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NBA Finals Betting Trends

June 05, 2007

Tim Duncan of the SpursThe NBA Finals are set with Cleveland and San Antonio, meaning it is time to look at numerous betting opportunities that could be available. For starters, early action has come hard on Cleveland to win the best of seven game series.

The Cavaliers opened as +400 underdogs to win this series and have been bet down to +350 dogs. This is not necessarily an indication that sharp bettors believe LeBron James and the rest of the Cavs are a strong wager, rather just a better payday if they do manage to pull the upset.

Cleveland on the season is now 62-36 with 53-42-3 ATS record. A good portion of that spread record being so positive has come in the postseason with an 11-4-1 ATS record including covering seven in a row.

Coach Mike Brown’s Cavaliers are 25-24 on the road with a 27-20-2 against the spread mark. Cleveland is a very impressive 6-1-1 ATS on the playoff road. Dating back to January, they are 20-7-1 ATS on the road as visitors. As a road underdog they are 13-14 and stalwart 19-8 ATS.

In Game One they are presently listed as a 7.5-point underdog at sportsbook.com. This will be just the fourth time all season LeBron and the boys will be an underdog of more than seven points. (1-2, 2-1 ATS)

At home the Cavaliers are 37-12 and 26-22-3 ATS. Based on conventional wisdom they could be a slight underdog or favorite playing at Quicken Loans Arena.

As a home favorite the Cavs are 35-10, 24-20-1 ATS, when listed as the home underdog they are 2-2 SU and ATS. In all games in which Cleveland have been in +3 to -3 point range this season, they were 16-8 and 15-8-1 ATS.

San Antonio will be out for 4th NBA title in nine seasons with its veteran cast. The Spurs will open at home where they are 38-12 and 26-22-2 ATS.

In the post-season the Duncan Gang is 8-2 SU and ATS at the AT&T Center. Since New Year’s Eve, San Antonio 23-3 and 18-8 ATS when favored by more than seven points at home and 8-0 and 7-1 ATS most recently. The Spurs are 11-2 and 10-2-1 ATS as playoff favorite in 2007.

The Spurs are 32-16 on the road with 26-21-1 ATS mark. If by chance they are a road favorite in any of the games in Cleveland, they are 28-13 and 22-18-1 ATS. The road underdog role has San Antonio a pedestrian 3-3 SU and ATS.

Speculation by the rank and file suggests the Cavs can get off to fast start with San Antonio last playing on May 30. While they may be a little rusty to start, this grizzled bunch is 8-2 and 7-3 ATS when playing with three or more days rest this season. Cleveland is not nearly as strong in exact same situation with 7-3 mark covering only four times.

The Cavaliers were outstanding playing against the presumed tougher Western Conference with 19-11 record, covering an astounding 20 times. The Spurs were 20-10 playing versus teams from the East with undistinguished 15-15 ATS mark.

What is interesting to note is Cleveland won both games between these teams in the regular season as the underdog. In the last nine years the eventual champion has never beaten the other team twice during the record season.

There have been eight instances during this time span (no interleague games in 1999 strike season) and the NBA champions split six times with finals opponent and twice has lost both games like San Antonio did during the regular season.

The subsequent champs were 7-11 and 6-12 ATS during the regular year against the other conference champions, proving the playoffs are far different than the normal season.

Discuss the NBA finals and picks in the NBA basketball betting forum.


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