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2015-16 NBA Previews. Articles , Info, 10/15

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    Warriors are clear favorites in NBA Pacific Division, but watch out for the Clippers
    By Steve Merril

    Much like the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Central, the 2014-15 NBA Champion Golden State Warriors are big favorites to earn the division crown this season. At +150 and a with win total of 56.5, the Los Angeles Clippers are lurking but the rest of the division leaves a little to be desired.

    Steve Merril breaks down the best ways to wager on the NBA Pacific Division this season.

    Golden State Warriors (2014-15: 67-15 SU, 47-34-1 ATS)

    Odds To Win Division: -500
    Season Win Total: 60.5

    Why Bet The Warriors: Golden State returns the same team that blitzed their opponents en route to a NBA championship last season. The Warriors are still the best team coming into the 2015 campaign, and there’s no reason they can’t repeat what they did a season ago.

    Why Not To Bet The Warriors: The team didn’t have to deal with any issues last season, and they were basically injury-free which is not a common thing in the NBA. Those things tend to reverse themselves the following season, so the only thing that can hamper Golden State this season is injuries.

    Season Win Total Pick: Over 60.5 Wins

    Los Angeles Clippers (2014-15: 56-26 SU, 37-44-1 ATS)

    Odds To Win Division: +150
    Season Win Total: 56.5

    Why Bet The Clippers: Los Angeles’ better half has a ton of talent on their roster. The Clippers got rid of the dead weight, and they brought in some experienced playoff veterans like Paul Pierce to help them get over the hump. The Clippers have one of the best trios in the NBA with Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, and DeAndre Jordan, and their offense will simply score the ball at will once again this season.

    Why Not To Bet The Clippers: Team chemistry is a major winning ingredient in the NBA, but with so much talent on the roster, it will be difficult to keep everybody happy. Close games are also a problem for the Clippers because of their woeful team free throw shooting. Those two elements are worth keeping an eye on in 2015.

    Season Win Total Pick: Over 56.5 Wins

    Los Angeles Lakers (2014-15: 21-61 SU, 36-41-5 ATS)

    Odds To Win Division: +20000
    Season Win Total: 29.5

    Why Bet The Lakers: Kobe Bryant returns, and since the Lakers have an abundance of young talent, the veteran’s game may be taken up a level. Los Angeles was so bad last season that expectations are extremely low for 2015. The Lakers will have a high-scoring offense so they may be able to out-score better opponents and steal some wins throughout the season.

    Why Not To Bet The Lakers: Los Angeles has to hope Kobe Bryant stays injury free or else they will repeat 2014 all over again. The Lakers are full of youth, and head coach Byron Scott’s system isn’t geared towards the newer style of basketball. There’s a very thin margin of error for the Lakers this season, so they will likely be a difficult team to trust in 2015.

    Season Win Total Pick: Under 29.5 Wins

    Phoenix Suns (2014-15: 39-43 SU, 42-37-3 ATS)

    Odds To Win Division: +8000
    Season Win Total: 36.5

    Why Bet The Suns: Phoenix has revamped their roster for 2015, and that may help their team chemistry on and off the court. The Suns won’t have as much talent on the court now, but team basketball will be much better and that will make them a tough out this season.

    Why Not To Bet The Suns: The Suns have a slew of question marks coming into this season. Phoenix thrived on offense, but their space and pace style will likely be scaled way back this season as they now have a better defensive team. The second unit is a major concern, so the best thing to do is wait and see what the Suns actually look like on the court.

    Season Win Total Pick: Under 36.5 Wins

    Sacramento Kings (2014-15: 29-53 SU, 33-46-3 ATS)

    Odds To Win Division: +10000
    Season Win Total: 30.5

    Why Bet The Kings: Sacramento has one of the best players in the league in DeMarcus Cousins and as long as he’s on the court, the Kings have a chance to win. Sacramento added point guard Rajon Rondo, and his presence on the court instantly makes the Kings a much better team, especially since they’ll be running George Karl’s fast-paced offensive system.

    Why Not To Bet The Kings: Much of Sacramento’s dysfunction over the last couple of seasons can be directly related to ownership and the front office. The Kings have been greatly mismanaged, and unless that changes, we may see the same old Sacramento despite the improved personnel on the court.

