April Fools and Numerology

  • Los Angeles Lakers 110 Dallas Mavericks 82

Los Angeles covers easily, as the 15-point margin I anticipated ballooned in the hot air of lost tempers, technicals and ejections.

Which brings my wagering record to 22-11. I’ve won 15 of 16, and two doubling campaigns are still alive (each one now at 2-0 and $200).

With last night’s win, for the first time, I’m above .500 when choosing the favorite and giving points, having gone 7-1 in recent days to lift my overall record to 9-8. Not so grand as the 12-1 run I’ve put together when backing the underdog and getting points, but it’s nice to be better than average on both sides of the wager, even if it’s just by a game.

The glass half full suggests the turnaround from the lows of 3-8 and $345 remaining to 19-3 and more than quadrupling what I had at the bottom is a sign I’m learning. And it’s hard to argue that an 85% return in under six weeks isn’t very good.

But the glass half empty suggests I’ve been too conservative wagering, preferring to protect capital rather than go for big gains. That 85% return divided by 33 wagers comes to $26 earned per bet–an underwhelming average, considering the risk was total each time, and the amount at stake ranged from $50 to $275. So the mind wanders to the outlandish returns that might have been realized by now, had I wagered at least 25% of my stake each time I spotted an opportunity. I’ve done the math: it’s more than double the $1855 currently on the books.

The glass returns to half full with another useful cliche: roads not taken haunt because they instruct, and aggression is something to remember next year. As for the NBA in 2011, only two weeks remain in the regular season, and I’m content with an end game of trying to grow two $50 stakes into $1600 with strings of 5 consecutive winners. I’m three away in each campaign, but as befits April fools, I can’t find a game tonight.

Detroit getting 8.5 at home against Chicago tempts, primarily because the Bulls aren’t the same team on the road and Noah may sit; the problem is, I have to win, and there’s a reasonable chance the line is too good to mess with.

I also don’t know what to make of the desperate Rockets getting 1.5 at home against desperate San Antonio. Except it will make for better viewing than desperate Indiana squaring off with desperate Milwaukee.

The rest fall easily into the Fun To Watch, Frightening To Wager category, particularly on a Friday night of fired-up home crowds, pranks and pulled legs.

Until the next guess…

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