Friday Noir

  • Chicago 97 Boston 81

An easy cover. After a 2-7 start, I’m now 11-9 overall when betting the favorite and giving the points.

Which means I’m on a 9-2 run in this type of game.

Which means I must be learning. Or I’ve learned. Or I’m good at this.

Right?

Right?

Well, here’s another way to look at it: someone flipping a coin can easily go on a 9-2 run of heads. It doesn’t change the fact that it’s a coin flip, and it doesn’t mean the coinflipper knows anything.

And another way: the coinflipping analogy is too reductive. Maybe there were a few random outcomes in that 2-7 debut and/or the current 9-2 streak, and yes, those are small samples, but it might matter that the good results have followed the bad in the timeline, and it’s the direction that counts.

And another way still: yapping about samples, random outcomes and directions fools no one–I’m moments away from asserting I have…a system. I can look at the 2-7 and 9-2 runs as unrelated sets, find the flaw in the former, note how it’s been corrected in the latter, and presto–anyone can do what I’ve done. Just note the insight and follow the steps.

Or maybe this is the truth: the mix of learning and luck is indivisible and unquantifiable. If there’s any revelation here, it’s that there is no system: NBA wagering is a game-by-game proposition, where the vast superiority of one team isn’t nearly enough to go on–not when one must contend with stalemates and mismatches at five positions on the floor, plus the bench, plus the coaches, plus the vagaries of garbage time, tired legs, bad shooting nights, midweek blahs and in-season trades clouding every oddsmaker’s line.

There. I feel better. Here’s what’s on tonight:

  • $220 to win $200 on the Los Angeles Clippers on the road getting 10 from Dallas

Kidd missed this morning’s shootaround. Chandler’s back hurts. If they play, it’s likely they’ll be limited. It’s also likely Juan Barea will spend a lot of time at the point with Roddy Beaubois at the two.

Which means the Clipper backcourt tandem of Williams and Gordon suddenly looks big by comparison. Or lightning fast, when the decrepit Terry and Stojakovich spell the Dallas newbies. Williams will drive and Gordon will get open looks, and because Nowitzki doesn’t defend even when hale (he isn’t), the air defense against the blitzkrieg of Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan falls to a statue called Brendan Haywood.

Yipes.

The Mavs might win, but this looks like youthful speed versus worn-down expertise, and that’s too many points for Dallas to concede to a spry, rested team.

Go Clippers.

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