Dinero Tracker - Feb. 13
February 13, 2018
By Tony Mejia
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Last night's ATS Records
NBA: 1-3-1 | NCAA BB: 6-8
Last night's NBA record looks better as a defense than what it's conveying above, but it is proof of a decidedly unlucky evening. Bounces didn't go our way. Garbage time was downright rude. In college, it was OT that served up nightmares. Both sets of guarantees failed, which thankfully hasn't happened often and hopefully won't become a frequent occurrence.The NBA lock is now 18-for-28 (64.2%) since Jan. 11. Here's Monday's recap, complete with some of the highlights (and lowlights):
TUESDAY'S FREE SELECTION
The pick: Michigan State -10
The Gophers sat key wings Amir Coffey and Dupree McBrayer the other night and just haven't been healthy enough to trust that they can turn a season that it now seems they're just attempting to soldier through into anything more than a series of learning experiences. They'll be plenty that winds up redeeming the next few weeks, but Richard Pitino isn't going to be able to do much with Minnesota against the Big Ten's best. That certainly would include the Spartans. The Gophers have lost to Purdue by 34 and Ohio State by 18 at home and comes of a 24-point setback at Indiana. Lay the points here and ride Miles Bridges-led Michigan State.
MONDAY'S FREE SELECTION
The pick: Bulls -4
The Bulls are starting to get all their pieces back, as there's a chance Kris Dunn may even suit up and play some tonight to get his conditioning up. He'd provide a boost, but this pick is simply about riding Fred Hoiberg's new-found depth with Lauri Markkanen back from paternity leave and Zach LaVine getting more comfortable with his minutes restrictions loosening up. The Magic are still depleted and now hit the road, where it's easier to fade. This is Orlando's first game outside of Florida since Jan. 30. Ride Chicago and lay the points.
Result: Chicago broke open a tight game with a big third quarter and was up by 18 points before Orlando made an improbable run, capitalizing on sloppy Bulls turnovers, awful decisions from Jerian Grant and hot shooting from Mario Hezonja. It was both improbable and stomach-turning, since the Magic actually took the lead before Bobby Portis kept them from getting too far ahead, allowing Zach LaVine to steal the result late with a steal, dunk and two made free-throws for a 105-101 win. The freebie pushed since we got in before the line moved to Chicago -5, but it should never have gotten that close.
The pick: Nets/Clippers OVER 220
The Clippers are as deep as they've been all season with Milos Teodosic joining Austin Rivers back in the mix for a backcourt that now also includes Avery Bradley, who was traded for, and Lou Williams, who wasn't traded. Danilo Gallinari is also back, so there are a lot of moving parts here, which combined with Brooklyn's desire to run at all costs -- their last three games have featured at least 221 combined points in surpassing the posted total -- should yield a high-scoring affair. Ride the over, guaranteed.
Result: The Clips held the Nets to just 16 points in the third quarter, putting this game away since it put them up 23 points entering the fourth. That put us in a major hole, but D'Angelo Russell scored 12 points in the first 3:01 of the final quarter to pull the Nets within 13, giving us hope that this game would get tight enough to get extended. The Clippers ultimately won 114-101 since garbage time wasn't at all kind, failing to deliver the 3-point shooting that we needed in order to sneak away with our total guarantee.
LOCK THAT DIDN'T CLICK
The pick: Iona -8
The Saints have dropped three straight and were run out of the building at Canisius, so they'll be out to try and not get embarrassed at home here. I don't think they have enough ammo to pull it off. The Gaels are tied for third in the MAAC and bounced back from an awful effort at home against Monmouth by rolling up 86 points on Saint Peter's. Look for a balanced approach to produce a double-digit win in Albany. Ride Iona, guaranteed.
Result: The Gaels had their eight-game winning streak over Siena at Albany's Times-Union ended in an 82-78 OT upset that paid as much as +300 on the money line. Khalil Richard and Evan Fisher each set career-highs in scoring, combining for 23 points. Iona shot just 6-for-19 from 3-point range.
