NBA Betting Trends: Hot and Cold Teams Against the Point Spread
by Aaron Smith - 11/29/2010
The NBA season is a long one, and that leads to many hot and cold streaks for teams during the course of one year. If you are able to get ahead of the oddsmakers and catch a team that is streaking or slumping, you are likely to do very well betting on the NBA. Let’s take a closer look at which teams have been hot and cold in the last two weeks. Note that the statistics used are for games between Nov. 15 and Nov. 28.
Top Five “Hot” ATS NBA Teams
- New York Knicks (7-1 ATS) - Most people that follow the NBA probably didn’t realize that the Knicks would be at the top of this list. This team has covered the NBA point spread six straight times on the road. After starting slowly, they are back to .500 on the year and are showing marked improvement from a year ago. The books had gotten a little too low on this team after their slow start.
- Chicago Bulls (6-1 ATS) - The Bulls have had an extremely impressive run over the course of the last couple weeks. Chicago has been on their annual circus road trip during this time, and they went 6-1 ATS. The one time they failed to cover was in San Antonio against the Spurs, who have the best record in the NBA right now. They’ll get a couple days off before playing Orlando and Boston.
- Utah Jazz (6-2 ATS) - The Utah Jazz were underrated heading into the season once again. Jerry Sloan does an amazing job with this team, and they are once again contenders in the Western Conference. The Jazz have been particularly undervalued on the road, where they are 6-2-1 ATS this season.
- Indiana Pacers (5-2 ATS) – The Pacers haven’t been feasting on bottom-feeders to get this impressive record in the last couple weeks. Indiana actually beat both the Heat and the Lakers on the road in the last week. What has been the key to the Pacers success so far this year? They are ranked second in the league in field goal percentage defense.
- San Antonio Spurs (5-2 ATS) - The Spurs have consistently been the best team in the NBA so far this season. Richard Jefferson didn’t help this team last year, but he has been much better this year. The Spurs now head to California to take on the Warriors and the Clippers this week.
Bottom Five “Cold” ATS NBA Teams
- Milwaukee Bucks (0-6 ATS) – The Bucks are averaging just 91 points per game, and they are shooting only 41 percent from the floor this year. The team still plays solid defense, but until they get some improved offense they can’t keep up with most teams. I expect them to improve if Andrew Bogut and Carlos Delfino get healthy.
- Miami Heat (1-6 ATS) – It isn’t as if the Heat have been terrible this year, but they certainly haven’t been nearly as good as they were expected to be. The trio of stars in Miami hasn’t performed up to expectations, and this team continues to be no better than mediocre. I have to think this team will improve with the wealth of talent they have, but the oddsmakers still have the lines set very high on this team.
- New Orleans Hornets (1-6-1 ATS) – I mentioned in the last ATS trends report that I believed the lines would become inflated for New Orleans, and they have. The Hornets were 8-0 ATS in their first eight games, but they have since covered the spread just once. The lines should level out soon on the Hornets.
- Denver Nuggets (1-5-1 ATS) – The Nuggets are winning at home, but they aren’t covering the number. They are 7-1 at home, but just 2-5-1 ATS. Injuries have held this team back, and they already appear to have some chemistry issues.
- Sacramento Kings (2-5 ATS) – The Kings make their second straight appearance on the bottom five. This is a young team that has quite a bit of talent, but they just haven’t been able to put together a full game of late. At some point this year the Kings will likely become a value, but I’m not sure that time is here just yet.
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