The Memphis Grizzlies tend to get forgotten by much of the NBA betting community. They’re only 28-25-2 ATS, and they’re pretty well the Western Conference’s most underrated contender when it comes to futures betting.
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Sitting at No. 2 in the West, the Grizzlies are 9/1 to win the NBA Championship. Though there are other intriguing betting options, a line like that should be considered given the franchise’s recent track record.
In the past four years, the Grizzlies have qualified for every postseason and gone as far as the Conference Finals. They’ve beaten, in different seasons, all of the West’s most formidable gatekeepers like the Clippers, Thunder and even the Spurs. It’s getting harder to discredit them.
After a slow start to the season, the Cleveland Cavaliers are finally starting to find their groove. Fortunately for bettors, thanks to the team’s early struggles, they now have compelling 13/4 odds in the NBA futures market.
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Betting on the NBA is fun and rewarding, but so often the dominant teams are often so heavily favored that it’s difficult to find a good price for them in the sportsbook. This season, LeBron James and the Cavs showed just enough weakness early on for experts to start questioning their ceiling, and that general sense of doubt has added a lot of value in the sportsbook.
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It’s been a solid season thus far for the Detroit Red Wings (29-12-2-7), but they’re only 24-26 ATS (minus-3.68 units) on the puck line. They’ll try to reverse course Thursday night in Denver against the Colorado Avalanche (21-18-7-4), who are plus-9.19 units at press time with a 31-19 ATS record.
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Detroit’s task has gotten tougher since Jimmy Howard (.920 save percentage) was shelved with a groin injury. Petr Mrazek (.907 SV%) is 7-2 this month since taking over the top job, but four of those victories were by just one goal. Game time is 9:00 PM ET on NBCSN.
The rivalry will go down as one of the greatest of this generation, but when the New England Patriots host the Indianapolis Colts in the AFC Championship this Sunday, there will be little time for nostalgia. These days Peyton Manning is out and Andrew Luck is in, but that doesn’t help the 7-point underdogs in their matchup against New England.
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With an 11-5 regular season and a 10-5-1 record ATS, Indianapolis is a respectable team ready to handle lofty expectations. The Patriots started slowly, but grew dominant in the last three quarters of the regular season.
Tom Brady may have only thrown 257 yards per game and 33 touchdowns in 2014 (compared to Luck’s 298 yards per game and 40 touchdowns), but his 367 yards thrown against Baltimore last weekend serve as a testament to just how dangerous this squad can be.In addition to the explosive passing game, the Patriots have one of the league’s most impressive rush defenses.
Whether the AFC clash comes down to a battle of quarterbacks or a defensive battle, it will be a match to remember. Currently oddsmakers favor New England with a seven point spread, which makes the Colts all the more intriguing.
The Denver Broncos have been an offensive juggernaut for as long as they’ve had Peyton Manning under center, but they still haven’t gotten a Super Bowl title. This Sunday, the squad will get a chance to prove that they’re more than regular season wonders as they go up against the Indianapolis Colts. The sportsbook lists Denver as the 7-point favorite against Manning’s former team. The total is 54 as we go to press.
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While Manning has donned the orange for three years now, fans will always think about his 14 year-stint with the Colts. That, and the symbolic rivalry between himself and Andrew Luck, will make the clash one of the most anticipated of the divisional round weekend.
The Broncos are 6/1 to win the Super Bowl, and Indianapolis is 16/1. The Colts’ lofty potential payout is as intriguing as their young roster.
Though the Broncos finished with a 12-4 record, they were 8-8 ATS this season. The much-lauded team has struggled to meet expectations. The Colts, on the other hand, were 11-5 on the year and 10-5-1 ATS, suggesting they could be ready for whatever gets thrown at them. Game time is Sunday at 4:40 PM ET.
While there’s no denying that the Boston Celtics have been the most active on the trade market this season, the Memphis Grizzlies have made recent moves that will have a bigger impact on the NBA betting landscape. The addition of perimeter threat Jeff Green has made Memphis all the more dangerous.
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Landlocked in the toughest NBA division (the reigning champion Spurs are over .600 and in fourth), the Grizzlies face an uphill battle to get in the postseason. As we go to press, they’re 16/1 to win the NBA Championship.
Coming off of four consecutive playoff berths, the 26-11 Grizzlies are serious threats. Now that the club will pair Green with Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol, this team is looking deeper than ever.Green may not be a perennial All-Star, but he’s a veteran with three seasons under his belt, averaging near 17 points per game. He could be the boost the franchise needs. Although deadly on a game-to-game basis, Memphis falls short at 18-19 ATS.
After years of consistency, the Grizzlies are ready to take their game to the next level. Considering Gasol is heading into free agency, scooping up Green couldn’t have come at a better time.
