Four Games on the NBA Schedule this Evening

Kerr
Kerr
Golden State Head Coach Steve Kerr has plenty to smile about a his Warriors travel to D.C.

With four NBA games on the schedule tonight, why not take a look at each one of them?

Golden State at Washington – The Wizards have slipped to the fifth spot in the Eastern Conference having lost three in a row and eight of their last ten games. There isn’t much concern of missing the playoffs as they have a large lead over the seventh and eighth seeds. Still, with the best team in the league coming to town this could be a good time to get things back on track.

Golden State has won seven of their last ten games and has maintained their 3.5 game lead over second-seeded Memphis in the tough Western Conference. The health of Stephon Curry is in question but it appears just to be a sore ankle he’s dealing with right now.

Trends: Golden State is 1-5 against the spread in their last six games… Washington is 2-8 straight up in their last ten games… The Warriors are 16-7 SU in their last 23 games on the road… The Wizards are 1-4 SU in their last five games at home against the Warriors.

The Pick:

Love
Kevin Love is playing better in recent weeks amid rumors he might be elsewhere in 2015.

Cleveland (-6.5) at Detroit – The Cavs have closed to within one half game of the third-seeded Bulls in the Eastern Conference. They’ve two straight and eight of their last ten games. Their chances of catching the Atlanta Haws for the top seed in the East are impossible with about 25 games to but the second seed isn’t out of the question.

Detroit has won two in a row and six of their last ten to close within one half game of eight seed Brooklyn and within one game of seventh-seeded Miami. The Pistons have to be happy with where they are considering they were given up for dead following the injury to Brandon Jennings.

Trends: Cleveland is 16-2 straight up in their last 18 games… The Pistons are 8-4 SU in their last 12 games against the Cavaliers… The Cavs are 2-4 against the spread in their last six games on the road in Detroit… The Pistons are 1-4 SU in their last five games against the Cavs.

The Pick: I like the Pistons to keep it close tonight.

Indiana (+7) at Oklahoma City – The Pacers have made a really nice run of late winning three-straight and seven of their last ten games. They are dead even with the Pistons and reside in the ninth spot. While the Eastern Conference is much weaker than the West, the chase for playoff positioning may be more exciting in the East.

Just as the Thunder got themselves into the eighth spot in the West, star Kevin Durant is out for at least a week following another procedure on his injured foot. Russell Westbrook can carry the Thunder only so far so if Durant is out for an extended period I see trouble for them down the stretch.

Trends: N/A

The Pick: The Pacers have been hot lately but I like the Thunder behind Westbrook to cover.

Toronto (+3.5) at Dallas – This could be the best game of the night as the Eastern Conference’s second seed comes to Big D. The Mavs are in the sixth spot out West but are actually just one half game out of the third seed.Basically, this is the Western Conference in a nutshell.

Both teams have won seven of their last ten games as the Mavericks look to defend their home court.

Trends: N/A

The Pick: I like Dallas to cover.

Would Legalized Sports Betting Hurt Las Vegas?

If legal sports betting were to start in places such as the California Indian casinos or other places across the U.S. would it hurt the Vegas strip or Nevada sports betting industry as a whole.

If it were to happen, it certainly would not happen overnight, but the idea of expanding gambling to other places besides just Nevada has gained renewed strength of late.

The commissioners in three of the four major U.S. sports leagues in the U.S. led by Adam Silver of the NBA said legalizing sports betting would eventually need to be looked at by the governing bodies of each league.

The American Gaming Association based in Washington wants its membership to decide what the best course is to take on the issue.

A legislator in Minnesota has introduced a measure to make sports betting legal in his state. However, the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act or PASPA, makes the discussion at this time moot.

PASPA, which Congress approved in 1992, confines sports wagering to Montana, Oregon, Delaware and Nevada. However, unlike Nevada with its multimillion dollar sportbooks that are ultra high tech. the three other states offer only betting at a small stakes level through a lottery or parlay cards.

Short of a repeal of PASPA by Congress, the Supreme Court would have the final say on any other U.S. states having sports wagering.

New Jersey has fought for three years trying to legalize sports betting for its casinos in Atlantic City and at racetracks to help the state gaming industry that has been in decline.

In November, a federal judge blocked the effort by New Jersey although supporters are hoping an appeals court will hear the issue this year.

Sports betting supporters in Minnesota want to make a challenge against PASPA saying the state has both racetracks and casinos and has used gambling revenues to construct a new NFL stadium for the Minnesota Vikings.

