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The Vegas Sports Masters

Kelso
Sturgeon
Wayne
Root
Jim
Hurley
Richie
Baccellieri
Tony
Salinas
Jim
Feist
SportsMasters
Consensus

Kelso Sturgeon

Kelso Sturgeon is not a shadow or a mirage. I am a real person, a man who has been handicapping football for more than 4 decades, and I bring to the table a set of credentials you can't find anywhere else in this business.

And so there is no misunderstanding, Kelso Sturgeon is my real name and I make my home in Las Vegas, the betting capital of the world.

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Wayne Root

Wayne Allyn Root is the only man to create a multi-million dollar empire out of nothing but picking winners! Long-time host of his own shows on Fox and USA Network, he has been celebrated in the business press and by all the TV pundits. He set the record for most outright upset winners in football in three different seasons and has enjoyed another winning and profitable basketball season. Wayne is the only oddsmaker/handicapper with his own Star on the Las Vegas Walk of Stars.

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Jim Hurley

JIM HURLEY is the founder and president of the most unusual organization in sports wagering.

Created as a small handicapping service back in 1985, Jim's NETWORK has evolved into a nationwide TASK FORCE of, handicappers, scouts, number crunchers, draftniks and former pro players who study and analyze every team and every game to develop BETTER information, make SMARTER picks and win MORE money!

In simple words, Jim's system approach to handicapping picks more winners and makes more money for their customers. And they are able to do this not because they are a one-man band, but because of the "TEAM" approach that utilizes a huge information gathering system to fine tune every selection.

But because they truly are a "Network" and cover the colleges and pros wall-to-wall, they know what's going on inside the locker rooms and dugouts. They know who's hot, who's hurt and who's ready to kick butt. NETWORK’s computer department analyzes upcoming matchups like it was the Dow Jones. They dig beneath surface factors to find out how two teams really compare. Who needs it more? Who's tapped out? Who's out for revenge? NETWORK finds those answers.

So when they run NETWORK'S number up against Vegas', we can immediately spot whether a game is off, and how much, and just cherrypick the contests that are giving us the most points

That's why JIM has racked up twentyone consecutive money making season for his customers.

Now what about YOU? Wouldn't you like to know who the big winners are going to be this week? NETWORK can tell you. Want to make money off that knowledge? Jim's NETWORK can help you there, too.

Want the best shot at the most money? There are dozens of ways to get you there, no matter what your wagering patterns or budget. So, why not get started NOW!

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Richie Baccellieri

In case you don't know me, for years people in Vegas knew Richie B as a kind of linesmaker's linesmaker - a kind of numerical purist who, when every other sports book in Vegas was posting Ohio State (-7) over Texas, I was saying... "NO! It ought to be Ohio State (-8)!"

I took a position. I didn't just put up a "betting middle" where I could draw even betting action from both sides. Instead - if I really felt the Buckeyes were stronger than generally thought - I'd put up (-8) or even (-9) and dare the bettors, "Come and get me! Prove me wrong!"

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Tony Salinas

Tony Salinas arrived in Las Vegas over two decades ago fresh from the family ranch in Texas, looking for the next winning thing. After all, he'd always been a winner back home... captain of the football team, State Champion tennis player, point guard for the district-winning basketball team, and Texas Calf Roping Champion in both high school & College.

Tony was an immediate hit, winning the $85,000 Castaways Challenge of 1980, and has never looked back. Tony is the proud winner of over a dozen handicapping contests, including two years ago when he beat out 226 other rivals to take the title in the $135,000 Hilton Superbook Handicapping Championship.

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Jim Feist

Jim Feist for decades has been the leader in the sports wagering information field. Beginning in the 1970s Jim has been ahead of the curve with Proline, the longest running sports football handicapping show on USA Cable Network and the Internet. Also, National Sports Services, utilizing the first telephone line services (Jim Feist’s Personal Line Service), former publisher of the Official Nevada Rotation, creator of Sports Tracker, Internet Web Sites (Jim Feist.com; DonBest.com)

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SportsMasters Consensus

In the world of Handicapping, the average bettor is up against a well financed, information-rich, experienced Casino Sportsbooks and Linesmakers.
ARE YOU STANDING ALONE AGAINST ALL ODDS?
YOU ARE NO LONGER ALONE!

Five professional handicappers have stepped forward to beat the line. If getting one strong man to help you win a fight, surely finding six is a dream come true. Isn't it time you learned more about the Vegas Sports Masters?

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Blog Headlines

Network Notebook: NBA Series Preview…Chicago at Cleveland

There’s been a lot of debate about how important the absence of Kevin Love will be in the second round Eastern Conference Playoff series matching the Cleveland Cavaliers and Chicago Bulls. Some pundits are suggesting that Chicago should be a series favorite (even a heavy series favorite) because the Cavs don’t have the depth to deal with an injury to a star. The market isn’t buying that at all, with Cleveland priced basically as the Floyd Mayweather to Chicago’s Manny Pacquiao.