    Season Win Total Pick: Over 30.5 Wins


    Cavs are kings of NBA Central, but is there any value betting them?
    By Matt Fargo

    The Cleveland Cavaliers will be huge favorites in the Central Division as long as LeBron James is on the roster. Cleveland has bigger and better plans for 2015-16, and that could open the door for value playing against the Eastern Conference’s best team – especially inside the Central.

    Matt Fargo breaks down the best ways to wager on the NBA Central Division this season.

    Cleveland Cavaliers (2014-15: 53-29 SU, 39-43-0 ATS)

    Odds to win division: -500
    Season wins total: 56.5

    Why bet the Cavaliers: The Cavaliers are the best team in the Eastern Conference and it isn’t even close. They have the best player in the game and a healthy roster that is now in its second year together. There is not a lot of value here but the only thing standing in the way from another Central Division title is injuries or a massive season from the Bulls.

    Why not to bet the Cavaliers: While this is most likely a winning bet, tying up funds for over half a year on a 1-5 favorite is not going to excite too many people. Plus, it is no guarantee to win because anything can happen if certain injuries take place. James is a monster but we saw in the NBA Finals last season that he can’t do it on his own. There is better value, much better, elsewhere.

    Season win total pick: Under 56.5 Wins

    Chicago Bulls (2014-15: 50-32 SU, 39-43-0 ATS)

    Odds to win division: +450
    Season wins total: 49.5

    Why bet the Bulls: The Bulls are clearly the second best team in this division and the gap between them and the other teams below is a wide one. They have the second biggest odds for a second place team so the number is filled with value. But can Chicago catch Cleveland? A healthy Derrick Rose is a must and the Bulls could get a spark from new head coach Fred Hoiberg.

    Why not to bet the Bulls: Rose has not played a full season since 2010-11 when he was the league MVP and he’s already missed time in the preseason because of a fractured left orbital bone. While the gap is big between the teams below them, there is a significant gap between them and Cleveland as the win total is seven games. Taj Gibson, Joakim Noah and Pau Gasol are not getting any younger.

    Season win total pick: Under 49.5 Wins

    Milwaukee Bucks (2014-15: 41-41 SU, 46-35-1 ATS)

    Odds to win division: +2000
    Season wins total: 43.5

    Why bet the Bucks: The Bucks were a pleasant surprise last season as they improved by 26 games from 2013-14 and made the playoffs as the No. 6 seed. While we won’t see a similar improvement, Milwaukee has the ability to be better once again. The return of Jabari Parker from injury and the addition of Greg Monroe will improve the offense considerably. The Bucks had the second best defense in the entire NBA last year.

    Why not to bet the Bucks: It can be argued that the Bucks overachieved last season and they have nowhere to go but down. Parker has great potential but the knee injury could hinder him early in the season. This is one of the youngest teams in the NBA with their six best players ranging between 20 and 25 years old, so they lack the veteran leadership that is needed to get them over the top.

    Season win total pick: Over 43.5 Wins

    Indiana Pacers (2014-15: 38-44 SU, 42-37-3 ATS)

    Odds to win division: +2000
    Season wins total: 42.5

    Why bet the Pacers: Give the Pacers a lot of credit for last season. Despite the loss of their best player in Paul George, they fought all the way to the end of the season and missed the playoffs by virtue of a tiebreaker. Now, George is back as healthy as ever and the additions of Monta Ellis and Myles Turner gives Indiana a very positive outlook going into the new season.

    Why not to bet the Pacers: Getting Ellis and Turner is positive but the departures of Roy Hibbert and David West means this team is basically brand new and while extremely talented, the early season chemistry could be a problem. Indiana could fall back in the standings early with not enough time to recover when they come together as a team. The playoffs are within reach but the division likely not.

    Season win total pick: Over 42.5 Wins

    Detroit Pistons (2014-15: 32-50 SU, 42-40-0 ATS)

    Odds to win division: +10,000
    Season wins total: 33.5

    Why bet the Pistons: While Milwaukee had the biggest turnaround last season, Detroit could have the biggest this season. The Pistons won 32 games last season and that was after Brandon Jennings ruptured his Achilles in late January. He won’t be back until December but the Pistons have put together a strong roster with Ersan Ilyasova and Marcus Morris flanking star Andre Drummond and possessing a strong backcourt until Jennings returns.