The discussions are centered around money, the states want to fill their budget gaps with taxes on sports wagering, while the sports leagues could also demand their share.

MLB Win Projections for 2015

Royals
Royals
Can the Royals duplicate their success of last year?

Can you believe teams have already reported for spring training in Florida and Arizona? Seems like the season just ended doesn’t it? Here are you season total win total projections from our friends at Bovada.

Arizona Diamondbacks – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      71½ (-115)

Under                                   71½ (-115)

Despite the changes, I like the UNDER.

Atlanta Braves – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      73½ (-115)

Under                                   73½ (-115)

The Braves always seem to find a way to succeed. Take the OVER.

Baltimore Orioles – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      82½ (-115)

Under                                   82½ (-115)

I think they take a step back but go with the OVER.

Boston Red Sox – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      86½ (-115)

Under                                   86½ (-115)

The BoSox have upgraded in all the right places. Take the OVER.

Chicago Cubs – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      82½ (-115)

Under                                   82½ (-115)

Will the Cubs be better? Yes, but I’m not ready for over .500 so take the UNDER.

Chicago White Sox – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      81½ (-115)

Under                                   81½ (-115)

I’m just not convinced this team is ready for recovery yet. Take the UNDER.

Cincinnati Reds – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      77½ (-115)

Under                                   77½ (-115)

Take the UNDER as the Reds are still reshuffling the deck.

Cleveland Indians – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      83½ (-115)

Under                                   83½ (-115)

Take the OVER. I like the direction of the Indians.

Colorado Rockies – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      71½ (-115)

Under                                   71½ (-115)

I don’t see much to be positive about here. Take the UNDER.

Detroit Tigers – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      84½ (-115)

Under                                   84½ (-115)

It’s really hard to see them doing as well as recent years with injuries and pitching losses. Take the UNDER.

Houston Astros – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      74½ (-115)

Under                                   74½ (-115)

Arrow up on the Astros. I like the OVER.

Kansas City Royals – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      79½ (-115)

Under                                   79½ (-115)

Can they repeat last year’s success? I say no. Take the OVER.

Los Angeles Angels – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      89½ (-115)

Under                                   89½ (-115)

Take the OVER. Big year coming from the Halos.

LA Dodgers
Can the Dodgers get over the hump and get to the World Series?

Los Angeles Dodgers – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      92½ (-115)

Under                                   92½ (-115)

It’s a big number but I’ll take the OVER.

Miami Marlins – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      81½ (-115)

Under                                   81½ (-115)

I really like the OVER here as new additions boost the Marlins.

Milwaukee Brewers – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      78½ (-115)

Under                                   78½ (-115)

Take the UNDER in a super-competitive NL Central.

Minnesota Twins – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      70½ (-115)

Under                                   70½ (-115)

Managerial change brings instability. Take the UNDER.

New York Mets – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      81½ (-115)

Under                                   81½ (-115)

What reason have they given me to be excited? Take the UNDER.

New York Yankees – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      81½ (-115)

Under                                   81½ (-115)

If A-Rod can contribute without being a problem, I like the OVER.

Oakland Athletics – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      80½ (-115)

Under                                   80½ (-115)

They stumbled to the finish last year and it continues in 2015. Take the UNDER.

Philadelphia Phillies – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      68½ (-115)

Under                                   68½ (-115)

Can they really be this bad? Yes, take the UNDER.

Pittsburgh Pirates – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      83½ (-115)

Under                                   83½ (-115)

Playoffs for two straight years in Pittsburgh and things look as good this season. Take the OVER.

San Diego Padres – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      85½ (-115)

Under                                   85½ (-115)

Fantastic additions but I’m still going UNDER.

San Francisco Giants – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      84½ (-115)

Under                                   84½ (-115)

The defending champs have some offense to replace but I still like the OVER.

Seattle Mariners – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      86½ (-115)

Under                                   86½ (-115)

Could the Mariners be the cream of the crop in the AL? Maybe and I’m taking the OVER.

St. Louis Cardinals – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      88½ (-115)

Under                                   88½ (-115)

This number is really close for me. I’ll take the UNDER but barely.

Tampa Bay Rays – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      78½ (-115)

Under                                   78½ (-115)

I just don’t see this team improving much. Take the UNDER.

Texas Rangers – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      77½ (-115)

Under                                   77½ (-115)

With Profar likely out for the season I’ll take the UNDER.

Toronto Blue Jays – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      82½ (-115)

Under                                   82½ (-115)

Lots of excitement in Canada about this team and rightfully so. I’ll take the OVER.