Honestly, nobody really knows for sure how the loss of Love is going to impact this series. Under consideration:

*Quant types…

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Network Notebook: NBA Series Preview…Memphis vs. Golden State

The Golden State Warriors are so good that they managed to strengthen their position in the NBA Championship race while only covering 25% of the time at the end of regulation vs. the New Orleans Pelicans in the first round.

Golden State played below expectations…yet now seems like a bigger championship threat than ever!

*Hey, a sweep is a sweep!

*Cleveland lost Kevin Love, which knocks the Cavs “below” championship level

*Top seed in the East Atlanta is playing nowhere near championship level so far

*Most dangerous threat in the West San Antonio is below last year’s form

Golden State is healthy…fresh…versatile…and was already the best…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…San Antonio at LA Clippers

The topsy-turvy best-of-seven first round NBA series between the San Antonio Spurs and the Los Angeles Clippers will finally come to an end Saturday evening at the Staples Center. That’s the home court of the Clippers…but home court advantage hasn’t meant anything in this series! The Spurs are actually 2-1 in Los Angeles, while the Clippers are 2-1 in the Alamo City.

It’s been an awkward series for all involved…from coaches and players to fans and handicappers. Both teams are extremely talented…but neither is playing with enough consistency to seal the deal. Coach Gregg Popovich in particular keeps pulling as many…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…Atlanta at Brooklyn

We’re at the point now where the Atlanta Hawks don’t even seem impressive when they win and cover! They were certainly dominant while racing to a 33-16 lead at the end of the first quarter this past Wednesday night in Game Five of their first round NBA Playoff series with the Brooklyn Nets. But…that was just a temporary reminder of their fantastic regular season form. Brooklyn won the rest of the game by seven. “Regular season Atlanta” would have won that one by 25 points as the bench put on a show in the fourth quarter.

Instead:

*The bench continued to struggle,…

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Jim Sez for Friday, May 1 …

THE NFL DRAFT:OUR FIRST-ROUND ANALYSES AS MANY TEAMS DON’T, IN FACT,“GET THEIR MAN”…PLUS HAWKS-NETS SQUARE OFFIN TONIGHT’S GAME 6 AS NBA PLAYOFFS OPENING-ROUND CONTINUESOkay, so Round I of this year’s 2015 NFL Draft has been put to bed – and we’ll weigh in with some keen Jim Sez analyses for all 32 opening-round selections in just a second but first this observation …What the folks on ESPN and the NFL Network didn’t tell you about Round I of this 2015 NFL Draft is that many of the teams selecting in the top half of the draft “settled” for their picks…

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Kelso’s Advanced Sports Betting: Handicapping Round Two

The NBA Playoffs will be transitioning to Round Two this weekend. As I write this, we already know that the Golden State Warriors will face the Memphis Grizzlies on Sunday in the West. The other three series will be locked in soon…as Houston, Washington, and Cleveland await the winners of San Antonio/LAC, Atlanta/Brooklyn, and Chicago/Milwaukee respectively. If you’re reading this on Friday, the picture may have clarified even more.

I’m not going to talk specifics because I have to protect possible releases for my clients. But, I will give all of you students of my College of Advanced Sports Betting and…

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Wayne Root: Finding Over/Under “Shockers” in NBA Playoffs

Most of the space in my web articles is devoted to finding upsets or shockers from a team side perspective in the major betting sports. This transition time between the end of the first round and the beginning of the second round in the 2015 NBA Playoffs seemed like the ideal spot to talk about “shockers” of another kind.

Sometimes the best betting value in an NBA game is on the Over/Under. We’ve seen several examples already of “outlier” games that ended up very far away from the market expectation. In fact, we’ve seen some series alternate extremes from one game…

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VSM Exclusive: LA Clippers/San Antonio Game Six Preview

Once again the Los Angeles Clippers find themselves facing a must-win situation on the road. They managed to score a critical upset this past weekend when trailing 2-1 in their opening round Western Conference series against the San Antonio Spurs. But, now…trailing 3-2, their season is officially on the line.

Can the Clippers win in the Alamo City AGAIN to stay alive?

It was just a play here or there that cost them Game Five at home Tuesday. It’s a razor thin margin that separates these two teams when both are in peak form. The problem for the Clippers is…they don’t get…

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Jim Sez for Thursday, April 30 …

THE NFL DRAFT:WE GO ‘ROUND THE LEAGUEAND CHECK OUT THE HOT RUMORS …PLUS THE NBA PLAYOFFS REPORT:BULLS, SPURS LOOK TO CLINCH TONITEAFTER GRIZZLIES CLINCH THEIR SERIES LAST NITE

When it comes to tonight’s NFL Draft in Chicago, the most popular question of the week has been …“Have you heard the one (trade) about so-and-so?”

Hey, let’s face it – in the past few days we’ve heard lots of rumblings about big names getting traded here on the first night of the NFL Draft from new Philadelphia QB Sam Bradford going to Cleveland, to Minnesota RB Adrian Peterson getting shipped to either Arizona…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…Chicago at Milwaukee

We hadn’t planned on spending any time this week on the Eastern Conference series matching the Chicago Bulls and the Milwaukee Bucks. After Chicago won the first three games…things pretty much seemed over. And, anyway…the Bulls were going to be a clear underdog to Eastern favorite Cleveland in the second round. We’d get to them later.

