In the NBA, the betting trends are definitely a bettor’s best friend. The NBA season is a long grind, and teams go through many hot and cold periods throughout the year. Doc’s Sports will be presenting an NBA Hot and Cold Report this year to help you stay ahead of the game in the NBA. Please note that statistics in this initial report are from games played between the beginning of the season and Nov. 14.
Top Five “Hot” ATS NBA Teams
--New York Knicks (6-0 ATS) No team has had more controversy over the past couple seasons than the New York Knicks, but they are off to a perfect start to the season. The Knicks have won every game and have covered the number each time through their first six contests as well. What’s the difference with the Knicks right now? They have started playing some tough defense. The Knicks are giving up only 87.8 points per game, which is first in the NBA. BetOnline still has the Knicks at +200 to win the Atlantic Division, so the oddsmakers are still being cautious with this team.
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--Memphis Grizzlies (6-1 ATS) Like the Knicks, the Grizzlies have the same overall win/loss record as they do against the spread. The Grizzlies are much healthier than they have been in the past couple of years, and this is definitely a team to watch as the season moves along. Wayne Ellington buried seven threes as the Grizzlies downed the Heat this past weekend, and he could prove to be a big addition for Memphis. 5Dimes lists the Grizzlies as the fourth favorite to win the Western Conference at +900.
--New Orleans Hornets (5-1 ATS) This is a classic case of an improved team that the oddsmakers haven’t been able to catch up with. New Orleans was terrible last year, and they were a tough team for the oddsmakers to line early in the season. No one knew how much better this team would be in the 2012-13 season. Anthony Davis has been great, and Ryan Anderson is leading the team in scoring. If they could ever get Eric Gordon back and healthy, this team could be dangerous.
--Los Angeles Clippers (6-2 ATS) Is it time for the Lakers to move over and let the Clippers be the top dog in Los Angeles? It might be a little early to say that, but the Clippers have certainly been the better team so far this year. Jamal Crawford looks like a great pickup. He is leading the team with 20.5 points per game so far this year. DeAndre Jordan is a much-improved player on the offensive end. Jordan leads the NBA with a field goal percentage of 71.4 percent.
--Minnesota Timberwolves (6-2 ATS) Count me among those who are shocked that Minnesota has been able to play this well without Kevin Love or Ricky Rubio in the lineup. Now the Timberwolves also must deal with recent injuries to Chase Budinger and Nikola Pekovic. Don’t be surprised if the team struggles in the near term.
Bottom Five “Cold” ATS NBA Teams
--Sacramento Kings (1-6-1 ATS) Sacramento fans must be tired of DeMarcus Cousins off-the-court problems by now. Few players in the NBA have as much talent as Cousins, but he continues to be in the news for the wrong reasons. Jimmer Fredette has been a bust so far, and the Kings are shooting a miserable 27.9 percent as a team from beyond the arc. How low are the oddsmakers on the Kings? Sacramento is listed at +20,000 to win the Western Conference, according to BetOnline.
--Phoenix Suns (2-7 ATS) Life without Steve Nash hasn’t started out well for the Suns. Phoenix has been a bad defensive team for quite a few years now. The difference is now they are bad offensive and defensively. This team still scores points because of the pace they play at, but they aren’t efficient on the offensive end.
--Chicago Bulls (2-6 ATS) The Bulls have a 5-3 record overall, but they have only covered the spread twice. Oddsmakers are going to have to lower their expectations for this team. This team isn’t quite as deep as they were last year in the frontcourt, and without Derrick Rose in the lineup they have no clear go to guy. 5Dimes still lists the Bulls as the second-favorite to win the Eastern Conference at +750.
--Atlanta Hawks (2-5 ATS) When ESPN The Magazine predicted a second-spot in the Eastern Conference standings for the Atlanta Hawks, quite a few people rolled their eyes. Atlanta’s slow start definitely makes that prediction look a little crazy, but it is important to remember that only two weeks of the season have elapsed. BetOnline doesn’t seem to think the Hawks have much of a chance in the East. Atlanta is listed at +3,300 to win the Eastern Conference.
--Indiana Pacers (3-6 ATS) You could make a good argument that the Indiana Pacers have been the most disappointing team in the NBA so far this year. The Pacers really pushed the Heat in the playoffs last year, but they have looked lost at times this season. What’s the reason for their poor start? Indiana ranks dead last in the NBA in points per game and field goal percentage offense. Danny Granger’s injury certainly hasn’t helped, but this team still has far more ability than they have shown in the early season.
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