Ta-da! Finally, an easy one! The Grizzlies 2* was a runaway winner, and that makes me happy. A couple winning days in a row, baby steps towards shaking this weird "treadmill" we've been on. Time to stop running in place, take the blocks off our bike and roll...
Because of the simple fact that we've been running in place since the end of that losing skid about 2 weeks ago, I am not promoting any "for sale" items. Buy if you so choose, but until things get kicked back into high gear (like they were when we made about 50 units from mid-August through mid-November), I think it's the noble move to use this section of the daily blog to promote the Free stuff, or other similar tasks!
This week, instead of posting a link, I come before you to ask a favor.
TELL ONE PERSON ABOUT A PREGAME PODCAST.
That's it. Just find one coworker or cousin, or new acquaintance and use TiSB as an ice-breaker. Because if everyone that listens to the show tells exactly one person, the show could double in size with everyone just doing 5 seconds of word-spreading.
Then, once you've told one person and made a new fan, report back to me.
Hell, let's make a contest out of it. The person who gets the most NEW listeners to ANY Pregame podcast gets 10 Pregame bucks. And rather than just relying on the honor system, have those new listeners come in this blog and type a quick response.
Make it happen!
Sports Wagering: NBA
Washington Wizards @ New Jersey Nets with a total of N/A;
This one is a mess. And by taking a quick peek at the start time, you can quickly assess that this is not one of the TNT games. The two teams involved might have been a tip-off, too. In any case, this game, to me, comes down to who plays. If the Wizards continue to deal with the injury bug, and John Wall and Andray Blatche can't make the game, the Nets should be able to slow things down and make the game nice and ugly. If Wall plays, and is actually healthy, the Wizards have a shot. Still, that team is so very, very young and can't make a shot to save their lives on the road, so until Washington posts a road win, I don't think you can rightly back them. Washington can cover some games at home, there's no doubt about that, and the Nets have been clanking along to about the same spectacularly awful tune that the Wizards have, but I'm inclined to think the "addition by subtraction" trade the Nets made has created a new buzz around the team. They're going on audition, and I think they show up with a marginal performance - enough to win, but cover? Let's see the line. Lean to JERSEY and the UNDER.
Atlanta Hawks @ Boston Celtics with a total of N/A;
This game, to me, depends quite a bit on how Boston's game with the Knicks goes. We've seen Boston struggle in fatigue spots this year (not surprisingly, given the lack of depth and age of the players), but if they drop this so-called rivalry game in New York, you have to think they come home looking for blood. If Boston can pull out a tough one against the Knicks, this is a spot where the Hawks might be able to jump back up. I will admit, though, the Hawks looked pretty awful in their last game, getting blown out in Detroit. I still think the Joe Johnson injury is going to catch up with Atlanta eventually, and I worry that game in Detroit might have been the start. This brings us to an interesting side point -- handicapping football is very much predicated on understanding how the betting world reacts to each game. In the NBA, it's about understanding how the world reacts to a WEEK of games, and then staying ahead of the curve. If Atlanta is starting to cool off after a nice warm run, it might behoove us to try to beat the rush. And yes, Boston killed Atlanta earlier this year, which some might see as a revenge spot, but I worry might just be an indication that Atlanta isn't good enough to compete with Boston, any more. Oh, the humanity. Another game with 2 competing angles. Let's talk more about it once Boston and New York is decided. My expectation is a lean to ATLANTA and the UNDER.
San Antonio Spurs (-1.5) @ Denver Nuggets with a total of 214.5;
This is a colossal total, and a pretty hefty opening number for the Spurs. I mean, I know San Antonio is playing good basketball, but to be a 1.5-point road favorite on the second night of a back-to-back is really giving San Antonio a wild amount of credit. Everyone take a moment and process this. This line is an announcement that the Spurs are a 6.5-point neutral court favorite over Denver. Would they really be a 9.5-point home favorite if they played again after a day off? This is classic line inflation due to the Spurs' success, and I have to give the slight nod to the Nuggets just because of the number. The huge total also would seem to point to a Denver-paced game, and going into altitude on the second night of two games, as we've seen before, is tough. It's not quite as bad when a team plays at 8pm ET the night before (as opposed to a 10pm game on the West coast), and the Spurs are gaining time due to zones, but even with the normal night of rest, the legs might be tough to find. The Spurs will try to win this one with defense, and if we believe Denver is the team we saw in their last 3 games, I lean NUGGETS, and the huge total makes me think the OVER is being hinted...