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Submitted by Kelso Sturgeon on Thursday, February 5, 2015 at 2:00 PM

With two extremely huge TV games in pro basketball coming up in the next 36 hours, this seemed like the ideal time to remind students here in my College of Advanced Sports Betting and Handicapping why betting the NBA is so profitable.

The first and most important reason is that oddsmakers are extremely slow in this sport to properly respond to dramatic changes in performance. The Cleveland Cavaliers, who host the Los Angeles Clippers Thursday Night on TNT are a great example of that. When LeBron James returned to the starting lineup after an injury absence, the team caught fire. It took forever for the market to catch up!

Entering tonight’s game, Cleveland is 9-2 ATS over its last 11 games. One of the misses was by half a point. And, the other miss was in a scrimmage vs. Philadelphia when favored by -17. That’s the kind of game many bettors pass anyway because they know in advance there’s going to be extended garbage time.

But…just before that run, the Cavs were 4-16 ATS because they were going through chemistry issues, injuries, and the general struggle that comes with everyone gunning for you when they can see something’s wrong. Oddsmakers just wouldn’t believe their own eyes…and kept pricing the Cavs as championship contenders when they weren't playing anywhere near that level. Note that these aren’t minor blips on the radar…those are multi-week hunks lasting 11 and 20 games.

Friday night, we have the long awaited matchup of the current #1 seeds in the respective conferences. West leader Golden State visits East leader Atlanta. Both of those teams have made backers fortunes in recent weeks. Honestly, it looks like oddsmakers have been BLIND to what these teams have been doing. They’d be embarrassed if national media coverage ever talked about it…instead of writing puff pieces about how great oddsmakers all are. Look at these records!

*Golden State is 31-15-1 ATS this season, meaning they’re covering better than 65% of the time. They established right off the bat that they were very good. Vegas refused to believe it.

*Golden State is currently on a 7-3 ATS run over its last 10 games…which is a better percentage than their full season mark. And, that includes 3-0 ATS the last three games. The market STILL hasn’t caught up!

*Golden State is 13-4-1 ATS its last 18 games…better than 75% for the money. After an 18-11 ATS start showed they were moneymakers…oddsmakers got WORSE at pricing them!

*Atlanta has actually calmed down with a 2-4 ATS mark over their last six games. But, that came after a historic run of 15 STRAIGHT COVERS! Atlanta covered every game for almost a full month in a market that’s supposed to be so “state of the art” that you can’t win by betting the obvious. Atlanta was obviously playing great, and they covered 15 straight!

*Before that 15 game run, Atlanta had been 10-3 ATS. That’s right…better than 75% over a few-week sampling BEFORE the 15 game run. Do the math…that’s 25-3 ATS over 28 games. Not supposed to happen in modern Las Vegas. But, it just happened before our eyes. While oddsmakers were sitting down for feature stories during the build-up to the college championship and the Super Bowl, they were completely missing these major NBA developments.

And, frankly, what’s happened with Cleveland, Golden State, and Atlanta is just the tip of the iceberg. I haven’t even mentioned team tendencies on Over/Unders…or what some of the bad teams have been doing. Of course…nothing there is as extreme as 25-3 ATS over 28 games. But, you only have to break 53% to make money. NBA handicapping and betting is a gold mine right now if you do the work, watch the games, and find developing stories that oddsmakers are missing.

I know many of you back off a bit when football ends. And, of those of you who don’t back off, your preference is for colleges over the NBA. I hope you’ll seriously reconsider those priorities in light of what you’ve read today.

If you’d like some help finding the best pro and college basketball plays on the board every night, you can purchase my game day BEST BETS right here at this very website with your major credit card. Questions about extended service can be answered personally by one of my representatives in the Vegas-Sports-Masters office at 1-888-777-4155.

Enjoy these great NBA matchups the next two nights. You should probably pay attention to other big games this weekend like LA Clippers/Oklahoma City, Atlanta/Memphis, San Antonio/Toronto, and Portland/Houston. I think you’ll find that oddsmakers have significant trouble keeping up with major developments for all 30 teams. They notice some of them…but they can’t get them all.

I’ll be back with you again early next week for our next coursework. It will be a mix of college and pro basketball for the forseeable future. Major League Baseball won’t be on the sports betting radar until the beginning of April. The Dean of Sports Handicapping greatly appreciates your continuing attendance and hard work!


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Kelso Sturgeon on twitter @vsm_sturgeon

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