When the basketball season ends, a national TV audience will be tuning in to watch the NCAA Tournament. We have every reason to believe that the 2007 NCAA Tournament will be another hyper-pleasing basketball season as has been the past 5 years.
There are more great basketball teams in college basketball history than I have any idea what to do with them. So instead of picking up after the conclusion of the season and try to make a profit, I thought I would take this opportunity to examine a very simple subject – getting the NBA line at the end of the season right.
Most bettors do this flawlessly and get it right 100% of the time. However, for whatever reason, the vast majority of those who bet on the NBA do so with an incorrect line. When you see a line like this, you can fold a game (with some very nice profit, as we have repeatedly proven) but when you see those lines, especially if they are overly aggressive, you can need to be patient.
If the line appears to be one way too high, that generally is a good indication that the bookmaker has some other estimate of probabilities in place and is trying to make a little issue to get bettors to bet the opposite way. So a high initial point total on one team, or a high second point total under the total, are good indicators, especially if associated with other fairly strong indicators of future success such as free throws and three point baskets.
In the NBA, certain line movements are purposeful and short term. Other times, they are just signs of how frustrated a bookmaker is that his bubble is about to pop.
In the NCAA, certain line movements are purposeful and short term. These are Opportunistic betting, and present an opportunity to bet the way the lines move in hopes of an increase in profit beyond anticipation.
Whether it’s the NBA, or the NCAA, detecting a trend is the entire point of the line movement. You can take advantage of small sample sizes, or fast rising lines, to make a thorough and accurate assessment of the probabilities of the outcome of the game. Whether it’s the NBA or the NCAA, discovering a purposeful line movement is the entire point of the line movement. You can take advantage of a rising line to solidify your bet or consider a wager against the public to solidify your bet.
A personal story from this past May is a perfect example. I had a friend that called me up one too many times as a caller on the game that my father had bet on. When I told him he’d probably win the bet if he didn’t do certain things, he modestly asked “planetary on that game?” Later that night, while listening to the game over the radio, I heard my father’s signature monotone voice yell out, “Beat the boys!”
therein was the reason his father had called him up one too many times. Later that night, father was called by his son, who told him the boys had beaten the line. When father asked what they were doing, his son said they were betting Don Nelson would not be coaching the game.
son told father via chat room that they bet $216 on the game, using the Neteller gambling site. Although father thought it was a mistake, he allowed his son to keep the money because he knew Nelson would be on the phone to personally answer the Neteller phone. When father got on the phone, he told son that he would explain the strategy. Although the two men were on the phone, neither could see each other’s faces. They discussed the pros and cons of using the services.
At the game’s end, father asked his son what he thought the boys were betting on. Son said they were going to bet on the Heat to win. father said nothing. Then the flood lights went on.son interruption him and said, “They’re dead.”
They both looked at me and lives were the same. They both said the same thing. “They’re dead.”
Then they both started laughing.son boom. boom. boom. boom.
We all thought that was the end of that conversation. As father went to get his things and inquire about the status of the game, he mentioned the only possible winners in the game.
“Oh, sure, the Heat can win,” he said. “They’re the best team.”
“The Jets can win,” said father. “They’re the worst team.”
Now father was wondering what the hell the young men were doing, so I said, “If they really think the Heat can win, then why are they betting for them?”
“They’re betting the other way around,” said father. “They think the Jets can win so they’re going to bet on them.”