    Why not to bet the Pistons: Detroit has not won more than 32 games in six straight seasons, averaging 28.7 wins over that stretch. There is probably nowhere to go but up but how far can they go? Milwaukee improved by 26 games and still finished 12 games behind Cleveland. Detroit will need a similar turnaround surpassing 25 games and while it will better its 32 wins, that big of a jump is not going to happen.

    Season win total pick: Over 33.5 Wins



    NBA Preview

    Over/Under Win Total Picks

    The Predictalator has already played (simulated) every 2015-16 NBA regular and postseason game 50,000 times before it’s actually played. Based on that analysis, we are proud to present NBA Over/Under Win Total picks (below). O/U win total lines represent the current consensus lines as of October 13. Please click on “Calc” to the right and adjust the play size and odds to best evaluate your investment strategy.

    A sample from our picks analysis is shown below with six notable teams, but all are “Light” picks. Every team has been evaluated against its Win Total line. There are a total of ten, highlighted “normal” or better picks for this season. Such plays are 31-16 (66% O/U) all-time. To view each team’s projected win-loss record as well as its chances of going Over or Under the current win total lines, you must subscribe to the NBA Full Season Picks.

    Over/Under Win Total Picks (based on every NBA game played 50,000 times)

    Team Projected Wins Total Wins Line Pick Pick%

    Brooklyn Nets 28.7 27.5 OVER 53.9%

    Golden State Warriors 57.6 59.5 UNDER 53.6%

    Atlanta Hawks 48.5 49.5 UNDER 53.4%

    Dallas Mavericks 38.5 37.5 OVER 53.0%

    San Antonio Spurs 56.9 58.5 UNDER 53.0%

    Houston Rockets 53.5 54.5 UNDER 52.8%


    2015-16 Win Total Best Bets
    By VI News

    The 2015-16 NBA season begins this week and we asked our stable of pro basketball handicappers to provide their best win total opinions on the upcoming season based on the odds that opened at the Las Vegas Hotel & Casino (LVH) SuperBook. Each expert chose one Over and Under to watch, as well as their NBA champion.

    The highest total on the board goes to the San Antonio Spurs (58.5), in spite of getting bounced out of the first round of the playoffs last season. The Spurs won 55 games last season, tied for third-most in the loaded Western Conference, as the veteran squad added LaMarcus Aldridge and David West in free agency to bolster their front-court. Two seasons ago in their champion run, the Spurs captured 62 regular season victories, while winning at least 59 games five times since 2003.

    The Cavaliers, Clippers, and Thunder each have high expectations tied to them as well, as the oddsmakers have posted 56.5 wins for these three clubs. Cleveland finished at 53 victories last season in LeBron James’ return to the team that drafted him, leading the Cavs to the NBA Finals. However, James missed 13 games last season, as the Cavs finished six wins shy of cashing their season win total of 58.5.

    Oklahoma City will hope to keep its two All-Stars healthy as Kevin Durant missed 55 games with injuries and Russell Westbrook sat out 15 contests as the Thunder finished shy of the playoffs in spite of a 45-37 record. The Clippers have won 56, 57, and 56 games the past three seasons, as this franchise has won at least 57 games in a season only once, while Chris Paul played in all 82 games last season for just the first time in his career.

    We polled some of our experts to get their thoughts on some of the best win total bets heading into the season. Last season’s money leader Stephen Nover believes there will be some magic happening in Orlando this season, “New coach Scott Skiles has a tremendous track record of turning around teams having done it with the Suns, Bulls and Bucks. The Magic have been stockpiling young talent for a couple of years and now it’s ready to pay off. The Magic’s win total is lower than it should be because they are under-the-radar right now especially in the backcourt with Elfrid Payton and Victor Oladipo and at small forward with Tobias Harris.”

    Handicapper Joe Nelson is also high on another Southeast division team, predicting a turnaround season in Charlotte, “The Hornets wound up just 33-49 last season but this was a team that was in playoff contention most of the season before closing with a 5-16 run from early March to the end of the season. A 6-19 start to the season also bookended a 22-14 run in the middle of the season as Charlotte ranked as one of the top defensive teams in the Eastern Conference allowing just 97.3 points per game. One can’t read too much into preseason results but Charlotte is 7-0 with a defense that is allowing fewer than 88 points per game and this should also be a very solid rebounding team.”

