NBA Betting Trends: Hot and Cold Teams Against the Point Spread
by Aaron Smith - 1/22/2015
It's time for the fifth edition of the NBA Hot and Cold Report here at Doc's Sports. Remember when everyone thought Cleveland would be the beast of the Eastern Conference this year? The Cavaliers are starting to play better now that they have a healthy LeBron James back, but the Cavs are a whopping 12 games behind the Atlanta Hawks. Atlanta is 35-8 overall on the year, and they are a stunning 32-11 against the spread. Golden State still rules the Western Conference. The Warriors have looked like the best team in the NBA all season thus far. Based on how well these teams are playing, it should come as no surprise that they take the first two spots on the hot side of this report. Though these two teams are at the top right now, there's no doubt that this year's NBA Championship picture is far more wide open than it has been in previous years. Stay tuned!
Doc's Sports has done an NBA ATS Hot and Cold report in the past, and we will be offering it again this year. We'll highlight the Top 5 hot teams and the Bottom 5 cold teams. This report allows bettors to keep an eye on which teams are streaking and which are slumping. There's no doubt that the NBA is a momentum-driven league. Will these current trends continue, or will they change soon? This report will be offered on a bi-weekly basis throughout the NBA regular season. The statistics listed below are for games played between 1/7 and 1/21.
Top Five Hot Teams
1. Atlanta Hawks (9-0 ATS) The Atlanta Hawks have covered the spread in every game they have played this year (2015)! They are 14-0 ATS in their last 14 games overall. That's extremely hard to do in today's NBA. I know the Eastern Conference is weak right now, but the oddsmakers do a great job setting the lines on a daily basis, so covering 14 times in a row is just ridiculous. The thing that has helped this team so much has been that many people doubted them in the preseason. Power rankings have been slow to adjust, and that has allowed the Hawks to keep covering. There aren't many doubters left!
2. Golden State Warriors (6-1-1 ATS) The Golden State Warriors were a team that many people were high on coming into the season, but not high enough! Golden State has been good everywhere, and they have won 10 straight home contests by a minimum of 13 points. The Warriors are 15-4-1 ATS at home this year. Four of their next five games are at home. The Warriors balance on both sides of the ball is tremendous.
3. San Antonio Spurs (5-1-1 ATS) Don't sleep on the defending champions! The San Antonio Spurs are starting to play some really good basketball again. Not surprisingly, their turnaround came at the time Kawhi Leonard re-entered the lineup. Leonard is the biggest star on this team now, and they need him to stay healthy. Patty Mills missed a lot of time early this year, too, and Mills is an underrated piece of this team's success. San Antonio is likely to be pushing harder than in past years because of where they are in the standings, and I think that means they could be a good team to back the rest of the regular season.
4. Charlotte Hornets (5-2 ATS) The Hornets have really turned things around in the past few weeks. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist is the all-around stat sheet stuffer that this team needs, and now that he is back and at 100 percent this team is competitive in the Eastern Conference. This isn't a special team, but they have been getting zero respect from the oddsmakers. The Hornets are 7-2 ATS in their last nine games overall. A road trip to San Antonio, Denver, and Washington in the next week will tell us a lot more about this team.
5. Houston Rockets (6-3 ATS) Ask the Houston Rockets how good the Golden State Warriors are. Houston has been embarrassed by Golden State twice in the last week. Against everyone else, Houston has looked great. The Rockets are piling up the points of late. Houston has scored 105 points or more in nine of their last 10 games. I'm concerned about their defense, though. This team's defense was among the best in the NBA early on, and they have been slacking off on that end of late.
Bottom Five Cold Teams
1. Indiana Pacers (0-8 ATS) The Pacers get the dubious distinction of being at this spot on the list. Indiana was 8-1-2 ATS the last time when we did this report. What's the difference? This time around they didn't have George Hill. It seems Hill is a real catalyst for this team, because they have failed to cover the number in all seven games since he's been injured again. Hill is questionable for Friday's game, and you can imagine that Pacers fans are hoping he returns immediately.
2. Los Angeles Lakers (1-7 ATS)
The Lakers are in the middle of a forgettable season, and it has just gotten worse recently. Los Angeles has failed to cover the number in their last six
games. To be fair, Los Angeles has been playing a tough schedule of late, but this team hasn't even been competitive in many games the last couple weeks.
The schedule doesn't get any easier in the coming days, and Kobe Bryant is getting more and more dinged up.
3. Chicago Bulls (2-6 ATS) I'm not sure what to think about this year's Chicago Bulls. It's clear that the Bulls are one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference, but that isn't saying a whole lot. At times this team has looked like the team to beat in the East, and at other times they look like a team that could lose in the first round of the playoffs. Bulls fans have to be optimistic about Derrick Rose's health though, and I have a feeling this team will get things going back in the right direction soon.
4. Toronto Raptors (2-5-1 ATS) DeMar DeRozan is clearly one of the best players on the Raptors roster, but he hasn't been able to spark this team since his return to the lineup. Toronto's offense, which had been one of the most efficient in the NBA, has been terrible in the past couple weeks. This team likely overachieved a bit early in the season, so it's possible this is a bit of simple regression.
5. Portland Trailblazers (3-5 ATS) Portland has been in a minor funk of late, and their task has gotten much more difficult now that LaMarcus Alridge is out with an injury. It's unclear how much time he'll miss, but the Blazers already have been dealing with a bunch of injuries, and this is one guy that can't afford to have out of the lineup. It puts more pressure on Damian Lillard, who has been in a bit of a shooting slump.
Read more articles by Aaron Smith
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