost SU to Illinois State, Weber State and UNLV as road favorites already this season. Even in bad years, Pepperdine has been tough against BYU at home covering the past seven times.
|01-17-19||Oregon v. Arizona UNDER 133.5||Top||59-54||Win||100||11 h 26 m||Show|
After three straight Overs, look for Oregon to go Under the total in this matchup. The Ducks are going back to slowing things down following games against racehorses UCLA and USC. Arizona plays at a much more deliberate tempo than the Bruins and Trojans. Both Oregon and Arizona are outstanding defensive teams. Oregon ranks 24th in defensive efficiency and gives up the 35th-fewest points in the nation. The Ducks are without their star shot blocker injured center Bol Bol,but could get big man Kenny Wooten back. The Ducks apply tremendous pressure on the ball ranking No. 1 in the Pac 12 in forcing turnovers. The Wildcats rank 45th in scoring defense holding foes to 66.1 points. Two strong defenses in a game where the tempo should be slow. That spells Under.
|01-17-19||Maple Leafs +128 v. Lightning||4-2||Win||128||9 h 20 m||Show|
It's tought to go against Tampa Bay at home, but the Maple Leafs are going to give the Lightning their best punch. Toronto is in circle-the-wagons mode losing five of its last seven games. Things should start to turn around, though, for the Maple Leafs with Frederik Andersen back in goal. This will be his second game after being out eight games due to a groin injury. He will be less rusty than he was in Toronto's last game, an embarrassing 6-3 home loss to the Avalanche. That happened on Monday. The Maple Leafs have been idle ever since. They are itching to test themselves versus the Lightning. Toronto has won 15 of its last 21 road contests. Even though the Lightning are home, the Maple Leafs are in the better spot. Tampa Bay just returned from a three-game road swing that concluded Tuesday night in Dallas where the Lightning defeated the Stars, 2-0. Dallas lost despite having six power play opportunities and getting off 35 shots on goal. This marks Tampa Bay's fourth game in six days - all at difference venues. The Lightning are vulnerable to lose here. Look for Toronto to seize the opportunity.
|01-17-19||Kings v. Hornets -3||95-114||Win||100||14 h 3 m||Show|
Charlotte is one of those decent home, bad road teams. The Hornets are 14-8 at home, 6-15 on the road. One of those away defeats came just five days ago at Sacramento. The Kings won, 104-97. So the Hornets have short revenge motivation. Charlotte lost by seven points at the Kings. The Hornets were 13-for-22 (59.1 percent) at the free throw line in that game. They rank ninth on the season in free throw percentage at 78.9 percent. The Kings are 9-11 SU on the road, 10-10 ATS. Sacramento has been far worse than average, though, recently on the road losing and failing to cover during their past four away matchups. The Kings haven't been on the road for nine days. They lost their last road contest, 115-111, to the Suns, who by far have the worst record in the Western Conference. Sacramento is fat and happy with three straight victories - all coming at home. Now the Kings go on the road where they have not looked good.
|01-17-19||Blackhawks v. Rangers OVER 6.5||3-4||Win||100||3 h 16 m||Show|
The Blackhawks have gone Over the total in their last five games. They have been a big Over team all season especially on the road where the Over stands 32-15-4 during the past 51 instances. It's an easy formula to see why. Chicago can score, but plays no defense. The Blackhawks have allowed an average of 3.8 goals in their last five games. They've also allowed an average of 4.6 goals in their last six games.
|01-16-19||Sharks v. Coyotes +131||3-6||Win||131||11 h 31 m||Show|
The Coyotes are in a great ambush spot here. They had won three in a row until suffering an embarrassing 7-1 road loss to Calgary on Sunday. Arizona has had three days to stew about that loss. The Coyotes should be pumped for the Sharks being back home. The Coyotes catch the Sharks fat and happy. San Jose is off a satisfying 5-2 home win against the Penguins. This puts the Sharks in a vulnerable spot traveling into a different time zone while not getting into Arizona until the wee hours of the morning. San Jose also is likely to go with backup goalie Aaron Dell.
|01-16-19||Minnesota v. Illinois +2||68-95||Win||100||9 h 43 m||Show|
Both teams aren't very good. But Illinois has played a tough schedule and has talented freshmen who are coming on. The Illini desperately need to win this home game. They draw Minnesota fat and happy after an easy win against Rutgers. The Gophers have a history of not covering against sub .500 teams going 6-20 ATS in that role the past 26 times. Illinois is good at forcing turnovers, are playing at home, in circle-the-wagons mode and won't be outclassed here.
|01-16-19||Spurs +1 v. Mavs||Top||105-101||Win||100||19 h 44 m||Show|
Gregg Popovich. That's the short answer as to why I like the Spurs here. San Antonio is in circle-the-wagons mentality having lost three of their last four games, including an embarrassing 108-93 loss to the Hornets at home on Monday. I trust Popovich to have his team fired-up. Dallas is tough at home. But the Mavericks are not as good as San Antonio and they have lost 14 of their last 19 games. The Spurs have been excellent in this situation covering 11 of the last 15 times when playing on one day's rest. There is a good chance the Spurs get back Rudy Gay. He has missed the last five games with a sprained wrist. It's an added bonus, too, if the Spurs get back key reserve Marco Belinelli, who suffered a knee injury this past Saturday and is day-to-day.
|01-16-19||Magic +3.5 v. Pistons||115-120||Loss||-108||17 h 17 m||Show|
Orlando is playing its best ball coming off consecutive home victories against the Celtics and Rockets this past weekend. The Magic are rested having been idle the past two days. They catch the Pistons returning home following a four-game West Coast trip that concluded Monday night in Utah. Detroit is 2-8 in its last 10 games and has a losing ATS mark when favored. The Magic have covered seven of the past eight times versus the Pistons, including defeating them, 109-107, as 1.5-point home favorites on Dec. 30. One of the major keys in beating Detroit is slowing down Blake Griffin. The Pistons beat the Clippers for their lone victory during their recently concluded four-game trip because Griffin lit up his former teammates for 44 points. Orlando has the defensive stopper to bother Griffin with Aaron Gordon. He helped hold Griffin to just four field goals and 15 points during the previous meeting.
|01-15-19||Penguins +127 v. Sharks||2-5||Loss||-100||14 h 36 m||Show|
San Jose is playing well, but I'll take a plus price with the Penguins. Pittsburgh is 10-2 in its last 12 games and 6-1 in its past seven road contests. However, the Penguins are coming off a disappointing, 5-2, road loss to the Kings. The Penguins had backup goalie Casey DeSmith in net for that game. Now Matt Murray will be in goal. Pittsburgh has won nine straight with Murray in net. Murray is 8-0-1 with two shutouts in road games this season. Pittsburgh has defeated San Jose in four of the last five meetings.
|01-15-19||Warriors -110 v. Nuggets||Top||142-111||Win||100||20 h 21 m||Show|
Kudos to the Nuggets for owning the best record in the Western Conference at the halfway point of the season. I do believe the Nuggets are legitimate. They've always had a strong offense and now their defense is improved. However ... the Nuggets are not in the class of the two-time defending world champion Warriors especially now that Golden State has Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green all back in the lineup. A motivated Warriors squad can beat any team any where. The Warriors certainly aren't going to lack incentive here trailing Denver by one-half game for best record in the West. Golden State also has revenge for a 100-98 road loss to the Nuggets from Oct. 21. Golden State has won six of its last seven games, including four in a row. The Warriors are averaging 130 points during their las six games. I want them going for me in this pick'em type range.
|01-15-19||LSU +4 v. Ole Miss||83-69||Win||100||7 h 34 m||Show|
LSU showed it could win on the road beating Arkansas this past Saturday. The Tigers are a good value play against overacheiving Mississippi, which is in a letdown spot after breaking into the Top 25 for the first time in six years. The Rebels achieved this by beating two Top-15 opponents last week. Heady stuff, but the Rebels are not used to being the hunted now. The Rebels have been underdogs in their last three games, all SEC matchups. LSU has won five in a row. The Tigers are the more talented team with the size and perimeter shooting to knock off the Rebels straight-up.
|01-15-19||Hurricanes v. Rangers +130||2-6||Win||130||11 h 38 m||Show|
The Rangers have the Hurricanes' number when the two teams play at Madison Square Garden. Carolina hasn't won there since 2010, a string of 15 road losses in a row. The Rangers are 25-5 the past 30 times hosting the Hurricanes. The Rangers are going to be fired up, too, after their coach, David Quinn, ripped their effort following a 7-5 loss to the Blue Jackets on Sunday. So I'll ride the Rangers at this plus price.
|01-15-19||Eastern Michigan v. Akron UNDER 128.5||49-51||Win||100||17 h 21 m||Show|
These two teams met twice last season and the combined final score totals were 125 and 112 points, respectively. Both games went Under the total. This was the fifth time in the last six meetings the Under has cashed in this series. Expect that trend to continue in today's matchup. Akron is averaging 66 points in three MAC games this season. The Zips are shooting only 36 percent from the floor and 23.7 percent from 3-point range in conference play. Both teams play at a very slow tempo. The Under is 18-7-1 in Eastern Michigan's last 26 MAC contests. The Zips figure to struggled against Eastern Michigan's matchup zone defense given their shooting woes. Akron is playing solid defense this season ranking 50th in field goal percentage defense.