The Vancouver Canucks (18-10-1-1, minus-4.18 units) have lost four games in a row. They’ve also lost five straight to the Dallas Stars (11-13-4-1, minus-17.67 units). Regardless, Vancouver is favoured by -170 for Wednesday night’s matchup at Rogers Arena.
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Dallas is the least profitable team in NHL betting, allowing a league-high 3.52 goals per game. Also, Stars right wing Ryan Garbutt (five goals, five assists) is suspended for this contest, and right wing Patrick Eaves (three goals, five assists) is out with a broken ankle. The puck drops at 10:00 PM ET.
Super Bowl XLVIII will encompass the classic battle between offense and defense, as Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos’ top-ranked attack will clash with Richard Sherman and the Seattle Seahawks’ top-ranked defense. Sherman stole the spotlight with his post-game rants after the NFC Championship game, but now he will have to answer the bell with it solely on him, and Manning throwing passes to the receivers he is trying to cover. The Seahawks have certainly answered the challenges they have faced to this point in the year, and that has led to a handful of Super Bowl 48 betting prop bets that stand out heading in to Super Bowl week.
There are Super Bowl prop bets for nearly everything that will be a part of the game, from the coin toss to the time length for the national anthem, and more. The one prop bet that stands out from the rest in regards to Seattle is the team point total for the game. The Seahawks’ number is listed at 22.5, meaning they would have to score 23 or more points in order to go over the total. The Seattle offense has had its share of highs and lows throughout the year, but Russell Wilson and Marshawn Lynch have made this group more consistent than most. The Seahawks may not score six touchdowns in this game, but three touchdowns and a field goal is definitely a strong sports betting possibility.
Another prop to like is the first half total, which takes from the prop above. The Seahawks’ first-half total is listed at just 10.5 points, a mark they will be able to top with a pair of touchdowns. That number will be very important heading in to the game, especially if it drops below 10. Seattle should be able to score against this Denver defense, so it makes sense to be on the first-half over as well.
A lot of the official numbers from player prop bets haven’t been released yet because of the unknown weather heading in to the week of the Super Bowl, but one player for Seattle that is definitely worth a close look at is Lynch. The Seahawks will try to pound the rock and keep it out of Manning’s hands as much as possible, and with the potential for winter conditions including snow, Lynch should get a ton of touches. Keep an eye out for Lynch’s total rushing yards prop, as it could have very good value.
The final prop worth investing in based on the weather is the field goals kicked by Seattle. Pete Carroll decided to attempt a 50-plus yard field goal in the NFC Championship game despite his kicker saying it was a bad idea, but he may think better of it this online betting week with the snow and heavy winds affecting the potential for field goals. The Seahawks’ field goal total is listed at 1.5, and the Under is definitely worth considering as the kickoff nears.
The Oklahoma City Thunder and Houston Rockets have faced off one time this season, and it ended in an ugly 31-point Thunder victory. The Thunder were without Russell Westbrook the last time these teams squared off, so it’s conceivable this game ends the same way. The Rockets however are playing better basketball as of late, and have won four of their last five games and are now just 3.5 games behind the Thunder in the Western Conference standings.
Oklahoma City Thunder @ Houston Rockets
Thursday, January 16, 2014 – 9:30 PM ET
Odds: Thunder -2
What To Watch For From The Oklahoma City Thunder
The Thunder have looked like a different team since losing Westbrook as they continue to lose to bad teams despite Durant putting up big points. The sports book spread for this game will likely be miniscule, or possibly nonexistent considering the Thunder are short-handed and playing some of their worst basketball of the season. The good news is that Durant has scored 30 points or more in each of the last four games, and Reggie Jackson has done a nice job filling in for the injured Westbrook. The Thunder may be the favorite heading into this game because of their record, but this is a game that easily could go either way, and thus is a hard one to predict.
What To Watch For From The Houston Rockets
As previously noted the Rockets have won four of their last five games, but all of those wins were against teams currently below .500. This shows they can beat the teams they are supposed to, but may struggle against the better Western Conference squads. James Harden has been hot since January began as he’s averaging 28 points, six rebounds, and five assists per game. He’s finally becoming a multi-dimensional offensive player that can not only score from all areas of the court, but affect the game in more ways than just shooting. The Rockets have advantages all over the court, except the small forward position, but the real question will be whether or not the stars show up.
While I fully expect Durant to put up more than 40 points just by himself, the Thunder are currently putting too much pressure on their superstar to lead them. While Durant is leading the team with 34 points per game in the month of January, the second leading scorer on the team in that time is Jackson, who averages just 14 points per game. The Thunder simply don’t have the players to beat the Rockets right now, which is why I’m going with the home team in this matchup.
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