    The experts at Doc’s Sports aren’t feeling a comeback in Denver, as the Nuggets are expected to be a lottery squad once again, “We have the Nuggets listed as one of the two or three worst teams in the Western Conference. They won 30 games last season and look worse this year. Not only is this team extremely thin depth-wise, but the good players that are there don’t seem to have a lot of chemistry. The Nuggets have a solid frontcourt but are very thin at point guard and center with a rookie and a second-year player, respectively, likely to start at those positions. These young players will get some experience that will help them prosper down the road, but this season looks to be an utter disaster in Denver.”

    Below are the season win totals courtesy of Las Vegas Hotel & Casino (LVH) SuperBook:

    Atlanta Hawks 49.5
    Boston Celtics 42.5
    Brooklyn Nets 28.5
    Charlotte Hornets 34.5
    Chicago Bulls 49.5
    Cleveland Cavaliers 56.5
    Dallas Mavericks 37.5
    Denver Nuggets 26.5
    Detroit Pistons 34.5
    Golden State Warriors 60.5
    Houston Rockets 54.5
    Indiana Pacers 41.5
    Los Angeles Clippers 56.5
    Los Angeles Lakers 29.5
    Memphis Grizzlies 50.5
    Miami Heat 45.5
    Milwaukee Bucks 44.5
    Minnesota Timberwolves 26.5
    New Orleans Pelicans 47.5
    New York Knicks 30.5
    Oklahoma City Thunder 56.5
    Orlando Magic 34.5
    Philadelphia 76ers 21.5
    Phoenix Suns 36.5
    Portland Blazers 26.5
    Sacramento Kings 32.5
    San Antonio Spurs 58.5
    Toronto Raptors 45.5
    Utah Jazz 41.5
    Washington Wizards 45.5

    Listed below are the Win Total selections from our handicappers.



    Alex Smart
    Philadelphia 76ers
    Atlanta Hawks
    San Antonio Spurs

    Andy Iskoe
    Indiana Pacers
    Miami Heat
    San Antonio Spurs

    Antony Dinero
    Detroit Pistons
    Denver Nuggets
    San Antonio Spurs

    Milwaukee Bucks
    Miami Heat
    San Antonio Spurs

    Bruce Marshall
    Sacramento Kings
    Cleveland Cavaliers
    San Antonio Spurs

    Dave Cokin
    Indiana Pacers
    Oklahoma City Thunder
    Cleveland Cavaliers

    Doc’s Sports
    Milwaukee Bucks
    Denver Nuggets
    Golden State Warriors

    Don Anthony
    Washington Wizards
    Los Angeles Lakers
    Golden State Warriors

    Greg Smith
    New York Knicks
    San Antonio Spurs
    Cleveland Cavaliers

    Jim Feist
    Boston Celtics
    Milwaukee Bucks
    San Antonio Spurs

    Jimmy Boyd
    Chicago Bulls
    Portland Trail Blazers
    Cleveland Cavaliers

    Joe Nelson
    Charlotte Hornets
    Oklahoma City Thunder
    San Antonio Spurs

    Kevin Rogers
    Toronto Raptors
    New Orleans Pelicans
    Cleveland Cavaliers

    Kyle Hunter
    Boston Celtics
    Charlotte Hornets
    San Antonio Spurs

    Marc Lawrence
    Utah Jazz
    Atlanta Hawks
    San Antonio Spurs

    Mark Franco
    Sacramento Kings
    Chicago Bulls
    San Antonio Spurs

    Chicago Bulls
    Orlando Magic
    San Antonio Spurs

    Paul Bovi
    New York Knicks
    Dallas Mavericks
    Oklahoma City Thunder

    Scott Pritchard
    Milwaukee Bucks
    Golden State Warriors
    Cleveland Cavaliers

    Stephen Nover
    Orlando Magic
    Memphis Grizzlies
    San Antonio Spurs

    The SportsBoss
    Phoenix Suns
    Dallas Mavericks
    San Antonio Spurs

    Vince Akins
    Washington Wizards
    Dallas Mavericks
    Golden State Warriors

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