|01-14-19||Blazers +2.5 v. Kings||107-115||Loss||-103||12 h 20 m||Show|
Yes, the Trail Blazers had to play last night falling, 116-113, at Denver when their huge comeback came up just short against the Western Conference-leading Nuggets. Portland had won four in a row entering that matchup. The Kings are not the Nuggets. They are a 22-21 team that has failed to cover six of the last seven times when going against an above .500 opponent. Sacramento has a much improved backcourt with De'Aaron Fox, Buddy Hield and Bogdan Bogdanovic. But it's trumped by Portland's star guard tandem of Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum. The Trail Blazers also have the best big man on the floor, Jusuf Nurkic. Portland should dominate the boards ranking third in the NBA in rebounding while the Kings are a bottom-10 rebounding team. The Trail Blazers also have defeated the Kings during the past four meetings going 3-0-1 ATS.
|01-14-19||Sabres v. Oilers UNDER 6||2-7||Loss||-120||10 h 42 m||Show|
The Sabres have gone Under seven of the last eight times they have played Western Conference opponents. Buffalo has scored three or fewer goals in seven of its last nine games. Despite having the great Connor McDavid, the Oilers rank 24th in scoring. They haven't broken the three-goal barrier in nine of their last 12 games. Both teams desperately need a victory here. So don't expect a wide open game.
|01-14-19||Grizzlies v. Rockets -6||Top||94-112||Win||100||19 h 57 m||Show|
The Rockets average 10 more points per game than the struggling Grizzlies and are in a kill spot returning home after blowing a 12-point lead against the Magic while suffering a 116-109 road upset loss to the Magic Sunday. Houston is 11-1 SU, 10-1-1 ATS in its last 12 home games, including defeating the Grizzlies, 113-101, on Dec. 31. The Rockets got too lax against the Magic and it cost them. Expect a much stronger effort and focus from the Rockets. Motivation, not talent, is the key for the Rockets against this opponent. And, now, Houston should have that. Based on talent, the Rockets should bury Memphis, which is 7-18 in its last 25 games and 1-7 in its last eight. The Grizzlies have lost by seven points or more in six of their past seven defeats. The Grizzlies are playing short-handed, too, down three of their rotation players with Kyle Anderson, Dillon Brooks and Chandler Parsons all injured. The Rockets are playing without rest, but the Grizzlies are 2-8 ATS when playing on one day rest.
|01-14-19||Blackhawks v. Devils OVER 6||5-8||Win||100||8 h 43 m||Show|
The Blackhawks have a decent offense, but play little defense. That's a golden formula for an Over. So it's no surprise the Under has won only six times during the Blackhawks' last 26 games. Chicago has scored three of more goals during its last four games. The Blackhawks also have allowed 15 goals in their last four games, an average of 3.7 goals. The Devils have a better offense than defense, too. So they are worth playing Over.
|01-14-19||Blues v. Capitals OVER 5.5||4-1||Loss||-115||4 h 55 m||Show|
The Over has cashed the past six times these two teams have met. Look for that trend to continue as each team is going with their backup goalie. Washington is the No. 7 scoring team in the league. They are facing Jake Allen, one of the weaker backup goalies. The Blues are dealing with injuries, but still have managed to score 3 or more goals in five of their last six games.
|01-13-19||Cavs v. Lakers OVER 217.5||Top||101-95||Loss||-110||21 h 46 m||Show|
Maybe the oddsmaker doesn't realize how bad Cleveland's defense really is because its season stats show the Cavaliers ranking 23rd in scoring defense. But no team has played worst defense than the Cavaliers during the past two weeks. Cleveland has yielded 117 or more points in seven of its last eight games. During their past four games, the Cavaliers are surrendering a whopping 128.5 points a game. Not helping matters for the Cavaliers is their top shot blocker, Larry Nance, is out. The Lakers are averaging 111.5 points in their past four home games. LeBron James isn't back, but talented scorers Brandon Ingram and Kyle Kuzma are. The Lakers want to light up the scoreboard to prove they aren't just about James especially going against his former team.
|01-13-19||Coyotes v. Flames OVER 6||1-7||Win||100||9 h 34 m||Show|
The Coyotes are averaging four goals per game in their last three games and draw Mike Smith in net. Smith is the lesser of Calgary's two goalies. He has a 3.09 GAA. Arizona is playing without rest after upsetting the Oilers on Saturday. The Coyotes are 5-1 to the Over the past six times when playing on the second of consecutive days. The Flames are the No. 2 scoring team in the NHL. They have produced three or more goals in seven straight games, netting at least four goals in six of these games. The Over has cashed in six of their last seven games.
|01-13-19||Blazers v. Nuggets -4||113-116||Loss||-109||19 h 16 m||Show|
Denver got caught peeking ahead to this home matchup. The Nuggets were upset, 102-93, on the road by the lowly Suns Saturday night. Even with that defeat, though, the Nuggets still are 7-2 in their last nine games. They own the best record in the Western Conference. The Nuggets are 9-2 ATS in their past 11 games at Pepsi Center. Portland is 4-11 ATS the past 15 times it has played on the road versus an opponent with a winning home mark. The Trail Blazers also enter this matchup fat and happy. They are on a four-game win streak - all home wins. Their last three victories have been against bad teams - Knicks, Bulls and Hornets. This is Portland's first road contest in 12 days. The Trail Blazers are 0-3-1 ATS the last four times playing the Nuggets.
|01-13-19||Panthers v. Canucks -102||1-5||Win||100||17 h 9 m||Show|
I want Vancouver going for me, especially at this fair price. It's not just because the Panthers have lost five in a row and are carrying a huge fatigue rating. The last time these teams met was back on Oct. 13. The Canucks won, 3-2. But the take from that game was the Panthers putting a dirty hit on star rookie Elias Pettersson, who was checked hard into the boards by Mike Matheson and suffered a concussion. Vancouver is mad about that. The Canucks also draw the Panthers playing their third road game in four days and fourth away contest in six days. The Canucks are without Pettersson, who is out this time with a knee injury. But they are expected to get back winger Josh Leivo to bolster their first line. Leivo had missed the last three games with an injury, but practiced Saturday and is likely to play.
|01-13-19||Eagles v. Saints -8||Top||14-20||Loss||-105||54 h 29 m||Show|
No the Saints aren't blowing out the Eagles by 41 points like they did at home in Week 11. Philadelphia's secondary is in better physical shape and Nick Foles has replaced ailing Carson Wentz at quarterback. But this isn't enough to keep the Eagles within a touchdown of the Saints. New Orleans is a level higher this season than the Eagles and playing inside their dome stadium where Drew Brees threw 22 touchdown passes with just one interception. The Eagles struggled against Mitch Trubisky on grass last week surviving only because of Cody Parkey's bad luck on his final field goal attempt. Brees on a fast track with Alvin Karma, Michael Thomas and Mark Ingram is too much offense for the Eagles. Karma and Ingram both are far superior to any of the Eagles running backs. Thomas is the best wide receiver on the field. The Eagles carry a fatigue rating playing in their third straight road matchup while the Saints are rested. Offensive mastermind Sean Payton is dangerous with extra prep time. The Eagles have failed to cover nine the last 13 times they have played on carpet. Foles may be the top backup quarterback in the league. But if he were a starter he would rank among the bottom half. Foles has started the past four games. He has an eight-to-five TD-to-interception ratio during this time. The Saints are much improved defensively. During Weeks 10 through 15 - when they were competing hard for playoff seeding - the Saints gave up 12.3 points per game. No team scored more than 17 points on them during this time. You need a balanced offense and ball-control to beat the Saints inside the Louisiana Superdome. The Eagles rank 28th rushing. New Orleans has the No. 2 run defense. Credit to the Eagles for getting this far. But their journey to repeat as Super Bowl champions ends here.
|01-12-19||Penguins v. Kings +142||2-5||Win||142||21 h 43 m||Show|
The teams met Dec. 15 in Pittsburgh and the Penguins nipped the Kings, 4-3, in overtime. The Kings had more shots on goal than the Penguins. Since then the Kings have gone a respectable 6-5. They are in an excellent spot to get their revenge on Pittsburgh and are at an attractive underdog price. The Kings are in revenge mode and are coming off an embarrassing home loss to the Senators from Thursday. They catch the Penguins off a 7-4 road win against the Ducks Friday night. That was the Penguins' first road game in nine days. LA is likely to draw backup Pittsburgh goalie Casey DeSmith.
|01-12-19||Coyotes v. Oilers -138||3-2||Loss||-138||21 h 42 m||Show|
The Coyotes are one of the most banged-up teams in the league. They are missing their top goalie and leading scorer among many others. Edmonton is in a position to take advantage. The Oilers have won three of their last five games. Arizona ranks 29th in scoring and must deal with Connor McDavid. The Oilers have defeated the Coyotes seven of the past eight times, including 3-1 at Arizona 10 days ago.
|01-12-19||Hornets +5.5 v. Kings||97-104||Loss||-105||19 h 2 m||Show|
If there was anything positive for the Hornets in their embarrassing 127-96 road loss to the Trail Blazers Friday night it was none of their players had to log big minutes. That should help Charlotte in this matchup. The Hornets have been blown out now in two straight games, having lost 128-109 to the Clippers in LA on Tuesday. However, only once all season have the Hornets dropped three games in a row and that was more than a month ago. The Trail Blazers and Clippers are superior to the Hornets especially when playing them at home. The Kings aren't. Sacramento has lost one fewer game than Charlotte. The Hornets are dropping down in class after facing the Trail Blazers and Clippers. The Kings aren't playing well either losing five of their last seven games. Just two games ago on this past Tuesday, the Suns defeated the Kings, 115-111. The Hornets met the Suns in Phoenix three games ago this past Sunday and beat the Suns, 119-113. Charlotte has the best player in Kemba Walker. The Hornets also have covered in four of their last five visits to Sacramento.
|01-12-19||St. Mary's -5 v. Loyola Marymount||71-60||Win||100||18 h 12 m||Show|
I'm not buying Loyola Marymount as a live 'dog here. St. Mary's is a traditional power having won 20 or more games in 11 consecutive seasons. The Gaels can't afford a loss here knowing Gonzaga is highly likely to win the West Coast Conference. Loyola Marymount's 12-3 record is bogus because of an easy schedule. The Gaels have dominated Loyola Marymount winning the past 10 times, including covering in the last five meetings. St. Mary's should have no problem taking advantage of the Lions' weak 3-point shooting.
|01-12-19||Cowboys v. Rams -7||22-30||Win||100||46 h 39 m||Show|
There are three major reasons why I like the Rams to beat the Cowboys by more than a touchdown: Situation, home/road data and coaching. Let's start with the situation. LA is rested. The Rams should be well prepared given two weeks to prepare with Sean McVay, who just might be the sharpest offensive-minded coach in football. The Rams won 11 games under McVay last season emerging as a force. However, the Rams suffered from playoff inexperience and lost in the first round to the Falcons. This year the Rams won 13 games and improved even more. Jared Goff and Co. now have playoff experience. A rested Todd Gurley trumps Ezekiel Elliott especially with a far better downfield passing attack on his side. The Cowboys entered this season having won one playoff game in Jason Garrett's previous seven years as head coach. McVay versus Garrett is a huge coaching mismatch in LA's favor. Home/road splits are huge for both teams. The Rams went 7-1 at home, averaging nine more points per game at home while giving up 8.2 points less per contest. Goff is a California quarterback. His quarterack rating was nearly 35 points higher when he played in LA. Dallas, by contrast, averaged 7.5 points fewer per game when on the road with Dak Prescott's quarterback rating being nearly 24 points lower away from Dallas. The Cowboys averaged a league-low 5.8 points in the first half when on the road. The Cowboys are heavily run-oriented. Prescott has severe limitations when throwing more than just short passes. The Cowboys also have a cluster injury problem at wide receiver. They are not built to come from behind if the Rams should jump out to a big lead against them.
|01-12-19||Spurs v. Thunder UNDER 227.5||112-122||Loss||-110||9 h 31 m||Show|
This total is inflated based on the matchup these two teams had two days ago. The Spurs beat the Thunder in double overtime, 154-147. That was a wild game. This one shouldn't be. Both teams are above average defensive clubs. The Thunder are in stop-the-pain mode having lost three in a row. Oklahoma City ranks eighth in scoring defense and is in the top five in shooting percentage defense. San Antonio gives up the 11th fewest points per game in the league. Until that wild Thursday game, the Spurs had not allowed more than 111 points in 16 straight games. Even with that crazy double overtime game, the Under sitll has cashed six of the past eight times in this series. The Under also has won the last four times these teams have played in Oklahoma City.
|01-12-19||Colts +5 v. Chiefs||Top||13-31||Loss||-105||121 h 48 m||Show|
Andy Reid is a likely Hall of Fame coach. But when it comes to the playoffs he is a Hall of Fame chump. Reid's team have lost eight of their last nine playoff games. This includes a 1-4 postseason mark with the Chiefs. The Titans upset the Chiefs as 8 1/2-point road 'dogs last season in the Chiefs' first playoff game. These Colts are far better than that Tennessee team. The Chiefs went just 3-3 down the stretch going 1-4-1 ATS with their lone cover coming against the Raiders. Indianapolis is 10-1 in its last 11 games. The Colts' defense has been far better than perceived. So has their offensive line, which gave up the fewest sacks in the league. Marlon Mack has emerged as a running back threat. He's better than any of Kansas City's running backs with Kareem Hunt gone. Patrick Mahomes had a great season. But so did Andrew Luck, who threw the second-most TD passes on the season in back of only Mahomes. Luck has playoff experience, something Mahomes lacks. Kansas City's defense has played better at home. But the Colts hold a defensive edge. They've held five of their last six foes to 21 points or fewer. The Chiefs defense surrendered the second-most points per game and second most-yards per game. The Colts have become a physical unit that can play ball control. That's the way to beat the Chiefs.
|01-12-19||Drexel v. NC-Wilmington -3.5||83-97||Win||100||15 h 6 m||Show|
NC Wilmington is in circle-the-wagons mode having already lost two straight Colonial Athletic Association games at home. The Seahawks draw Drexel, a team they have beat six consecutive times, with the Dragons in a letdown spot. The Dragons just shocked Charleston, 79-78, as a 12 1/2-point road 'dog on Thursday. Drexel rallied from a 13-point deficit. Charleston had the second-longest home win streak at 22 in back of only Houston. NC Wilmington has covered five of its last six home games, while Drexel is 1-4 ATS following a victory.
|01-11-19||Penguins v. Ducks UNDER 6||7-4||Loss||-101||11 h 31 m||Show|
Anaheim is the second-lowest scoring team in the NHL. The Ducks have scored just 12 goals in their last nine games, all losses. They have failed to score more than two goals in eight of these games. The Penguins, on the other hand, are averaging four goals per game during their last 10 games. So something has to give, offense or defense? I see defense carrying the play. A total of 6 is too high for a Ducks game. The Under is 5-0-2 when the Ducks have had a 6 total.The Over has yet to cash. This is the first game the Penguins are playing in California this season. They are not used to a three-hour time difference. Under has been a strong profit-maker when the Ducks meet an Eastern Conference opponent. The Under has won 72 percent of the time during the past 26 instances.
|01-11-19||Cavs v. Rockets OVER 216.5||113-141||Win||100||4 h 41 m||Show|
Cleveland ranks last in defensive field goal percentage. The Cavaliers are surrendering 122.7 points in their last seven games and just lost their best shot-blocker, Larry Nance. The Cavaliers, though, just put up 124 points against the Pelicans. The Pelicans are a bad defensive team. But Indiana isn't. The Pacers rank No. 2 defensively in the NBA. The Cavaliers scored 115 against them in the game before New Orleans. The Rockets have permitted at least 101 points during their last 11 games. They are giving up an average of 114.4 points in their last four games.
|01-11-19||Bucks v. Wizards +7||Top||106-113||Win||100||17 h 55 m||Show|
Sometimes facts lead to misperceptions. There are two examples of this in the Bucks-Wizards Friday matchup. The Bucks have the best record in the NBA. John Wall is a great player being a five-time All-Star. Both sentences are facts. However ... there is more than meets the eye in both statements. Knowing them should help lead to a profitable investment by backing the Wizards. The Bucks deserve huge kudos for compiling the top winning percentage in the league through 40 games. But the Bucks have put together their outstanding record mainly at home. They are 10-7 on the road, 8-8 ATS. So spread-wise, Milwaukee is merely an average away club. The Bucks also are in a flat spot after a huge nationally televised road win against the Rockets and James Harden on Wednesday. Proving themselves on national TV is a big deal to the small market Bucks. This game is far from the madding crowd. It's a low-key affair against a 17-25 Washington team that is minus its best player, Wall. Guess what, though? You can make a strong case Washington is better team-wise without Wall. Remember when Wall was injured last season? The Wizards proceeded to play their best ball winning 11 of 14 games. That streak pushed them into the playoffs. It could happen again this season. The Wizards are 4-3 and 5-2 ATS since Wall was lost for the season. There is more to the Wizards than Wall. Otto Porter Jr. has gotten the rust off since returning from a quad injury. Bradley Beal is a top-scoring backcourt threat. Trevor Ariza is an underrated two-way pro. Wall's injury has also brought more prominence to unsung guard Tomas Satoransky and center Thomas Bryant. Washington has won and covered each of its last three home games. The Wizards are below-the-radar and should be highly motivated to prove themselves in this spot. Please note that since I released this game late Thursday night, the line has dropped quite a bit as word is out that Giannis Antetokounmpo is doubtful and Eric Bledsoe is questionable. I would not make this a max unit wager at the current number. However, the handicap still holds. The Wizards are very live here to beat the Bucks straight-up if Milwaukee doesn't have Antetokounmpo.
|01-10-19||Pepperdine v. Santa Clara -115||64-67||Win||100||7 h 31 m||Show|
Santa Clara is underpriced here coming off a loss to Gonzaga. Certainly there is no shame in that. The Broncos had won eight of their last nine before that. They own victories at home against USC and San Diego. The Broncos can certainly handle Pepperdine especially in a revenge spot after the Wave knocked them out of the WCC Tournament last season by hitting an incredible 70 percent of their shots. Santa Clara has been strong against the spread all season covering 69 percent. I'll ride the Broncos here.