Then…the Kevin Love injury happened!

Suddenly, everyone was picking Chicago to win the East because Cleveland had been “eliminated,” because top seed Atlanta had been “exposed” by mediocre play vs. Brooklyn, and because the media can’t help jumping on the Derrick Rose bandwagon whenever he goes…

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Jim Sez 2015 NFL Mock Draft
OUR NFL MOCK DRAFT IS HERE!!!

Give the National Football League plenty of props ... there's been more intrigue surrounding this year's Draft than we can ever remember with major "names" at the very top of this draft.

Now, it's our turn to weigh in and deliver our 2015 NFL Mock Draft and we'll do it Jim Sez style as we bring you the way we see Round I turning out Thursday night (8 p.m. ET on ESPN and NFL Network) from the great city of Chicago.

Hey - as usual - we've jazzed up the Draft even further with a couple of…

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Richie Baccellieri: How Will NBA Markets Handle Kevin Love’s Injury?

Many in the mainstream media and the major sports betting markets are wondering how oddsmakers and sharps will deal with the injury to Kevin Love of the Cleveland Cavaliers. He’s going to miss the entire second round (at least) according to team officials. We know the Cavs would have been favored with him (likely over the Chicago Bulls, but still possibly over the Milwaukee Bucks). How many points is Love worth?

On one hand, you’ll hear old-timers discussing how no NBA player is worth more than a few points. Love is talented…but he wasn’t exactly setting the world on fire this…

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VSM Exclusive: Portland/Memphis Game Five Preview

Even though the Memphis Grizzlies won the first three games of their opening round Western Conference series against the Portland Trailblazers…a glimmer of hope started to show for the Pacific Northwest in the fourth quarter of Monday night’s Game Four.

*The Blazers staved off elimination with a 31-17 fourth quarter victory…resulting in a 99-92 win that kept them alive down three games to one.

*Damian Lillard finally looked like the lethal force everyone was expecting to see from the get-go in this series. He scored 32 points and added 7 asses while consistently attacking the basket with success.

*The loss of Mike Conley…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…Brooklyn at Atlanta

Who said Deron Williams was washed up? WE DID! And he probably still is. But, for one night…the veteran Brooklyn guard reminded everyone why he was so widely regarded in his younger days. Check out these stats from Brooklyn’s overtime win over Atlanta this past Monday night!

35 points

7 of 11 on treys (!!!)

7 assists

2 giveaways

Williams also had 5 fouls…which is a sign that he was actually guarding people rather than letting them run by. Clearly, he got tired of hearing all the bad press. And, it appears he felt awful about missing the clutch jumper in Atlanta that might have…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…San Antonio at the LA Clippers

This past Friday night…in fourth quarter of Game Three in the back-and-forth Western Conference series featuring the San Antonio Spurs and the Los Angeles Clippers…it was starting to look like the Texans were in complete control.

*They were on their way to a blowout win and a 2-1 series advantage

*They possessed home court advantage in the series thanks to an earlier road win

*The offense was clicking (finally)

*The defense was imposing its will

*The “bench” advantage seemed to be paying off even more dramatically

How were the Clippers going to rally from 2-1 down when THEY were the team most likely to fade during…

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Still Burying Bookmakers In NBA Playoffs
Still Burying Bookmakers In NBA Playoffs Standing 8-2 Over Past 4 Days And Not About To Back Down From This Daily Battle Of Wits

Nationals Still 5-1 World Series Favorite But I'm Taking A Pass For A While - Washington Ranked 28th In Hitting, Pitching

Mayweather Remains -205 Favorite To Retain Title Saturday But Public Money Is On Pacquiao

By Kelso Sturgeon

The challenge of beating the NBA Playoffs is real but I am one who loves this daily battle of wits with bookmakers, working overtime to beat them at their own game by doing a better job of…

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Kelso’s Advanced Sports Betting: Early Baseball Surprises

I’m going to take a break from the NBA Playoffs today because there’s not much new to say about the handful of First Round series still going on. I told you a week ago that early evidence suggested we’d have a lot of one-sided matchups. I’m frankly a little disgusted by how many teams just laid down once they had fallen behind. Toronto was a series favorite and threw in the towel early!

Our next class get-together at the end of the week will talk about handicapping Round Two of the NBA Playoffs. Looking forward to that because we should have…

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Wayne Root: Doors Opening for Potential NBA Cinderellas

The 2015 NBA Playoffs have been fairly disappointing so far in terms of excitement and drama. There have been a few great games. There have been some exhilarating moments scattered across the brackets. But, for the most part…the series have been ending in workmanlike fashion. The only series upset was a 4-0 sweep for Washington!

What’s most interesting to me as THE KING OF UPSETS is how the door may be opening for potential Cinderella stories later in the proceedings. It was initially believed that the Conference Finals and Championship round were going to be the domain of Golden State, San…

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Jim Sez for Monday, April 27 …

Jim Sez for Monday, April 27 …

THE NFL DRAFT REPORT:IT’S TIME TO CHECK OUTTHE TOP QUARTERBACKS …NBA DRAFT UPDATE:THE CLIPPERS STEAL THEWEEKEND HEADLINES(BUT CAN THEY “HOLD SERVE” in GAME 5IN L.A. ON TUESDAY NIGHT?)PLUS MORE PLAYOFF GOODIES …MLB NEWS & NOTES:PUIG, WAINWRIGHT ARE DL-BOUND

Drum roll, please.Our NFL Draft position-by-position analyses have filled these Jim Sez pages in recent weeks but we’ve come to the final installment … The Quarterbacks.Heck, there have been more words printed (and verbalized over the airwaves) regarding both Florida State QB Jameis Winston and Oregon QB Marcus Mariota to fill a thick bound book and so…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…Atlanta at Brooklyn

The Atlanta Hawks entered the 2015 NBA Playoffs as the top seed in the Eastern Conference. They weren’t the betting favorites because Cleveland has been so impressive since LeBron James and company got all of their pieces in place. But, the Hawks were an undisputed #2 in the Eastern race…well ahead of the rest of the field.

There are now very clear questions about that three games into what was supposed to be a lopsided #1 vs. #8 Atlanta/Brooklyn matchup. No REAL team should have trouble against a #8 seed in the pathetic East! Yet, Atlanta has yet to play to…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…Cleveland at Boston

If there’s one thing LeBron James learned when playing for the Miami Heat, it’s that the energy you save early in the playoffs can be very useful when you’re trying to win a championship! He’s certainly imparted that message to his new Cleveland Cavaliers teammates. Game Three of the Cleveland/Boston series this past Thursday night very clearly featured a favorite turning its intensity on and off in an attempt to win with the bare minimum of energy exerted.

They would relax with a lead. They would stand around on offense for 15 seconds until LeBron led an attack at the basket…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…Atlanta at Brooklyn

This will be our eighth and final “series” preview as we crunch the efficiency numbers for the Atlanta Hawks and the Brooklyn Nets. We saved it for last because anything involving the #8 seed in the East should go last! But, we have to admit that the Nets have been more competitive than most expected thus far in this series. Does that mean that top seeded Atlanta really isn’t championship material?

Let’s start with JIM HURLEY’S key indicator stats…then we’ll review the boxscores from both games down in not-so-Hotlanta.

 

Offensive Efficiency

Atlanta: 106.2 per 100 possessions (ranked #6 in the NBA)

Brooklyn: 101.9…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…Toronto at Washington

In the first five days of NBA Playoff action, there were only two upsets. Both in the same series! The underdog Washington Wizards shocked Toronto in the first game of the playoffs back on Saturday…and then shocked them again Tuesday night.

The Raptors blew a “must-win” game at home, and are now starting two of those in the face in the nation’s capital Friday night and Sunday. This is our first chance to check in on this series. So, there’s a lot to talk about. We begin with JIM HURLEY’S key indicator stats from the regular season. Then, we’ll look at…

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Wayne Root: Where Have all the Upsets Gone?!

If you’ve been watching the 2015 NBA Playoffs, you know that upsets have been few and far between. Instead of having a bunch of matchups that are knotted up at one apiece through two games, we’re seeing SEVEN of the eight with a 2-0 series advantage!

The only real surprise is Washington winning twice as an underdog in Toronto. That’s a pair of upsets likely leading to a series upset. Other than those two, the only other game upset was San Antonio over the LA Clippers in that late overtime thriller Wednesday Night.  That’s barely an upset because the line was…

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Kelso’s Advanced Sports Betting: Playmakers Can’t Win 1-on-5

To me, the biggest lesson so far in the 2015 NBA Playoffs regards what has become the clear inability for “individual” PLAYMAKERS to dominate a game or a series. In fact, we’re seeing a few one-dimensional “stars” get exposed as weak links.

Hero-ball has become zero ball!

You may have heard the TNT guys talking about Damian Lillard of Portland after their Game Two loss at Memphis (I had Memphis and Under in that game by the way). He’s an amazing talent. Yet, he’s also a fairly one-dimensional talent. He’s a very poor defender. He’s more of a scorer than a distributor…and…

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Richie Baccellieri: How Sharps are Handling the NBA Playoffs

So far it’s been a relatively quiet opening week in terms of how both the sharps and the public are betting the 2015 NBA Playoffs. With so much information in play, opening numbers are fairly solid to begin with. To the degree the public is betting (which isn’t much), it tends to be on the most high profile celebrity stars (like LeBron James), which doesn’t give Wise Guys much square action to fade.

Also, as we move from game to game, oddsmakers know the historical tendencies that sharps like to play for percentages (usually variations of asking the straight up loser…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…Golden State at New Orleans

The New Orleans Pelicans have certainly been very impressive for a team that’s down 0-2 in an NBA Playoff series! The young upstarts covered both games on the road against #1 seed Golden State. They rallied from WAY behind in the series opener to make things very interesting too. Plus, their regular season finale was a win over San Antonio that few thought they’d pull off.