Washington Nationals – Total Regular Season Wins in 2015

Over                                      92½ (-115)

Under                                   92½ (-115)

I see no reason why this shouldn’t be a World Series team. Take the OVER.

No. 3 Gonzaga Faces Rival Saint Mary’s

The No. 3 ranked Gonzaga Bulldogs visit the Saint Mary’s Gaels on Saturday night. Gonzaga is 27-1 straight up and 12-11-2 against the spread. Saint Mary’s is 20-6 SU and 16-6-2 ATS. Gonzaga opened as an 8.5-point favored by currently is -6.5.

Even though Gonzaga has just 1 loss straight up this season, the Bulldogs are 1-4 ATS over their past five games played. Of course, it makes it a bit more difficult when those five games the Bulldogs were favored by 10 points or more.

Besides a win by 8 points over Pepperdine, none of the past five games has been close even though they have failed to cover.

Gonzaga has one of the country’s best offenses even if the competition it faces is not the best in the country. The Bulldogs have the best field goal percentage in the nation and score an average of 80 points per game.

The defense for St. Mary’s is just average but on offense they are competitive. However, the first time the two meet earlier this season Gonzaga covered a 15-point spread.

Gonzaga is in the top 20 in the country for defensive field goal percentage. In January in the first meeting between the two, the Bulldogs held St. Mary’s to 36% shooting, while Gonzaga hit 53% of its shots. St. Mary’s could only score 47 points, which is its lowest output of this season.

Gonzaga has won 20 straight games for the third time in team history. The Bulldogs have won 10 of the past 12 regular season titles outright. St. Mary’s, who are in second place this season, was the winner of the conference in 2011-12 one season after both teams split the title.

Gonzaga has won 7 straight against St. Mary’s, with the past 6 by an average margin of 19.7 points.

St. Mary’s has won 9 of its past 10 on its home court. The Gaels will retire the jersey of former Gaels star Patty Mills, who now plays for the San Antonio Spurs, at the game tonight.

It is the first time all season that St. Mary’s will be the underdog at home. Gonzaga has not covered a spread in any of its past six games on road, but remember the spreads have been large in each game.

Pick: Gonzaga 62-57

Who’s Your 2015 NASCAR Champion? I’ve Got the Odds Right Here

Stewart
Stewart
Word has it Tony Stewart is feeling like his old self. That could be bad news for the rest of the NASCAR drivers.

This Sunday is the Daytona 500 and unlike many professional sports, NASCAR kicks off its’ season with its’ biggest race. In other words, this is like the having the Super Bowl as the first game of the National Football League season.

The biggest news as we start the new season is that this will be the last full schedule for NASCAR legend Jeff Gordon. The four-time champion may race a limited schedule in the coming seasons but this will be in effect, his final run at a Cup title.

The opener at Daytona will also be the 14th since the death of Dale Earnhardt. There are plenty of people who know far more than I do about NASCAR but no one will alter my opinion. When Earnhardt passed away that day a piece of NASCAR did too and it has never recovered.

Also expected to be a story-line is the racing of Tony Stewart. He’s already proven that “Smoke” is back with his driving in the Unlimited as well as comments about racing in general. Common thought is that the only way Stewart is a factor in the Cup chase is if he returns to aggressive ways and style. That wasn’t easy following his accidental hitting of Kevin Ward, Jr on a dirt track race in New York. Ward of course died in the accident.

Our friends at Bovada have graciously provided us with the latest odds on who are the favorites for the 2015 Sprint Cup Chase.   

2015 Sprint Cup Championship Odds

Jimmie
Is Jimmie Johnson ready to add a seventh title? I think so.

Jimmie Johnson 13/2

Why wouldn’t he be the top favorite? He’s only won the Cup six times for crying out loud. Yes, he’s had a couple of down seasons but it’s not like he’s ready for retirement.

Jeff Gordon 15/2

Kevin Harvick 15/2

Gordon has been one of the racers that fans either love or hate. I think he’ll finally get more respect at tracks across the country in his final full season but I’m not sure that means a title. Harvick is the defending champion and repeating is never easy. He could be the first guy not named Jimmie Johnson to repeat as the champ since… Jeff Gordon.

Brad Kesolowski 8/1

Last season saw Kesolowski lead NASCAR in wins with six and there’s good reason to like his chances this season.

Joey Logano  9/1

At some point, Logano is going to win a Cup and I think it happens pretty soon. He had some tough luck heading into the final race last year and looks to reverse that trend.