|01-10-19||Sharks v. Golden Knights OVER 6||Top||3-2||Loss||-103||21 h 6 m||Show|
The Sharks have the two best offensive defensemen in the NHL with Erik Karlsson and Brent Burns. It is showing, too, as the Sharks have scored three or more goals in 14 of their last 15 games. San Jose has been particularly hot lately averaging 5.1 goals in its last seven games. The Golden Knights have scored at least three goals in eight of their last 10 games. They can take advantage of the Sharks likely to be without defensemen Marc Edouard Vlasic and Justin Braun, both of whom have been out with injuries.
|01-10-19||Clippers v. Nuggets -6||100-121||Win||100||11 h 3 m||Show|
The Clippers are fat and happy after consecutive home wins against Orlando and Charlotte. Now, though, they have to step up on the road against the Nuggets, who are in revenge mode and have been playing well all season. I don't see it happening for the Clippers. The Nuggets are 6-1 in their last seven games and have covered eight of their last 10 home games. They have the far superior defense and an edge up front with Nikola Jokic.
|01-10-19||UCLA v. Oregon OVER 141.5||87-84||Win||100||19 h 57 m||Show|
UCLA isn't a particularly good defensive team. Oregon is, or make that was. The Ducks rank first in the Pac-12 in scoring defense and defensive shooting percentage, but that is going to change. The Ducks lost their defensive presence with injuries to 7-foot-2 Bol Bol and 6-foot-8 Kenny Wooten. Oregon just surrendered 77 points to Oregon State in its last game. That was nearly four points more than the Beavers were averaging on the season. The Bruins are a different team, too, because of the coaching change from Steve Alford to interim coach Murry Bartow. In two games under Bartow, the Bruins scored 92 points versus Stanford and 98 against Cal. They are much more up-tempo under Bartow than they were under Alford, who is a Bobby Knight disciple.
|01-10-19||Michigan -9 v. Illinois||79-69||Win||100||10 h 23 m||Show|
Maybe things will turn around for Illinois. But probably not this season. The Illini are horrible. Fourth-ranked Michigan is far superior and doesn't lose focus. Even though they are home, the Illini may have trouble shaking a heartbreaking 68-66 road loss to in-state rival Northwestern this past Sunday. Michigan has dominated Illinois going 12-3-1 ATS in the past 16 meetings. The Illini are only 1-6 ATS in their past seven home games.
|01-10-19||Islanders -127 v. Rangers||4-3||Win||100||3 h 59 m||Show|
The Islanders have dominated this series winning 12 of the past 14 times. However, they lost 5-0 to the Rangers on Nov. 21. The Islanders want revenge for that loss. They had won the previous eight times against the Rangers. The Rangers are not playing well to say the least, outscored by 17 goals in opening 0-4 in 2019. Look for Robin Lehner back in net for the Islanders. He has been hot going 7-0 in his last seven starts while giving up only eight goals.
|01-09-19||Pistons v. Lakers -117||100-113||Win||100||22 h 49 m||Show|
No, LeBron James isn't back. But Brandon Ingram and Kyle Kuzma are. Given those two along with Lonzo Ball and playing at home following a confidence-building road victory against the Mavericks this past Monday gives a buy sign to the Lakers. The Lakers' 107-97 road win against the Mavericks is impressive. Dallas was 15-3 at home entering that game. The Pistons are back in lottery territory following a strong start to the season. They are 4-14 in their last 18 games. Detroit has lost and failed to cover in four of its past five road matchups. The Pistons' lone away victory during this span came against the struggling Grizzlies, who are 0-6 SU and ATS in their last six games. The Lakers have covered seven of the last eight times they have hosted the Pistons.
|01-09-19||Predators v. Blackhawks OVER 6||4-3||Win||100||19 h 32 m||Show|
Watching the Blackhawks it's easy to see why they give up the second-most goals per game in the NHL: They don't play much defense. The Blackhawks are particularly vulnerable when the other team has a man advantage ranking last in penalty killing. The Predators have picked up their scoring averaging four goals a game during their last six games. The Blackhawks have been respectable offensively, too, averaging 3.3 goals per game in their last nine matchups. Chicago has improved its power play moving up to 24th after ranking last. Chicago is 10-for-30 on the power play during its last 10 games.
|01-09-19||Ohio State v. Rutgers UNDER 134||61-64||Win||100||7 h 50 m||Show|
Ohio State gives up the 31st fewest points in the country - and that's after surrendering 86 points to Michigan State in its last game. So expect the Buckeyes to really clamp down on Rutgers, which averages fewer than 69 points per game.
|01-08-19||Wolves v. Thunder -8||119-117||Loss||-108||18 h 52 m||Show|
Sometimes a team gets a psychological lift in their first game following a coaching change. I don't see that happening, though, with the Timberwolves in this matchup after they fired Tom Thibodeau on Sunday. Oklahoma City is in revenge mode from a home loss to Minnesota just two weeks ago. That was a rare road victory for the Timberwolves, who have played far worse away from Target Center going 5-15 SU, 8-12 in their away games. The Thunder are one of the top-seven teams in the NBA. The Timberwolves are a below .500 club. Motivation is key for Oklahoma City, which has a winning spread mark at home and is 5-2 ATS the past seven times laying 7 or more points. The Thunder lost at home to the Wizards in embarrassing fashion, 116-98, this past Sunday getting dominated on the boards and defense. Those are two of the Thunder's strong areas. The Thunder went into that matchup against the Wizards fat and happy returning home after going 2-0 on a West Coast trip beating the Lakers and Trail Blazers. The Thunder are too professional and have too much superstar talent with Russell Westbrook and Paul George to suffer a second straight home loss to an inferior opponent especially with revenge motivation. The Timberwolves may not have their full focus as the firing of Thibodeau was a surprise coming after the team had blown out the Lakers at home for their second win in a row. Thibodeau not only was the head coach, but also president of basketball operations. It's a distracting and unexpected move. Now the Timberwolves have to play a far superior opponent on the road just two days later. Untested 32-year-old Ryan Saunders is the Timberwolves' interim coach. I don't see him enjoying success in this spot.
|01-08-19||Texas A&M v. Kentucky -12.5||Top||74-85||Loss||-108||17 h 24 m||Show|
Kentucky is in a kill position mood after getting upset, 77-75, as five-point road favorites against Alabama this past Saturday in its SEC opener. Wildcats coach John Calipari is putting a lot of emphasis on this matchup after that frustrating loss. The Wildcats are unbeaten at home and have won 79 percent of their games under Calipari following a loss, a span of 58 games. Texas A&M is not very good this season. That has become clear in the Aggies' last two games, both home losses. The Aggies lost 73-71 to Arkansas and before that fell to Texas Southern, 88-73, as 16 1/2-point favorites. The Wildcats are 7-2 ATS in their last nine home games versus a foe with a losing road record.
|01-07-19||Nuggets v. Rockets -117||113-125||Win||100||19 h 60 m||Show|
Kudos to the Nuggets. It's nearly halfway through the NBA regular season and Denver has the best record in the Western Conference. The Rockets, though, should be ready for the Nuggets at home. Houston has picked up its pace since a slow beginning and is playing extremely well despite being without Chris Paul. The Rockets are 11-2 SU, 10-1-1 ATS in their last 13 games. They just lost, though, on the road to the Trail Blazers this past Saturday, Among the Rockets' wins during this current 13-game span have been against the Celtics, Thunder, Spurs, Jazz, Lakers when they had LeBron James and Trail Blazers. Houston is 8-0-1 ATS in its past nine home games. Denver has won five in a row. But its last four victories have all come against below .500 teams - Suns, Knicks, Kings and Hornets. Those teams are a combined 44 games under .500. The Nuggets have failed to cover five of their last six road games. They have a losing road spread mark on the season.
|01-07-19||Alabama v. Clemson +5.5||Top||16-44||Win||100||115 h 3 m||Show|
Clemson isn't getting the respect it deserves from oddsmakers. The Tigers are every bit as good - if not better - than Alabama. Yes, the SEC is a better football conference than the ACC. No argument there. But I will argue the Tigers passed a tough schedule with flying colors beating 10 Bowl teams, eight of them by 20 or more points. Clemson is every bit as dominating as Alabama ranking fourth in points scored while giving up the fewest points per game in the nation. The Tigers have proven themselves huge money-winners in the postseason, too, covering eight of their last nine bowl games. Alabama's defense showed some vulnerability against Oklahoma. True, the Sooners have a great offense. But so does Clemson. I like Tigers QB Trevor Lawrence much more than Kelly Bryant. The Tide defeated Clemson, 24-6, in the Sugar Bowl last season when Bryant was behind center. This time around it will be much different.
|01-07-19||Blues v. Flyers -113||3-0||Loss||-113||17 h 3 m||Show|
There's a due factor that should kick in for the Flyers here. They are in full circle-the-wagons mode having lost six in a row with nearly all of those defeats coming in close games. The Blues aren't a good team and they have lost three of their last four games. St. Louis averages just 2.2 goals on the road where they are 6-9. St. Louis has dropped eight of its last nine matchups versus sub .500 opponents and are 1-4 during its past five visits to Philadelphia. Backup Blues goalie Jordan Binnington will make his first career start. He has an unispiring 3.51 GAA and .840 save percentage in three relief appearances. The Flyers are going with Carter Hart in net. He has been the Flyers' best goalie.
