My name is Anthony Summers and I am a NBA Handicapper. I go by the name “SweetJones55″ on the Sports Betting Forums on the Internet. You can also find me and my NBA plays for free on Twitter. I am 24 years old, recently graduated from the University of Miami (FL), and have been handicapping the NBA now for seven years.
The NBA is a big passion of mine and I have had a lot of success the last few years betting NBA. My NBA record last year was 182-120-6 (60.26%) with over 308 plays, all tracked online. Billy Walters, widely considered as the best sports gambler on the planet, on his best year hit 60% for a full season. He was betting over $100,000 on games at this hit rate and the enormity of his success at 60% almost landed him in jail as no one could believe he was making this much money betting on sports.
This year, thus far in the NBA, I am currently 54-34 (61%) and I have already hit my game of the year on Orlando at home vs. Miami. With over 80 plays in the NBA this year, there is no one hitting the percentage that I am that tracks their plays online.
So let’s make some money …
This is a big revenge game for the Bulls having gotten beat at home by the Knicks in their first matchup in a game that was nationally televised. The game was never even close with the Knicks jumping out to a double-digit lead and winning the game by eight. Carlos Boozer is back now for the Bulls and he has been very good for them as of late tallying up four double doubles in his last five games. The Bulls are now 9-1 their last 10 games while the Knicks are 6-4 their last 10 games, but just 1-3 their last four games. I thought the injury to Noah would hurt the Bulls, but so far they have been able to adjust.
This game seems pretty even from a matchup stand point. Rose should have his way with Raymond Felton. Landry Fields has been playing great this year and should have an edge over Keith Bogans who has been struggling. Amar’e will obviously dominate Kurt Thomas. Boozer will score at will on Gallinari but Gallinari will be able to stretch Chicago’s defense with his three-point shooting. Deng and Chandler should cancel each other out. I think there are a lot of big offensive mismatches on the floor and as a betting man I think I would have to play the OVER 204.5 points if I had to make a play on this game. They scored 232 points last game so even if they score 25 points less that would still go OVER the posted total. I think Chicago’s bench is much better than the Knicks, and that may tilt the game in their favor if I had to play a side.
Boston will be traveling to Orlando to play the Magic in the second game of the Christmas Day schedule. Boston has been rolling this year and are currently 23-4 and on a 14 game winning streak. Orlando has been the polar opposite this year struggling to a 17-12 record and winners of two of their last 10 games. Magic are coming off a nice win against the Spurs, but SA was in a very bad spot in this game having coming off a big win against Denver in a game that they had to give everything they had in the second half. It was going to be very tough for SA to beat Orlando the very next night in a game the Magic were desperate for.
Here is why I like Boston and why I am liking them enough to go big on them. Stan Van Gundy said something to this effect at the end of the third quarter in the SA win, “We have to get out in transition because we just aren’t an effective half court team right now”. Orlando’s own coach is saying that they are not good in the half-court and need to get easy fast break points to win right now. This may have been easy for them against a tired San Antonio team playing on back to back who rank 19th in defensive NBA Team Opponent Fastbreak Points Per Game but it will be very hard for them against Boston who are ranked No. 1 in NBA Team Opponent Fastbreak Points Per Game and will have had a full two days rest for this game. Now I know what a lot of you are thinking, what if Orlando shoots the lights from the three-point land like they did against SA? SA is the worst team in the NBA defending three pointers. Boston is 5th best in the league at defending three pointers. Another concern may be Rajon Rondo being out, but the Celtics actually have a better winning percentage this year with Nate Robinson starting.
Boston only has four losses this year and three of the losses can be attributed to lack of focus, which won’t be a concern on Christmas, on the road. The Celtics lost to OKC without Durant, at Toronto, and at Cleveland the night after beating Miami. Those were just three bad teams that Boston slept on and came out and surprised them. Their other loss was in Dallas but they covered that game. The Celtics are 4-1 ATS their last five games in Orlando. Last Christmas, Boston traveled to Orlando and beat them outright as a 5.5 point underdog. This was when Boston had been really struggling during the regular season and Orlando was rolling. If Orlando struggled to beat Boston when they had a team with great chemistry, I don’t see how a newly assembled Orlando team that has only been together a week can beat a well-polished machine like the Celtics.
The C’s line opened up at +1.5. This is the least the Celtics have ever been favored playing in Orlando in years. Why would Dallas be +4 and SA +2.5 playing in Orlando and when Orlando finally wins a game by double digits they are now favored less than both those games against Boston? I think that’s the sportsbooks calling for a Boston.
Heat vs. Lakers, 5p ET
The Lakers have had plenty of rest for this game having not played since 12/21 — a full two days more of rest than Miami. I’m leaning Lakers on this game and my explanation is pretty simple. The Heat are just 1-5 vs. the top teams in the NBA this year. Their only big win was against Orlando in Miami. I think the Heat were just so pumped up with it being the first game at home that the talent and energy just willed ‘em to that big win. Also, how good were the Magic this year if their GM decided to trade away the whole team? Since that Magic win the Heat have really struggled, losing easily to Dallas twice, Boston twice, and in Orlando. None of the games came down to the last possession.
The Lakers are one of the best teams when it comes to responding to a loss, especially when at home. They are 7-1 their last eight home games when coming off a home loss. The only loss was a few years ago against Portland in a meaningless end of season game where they were already getting ready for a playoff run. I just think the Lakers have an all around better team with Kobe, Gasol, Odom, Artest, Fisher, Bynum, Blake, and Brown. All of those guys are very capable of having a big game while the Heat really just rely on their three superstars. Lakers matchup very well with Miami by having Artest guard LeBron, Kobe guard Wade, and Gasol guard Bosh. The Lakers will make the Heat beat them with the likes of Carlos Arroyo, James Jones, Zydrunas Illgauskus, Joel Anthony, and Erick Dampier. Benches usually don’t travel well in the NBA.
(Note: Just so everyone knows, I am a die-hard Heat fan so there is no bias at all in my analysis. I’ve actually hit about 80% of the games when betting against or on the Heat so far this season.)
So there you have it, my analysis on the three big Christmas Day games. A quick recap:
Celtics +1.5 (5 units)
Lakers ML (1 unit)
Bulls/Knicks OVER 204.5 (1 unit)
Thank you The Jones for giving me the opportunity to share my thoughts on the big games. Again, you can find me, and all my plays, on my Twitter page at www.twitter.com/sweetjones55. I also post my plays with all my writeup’s and analysis at The Sharp Group Sports Handicapping Forum and SBRForum under the user name sweetjones55. Go Celtics, Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas!