Sports Betting: All-Star Betting Teams
by Trevor Whenham - 02/13/2009
It's NBA all-star weekend. In honor of that, I thought that I would name an all-star team of my own. With action being spread over the NHL, the NBA, and college basketball these days, I thought I would name my all star squad of the best betting teams currently active in sports. I didn't necessarily just want to pick the five teams that have made the most money for their backers all season. Instead, I wanted to pick out five squads that are consistently honest in their effort and reward those with faith in them. These teams have all been particularly profitable, but they have also been easy to admire and respect. Without further ado:
Oklahoma City Thunder - The Thunder are far from a good team. They are so bad, in fact, that they have already gotten a coach fired this year. They have only won just 13 games all year. That means that they have lost 40. Despite that, no team has covered more spreads this year than the Thunder. They are a whopping 33-20 ATS. When a team is that bad, the only way that they cover spreads that often is by putting forward consistently excellent effort. They are led, of course, by Kevin Durant. He's obviously turned into the star that he was supposed to become, and he'd be even more of one if he wasn't stuck in Oklahoma City. What the Thunder have done is even more impressive if you consider that they started out 5-8 ATS before P.J. Carlesimo was fired. Scott Brooks is only an interim coach for now, but he has this team playing hard, learning a lot, and starting to reach for their potential. Brooks doesn't have an easy job, but his 28-12 ATS mark shows that he's up for it. My favorite part of this team is that they are solidly profitable against the spread both at home and on the road.
Los Angeles Lakers - L.A. is the exact antithesis of the Thunder, but they are equally noteworthy. They have gone over the total 32 times in 52 games, making them the most profitable team in the league on the total. That's particularly impressive for a team that is as public as the Lakers are. The public loves the Lakers and they love the over, so there is no reason that they should be as successful as they are. On top of that, they play in a very tough conference, they have faced injuries, and they don't have a whole lot of depth. Despite it all, they score more points than any team in the league, and that has led them to the second most wins.
Minnesota Wild - There is nothing better than a team that consistently does exactly what they are supposed to do. That's Minnesota. For a long time now they have played stifling defense and have been offensively incompetent. That has long made them a reliable under for a long time. In fact, the under has been profitable each of the last five seasons. I'm not going to check, but I would be surprised if any team in any pro league has a streak that long. The Wild are doing it again this year. The under is 29-19 this year, so they are currently quite profitable, and are on track to stay that way. There is no offensive boost on the immediate horizon, either, so things shouldn't change in any hurry.
Princeton Tigers - Playing in the Ivy League, the Tigers don't face as many games with spreads as a lot of teams. When they do, though, they make the most of it - they are 9-1 ATS. It's not an exciting brand of ball that they play, but it's effective. They have covered their last seven spreads. They have also turned their game around - they ended a six-game losing streak by winning seven in a row. It's a particularly good sign that their last three covers have been their most impressive of the season. This is a team that has found their stride, and that's worthy of some recognition.
Creighton Bluejays - I can't pretend to spend a lot of time watching Creighton play, but I have enjoyed watching Rodney Buford, Kyle Korver and the like in the NCAA Tournament over the years. I've very much enjoyed betting them on the over this year, too. The over is 14-6 when Creighton plays, and 7-2 in the last nine games. Teams that good at going over usually score a lot of points, but Creighton uses a different formula - they have an offense that is only slightly above average, but it is matched with a defense that is even worse. Whatever they are doing seems to work. It might not lead to the tournament, but it should lead to a few more winning bets.