|01-06-19||Blackhawks v. Penguins OVER 6||5-3||Win||100||5 h 58 m||Show|
The Blackhawks give up the second-most goals and are last in stopping power plays. The Penguins are hot on the power play scoring 69 percent of the time on their last 13 attempts. Pittsburgh has scored at least 3 goals in six straight games. The Blackhawks have a respectable offense and can contribute their share of goals. The Penguins have been putting up good defensive numbers, but haven't faced many good offenses recently. The Over is 13-6-3 in Chicago's last 20 games.
|01-06-19||Chargers +3 v. Ravens||Top||23-17||Win||100||39 h 22 m||Show|
The Chargers are that rare team that plays better on the road than at home. The reason for this is they really don't have a home-field advantage playing at sparsely populated StubHub Center in Southern California. The Chargers are 8-0, though, in games outside of Southern California. They have won in five different time zones and won't be intimidated here. The forecast for Sunday in Baltimore is sunny with temperatures in the 40s with around a 10-12 mph wind. So it's not like the Chargers are going into frigid conditions. Baltimore dominated the Chargers, 22-10, on the road just two weeks ago. Until that loss, the Chargers were in the argument for best team in the league. So maybe they needed a loss like that to sharpen them up and energize their focus. There is no secret to the Ravens. They are going to pound the ball, play for field position and rely on their excellent defense. The Chargers won't be ambushed again by the Ravens. Baltimore beat the Chargers after LA had knocked off the Chiefs the previous week on the road. So it wasn't a great spot for the Chargers. I respect the Ravens. Their defense is better than the Chargers. John Harbaugh is an above average coach, while Anthony Lynn is untested in playoff games. But I believe the Chargers are the better all-around team. Philip Rivers, Melvin Gordon and Keenan Allen give the Chargers the best skill position players. The Chargers also get back big-play tight end Hunter Henry for the first time this season. They also have change-of-pace Austin Ekeler back. He missed the first game against the Ravens. Ekeler is a key because he's good pass-catching back and can hurt the Ravens via screen passes, which would slow down the Ravens' pass rush. The Chargers know what's coming. They are going to be prepared for Baltimore's ground attack by loading up the box. Lamar Jackson is an outstanding running QB, but he's not a good downfield passer.
|01-06-19||Hurricanes v. Senators UNDER 6.5||5-4||Loss||-110||9 h 23 m||Show|
Carolina is playing for the third time in four days. Note this is a day game with an early start. So the Hurricanes are likely to have heavy legs, which should mean more of a slow tempo, defensive-minded effort. The Hurricanes haven't given up more than three goals during their last seven games. They have been a strong Under team on the road, too, going below the total in 69 percent of their past 16 away matchups. The Senators haven't broken the three-goal barrier during regulation in their last nine games. The under has cashed five of the past six times these two teams have met.
|01-05-19||Lightning -115 v. Sharks||2-5||Loss||-115||21 h 36 m||Show|
I'll take my chances at this low lay price with the Lightning, winners of 18 of their past 20 games including the last seven. Tampa Bay has scored at least four goals in 10 of its past 11 games. San Jose just lost two defensemen to injuries in their last game, steady Marc-Edouard Vlasic and Justin Braun. San Jose has allowed four or more goals in five of its last seven games. The Lightning lead the NHL in goals averaging 4.2 per game. The Lightning have been on the West Coast for nearly a week, while the Sharks just finished a three-game road trip. San Jose has lost in three of its last four home games.
|01-05-19||Lightning v. Sharks OVER 6.5||2-5||Win||100||21 h 35 m||Show|
I'll take my chances at this low lay price with the Lightning, winners of 18 of their past 20 games including the last seven. Tampa Bay has scored at least four goals in 10 of its past 11 games. San Jose just lost two defensemen to injuries in their last game, steady Marc-Edouard Vlasic and Justin Braun. San Jose has allowed four or more goals in five of its last seven games. The Lightning lead the NHL in goals averaging 4.2 per game. The Lightning have been on the West Coast for nearly a week, while the Sharks just finished a three-game road trip. San Jose has lost in three of its last four home games.
|01-05-19||Seahawks v. Cowboys -125||Top||22-24||Win||100||50 h 15 m||Show|
Those who like Seattle in this matchup point to the Seahawks' playoff experience and coaching/quarterback edges thanks to Pete Carroll and Russell Wilson. But the Seahawks have failed to cover in five of their last six playoff games. Dak Prescott isn't nearly as good as Russell Wilson and I would take Carroll over Jason Garrett. But the Cowboys hold most of the other edges not to mention home field and having had the opportunity to rest Ezekiel Elliott last Sunday. Elliott trumps any of Seattle's running back. The Cowboys are healthier in the trenches and have the superior defense. Both teams rely on the run to set up play-action. Dallas has the better offensive line. Seattle has a key defensive injury with cornerback Shaquill Griffin dealing with an ankle injury. Griffin would be lining up opposite Amari Cooper, who caught 53 passes for 725 yards and six touchdowns in just nine games for the Cowboys providing Dallas with a legitimate No. 1 receiver. The Cowboys also found a late-season hidden weapon, second-year tight end Blake Jarwin. He had 228 receiving yards in Dallas' last four games while scoring three touchdowns against the Giants in Week 17. The Cowboys defense ranks in the top-seven in fewest points, fewest yards and run defense. Seattle was 16th in yards allowed, 13th in run defense and 11th in scoring defense. Bobby Wagner is the Seahawks' lone defensive star. The Cowboys have an elite pass rusher, DeMarcus Lawrence, a top-notch cornerback, Byron Jones, and two emerging star linebackers, Leighton Vander Esch and Jaylon Smith. It's an added plus if Sean Lee is healthy enough to give them anything. Dallas' home field advantage can't be minimized either. It's huge. Dallas is 7-1 at home. The Cowboys held the Saints to a season-low 10 points at AT&T Stadium. Seattle is 4-4 on the road. The Seahawks' away victories came against the Cardinals, Lions, Panthers and Raiders - all below .500 teams.
|01-05-19||Northern Illinois v. Ohio -3.5||72-66||Loss||-109||10 h 47 m||Show|
Northern Illinois enters this matchup off a deflating 88-60 loss to eighth-ranked Michigan State last Saturday. The Huskies hadn't met an opponent that high ranked since 1996. The Huskies are 1-4 on the road this season. They didn't beat a MAC team on the road last season. You have to go back to Feb. 21 of 2017 to find the last time Northern Illinois beat a MAC team away from home. Ohio is 7-0 at home. The Bobcats have covered seven of their last 10 home games. The Bobcats defeated the Huskies, 78-68, at home last season. That was the fourth straight time they have covered against the Huskies.
|01-04-19||Buffalo -11 v. Eastern Michigan||74-58||Win||100||12 h 49 m||Show|
Eastern Michigan has been one of the worst college basketball teams against the spread this season failing to cover in eight of its nine lined games. The Eagles have lost six of their last eight games. They've been held under 70 points in four of those last six points. I think this line is short so I'm going to ride with 12-1 Buffalo, which has proven itself on the road covering five of six lined away games. The Bulls have defeated much better teams on the road, including West Virginia and Syracuse. The 20th-ranked Bulls should be focused since this is their Mid-American Conference opener.
|01-04-19||Wizards v. Heat -6.5||Top||109-115||Loss||-109||19 h 18 m||Show|
Quietly Miami has been on a monster point spread run covering 13 of its last 16 games. Look for the Heat to cover another game as this matchup against the Wizards sets up well for them. Washington has been terrible on the road lately losing and failing to cover its past seven away matchups. The Wizards have lost by at least seven points in each of their past seven road defeats. This includes lopsided losses to teams much worse than the Heat, including falling to the Pistons by 16 points and 15 points to the Cavaliers. The Heat should dominate the paint against the Wizards, who are a weak rebounding team and rank second-to-last in scoring defense. The Wizards are minus John Wall and thin up front with Dwight Howard and Markieff Morris out. This has drained Washington's bench. The Heat, though, just got Dion Waiters back from injury boosting their rotation. The Wizards are heavily reliant on Bradley Beal with Wall out. Miami ranks third in defensive field goal percentage and give up the fifth-fewest points per game in the league.
|01-03-19||Raptors v. Spurs -120||Top||107-125||Win||100||18 h 41 m||Show|
The Spurs have covered 75 percent of their last 32 home games. They have defeated the Raptors nine consecutive times at AT&T Center going 6-2-1 ATS. San Antonio is playing well going 10-3 in its last 13 games, while the Raptors are 1-4 SU, 0-5 ATS during their past five road games. So it's not too much to ask the Spurs to win this matchup especially considering how bad the Raptors have looked recently on the road. Toronto's last four road defeats have been by 29 points to the Magic, 25 to the 76ers, nine to the Nuggets and six to the Trail Blazers. The Spurs are going to be super motivated, too, for this matchup since it marks the return of Kawhi Leonard to San Antonio. There is bad blood between the Spurs and Leonard following last season when Leonard played in only nine games for San Antonio. The Raptors face San Antonio short-handed without point guard Kyle Lowery, their second-best player, and center Jonas Valanciunas. Lowery has a back injury that has kept him out of eight of the past nine games while Valanciunas isn't expected back for another four weeks due to a thumb injury.
