After the All-Star break, things change when it comes to betting the NBA.
It starts with the attitude of sportsbooks and oddsmakers when it comes to playoff teams and those who will be making lottery picks.
Most basketball bettors will look at the favorites and want to bet them against bad teams and every sportsbook in the world knows this. Oddsmakers, in turn, will become more aggressive in their approach to setting numbers and the adjusted/inflated numbers will have the feel and look almost of teaser numbers.
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Their mission is not to discourage you from betting, rather, create the suspicion in the bettors mind they don't really have an edge in playing a favorite because the number is so high. In other words, if you want to back a double-digit favorite, you will pay for it and it could be as many as two/three points higher than it might have been four to six weeks earlier. Be cautious with chalky favorites and underdogs.
Trade Deadline Adjustments and Players Seeking Max Contracts
Unfortunately, a newer aspect of handicapping against the NBA odds is dealing with teams making major trades or players wanting max contracts either with the club they are on or elsewhere.
Of course, having a collection of the finest talent is preferred by any team. But when it comes to adding pieces, particularly starters, there is always a period of adjustment. The existing players might see minor roles changes and fewer touches coming their way and the new player has to fit in and see what his role ends up being.
Bettors will often go overboard when such a trade happens and back a team that looks like they could at the very least play for the conference title. Basketball is still about chemistry and having moving parts working cohesively. It might take a team weeks to come together and sometimes they never do that season. Being wise and following this team closely to bet for or against them is likely the best strategy.
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The other element is if a player publicly states he wants a max contract, but not necessarily with the team he plays for. Typically, this player will make less money to play elsewhere but most likely will be going to a team that should be a championship contender, compared to the current status of his team. Also, some players will want to play where endorsements or better state tax situations could offset the financial loss of staying with the original club.
If this intent publicly made by the player in question, the team itself or his agent, this could impact the team negatively for a while or the rest of the season. The idea of a team is to be together and sacrifice for the greater good. When one player chooses to place his needs above everyone else's and makes it known, teams like this become excellent play against material.
Keep These Betting Elements At The Forefront Of Your Mind Daily
• Never Ask Bad Teams To Do Good Things
When a team has nothing to play for, asking them to cover against teams that do is a risky proposition. That does not mean that they cannot cover, but finding that right game when they do is not easy.
• Stay Away From Bad Games, Unless
When two teams are out of the playoffs, trying to figure out if one or both squads will come to play is guesswork, not handicapping work. The only real scenario to consider is if one team for whatever reason hits a hot streak, which makes them more worthy.
Otherwise, best to play on teams who have a stake in the outcome.
• Injuries and Rest
In the last 10 games of the season, injury reports are very important, especially for contenders, as that can swing outcomes. Also, for those teams whose playoffs fate are mostly set, often, coaches will give starters a game or two off late in the year, which will alter spreads and outcomes.
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