Matt Kenseth 10/1

Carl Edwards 10/1

Kyle Busch 10/1

Dale Earnhardt, Jr. 10/1

Kenseth didn’t win last season but did have 22 top ten finishes… Edwards is a bigger favorite with many NASCAR previews mostly due to a team switch… Kyle Busch is another guy who seems to be “due…” What can you say about Junior? He finds ways to win races here and there but will he find consistency?

Longer Shots I like

Tony Stewart 22/1

Like I said in the opening, if he can put the past behind him and return to his racing style then the sky could be the limit.

Ryan Newman 40/1

Newman was pretty consistent last year despite not winning any races over the final 10. He has always been a guy who ‘could’ win the Cup so why not now?

My Pick: Jimmie Johnson doesn’t get enough credit for how fearsome of a competitor he is and I think he finds a way to add a seventh title.

 

NBA Re-Starts After Week Long All-Star Break

The NBA returns from his All-Star break on Thursday with just two games on the calendar but bigger slates of games will tip off on Friday and Saturday.

A number of teams in the NBA would have preferred if the season would have not stopped for the All-Star break. LeBron James and the Cavaliers were on a roll winning 14 of their past 16 games prior to the break and the last loss was to Chicago the night prior to the break and some say the Cavs might have being looking ahead to a week off.

James was consulted last season by Adam Silver, the NBA commissioner, about extending the All-Star break. James said he had a say in it and thought everybody would benefit in the league.

James, in theory should be right, as it gave players a chance to have an extended rest with the majority of teams not practicing until this past Wednesday.

Overall, the advantages outweigh any disadvantages, but disadvantages still do exits. If teams have a difficult time getting back into a rhythm it could be disastrous for them down the stretch.

Chicago exits the All-Star break with the longest active winning streak in the NBA with four straight. Milwaukee and Toronto have each won 8 of their past 10. Memphis is the only Western Conference team to be that hot of late. It will be interesting to see how the Spurs, Mavericks and Rockets can start pressuring the Grizzlies for second place in the conference.

The Grizzlies do not start again until Sunday night in Portland. Each team starting this stretch run has between 26 and 31 games left on their regular season schedule.

The NBA re-starts with Dallas playing at Oklahoma City and San Antonio visiting the Los Angeles Clippers. OKC has battled its way back to within a half game of Phoenix for the eighth and final playoff spot in the West.

San Antonio, Dallas and the Clippers all have lost 19 games and are holding down the 5 to 7 seeds at the moment.

The West is by far the deeper of the two conferences with the tenth place New Orleans Pelicans one game over .500, while the East has just six of its 15 teams over .500.

Odds maker have kept Cleveland at or near the top all season thus far in the futures and the Cavaliers are currently at the top with Golden State at 7 to 2 to win the title.

Betting the Oscars? I’ve Got Your Winners Right Here

Boyhood
Boyhood
Boyhood seems to be the odds on favorite to win Best Picture but am I following suit?

You may have thought I was a man of single-minded focus and that all I ever thought about was sports gambling but you’d be wrong! I also enjoy the movies a great deal and since our friends at Bovada put out their odds for Sunday night’s Oscar Awards I figured this was my cue to jump in!

The question for you is… How much faith will you put into my Oscar picks?

The Oscars – Best Picture             

Birdman                                               5/8

Boyhood                                              6/5

American Sniper                              16/1

The Imitation Game                       28/1

Selma                                                   33/1

The Grand Budapest Hotel          40/1

Theory of Everything                     50/1

Whiplash                                             50/1

Will Win: Boyhood. Critics love it because it spans over so many years which is really unique and it has very good performances from all involved.

Should Win: Birdman. It’s something we’ve all seen in terms of a star trying to re-capture lost glory but this movie does it exceptionally well.

The Oscars – Best Director           

Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu – Birdman                   4/7

Richard Linklater – Boyhood                                        11/10

Wes Anderson – The Grand Budapest Hotel         25/1

Bennett Miller – Foxcatcher                                        50/1

Morten Tyldum – The Imitation Game                    50/1

Will Win/Should Win: Boyhood. Linklater has patiently created a movie that will stand the test of time and it will serve as an inspiration for other directors to be as creative.

The Oscars – Best Actor                

Eddie Redmayne – The Theory of Everything           1/3

Michael Keaton – Birdman                                           2/1

Bradley Cooper – American Sniper                           14/1

Benedict Cumberbatch – The Imitation Game       33/1

Steve Carrell – Foxcatcher                                            33/1

Will Win: Redmayne. Portraying the world’s most brilliant mind in Stephen Hawking as his body debilitates carries weight with voters.

Should Win: Cooper. The third time should be the charm as he took on a role that saw him gain 40 lbs and display his acting chops from one end of the spectrum to the other.

 

Reese
I believe Reese Witherspoon will be adding a second statute to her first from "Walk the Line."

The Oscars – Best Actress            

Julianne Moore – Still Alice                                         1/50

Reese Witherspoon – Wild                                          12/1

Rosamund Pike – Gone Girl                                         25/1

Felicity Jones – The Theory of Everything             40/1

Marion Cotillard – Two Days One Night                  50/1

Will Win/Should Win: Witherspoon. She took on a mentally and physically challenging role based on a true story and nailed it. The voters love stories like this.

The Oscars – Best Supporting Actor         

JK Simmons – Whiplash                                 1/50

Edward Norton – Birdman                            12/1

Mark Ruffalo – Foxcatcher                            16/1

Ethan Hawke – Boyhood                               33/1

Robert Duvall – The Judge                            33/1

Will Win: Hawke. The run of Oscars for ‘Boyhood’ continues as the long-time actor gets his due.

Should Win: Simmons. I’ve always felt it was just a matter of time before a role came along that was made for Simmons and this one was it as he portrays the teacher of young drumming phenom.

The Oscars – Best Supporting Actress     

Patricia Arquette – Boyhood                       1/50

Emma Stone – Birdman                                 14/1

Keira Knightley – The Imitation Game    25/1

Laura Dern – Wild                                          5/1

Meryl Streep – Into the Woods                  25/1

Will Win/Should Win: Stone. This Academy Awards could be remembered as a passing of the torch. With Stone and Knightley (who could easily win) dethroning the legendary Meryl Streep as the youth movement in Hollywood takes over.

MLB Offensive Props Favor the UNDER

Odds makers have released hundreds of props for the Major League Baseball season. Several of the props are geared toward results prior to this summer’s All-Star break giving bettors something to look forward to prior to the end of the 162-game regular season.

When looking over the totals in the props for offensive results on two-way props, there are a few that appear to be high considering that strong pitching has dominated.

Pitching dominates so much now that the MLB has considered shrinking the strike zone at the lower end. The rules committee will analyze the strike zone during this season with a potential changed coming for the 2016 season.

However, bookmakers know most gamblers love to bet the OVERs, which makes them factor that into their final numbers.

One of the two-way props that stands out is the OVER 58.5 for the leader in stolen bases. More teams appear to be trying to get one of their runners in scoring position through a stolen base due to the game being dominated by pitching and runs are not scored as easily any longer.

Kansas City used the stolen bases as an offensive weapon on many occasions last season, which helped them to reach the World Series. Since copycatting is commonplace, look for more teams to use the Royals form of advancing runners.

However, do not look for stolen bases in the number that were posted during the 1970s and ‘80s, but it seems quite probable at least one player will steal 58.5 bases this season.

When it comes to power, the big what if is whether Giancarlo Stanton can remain healthy during the entire season. If he is able to play the full 162-game schedule, which he has not done for three straight seasons, he will likely hit the OVER on home runs of 44.5 and in RBIs of 126.5.

Last season Nelson Cruz was the MLB home run leader with just 40, and Adrian Gonzalez led in RBIs with 116. Therefore, the numbers 44.5 and 126.5 looks high.

It is expected that pitching will dominate again and some feel even more so than last year.

When making a choice for over/under on a two way prop beat, make sure you factor how strong the pitching has been the past few seasons. Most of the props that are two-way and offensive look like solid UNDERs with the exception of the stolen bases and total hits. The two-way total hits prop is sitting at 206.5, there has to be at least one hitter in MLB who can record more than 206.5 hits. However, just one player last season, Jose Altuve had over 206.5 hits, with 225.

With No NBA Tonight, My Focus is on the College Hardwood

Wright
Wright
Jay Wright's Villanova Wildcats look to avenge an earlier loss to Seton Hall.

The National Basketball Association is still on their All-Star Break which means I turn my attention to the college scene. Believe it or not, we are already getting close to conference tournament time for some of the smaller conferences and before you know it, the big boys will be on stage as they prep for the tourney.

Seton Hall (+16.5) at Villanova – The Wildcats score five more points per game than do the Pirates and they give up five points less per game than does Seton Hall. That doesn’t bode well for the Pirates. Head-to-head the two teams have seen Villanova win seven of the last ten meetings but the Pirates own a two-game winning streak right now.

