With the NBA post season in full swing, it’s time to take a close look at placing bets on the NBA playoffs. The first thing we take at look at when the first round matchups are announced is betting on the first round series winners.
It is usually tough to take the high priced favorites in the first round as teams like the Heat, Thunder and Spurs are usually -500 or more to win their first round series. You can find this information out at an online sportsbook such as this Bodog betting site.
When the number three seed plays the number 6 seed or the number 4 seed plays the number 5 seed we have some betting opportunities. This season the Western Conference is extremely wide open and I don’t see anyone having a huge advantage. Taking the underdogs at a price in the West is worth a shot in nearly every series with the exception of the number one versus the number eight as San Antonio looks very tough. In the East, the top two seeds will be very tough to beat so I don’t see much of a chance going against either the Pacers or the Heat.
When betting the NBA playoffs a very popular strategy has been nicknamed the zigzag theory. It is pretty basic in that you take the loser of the previous game to win the next game. The feeling is that the losing team will really focus on winning the next game while the victorious team may feel a little smug and have a letdown.
This theory is at its best in the first round. Last year in the first round the theory was a very solid 23-17-1. The zig-zag theory is hitting over 57 percent in the first round over the last seven seasons. That is information that you can use to really help your NBA playoff betting.
In past seasons, when betting on the NBA playoffs, we could focus on betting against certain teams. The Clippers are a traditional go against team come playoff time. They just have continual trouble doing anything positive in the playoffs. This year will put that theory to the test as the Warriors have their best team in years and may end up upsetting them in the first round.
The Heat are the public’s and the oddsmakers choice to win it all. If the superstar lineup of Lebron, Dwyane, and Bosh play up to their standards the Heat will be hard to handle. The Western conference is very tough though and any of the top seven seeds will be able to make a case for reaching the finals.
Last season in the playoffs the Spurs dominated the point spread as they won games at nearly a 63 percent clip against the spread, even though Miami was the eventual champion. Last season the Clippers were at the bottom of the barrel against the spread in the playoffs going 1-5.
What to Look for in this year’s playoff
The best bet to win the title will be mostly likely be the top two seeds in each conference. Of these teams, it’s going to be difficult to choose the winner of the Western Conference. The Spurs and Thunder is a classic powerhouse rivalry. All bets are off if the two of these teams make it to the conference finals.
On the other hand, the Heat would seem to have the advantage over the Pacers right now, even though they would be the road team in this matchup. The Pacers have been playing poorly for a month now, but they do seem to have the Heat’s number in head-to-head games. Right now, the smart money is probably for the Miami Heat to repeat again. Lebron James has been playing some of his best basketball this year and it’s up to every other team to try to deal with him.
Pick your spots as the NBA playoffs begin and give the zigzag theory some serious consideration. I would always look to take the underdogs, especially in the Western Conference. I like Oklahoma City to take on Miami in the finals, but as in all sports, anything is possible.