Bottom line…the Anthony Davis and company have been playing at a very high level for awhile. Heck, they might have made the finals in the East! Instead, they’re looking at getting swept out of the…

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Jim Sez: Wednesday NBA Previews - NFL Draft: RBs and TEs
THE NFL 2015 SKED IS OUT!PLUS THE NBA PLAYOFF REPORT AS WE ZOOM IN ON TONIGHT'S GAMES IN ATLANTA, MEMPHIS & LA AND OUR LATEST NFL DRAFT EDITION AS WE CHECK OUT RBs AND TEs

So, what grabs you the most about the hot-off-the-presses 2015 NFL schedule?

Heck, Week 1 on its own will be a major blast what with the season-opening Thursday Night game between the Pittsburgh Steelers at the defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots (haven't been able to call 'em that in 10 years!) plus some great Sunday afternoon action featuring the likes of Baltimore at Denver, Green…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…Portland at Memphis

You don’t ever want to put too much weight on a series opener in the first round of the NBA Playoffs. It’s not uncommon for the opener to give a false read, particularly when a good team posts an outlier negative. But, the shorthanded Portland Trailblazers sure LOOKED like a team that was going to be outmatched by the “built for the playoffs” Memphis Grizzlies in last Sunday’s blowout loss.

Portland is dealing with multiple injuries. Which…

*Reduces their weaponry

*Reduces their depth

*Reduces their ability to play aggressive defense

*Discourages them from playing at their preferred faster pace.

All of that lines up perfectly for…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…Boston at Cleveland

If you watched the first third of this past Sunday’s first round playoff game between the Boston Celtics and the Cleveland Cavaliers…you saw the very best the young underdog had to offer. Hustling. Enthusiasm. Heart. Grit. Smart coaching from a young prodigy. It got them a temporary lead that quickly vanished once Cleveland shifted into high gear.

Boston may or may not be a team of the future depending on what personnel additions they make in coming years. There’s a lot to like about the coach and a few of the key players. But…right now…they don’t have much hope of extending…

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Wayne Root: Can KC Royals Extend Their Cinderella Story?

Last year the Kansas City Royals were one of the biggest surprise entries in the World Series EVER. Nobody gave them a shot before the season started. Nobody gave them a shot when the playoffs started. Nobody believed their eyes as the team kept right on winning the American League. Then, in the offseason, they were a popular “Under” pick against regular season victory totals in Las Vegas even though oddsmakers had only projected a .500 season.

But, two weeks into the 2015 campaign, the Royals are still winning! They’re off to a sizzling 9-3 start which includes a road sweep…

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Kelso’s Advanced Sports Betting: NBA First Round May be One-Sided

If the opening weekend of the 2015 NBA Playoffs is any indication, handicappers and sports bettors may be in for some very one-sided first round series that lack drama and intensity. It’s dangerous to draw conclusions from just one game. But, when that one game is consistent with issues that had been present prior to the postseason…then you can draw safer conclusions.

Some quick examples:

*BROOKLYN isn’t a playoff caliber team by traditional standards. If you’re #8 in the East, you’re pretty bad! Even while covering a spread, they didn’t look at all like a team that was ready to scare Atlanta.…

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Jim Sez: NBA Playoff Update - MLB Notes
THE NBA PLAYOFFS UPDATE

CO-FAVORITES WARRIORS, CAVS SNAG GAME 1 WINS (BUT ONLY ONE OF 'EM COVERS THE PRICE TAG!) PLUS MORE NEWS/NOTES AS WE LOOK AHEAD AT SOME GAME 2 TILTS

THE MLB NOTEBOOK:

CUBS' BRYANT UNDER THE MICROSCOPE PLUS A RAGING-HOT ADAM JONES FOR THE O's

Forget all that mass media rubbish that the NBA Playoffs "don't really begin till Round II" - the pro round-ballers surely swung open the gates on what's gonna be a great post-season with eight games this past Saturday/Sunday and - for starters - we'll say this:

If the established NBA co-favorites Golden State and Cleveland -…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…Milwaukee at Chicago

As the Chicago Bulls were taking care of the Milwaukee Bucks Saturday night in Game One of their opening round NBA Playoff series, two quick questions jumped to mind:

*Does Milwaukee’s lack of offense eliminate them from any hope in this series?

*Can Derrick Rose look THIS sharp all the way through the playoffs?!

If Rose can find anything near his past form (which has been largely absent during the regular season even when he was healthy), then the projected second round pairing against the Cleveland Cavaliers could get very interesting. Rose had 23 points and 7 assists against a stellar Milwaukee defense.…

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Network Notebook: NBA Series Preview…S. Antonio at LA Clippers

Through the second half of the season, both the San Antonio Spurs and Los Angeles Clippers were consistently performing at a level that would normally be considered “championship caliber” basketball. Now…Golden State and Cleveland were also playing that well or better…the elites are truly terrific this season. But, it’s seems like a CRIME that the Spurs and Clippers have to face each other in the FIRST ROUND of the NBA Playoffs! Neither would be out of place in the League Finals, yet one will be displaced from the brackets early in the tourney.