|01-03-19||Hurricanes v. Flyers -109||5-3||Loss||-109||16 h 59 m||Show|
The Flyers are really pointing to this game, having lost 3-1 to the Hurricanes on the road Monday. It's the Flyers' first home game since Dec. 22. Philadelphia is 3-5 in its last eight games with four of those defeats occurring on the road. The Flyers have played better than their recent 3-5 record indicates losing by one goal to Columbus, by one goal to Tampa Bay in overtime and by one goal to Florida after leading most of the game. Carolina is 4-10 in its last 14 games. The Hurricanes have scored one or fewer goals in four of their last six games. They also have lost in five of their last seven visits to Philadelphia.
|01-02-19||Boise State -3.5 v. Wyoming||Top||69-55||Win||100||14 h 48 m||Show|
Wyoming edged Boise State, 79-78, in overtime last season when it hosted them. Boise State got some revenge when it beat the Cowboys, 95-87, at home in the final regular season game last season. Now the Broncos have a great opportunity to get road revenge as the Cowboys have a cluster injury problem in their backcourt. Among Boise State's banged-up players are Hunter Maldanado and Jake Hendricks, both of whom average double figures in scoring. Madanado is out with a back injury, while Hendricks is deaing with a knee injury. The Cowboys have been one of the worst ATS teams in the nation covering only two of their first 12 lined games. Long-term, the Cowboys are 7-18-1 ATS.
|01-02-19||Heat -6 v. Cavs||Top||117-92||Win||100||20 h 54 m||Show|
Just two games ago, Miami hosted Cleveland. Final score: Heat 118, Cavaliers 94. While I don't expect the Heat to bury the Cavaliers on the road by that much in this short turnaround, I do expect them to cover this spread. The Cavaliers have lost eight of their last nine games, including the past six. They have failed to reach 100 points in five of their last seven games. The Heat rank third in defensvie field goal percentage and seventh in fewest points allowed. Miami is on a nice point spread run covering 12 of its last 15 games. The Heat are 8-1 ATS during their past nine road matchups. The Heat, though, shouldn't lack motivation or being overconfident having lost their last game. That was at home to Minnesota, 113-104, this past Sunday. It was the most points Miami had allowed in its last 15 games. Cleveland is the third-lowest scoring team in the NBA. The Cavaliers are playing at home for the first time in more than a week having concluded a three-game road trip this past Saturday. They could be rusty and unfocused after had a long holiday break following their last game. The Cavaliers are 3-7 ATS on three or more days rest. The Cavaliers have permitted 110 or more points in five of their last six games.
|01-02-19||Canucks v. Senators +118||4-3||Loss||-100||19 h 47 m||Show|
Ottawa is far more respectable when playing at home going 11-7-3. The Senators begin a three-game homestand against the Canucks attempting to halt a five-game losing streak. However, three of those defeats occurred on the road and the other two were at home to the defending Stanley Cup champion Capitals, including a one-goal loss. The Senators' last game was a 6-3 road loss to the Blue Jackets on Monday. That game was far closer, though, than the final score. The game was tied with 2:01 left. Columbus scored three goals during the last 2:01, including two empy-netters. Vancouver is playing its fourth road game in seven days. The Cancuks aren't a great road club having lost 36 of their past 53 away matchups and are 2-5 in their last seven games versus the Senators.
|01-01-19||Texas +13.5 v. Georgia||28-21||Win||100||24 h 51 m||Show|
Not sure of Georgia's motivation for this game after playing for the national title game last season and falling short against Alabama this season. I'm not doubting the Bulldogs' talent. But Texas is going to be up for this game. The Longhorns never lack talent either and they have the best underdog coach going for them in Tom Herman. How good of a 'dog coach is Herman? If you take his last four jobs as offensive coordinator and head coach his teams are 23-2 ATS for 92 percent when taking points! Texas has a pair of dangerous big-play versatile receivers in Collin Johnson and Lil' Jordan Humphrey. The Bulldogs are without their top defensive back, Deandre Baker, who is sitting out the game to prepare for the NFL draft.
|01-01-19||Jazz v. Raptors UNDER 212.5||116-122||Loss||-114||16 h 11 m||Show|
Down point guard Kyle Lowry and center Jonas Valanciunas, the Raptors have hit a scoring drought. They scored only 87 points against the Magic and 95 points versus the Bulls in their last two games.Now Toronto faces Utah, which has a far better defense than the Magic and Bulls. The Jazz give up the fifth-fewest points in the league. Utah has held five of its past nine opponents to 97 points or fewer. The Under has cashed in eight of Utah's last nine games and five of the Jazz's past six road games. The Jazz rank 24th in scoring. Toronto ranks eighth in defense. The Jazz are reliant on second-year man Donovan Mitchell, who is having a down year so far shooting .41.1 percent from the floor after connecting on 43.7 of his shots last season. Playing on New Year's Day is a plus for the Under, too, following New Year's Eve.
|01-01-19||Washington v. Ohio State -6||Top||23-28||Loss||-110||20 h 22 m||Show|
I want Ohio State going for me in Urban Meyer's final game as Buckeyes coach and the price isn't too high to get it. The Pac 12 is down this season. That's reflected in the bowls. Washington is one-dimensional relying on a strong defense. But Ohio State has a great offense ranking No. 2 in the nation in yards gained and seventh in points. The Buckeyes average 17 points more per game than the Huskies and play in the stronger conference in my view. If the Huskies fall behind early they are in big trouble because they lack an explosive offense. When motivated the Buckeyes can beat any team with the exception of Alabama and Clemson. Washington isn't close to being in that class. The Huskies lost to Auburn, Oregon and California. Ohio State displayed its power by burying Michigan, 62-39, in its last game. I see a class difference here. Throw in the huge motivating factor to get Meyer a victory in his finale and I'll lay the points.
|12-31-18||NC State v. Texas A&M OVER 55.5||Top||13-52||Win||100||21 h 59 m||Show|
Both teams rank among the top 26 in scoring. NC State averages 35.6 points. Texas A&M averages 34.7 points. So I find this total short. Neither defense can is strong enough to slow the other offense down. North Carolina State has a stud QB in Ryan Finley. He has a deep group of receivers to throw, including Kelvin Harmon and Jakobi Meyers. Both of whom had more than 1,000 yards receiving this season. The Wolfpack have gone Over in each of their last eight neutral site games. The Over has cashed in each of North Carolina State's last six bowl games. Texas A&M has gone Over in six of its last seven nonconference games. The Aggies have one of the best running backs in college football, Trayveon Williams, and also one of the better tight ends, Jace Sternberger, who had 804 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns.
|12-31-18||Missouri v. Oklahoma State +10||33-38||Win||100||17 h 25 m||Show|
If Missouri is the better team here, the Tigers aren't more than a touchdown better than Oklahoma State. Both offenses are strong. Missouri has the better defense, but Oklahoma State can score on any team. The Cowboys rank 14th in scoring and 10th in yardage. QB Taylor Cornelius is one of the most dangerous dual threats in the country. Cornelius is backed by talented running backs. The Tigers didn't see a lot of wide open attacks like Oklahoma State has playing in the SEC. The Tigers have good skill position talent, too, but Drew Lock doesn't have Cornelius' mobility and the Tigers could be missing several of their weapons with running back Damarea Crockett, wide receiver Jalen Knox and tight end Albert Okwuegbunam all banged-up. The Cowboys have been point spread gold in nonleague games covering eight of their past nine nonconference matchups.
|12-31-18||Hawks v. Pacers -11.5||108-116||Loss||-118||11 h 60 m||Show|
Indiana has the No. 1 defense in the NBA. Atlanta has the worst defense in the league. The difference is the Pacers surrendering an average of 17 fewer points per game than the Hawks. Throw in a strong situational spot favoring Indiana and the possibility the Hawks could be without maybe their third best player, Kent Bazemore, and this spread doesn't seem so high. The Pacers are one of the better teams in the Eastern Conference at 24-12. They are 11-2 in their last 13 games and have won four in a row. The Pacers last played on Friday. They are 7-1 ATS the past eight times when playing on two days rest. Indiana doesn't play again until Friday so a full effort should be forthcoming. The Hawks are in action for the fourth time in six days and third in four days. This is an early start time, too, which does the Hawks no favors almost making this a back-to-back game. Atlanta enters the matchup fat and happy with consecutive victories, including upsetting the Timerwolves in overtime as a 9 1/2-point road 'dog. Atlanta may be without Bazemore. The shooting guard is questionable with an ankle injury.
