Doc’s Sports Service recently celebrated its 40th Anniversary in the sports selection industry, and you do not enjoy that kind of longevity in this business without having access to some of the best handicappers in the world. Our unparalleled success over those many years has been built around the ability to provide a steady stream of winners to our loyal customers on an ongoing basis. One of those top performers over the past four years has been the Vegas Sports Informer. He has been able to put together a winning track record in a number of different sports by combining his uncanny ability to successfully break down matchups with over 15 years experience working behind the counter of one of the biggest sportsbooks in Las Vegas. Having the luxury of working in the Mecca of the sports gambling world over an extended period of time has enabled The Informer to create an insider’s edge that is tough to duplicate.
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Doc’s Sports decided to sit down with The Informer on a weekly basis to provide our readers with a first-hand, behind-the-scenes glimpse at what is really going in the Las Vegas sportsbooks as well as get his expert opinion on each week’s hottest trending sports gaming topics. The following is this week’s discussion.
Doc’s Sports: Given that the 49ers closed as four-point road favorites against Atlanta coupled with the fact that Baltimore pulled out an improbable straight up road win for the second week in a row as a prohibitive underdog, how did the Las Vegas books fare in last Sunday’s games.
VSI: With the 49ers game ending as a “push” at just about every book on The Strip, the losses really piled up on Baltimore’s straight up win. The saving grace on Sunday was on the total line. More money than expected came in on the “under” in the first game, and there was quite a bit of money bet on the “over” in the Ravens verses Patriots game as expected, so the net effect for the day was not all that bad.
Doc’s Sports: Most of the books have opened San Francisco as anywhere from a four to 4.5-point favorite over the Ravens for Super Bowl XLVII with the total set at 48. Where does the early money on this game seem to be going?
VSI: The early money is pouring in on Baltimore. The action on the total line has leaned towards the under but has been relatively quiet as a whole. I expect the trend on the Ravens to continue. So much so, that I would not be surprised to see this line go as low as three points on some books by the time the kickoff finally rolls around. The money will start to come in on the over as it always does, but there could be some downward pressure on that line as well to help move bettors in that direction.
Doc’s Sports: The NHL regular season finally got underway this weekend after an extended delay due to a labor dispute. League attendance figures at the games and early television ratings point to hockey fans coming back in droves, but how has the betting public responded to the games been at the books?
VSI: The response from the fans has been great, and the fact that the league kicked things off the Saturday before two huge football games gave it a boost on the betting floor. Overall, the NHL is a distant fourth with the betting public after the NFL, NBA and college football and basketball as I think they still struggle to understand the ins and outs of wagering on the sport.
Doc’s Sports: The race for the No.1 spot in the NBA’s Eastern Conference has suddenly turned into a major logjam with five teams all within just three games of one another. Which two teams do you see rising to the top over the second half of the regular season to actually contend for the title?
VSI: Before the season started, I penciled in Brooklyn and Miami to meet in the conference finals, and I am sticking with that pick. I am a die-hard Chicago Bulls fan, and they could still be a major factor with the ability to win on the road, but I am not sure how well the Bulls will be able to work Derrick Rose back into the lineup once he is ready to return. I still think the Boston Celtics can make a run, so I’ll put them fourth followed by New York and Indiana.
Doc’s Sports: The top five teams in men’s college basketball have also been a revolving door over the past few weeks with a number of upsets. Do you have your eyes set on any possible major upsets for this weekend’s games?
VSI: When looking for upsets, I tend to concentrate the majority of my efforts to games played during the week as that is usually where the best opportunity lies. That being said, look for UCLA to push No.6 Arizona to the limit on Thursday night and put No.5 Louisville on upset alert with Saturday’s trip to Georgetown to face a Hoyas’ team that just crushed Notre Dame.
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