NBA Betting Trends: Hot and Cold Teams Against the Point Spread
by Aaron Smith - 3/15/2013
There is about one month left in the NBA regular season. The Heat are on an epic win streak, and they’ll clearly be the top seed in the Eastern Conference. However, the top seed in the Western Conference is up for grabs. Similarly, in the Eastern Conference there is virtually no race for the eighth and final spot in the playoffs, but the race is hot and heavy in the Western Conference. The motivation levels for playoff-contending teams are definitely higher, but it’s important to remember that oddsmakers account for this in the numbers.
Who’s streaking and who is slumping right now? Doc’s Sports will be posting an NBA Hot and Cold Report every two weeks this year to help you stay ahead of the game. Please note that statistics in this initial report are from games played between March 1 and March 13.
Top Five “Hot” ATS NBA Teams
--Denver Nuggets (7-0-1 ATS) No one is as hot as the Denver Nuggets. They haven’t lost against the number since Feb. 22. The Nuggets are 9-0-1 ATS in their last 10 games. The Nuggets are quickly rising in the Western Conference standings. They are currently fifth, but they are only a game and a half behind Memphis for the third seed. Denver has scored at least 104 points in each of their last 11 games. Can anyone slow down this Nuggets offense?
-Memphis Grizzlies (6-1 ATS) Trading away Rudy Gay might not have been popular with the Grizzlies fans, but Memphis continues to win even without him in the lineup. How good have the Grizzlies been of late? Memphis is 14-1 overall in their last 15 games, and they have covered the number in 11 of those 15 games. Memphis is first in the NBA in points per game allowed. Tayshaun Prince has given the team some much-needed length on the wing, which makes this defense even tougher.
--Boston Celtics (5-2 ATS) The Boston Celtics were thrashed 100-74 by the lowly Charlotte Bobcats earlier this week, but other than that one clunker, Boston has been playing good basketball of late. Boston continues to play well without Rajon Rondo. Jeff Green has really picked up his production in the absence of Rondo. Boston hosts Miami on March 18, so they’ll have a chance to show they can win against the beast of the Eastern Conference.
--Dallas Mavericks (4-2 ATS) Dallas is quietly only 2.5 games behind the Lakers for the final spot in the Western Conference Playoffs. The Mavericks have won three straight on the road, and they are playing their best basketball of the season right now. Dallas is 11-3 ATS in their last 14 road games. Dirk Nowitzki is finally starting to resemble his former self, and O.J. Mayo continues to have a breakout season.
--San Antonio Spurs (4-2 ATS) The Spurs currently sit in the top spot of the Western Conference standings, but Oklahoma City is just one game behind. Tony Parker is out for several more weeks, and the Spurs definitely aren’t the same team without him. San Antonio is tough to figure out right now. They blasted Oklahoma City at home, but were blown out by both Portland and Minnesota. Be careful wagering too much for or against the Spurs right now.
Bottom Five “Cold” ATS NBA Teams
--Charlotte Bobcats (1-6 ATS) Charlotte’s aforementioned blowout of the Celtics early this week is the only time they have covered the spread in their last 11 games. Before their win against Boston, the Bobcats had lost nine games in a row by at least 13 points. Outside of Kemba Walker, no one on this team is consistently bringing it every day. Charlotte is now a miserable 21-42-1 against the number this season.
--Golden State Warriors (2-6 ATS) The Golden State Warriors have definitely cooled off a bit over the last few weeks. They are still safely in the playoffs right now, but they’ll have to hold it together over the last month. Golden State shoots it from long range better than anyone in the league, but they haven’t been getting any low post points. Their defense has been much better this year. And if they are going to hold on to their spot in the playoff race, they have to continue to lock teams down on the defensive end.
--Minnesota Timberwolves (2-5 ATS) Minnesota is literally limping to the finish line this year. With 20 games left on their schedule, the Timberwolves are having a hard time even finding five healthy guys to put on the floor. Fortunately for Minnesota, the one star who seems to be healthy right now is Ricky Rubio. This team won’t contend for anything this year, but Rubio getting more playing time is a positive for the future of this team.
--Detroit Pistons (2-5 ATS) Detroit has lost seven straight games, and they have only covered the number in two of those seven games. Brandon Knight was the butt of all kinds of jokes after getting dunked on by DeAndre Jordan. In the team’s next game, Knight injured his ankle, and he is out indefinitely. The Pistons have several tough matchups in the next couple weeks, and it’s hard to imagine this team turning it around anytime soon.
--Washington Wizards (2-5 ATS) The Wizards had been one of the hottest teams in the league against the number, but they have gone cold of late. The team clearly misses Bradley Beal on both ends of the floor. Beal had been the team’s best player of late, but he is currently out with an ankle injury. The Wizards next four games are against some of the worst teams in the league, so don’t be surprised if they bounce back over the next few days.
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