|12-31-18||Virginia Tech v. Cincinnati -6.5||Top||31-35||Loss||-110||14 h 5 m||Show|
This is not a very good Virginia Tech team. The Hokies just were able to sneak into a bowl game. I find Cincinnati to not only be the superior team, but the more motivated one. The Bearcats surrendered 152 fewer yards per game than the Hokies. Cincinnati gave up fewer than 17 points a game, while Virginia Tech allowed nearly 32 points per game. The Hokies can be run on and passed on yielding more than 220 yards both ways. Cincinnati has the skill position talent to exploit Virginia Tech's vulnerable defense with dual threat quarterback Desmond Ridder and running back Michael Warren II. The Bearcats also have the best pass rusher in the game in Cortez Broughton and an excellent punter, James Smith. When Virginia Tech loses it is not by a close count. All of the Hokies' six defeats came by 10 or more points.
|12-30-18||Kings v. Lakers +1.5||Top||114-121||Win||100||22 h 51 m||Show|
LeBron James isn't likely to play because of a groin injury suffered on Christmas Day. But the Lakers are going to go all out here after losing their first two games without James. The first game the Lakers played without James was this past Thursday against the Kings on the road. The Lakers built a 15-point lead with 6:44 left in the game. The Kings came all the way back to win, 117-116, with Bogdan Bogdanovic sinking a 3-pointer at the buzzer to give Sacramento the victory. Stunned by that loss, the Lakers were buried the next day by the Clippers. Now the Lakers have had a full day to regroup. LA doesn't lack talent without James. They have Brandom Ingram, Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart and Kevin Kuzma. The Kings are an improved team, but their young core isn't as talented as the Lakers. The Lakers are home, highly motivated and getting points against a team they are least the equal of without James.
|12-30-18||Colts -3 v. Titans||33-17||Win||100||74 h 48 m||Show|
The Colts knocked out Marcus Mariota when they played the Titans in Week 11. The Colts buried the Titans, 38-10, in that game. Andrew Luck torched the Titans for 297 yards passing and three touchdowns. Luck is 10-0 lifetime versus Tennessee. Luck is an elite quarterback and now, for the first time, has an elite pass-blocking offensive line. The Colts are very underrated defensively giving up the 11th fewest yards and 13th fewest points. I expect Mariota to start for the Titans. But he's not likely 100 percent and he's not that good even when he is healthy unable to consistenly hurt a defense with downfield throws. The Titans' strategy has become feed Derrick Henry and rely on a good - but not great - defense. The Colts rank eighth in run defense. They are going to stack the line keying on Henry. Then what for the Titans? I don't see them being able to keep up with Luck, who is back to elite status and has found a decent running back in Marlon Mack. If the Colts are able to build a big early lead the Titans are in real trouble because that would take Henry out of the mix. The Colts have been playing extremely well going 8-1 in their last nine games, charging hard for a playoff spot. I believe they are the better team with the much superior quarterback. The Titans' home field is strong, but not strong enough to compensate for them being the weaker foe.
|12-30-18||Chargers -6.5 v. Broncos||23-9||Win||100||112 h 53 m||Show|
Despite getting manhandled last week by the Ravens, the Chargers are one of the best teams in the NFL. They are 11-4 and rank in the top 10 both offensively and defensively. The Chargers need this game in their hunt to finish with the best record in the AFC and win the AFC West Division title. They will be playing hard especially following their bad performance against the Ravens. The Broncos are a shot team done in by injuries, low morale and a coach who barring a miracle won't be with the team next season. Denver is reeling as the regular season comes to a conclusion losing the past three weeks to the 49ers, Browns and Raiders this past Monday night. The Broncos are 11-20 under Vance Joseph, who has impressed no one with his coaching blunders. Denver is down three key players - cornerback Chris Harris, wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders and now its star rookie running back Phillip Lindsay, who suffered a wrist injury against the Raiders. LA is much the better team and has motivation. The Chargers have the best road mark in the NFL at 6-1 SU and ATS. They have posted road victories against much stronger teams than the Broncos beating the Chiefs, Steelers and Seahawks.
|12-30-18||Raiders v. Chiefs -13.5||3-35||Win||100||70 h 33 m||Show|
When is it OK to lay two touchdowns in a division game? The answer is right here. This is a kill spot for the high-powered Chiefs off two straight losses and looking for a big win to regain momentum for the playoffs. No team gains more yards or scores more points than the Chiefs, who average 35.3 points per game. Patrick Mahomes should be the MVP of the league with his 48 TD passes, which is 12 more than second-place Andrew Luck. The Raiders rank 31st in scoring defense allowing 28.9 points a game. The Raiders are traveling on a short week after getting a bit of redemption for their disaster of a first season under Jon Gruden having just beaten the Broncos on national TV Monday. I see the Raiders being fat and happy after that win. They don't have nearly the talent to hang against the Chiefs on the road unless they produce an "A" effort. Gruden is going to be around a long time for the Raiders after signing a 10-year contract. I don't see the Raiders entering this matchup with a lot of urgency. They just want this season to be over with. Oakland is 1-6 on the road with the lone victory coming by two points against the punchless Cardinals, who are the opposite of the Chiefs with the worst offense in the NFL. Just two weeks ago the Raiders traveled to Cincinnati and lost by 14 points to the hapless Bengals surrendering 30 points to an outfit that is down their starting quarterback and their three best receivers. The Raiders have lost four road games by 14 points or more. Defense has been Kansas City's major weakness. The Chiefs, though, are giving up a respectable 20.1 points a game when playing at Arrowhead Stadium. The return of star safety Eric Berry improves their defense, too.
|12-30-18||Cardinals +14 v. Seahawks||24-27||Win||100||68 h 53 m||Show|
I understand the Cardinals are dog excrement. They are 3-12 and headed toward getting the No. 1 draft pick. Steve Wilks has been a dismal failure and is likely to be one-and-out as the Cardinals head coach. However ...The Seahawks have no incentive to pile up a big victory here. They clinched a playoff spot this past week. Even if they beat the Cardinals the best they can be is a No. 5 seed. That means the Seahawks may not play Russell Wilson and some of their other key players the entire game. The Seahawks are not some dominant, elite team. Their defense is opportunistic rather than outstanding with 24 takeaways. The Cardinals have better talent than their record shows with David Johnson, Larry Fitzgerald, Chandler Jones and Patrick Peterson. Arizona nearly forced overtime in the first meeting. The Seahawks won, 20-17, on a 52-year field goal with no time left. The Seahawks have won nine games. Only two of those victories, though, were by more than 14 points.
|12-30-18||Dolphins v. Bills -3||Top||17-42||Win||100||140 h 13 m||Show|
The Dolphins have lost 11 of their last 12 road games. They are 0-6 SU, 1-5 ATS in their past six away matchups. The Dolphins are not going to the playoffs and likely will have a new coach and management team in place next season. The warm-weathered Dolphins have no interest in traveling to Buffalo where the forecast is for temperatures in the 20's with wind and a 30 percent chance of snow. That's the situational aspect. The fundamental matchup is the Bills have the superior defense and a far more mobile quarterback. Miami ranks third-from-the-bottom in both yards allowed and fewest yards gained. Ryan Tanneheill is a mediocre quarterback, who is even less effective because of a sore ankle. He has been sacked 20 times in the last five games. Buffalo ranks No. 1 in pass defense and also gives up the second-fewest yards in the league. The Bills' defense is far more respectable than Miami's. Josh Allen provides a spark for the Bills on offense. He's already one of the best running quarterbacks having rushed for 100 yards twice this season. The Bills outgained the Dolphins, 415-175, when the teams met in Week 13. The Dolphins won, though, 21-17. The Bills should have taken a late lead but Charles Clay dropped a throw in the end zone with 53 seconds left.
|12-29-18||Blackhawks v. Avalanche -1.5||3-2||Loss||-100||19 h 25 m||Show|
Not only are the Avalanche in circle-the-wagons mode, but they are in a big revenge spot, too, after the Blackhawks surprised them, 2-1, at Colorado eight days ago. Blackhawks third-string rookie goalie Collin Delia made 35 saves in his season debut to thwart the Avalanche. The Avalanche were minus $2.45 favorites against the Blackhawks. Stunned by that loss, Colorado went on the road and lost to the Coyotes and Golden Knights. Now they are back home for the rematch against Chicago and heavy favorites once again. So I'm laying the 1 1/2 goals to knock off the heavy juice and get a plus price in what I envision as a kill spot for the superior Avalanche. Colorado is sixth in the NHL in goals per game. The Blackhawks have the worst defense in the league. The Avalanche have film and first-hand scouting reports now on Delia. The Blackhawks are traveling after beating the Wild at home on Thursday, 5-2. The Wild have lost five in a row so the Blackhawks hosted them at a good time. Chicago is 8-23 following a victory and 2-7 the past nine times when playing on one day rest.
|12-29-18||Oregon v. Boise State UNDER 134||62-50||Win||100||16 h 22 m||Show|
These same two teams met just two weeks ago and Oregon won, 66-54, at home for a combined total of 120. That stayed well under the 133 lined total. Oregon didn't have its leading scorer, center Bol Bol, for that game. He's out for this game, too. The Ducks average 61 points without him. Oregon is a strong under team. The Ducks rank 35th defensively and have slowed their pace. The under has cashed in five of their past six games. Boise State is a better defensive team than an offensive one. The Broncos don't push pace either. These teams are familar with each other. So I see another low-scoring game.