The market considers San Antonio as the slightly…

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Network Notebook: NBA Series Preview…Dallas at Houston

Every year, the field of sports analytics holds a conference at MIT. It’s hosted by the General Manager of the Houston Rockets…and always features the owner of the Dallas Mavericks as one of the showcase guests. The two franchises have been at the cutting edge of analytics for years…but don’t always see eye-to-eye on everything.

That’s set up a fascinating first round battle in the 2015 NBA Playoffs as the two teams square off in the softer half of the Western conference brackets. Houston is a #2 seed, despite not getting serious media or market run as a potential champion. Dallas…

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Richie Baccellieri: How Sharps are Betting the NBA Playoff Openers

The 2015 NBA Playoffs begin Saturday with a quadruple-header. There are EIGHT games set for the full weekend featuring the openers of all eight first round series. Let’s take a look at how sharps (professional wagerers) have been betting thus far in the process (lines have been up for about a day as we publish this report).

Games are presented in schedule/rotation order.

 

Washington at Toronto (12:35 p.m. ET Saturday on ESPN)

You regulars know that favorite money usually comes in early in important events. Sharps who like the favorite bet quickly in advance of public action (squares almost always bet favorites). Underdog…

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Jim Sez: Saturday NBA Previews
THE NBA PLAYOFF REPORTTHE POST-SEASON'S FINALLY HERE AND WE GET GROOVIN' WITH SATURDAY'S FOUR (4) SERIES OPENERS ...BASEBALL NEWS & NOTES: ROCKIES-DODGERS IS WEEKEND'S BEST SET

Are you all buckled up and strapped in? Good, 'cause this year's NBA Playoffs are bound to take us for a wild ride these next two-plus months - we know there'll be no Miami Heat in the NBA Finals for the first time since 2010 but will the defending champion (and five-time champ) San Antonio Spurs gonna be there still playing ball right 'round Fathers' Day? Do stay tuned.

Now, here's the up-to-the-minute NBA Odds to…

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Network Notebook: NBA Series Preview…New Orleans at Golden State

The marquee matchup Saturday afternoon in the NBA Playoffs features top seed from the West Golden State at home against the hard-finishing New Orleans Pelicans. The Pellies had to beat serious championship contender San Antonio Wednesday night just to get into the brackets. Golden State’s been coasting as the #1 seed for weeks.

Can the Warriors flip their switch back on now that it’s time to play for a championship? Can New Orleans maintain their intensity after climbing the most important mountain in the franchise’s short history just a few days earlier? Most pundits expect this to be a one-sided series…

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Wayne Root: Finding Upsets in the NBA’s First Round

The NBA Playoffs begin Saturday, so you know that THE KING OF UPSETS WAYNE ALLYN ROOT is already hard at work trying to find potential upset calls in any of the eight first round series and on a game-by-game basis. Today I’m going to talk to you about general principles for finding shockers in the first round of the NBA’s postseason.

First, it’s important to remember is that it’s much harder for a team to score an upset in a full series than it is in an individual game. The best-of-seven format strongly favors superior teams to express that superiority over…

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Jim Sez: NBA Playoff Team Previews - NFL Draft: Guards and Centers
THE NBA PLAYOFFS ARE SET AND WE DELIVER QUICK-HITTER COMMENTS ON ALL 16 POST-SEASON TEAMSOUR NFL DRAFT REPORT: TIME TO CHECK OUT THE GUARDS/CENTERS

Folks, our Jim Sez NBA Playoffs series-by-series previews will fill up the next two columns right here - just remember the "Second Season" gets underway on Saturday afternoon with four games on both Saturday and Sunday ... but right now we wanted to take a few moments to give an overview of the teams in this year's post-season with a line or two about each one:

EASTERN CONFERENCE

The first-round playoff series matchups are ... Brooklyn vs. Atlanta;…

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Kelso’s Advanced Sports Betting: Handicapping the NBA Playoffs

As promised, I’m back to talk about handicapping the NBA Playoffs. The next several weeks will be very lucrative for serious handicappers who have been studying the players, teams, and head coaches all season (and for multiple seasons). But, even if you’re just now getting into the NBA after enjoying March Madness, there are ways to position yourself for success.

We start with my classic fundamentals:

 

PLAYMAKERS AND GAMEBREAKERS

The NBA Playoffs are heavily influenced by this element. In a best-of-seven series, the best talent usually wins out. That’s always been true. It may be blinding some former players who are TV analysts…

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Jim Sez: NBA Final Night Plus The NBA Awards - NFL Draft Cornerbacks
THE NBA'S FINAL NIGHT: TIME TO DRAW THE CURTAIN ON THIS 2014-15 REGULAR SEASON AND HERE'S WHAT TO WATCH, PLUS IT'S NBA AWARDS TIME TOO! THE NFL DRAFT REPORT: HERE'S THE TOP CORNERBACKS

Leave it to the NBA to have so much drama built into this final night of regular-season play - there's still playoff berths to be secured and higher seeds to be snagged and, lest we not keep up with the here-and-now times, key players to be rested too!

The bottom line to all of tonight's craziness is that there are 14 games on this Wednesday night docket - only…

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Network Notebook: NBA Preview…San Antonio at New Orleans

Sometimes the last day of a regular season is as boring as it gets. That’s actually true over much of the 14-game slate on the NBA’s final night. But, there’s one HUGE game that involves the San Antonio Spurs and the New Orleans Pelicans in what could end up being one of the most intense and exciting showdowns all season!

*San Antonio earns the coveted #2 seed in the tightly packed Western Conference race with a victory. Amazing that this team has played so well down the stretch to rise from what might have been a much worse spot. This game…

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Wayne Root: Using Injury Reports to Find MLB Dogs

The last time we were together, I talked about using weather reports to find great underdog bets in Major League Baseball. Today I want to talk about how to use the Injury Reports for the same purpose. Some of my best underdog plays in this sport come when the market hasn’t properly adjusted for the impact of an injury.

 

PITCHING

Game day prices are heavily influenced by the starting pitchers. And, market pricing is strongly influenced by overall perceptions of those pitchers. It’s generally assumed that each “name” pitcher is throwing at full strength. Ace pitchers are going to pitch like aces.…

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Jim Sez: NBA Report and The High Flying KC Royals
THE NBA REPORT IT'S DOWN-THE-STRETCH TIME, FOLKS WITH THE PLAYOFFS LOOMING THIS WEEKENDPLUS IT'S OUR BASEBALL NEWS & NOTES: LADIES AND GENTS IN LAS VEGAS, WANT A "DO-OVER" ON THOSE RAMPAGING ROYALS?

You can count 'em down now, ladies and gentlemen. As we begin this new work week, there are only 29 regular-season games in all remaining on this NBA schedule (and you thought we'd never get here!) and - just as Commish Adam Silver would like it - a whole bunch of 'em come with playoff meaning whether it is playoff seeding at hand or even who fills in the…

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Kelso’s Advanced Sports Betting: Don’t Overreact in MLB!

Week One of the 2015 Major League Baseball season is in the books. Handicappers have to be careful not to overreact to what they’ve seen. Each and every day’s results looms large right now because the sport is fresh in our minds. Come July, nobody’s going to remember the first week! Come September, nobody will even remember July, let alone what happened in the first few seconds of a long season.

There have been a handful of early surprises. Most don’t mean anything because the laws of math even out over time in baseball. And, some of these records are polluted…

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Network Notebook: MLB Series Preview…Washington at Boston

Before the 2015 Major League Baseball season began, the Washington Nationals were co-favorites with the Los Angeles Dodgers to win the National League. The Boston Red Sox were the betting favorites to win the American League East, which puts them in serious consideration to win the pennant in a parity-riddled AL. That means the current Nats/Sox series will at least be featuring serious contenders down the road…and could conceivably be an early taste of October action.

Nothing’s happened yet to change that line of thinking for Sox Nation. Boston’s posted a winning record against an easy early draw (at Philadelphia, at…

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Wayne Root: Using Weather Influences to Find MLB Dogs

Earlier this week, I outlined several different ways to find value underdogs here in the early days of the 2015 season. You should be looking to fade overrated media teams and big-name pitchers who aren’t yet in their regular season form. You should be looking to back lesser known pitchers who are well-suited to thrive in current conditions. Today, I want to add WEATHER into the mix.

Game conditions are of huge importance in the month of April…where it can be like winter at some sites but early summer in others. Here are some quick guidelines for dealing with the extremes.

 

IN…

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Network Notebook: MLB Series Preview…Detroit at Cleveland

The major betting markets had some real trouble evaluating the American League Central division this year. How do you discount a Kansas City Royals team that went to the World Series?! How much of a hit to the Detroit Tigers take by losing Max Scherzer, amidst concerns that Justin Verlander’s best days are way behind him? Does Cleveland have what it takes to win the division, or are they just the “least worst” of the confusing options?

Entering the season, there were the projected win totals in Las Vegas…

Cleveland 84.5

Detroit 84.5

Chicago White Sox 81.5

Kansas City 80.5

Minnesota 71.5

Everyone agreed that Minnesota didn’t…

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3
May
Reports: Warriors' Curry to be named MVP

(SportsNetwork.com) - Stephen Curry will reportedly beat out James Harden for the NBA's Most Valuable Player Award.

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3
May
National Basketball Association Playoff Game Capsules

Atlanta, GA (SportsNetwork.com) - Bradley Beal and John Wall overcame injury scares in the Washington Wizards' 104-98 win over the Atlanta Hawks in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series. Beal (right ankle sprain) and Wall (left wrist sprain) battled to score 28 and 18 points, respectively, for Washington on Sunday. Wall also had 13 assists and three blocks. Paul Pierce ended with 19 points for the Wizards, who had been off for a week since sweeping the Toronto Raptors in the first round. Marcin Gortat tallied 12 points and 12 rebounds. The Wizards became the first team in NBA history to win four straight Game 1s on the road. DeMarre Carroll scored 21 of his 24 points in the first half for the top-seeded Hawks, who needed six games to eliminate the Brooklyn Nets in the opening round. Al Horford recorded 17 points, 17 rebounds and seven assists. Jeff Teague played through a right ankle sprain and finished with 11 points and seven assists. Game 2 will be Tuesday night in Atlanta.

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3
May
Warriors beat Grizz in Game 1, continue home run

Oakland, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Make it three months and counting since the Golden State Warriors have lost in front of their raucous fans.

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3
May
Well-rested Wizards beat Hawks in Game 1

Atlanta, GA (SportsNetwork.com) - Bradley Beal and John Wall overcame injury scares in the Washington Wizards' 104-98 win over the Atlanta Hawks in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series.

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3
May
Braves blank Reds to earn series split

Atlanta, GA (SportsNetwork.com) - Julio Teheran kept Cincinnati guessing over six strong innings to help the Atlanta Braves blank the Reds 5-0 in the finale of their four-game series.

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3
May
Cards win in 14 innings to complete sweep of Pirates

St. Louis, MO (SportsNetwork.com) - Kolten Wong capped a successful weekend for the St. Louis Cardinals with a home run to give them their sixth straight win.

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3
May
National League Game Capsules

Flushing, NY (SportsNetwork.com) - Ryan Zimmerman hit an RBI single in the first inning and the Washington Nationals held on to beat the New York Mets 1-0 on Sunday, winning their four-game series. Doug Fister (2-1) improved to 5-0 in five career starts against the Mets after working into the seventh inning. He allowed five hits, no walks and struck out three. The Nationals won three of the four games, including back-to-back 1-0 decisions, improving to 17-2 in their last 19 at Citi Field. They have won five of their last six overall on the heels of a six-game slide. Dillon Gee (0-2) faced the Nationals for a 17th time in his career -- his most common opponent -- and took the loss after giving up six hits and five walks.

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3
May
Dodgers edge D-backs in 13

Los Angeles, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Yasmani Grandal clubbed a leadoff home run in the 13th inning to give the Los Angeles Dodgers a 1-0 win and three- game sweep of the Arizona Diamondbacks on Sunday.

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2
May
NFL Draft Update, Day 3

(SportsNetwork.com) -

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2
May
Extra Points: Packers get greedy at QB position

(SportsNetwork.com) - We all remember one Brett that worked out pretty well in Green Bay but expecting another to make it three Hall of Famers in a row at the game's most important position is probably a stretch.

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2
May
Petty, Hundley headline Day 3 draft picks

Chicago, IL (SportsNetwork.com) - Bryce Petty didn't have to wait long to finally have his name called on Day 3 of the NFL draft. For fellow quarterback Brett Hundley, the delay took a bit longer.

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2
May
Jets grab Baylor QB Petty in 4th round

Chicago, IL (SportsNetwork.com) - Baylor quarterback Bryce Petty didn't have to wait long to finally have his name called on Day 3 of the NFL draft, with the New York Jets selecting the 2013 Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year with the fourth pick of the fourth round.

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2
May
Defense strong in New Hampshire spring game

Durham, NH (SportsNetwork.com) - One usually thinks offense with the University of New Hampshire football program, but defensive players put on an impressive show Saturday as Team Cats defeated Team Wild, 23-10, in the spring game at Cowell Stadium.

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2
May
MEAC, SWAC grab some draft spotlight

(SportsNetwork.com) - The two FCS conferences for historically black colleges and universities have developed a spotlight for both the start and end of the 2015 season.

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2
May
Chargers pick Buchanan Award winner Emanuel in fifth round

Chicago, IL (SportsNetwork.com) - The San Diego Chargers selected 2014 Buck Buchanan Award winner Kyle Emanuel from North Dakota State in the fifth round of the NFL Draft on Saturday.

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2
May
Chattanooga's Tull goes to Saints in fifth round

Chicago, IL (SportsNetwork.com) - The New Orleans Saints selected Chattanooga's three-time Southern Conference defensive player of the year Davis Tull in the fifth round of the NFL Draft on Saturday.

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1
May
Top recruit Jaylen Brown picks Cal

(SportsNetwork.com) - Georgia native Jaylen Brown, one of the nation's top incoming freshman, has committed to play basketball next season at the University of California.

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1
May
WNBA All-Star Katie Douglas calls it a career

(SportsNetwork.com) - Katie Douglas, a five-time WNBA All-Star, announced her retirement Friday after a 14-year career.

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29
Apr
Ex-Louisville basketball player Jones cleared on rape charge

Louisville, KY (SportsNetwork.com) - A grand jury has cleared former Louisville basketball star Chris Jones on rape and sodomy charges, according to the Associated Press.

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26
Apr
Kennesaw State names Al Skinner men's hoops coach

Kennesaw, GA (SportsNetwork.com) - Kennesaw State has named Al Skinner its new men's basketball coach.

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