The pick: Pelicans/Pistons OVER 221.5
Considering the All-Star break lurks in the background and visions of beaches and margaritas are dancing in the heads of many players, look for neither team to be very interested in defending here, which should lead to big games from Anthony Davis and Blake Griffin. Expect this game to wind up extended down the stretch by whoever is trailing and ride the over.
Result: There's nothing more frustrating that reading a game correctly and still getting beat by the number. In this case, not getting on this early enough contributed to falling a half-point short as the Pelicans wrapped up a 118-103 home win that featured no scoring in the final 1:23. Eric Moreland missed two free-throws with 18.4 seconds left due to an ugly hitch in his form, and even though the Pistons grabbed an offensive board to get us one last chance, Dwight Buycks missed an open 3-pointer before New Orleans grabbed the rebound and ran out the clock. The fourth quarter featured a game-low 46 points. It didn't help that the teams combined to miss 46 of 69 3-point attempts.
The pick: Baylor +3, Texas/Baylor UNDER 133
The Longhorns have really been compromised by the unfortunate loss of Andrew Jones, a talented guard who is battling cancer and will hopefully be able to become an inspiration over the coming years. This season, not having his scoring prowess really hampers a Texas team that struggles to score effectively. This battle between elite shot blockers Mo Bamba and Jo-Lual Acuil is likely to produce a low-scoring affair. Take the points with Baylor and ride the under for the in-game parlay.
Result: If you're into stomach ulcers, it's always fun to follow up frustrating losses with a second helping of nonsense. On Monday, this looked like a winning in-game parlay throughout most of the night since the Bears led for most of the second half in Austin. The Longhorns improbably got the game tied at 56 to send it to an extra session, and we still would've been OK had they then not pulled off another late comeback to send it to a second OT thanks to clutch free-throws from Matt Coleman and Kerwin Roach. Texas shot 3-for-19 from 3-point range and managed to hang around, but at least they didn't complete an unpleasant sweep, ultimately dropping a 74-73 decision.
SWING AND A MISS
The pick: Notre Dame +10.5, UNC/ND OVER 151.5
The Fighting Irish should be able to take advantage of the fact that the Tar Heels are playing their third game in five days, coming off Tobacco Road wins over Duke and N.C. State. Matt Farrell's ankle looks healthy again, so I'd expect a strong performance on the road from a desperate team. Take the points with Notre Dame and ride the over for the in-game parlay.
Result: The Irish had a chance to take the lead heading towards the under-eight timeout, trailing just 58-57. At the very least, it appeared that we'd be headed to at least a split and had a great shot at knocking down both legs of the in-game parlay. Unfortunately, UNC broke off a 13-0 run and cruised to the cover. There's no question that Irish forward John Mooney coming up 0-for-3 on free throws after being fouled beyond the arc with his team down just 63-59 was a crippling blow. The Tar Heels outscored Notre Dame 16-3 over the last 5:30 to keep us from a payday in an incredibly frustrating 83-66 loss that let us know early on that it wasn't going to be our night. Most games were right where they needed to be coming down the stretch to offer up a big night, but the basketball gods had other ideas.
PROOF OF CLAIRVOYANCE
The pick: West Virginia -8
The Mountaineers should get thee juice they need at home to grab a quality win over NCAA Tournament hopeful TCU, which crushed Texas on Saturday in a bubble battle to snap a two-game losing streak. The Horned Frogs have struggled since losing Jaylen Fisher and will have to produce down the stretch to cement a bid, but that won't start today with Bob Huggins' team looking to rally after an upset loss to Oklahoma State in Morgantown. They won't drop two straight. Lay the points and ride West Virginia.
Result: The Horned Frogs hung around for a while, but the Mountaineers were never in danger of losing a second straight home game, earning revenge for a loss in Fort Worth earlier this season. West Virginia pulled away to win 82-66 and owned the final few minutes as the depleted Horned Frogs wore down, keeping this cover drama-free.
Follow Tony Mejia on Twitter at @TonyMejiaNBA or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org
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