|12-29-18||Rockets -125 v. Pelicans||108-104||Win||100||15 h 20 m||Show|
The Rockets are back playing like the Rockets again. Houston is playing better than anyone winning eight of its last nine. The Rockets have knocked off tough opponents, too, during this span beating the Celtics, Thunder, Spurs, Jazz, Grizzlies, Lakers and Trail Blazers. Houston's lone defeat in this time frame came on the road to the Heat when the Rockets were playing without rest. Now the Rockets draw the Pelicans without rest. New Orleans was super extended in getting past the pesky Mavericks, 114-112, on Friday in a revenge spot. Dallas had defeated New Orleans on Wednesday. Anthony Davis had a huge game on Friday with 48 points and 17 rebounds. He also played nearly 43 minutes. This marks the Pelicans' third game in four days. The Pelicans are one of the weakest defensive teams in the league ranking 26th. James Harden is on fire averaging 40.5 points during the last eight games. Houston is averaging 120 points in its last two games. The Rockets aren't going to lack motivation either. The Pelicans embarrassed them early in the season with a 131-112 home win on Houston's opening night.
|12-29-18||Notre Dame v. Clemson UNDER 57||Top||3-30||Win||100||21 h 17 m||Show|
Clemson's Travis Etienne and Notre Dame's Dexter Williams are two excellent running backs. I expect a lot of carries for these two backs given the high quality of these defenses and the inexperience of each team's quarterback when going against an elite defense. Running the ball eats clock. So given this high of a total, Under is the way to go. Notre Dame ranks 10th in scoring defense allowing just 17.2 points a game. The Irish do not give up big plays, which has been a staple of Clemson's quick-strike offense. Clemson also doesn't give up big plays. The Tigers rank fourth in the country in both fewest yards and fewest points allowed. I don't see Notre Dame QB Ian Book having too much success against the Tigers. The Irish defense, with their strong defensive front, can contain Clemson freshman QB Trevor Lawrence.
|12-29-18||South Carolina v. Virginia +5||0-28||Win||100||17 h 16 m||Show|
Virginia has steadily improved under Bronco Mendenhall. The Cavaliers reached a bowl game last season and now they are ready to win one after getting crushed by Navy, 49-7, in a bowl game that was more like a home game for the Midshipmen. South Carolina has a strong passing attack. However the Gamecocks have two things against them. They won't have their best wideout, Deebo Samuel, who is sitting out for personal reasons. And they are facing a strong Virginia secondary that ranked 14th in the nation in pass defense. The Cavaliers have an excellent quarterback in Bryce Perkins, a dual threat who accounted for 3,314 all-purpose yards and 31 touchdowns. South Carolina will be without two injured defensive starters, too, tackle Javon Kinlaw and cornerback Keisean Nixon.
|12-28-18||Iowa State +3 v. Washington State||Top||26-28||Win||100||80 h 16 m||Show|
There are many reasons to like Iowa State against Washington State especially when the wrong team is favored. Iowa State played in the tougher conference and faced a tougher schedule. The Pac-12 was extremely weak this year. Washington State is a one-dimensional passing team. This is a reflection on its coach, Mike Leach. Iowa State is used to facing passing teams being in the Big 12. The Cyclones have a solid defense. They held West Virginia and Baylor to 14 points each. If the Cyclones can stop Will Grier like they did, they can slow down Gardner Minshew. I find Leach to be an overrated coach. I base much of this opinion on his being 1-7 ATS in his last eight bowl games. The long layoff from the end of the regular season to the bowl game is a real negative for Washington State, throwing off its timing in the passing game. The Cougars are averaging just 16.3 points during their past three bowl games. Washington State was hoping to play in the Rose Bowl. The Cougars had to settle for this minor Alamo Bowl game after losing 28-15 at home to long-time Pac 12 rival Washington. So the Cougars may not be fully motivated. Iowa State quarterback Brock Purdy proved himself this season with a 16-to-5 touchdown-to-interception ratio in eight games. He has a pair of tremendous skill position weapons in running back David Montgomery and wide receiver Hakeem Butler. I also like Iowa State coach Matt Campbell. His Cyclones have covered 69 percent of the time in the 36 past instances when they were underdogs of three points or higher.
|12-28-18||Nets v. Hornets -4.5||87-100||Win||100||19 h 22 m||Show|
The Hornets just have to wait two days to get redemption. That's how long their last game was, which happened to be a 134-132 overtime road loss to the Nets on Wednesday. The Hornets blew an eight-point lead during the final three-plus minutes of regulation. The Nets are improved and playing well. But Charlotte is the better team and has the best player, Kemba Walker. The Nets slowed down Walker in the fourth quarter using a form of box-and-one that might have caught the Hornets off guard. Charlotte will be better prepared this time around. This back-and-back series has a playoff and zig-and-zag feel to it. So I want the Hornets going for me here.
|12-27-18||Canucks v. Oilers UNDER 6||4-2||Push||0||10 h 45 m||Show|
Look for some rust with both teams coming off Christmas break. The Under is 16-6-3 the past 25 times the Canucks have played after being idle for three or more days. The Canucks have been strong defensively lately. If you discount the five goals they gave to the Lightning, the Canucks have held their previous four foes to a combined five goals. Edmonton is overrated offensively because it has Connor McDavid. The Oilers rank 25th in goals. They went into break averaging two goals per game during their last three games. There is an Under bias to this series. Only twice has the Over won the past 10 times these teams have met.
|12-27-18||Duke +3.5 v. Temple||Top||56-27||Win||100||23 h 39 m||Show|
Care to lay points with an 8-4 American Athletic Conference school against an Atlantic Coast Conference opponent, who owns victories this season against bowl teams Army, Northwestern, Baylor, Georgia Tech and Miami? I sure don't. That's one reason I'm taking the points with Duke against Temple in the Independence Bowl. Please note this game goes early Thursday. The Blue Devils are going for their third straight bowl win. They have a tremendous bowl and underdog coach in David Cutcliffe, whose teams have covered 60 percent of the time the past 80 times they have been underdogs. Cutcliffe's teams are 8-2 ATS, too, in bowl games. Temple, by contrast, has a messed-up coaching situation. Ed Foley will be coaching just his second game as Owls head coach Geoff Collins left for Georgia Tech. The Owls' biggest wins were against Maryland, which finished with a losing record in the down Big Ten, and Houston. The Cougars just got blasted, 70-14, by Army in the Armed Forces Bowl. It's clear Duke has played a far tougher schedule. Blue Devils quarterback Daniel Jones is a pro prospect. Wrong team favored in my view.
|12-26-18||Nuggets v. Spurs -3||103-111||Win||100||22 h 56 m||Show|
The Nuggets have been a major surprise opening the season with 21 wins in their first 31 games. A regression is coming, though, for Denver. That was evident in its last game, a 132-111 blowout loss to the Clippers on the road this past Saturday. That was Denver's worst loss of the season. Denver is down three starters with Paul Millsap, Gary Harris and Will Barton all out. Big man Millsap is an underrated loss. The Clippers dominated the paint against the Nuggets scoring 80 points down low while shooting a blistering 57.6 percent from the field. The Clippers also outrebounded the Nuggets by 21 boards. The Spurs are coming on after a slow start. They are 7-2 in their last nine games with five of those victories coming by 25 or more points. LaMarcus Aldridge can have a big game with Millsap out. San Antonio has covered 73 percent of its past 30 home games.
|12-26-18||Minnesota v. Georgia Tech -5.5||Top||34-10||Loss||-100||29 h 14 m||Show|
Minnesota ranks 74th in run defense. The Gophers give up 5.2 yards per run, second-worst among all bowl team. And these numbers include the Gophers having their best defensive player, senior linebacker Blake Cashman, who is sitting out this game in preparation for the NFL draft. Cashman was in on 104 tackles. If you can't stop the run, you can't beat Georgia Tech with its unique triple-option attack. The Yellow Jackets are the No. 1 rushing team in the country averaging 335 yards on the ground. Minnesota's defense isn't that good to begin with and now facing Georgia Tech and without Cashman it is in real trouble. The Yellow Jackets have an underrated defense ranking 45th in total yards. The Gophers were 89th in yards gained. The topper is the Yellow Jackets will be highly motivated to bury the Gophers as a sendoff to their coach, Paul Johnson. He is retiring after this game.
|12-25-18||Indiana State +12 v. TCU||69-83||Loss||-108||20 h 54 m||Show|
I like taking double-digits with a Missouri Valley Conference team especially in a rare nonconference revenge spot. Indiana State finds itself a big 'dog to TCU in the championship game of the Diamond Head Classic in Hawaii. The Sycamores rebounded from a 90-70 road loss to TCU on Dec. 16 to beat Colorado and UNLV in the tournament to reach the finals. The Sycamores were hoping to draw the Hornets Frogs - and they have. Indiana State played in the early Sunday semifinal game. So the Sycamores have a little added rest considering the Horned Frogs had to play in the late semifinal game against Bucknell Sunday. The Sycamores are the most accurate 3-point shooting team in the country. They've had one poor shooting game from beyond the arc - and that came against TCU. Indiana State was just 3-for-16 in 3-pointers against the Horned Frogs. The Sycamores are going to be highly motivated and they should shoot much better being ranked No. 1 in 3-point field goal accuracy.