Study NBA schedules to find friendly betting opportunities

A lot of bettors are going to switch to the NBA now that we go from 16 NFL games to six, then four, then two, then one. There just won’t be as many betting opportunities.

Something I’ve always tried to do with the NBA is use the schedule as a way to focus. Granted, I’m not a huge NBA fan and don’t follow it very closely. However, I look for situational spots to bet on or against and try to take advantage of those opportunities. You’ve probably heard the term “loss of schedule,” which describes a game in which the team was in a compromised position due to rest, travel, or emotional factors.

What I like to do every Sunday is take stock of where a team has been, where they are going and how much rest is involved for the week ahead. It was a better strategy pre-COVID when teams went out on the town in some places and probably more basketball-focused in others. However, I think there are still a few good addresses to consider.

Evan Mobley (left)
USA TODAY Sports

These situational spots are not the only justifications for a spread bet. These are handicapping elements that weigh heavily in my assessment of a game, but the line still needs to cooperate, and I always look at the teams’ recent stats and performances.

Here are a few that fit the criteria I’m looking for:

Riders at Trail Blazers (Friday)

Teams attempt to get off to a good start in the first game of a road trip. They want to “set the tone” or “start on the right foot”. Buzzwords, phrases, clichés we’ve all heard. The last match of a road trip is a typical fade. Game 1 is a buying point for me, especially as Cleveland begins a six-game road trip after a home loss.

Hornets vs. Bucks (Saturday)

The Bucks face the Nets on Friday night. It’s a big game in the Eastern Conference on ESPN and Milwaukee should be very excited. The following night, the Bucks face a rested Hornets team with two days off before the game.

Knicks at Celtics (Saturday)

The “quick payback theory” is something I’ve thought about a lot. The Knicks and Celtics played Thursday and meet Saturday night with a change of venue. I like to start by looking at the team that lost the first game and see if I should bet on the second game. It depends on how the box score looks, and maybe it’s just a bad game, but I think athletes who hate losing would want revenge in a back-to-back game like this.

Look for bad travel points (especially if there are weather delays in getting somewhere), difficult rest points like “4 in 6” or “5 in 7”, when teams can either make a call during the game to sit. the players or team simply won’t have legs. Even if you’re not a big fan of the NBA, these spots might put you on the right track.

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