Way, Way, Way Off

  • $100 to win $115 on Miami knocking off the Spurs in San Antonio
  • $105 to win $100 on Boston giving 9.5 at home against Golden State
  • $105 to win $100 on the L.A. Lakers giving 12 at home against Charlotte

Nope, nope, and nope.

On top of this, the three temptations I passed on (New York giving 12, Dallas giving 8.5, and Minnesota getting 9) all would have lost as well.

One way to see this is that I correctly stayed away.

Another is that if I hadn’t, I would have gone 0-6 on Friday night.

There’s only a 1 in 64 chance of calling six consecutive 50/50 propositions wrong.

Unless you’re betting like I do.

I’m 3-8 now, and have lost nearly two-thirds of a hypothetical $1000 stake.

Once again, I picked two stalled-out, low-margin blowouts (Golden State and Charlotte never really challenged Boston and L.A., respectively, and so the home teams responded with a low-wattage efforts. Golden State even outrebounded Boston, something I didn’t think was possible).

And this time, I managed to miss the blowout of the night in a game I actually bet. I wouldn’t have wagered had I known Tony Parker would make a special guest appearance; even so, eight Spurs put up between 11 and 20 points, six buried three point shots, and the Heat seemed to have no answer for someone named Matt Bonner, who strafed them for six treys in seven attempts.

Maybe it’s a gift.

Thus far, the best strategy is fading what I think will happen. I’m seriously considering it.

Wouldn’t you?


Punched in the South

Sacramento 111 Orlando 105

Oh, come on—it’s funny.

I’m fine with yesterday’s wager. I’m also down to $225 after debuting with a loss.

My second choice for a bet (Chicago over Toronto) didn’t pan out either (though my third, Philly over Washington, did), and now I’m two small wagers from oblivion. Of course I need a winner; I just bet heavily against Jermaine Taylor on the greatest day in the history of Jermaine Taylor.

But I also put as much money down as I dared yesterday—55% of my stake. I imagined a victory column today, but I also considered what The Morning After would look like on the off chance that for one star-crossed night, Jermaine Taylor wasn’t Jermaine Taylor.

No one you’d like to know actually embraces duality, but it’s possible to price bets so you don’t lose sleep either way. It stinks to lose right off the bat, and it will force me to be more conservative on my next few wagers, but I’m glad I was aggressive, glad enough to cope with the mysteries of Jermaine Taylor.

Besides, with only $500 and the vig to consider, I started this blog only four small bets from oblivion.

So onward and sideways, for a while.

There are only two NBA games tonight—Miami at Chicago and Boston at Denver. Neither is tempting; the first is unpredictable (two very good, healthy, motivated teams) and the second is a Celtics squad with a key injury (Kendrick Perkins, again) facing a reconfigured franchise that’s suddenly a cypher. It might have a deep bench. It might have a chip on its shoulder. It might be a harmonic convergence of mismatched players. Pass.

In meantime, I’ll be waiting for Friday’s lines.