Trends: Seton Hall is 1-11 straight up in their last 12 road games at Villanova… The Wildcats are 12-3 SU in their last 15 games against Seton Hall… The Pirates are 2-5 SU in their last seven road games… The Wildcats are 2-4 against the spread in their last six game at home versus the Pirates.

The Pick: The Pirates rebound better than ‘Nova does so I like them getting the points but I like the Wildcats to win.

Dixon
Jamie Dixon and the Panthers have a tough assignment at Virginia.

Pittsburgh (+13) at Virginia – The Panthers are coming off of a very important home win over North Carolina but this road test is a different monster altogether. Both teams are scoring in the upper 60’s each game but the Cavaliers are allowing a paltry 50 points per game defensively while Pitt gives 65 per game. The Panthers are a little board on the offensive glass than is Virginia but everything else favors the Cavs tonight.

Trends: Pitt is 1-5 straight up in their last six road games… UVA is 1-5 against the spread in their last six games… The Panthers are 0-4-1 ATS in their last five road games… The Cavs are 13-1 SU in their last 14 games at home.

The Pick: I like UVA to cover considering Pitt’s road woes of late.

Kansas (+1) at West Virginia – There really isn’t a stat to point to in this game that makes you jump on one side or another. Both teams score over 70 points per game and both give up about 65 per game. KU is a little better on the defensive boards while the Mountaineers hold an edge in offensive rebounding.

Trends: Kansas is 4-2 straight up in their last six road games… WVU is 15-3 straight up in their last 18 games at home… The Jayhawks have won three of the last four times they’ve played the Mountaineers… West Virginia is 1-4 against the spread in their last five games.

The Pick: I like the Mountaineers to cover at home but I expect a close contest throughout.

Clemson (+4) at Georgia Tech – This is a contest of two ACC teams who are not always used to being also-rans but that’s where they find themselves in 2015. The Tigers are 15-10 and are holding out hope of an NCAA berth but an NIT bid is more likely. Georgia Tech is under .500 and is going to need to pull off a miracle in the ACC Tournament in order to advance to the NCAA Tournament in March.

Trends: The Tigers are 8-17 straight up in their last 25 road games… Georgia Tech is 2-11 straight up in their last 13 games… Clemson has won five of the last six games in Atlanta straight up versus the Yellow Jackets… GT is 1-5 against the spread in their last six games at home against the Tigers.

The Pick: I love Clemson here getting the points.

2015 NBA All-Star Game Today From the Big Apple

The NBA All-Star game will be played today in the Big Apple at Madison Square Garden. The 64th annual All-Star game will have the West looking to avenge last year’s 8-point loss.

This game is all entertainment. While players are clearly competitive and want to be victorious, there are some that go well above and beyond for these types of games.

Last season, it was the Eastern Conference team led by LeBron James that ended a losing streak of three years with a 163-155 win.

Kyrie Irving, James’ current teammate, won the MVP award, after shooting 14 for 17 for 31 points and adding 14 assists.

This season five players voted to the team have played in 10 or more All-Star games but two Kobe Bryant and Dwayne Wade are sidelined with injuries. The other three Tim Duncan is playing his 15th, LeBron James his 11th and Chris Bosh his 10th.

Besides Bryant and Wade, Blake Griffin misses the game due to an injury and was replaced by Portland’s Damian Lillard. Kyle Korver and DeMarcus Cousins replaced Bryant and Wade. This will be the first All-Star appearance for both Korver and Cousins. Anthony Davis is injured and was replaced by Dirk Nowitzki who will be playing the All-Star game for the 13th time.

Stephen Curry who received more than 1 million votes for the Western Conference team has led his Golden State Warriors to the top spot in the conference.

According to Bovada and betonline this year’s favorites for the MVP in the All-Star game are:

Stephen Curry 13 to 4

LeBron James 7 to 2

Kevin Durant 7 to 2

James Harden 11 to 2

Carmelo Anthony 6 to 1

According to topbet and sportsbook.com the favorites for high scorer are:

Stephen Curry 3 to 1
Kevin Durant 3 to 1
LeBron James 3 to 1
James Harden 6 to 1
Carmelo Anthony 7 to 1

The current line has the West favored by 2 points over the east. NBA fans and bettors know the West is far deeper in talent at the individual and team level. However, it is difficult for that to play out in this type of game since the talents levels are so close when only the top 15 from each conference play.

Pick: West 145-138