Submitted by Kelso Sturgeon on Thursday, May 9, 2013 at 7:00 PM
We’ve talked a lot already about the key fundamentals for picking NBA Playoff games. The league itself has created a new dynamic for Advanced Sports Bettors and Handicappers to consider with the bizarre way they’ve scheduled the second round matchups.
For example, Golden State and San Antonio will be playing an up-tempo series every other day through the first six games. Indiana and New York can basically take a Caribbean vacation between games in the early part of their matchup, before the schedule then goes every other day for the last three games.
Allow me to run through the remaining schedules for the four second round series…
There’s only one schedule break here…as the Heat and Bulls get both Saturday and Sunday off before picking up again Monday. Having a weekend off could help Chicago recover from their brutal recent schedule, and may allow Luol Deng to return to the court. Miami is still fresh as a daisy after sweeping Chicago. The Bulls needed a slight break if they wanted to extend this series, and will get that very soon.
*San Antonio/Golden State: Friday-Sunday-Tuesday-Thursday-Sunday
This is just crazy. The league held these guys back last weekend even though both of them had wrapped things up in time to start Sunday. Then, they jammed everything together through the first six games. The only break comes after Game Six…when next Friday and Saturday would be off if a seventh game was needed to finish things off. Advanced Handicappers need to watch body language VERY carefully on a game-by-game basis to see if either side runs out of gas.
*Oklahoma City/Memphis: Saturday-Monday-Wednesday-Friday-Sunday
These teams just had a long layoff after playing Tuesday. Maybe that extra time will help Oklahoma City come up with a better gameplan. It will certainly help Kevin Durant get some rest after he’s had to carry such a heavy load. It’s every other day from this point forward…and the team best able to handle that scheduling challenge is going to advance to the Western finals. Oklahoma City had BETTER find a way to reduce the burden on Durant or he’ll be pulling leaves out of gutters and changing light bulbs at home much sooner than originally expected.
*New York/Indiana: Saturday-Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday-Monday
The Knicks and Pacers just sat for three days, and will then get another extra day off before taking the floor Tuesday. INSANE! At least you can’t say the NBA is worrying about TV ratings. New York is never on TV! I expect the extended early rest to create a very physical series…because the bullies on each team will have plenty of energy to bully. I will have to think about some Overs the refs will have to call all the contact and because shooters will have fresh legs.
I think it goes without saying that you’ll want to back any team you see as “fresh” (because of depth or youth) against any team you see as “tired” (due to a lack of depth or old age). Be sure you’re watching the body language of the teams and the key scorers (GAMEBREAKERS and GAMEWINNERS!). When considering Over/Under options, remember that tired legs generally equal Unders (the pace slows down and jumpers start hitting the front rim), while fresh legs generally equal Overs (faster pace, more free throws, and better shooting from the floor).
If you’d like some assistance determining the best basketball plays on the board through this holiday weekend and the rest of the playoffs, you can purchase my BEST BETS here at the website with your major credit card.
Be sure you spend some time Sunday with the most important mother you know (be it your mother, wife, or daughter). Just don’t schedule your Mother’s Day meal during what’s shaping up as an exciting San Antonio/Golden State game Sunday (3:30 p.m. ET, 12:30 p.m. Las Vegas time)! I expect we’ll be talking more about the NBA Playoffs when we get together again on Tuesday. There’s still time for multiple fascinating storylines to develop…and these second round matchups have provided plenty of drama already.
Thanks again for all of your hard work here in my Advanced College of Sports Betting and Handicapping. The Dean of Sports Handicapping greatly appreciates your attendance and effort!