If you missed it, this year I went to Las Vegas and plopped down some money on the 2016-17 NBA Season. Normally, I like to do updates about once a month, but this year I decided to wait a lot longer. And boy am I glad I did because there'd have been a lot of crow to eat after my first one-month update!
First, let's look at the bets, and then I'll talk a bit about some of them.
|MEM||32 - 22 (.593)||47 - 35||UNDER 43.0||$400||10.0%||-110||$764.0||?||0.0||0|
|CHA||24 - 28 (.462)||39 - 43||OVER 41.5||$400||10.0%||-110||$764.0||?||0.0||0|
|Field vs. GSW||68 - 14||CHAMP||$300||7.5%||+120||$660.0||?||0.0||0|
|PHI||18 - 33 (.353)||27 - 55||OVER 24.5||$300||7.5%||-110||$573.0||?||0.0||0|
|BOS||33 - 18 (.647)||51 - 31||UNDER 52.5||$300||7.5%||-110||$573.0||?||0.0||0|
|GSW||43 - 8 (.843)||68 - 14||OVER 66.5||$200||5.0%||-110||$382.0||?||0.0||0|
|WAS||30 - 21 (.588)||47 - 35||UNDER 43.5||$200||5.0%||-110||$382.0||?||0.0||0|
|HOU||2nd (3.0 GB)||56 - 26||DIV||$200||5.0%||+1000||$2200.0||?||0.0||0|
|HOU||38 - 17 (.691)||56 - 26||OVER 44.0||$200||5.0%||-110||$382.0||?||0.0||0|
|CHA||3rd (6.0 GB)||39 - 43||DIV||$200||5.0%||+325||$850.0||?||0.0||0|
|BRK||9 - 43 (.173)||16 - 66||OVER 22.5||$200||5.0%||-110||$382.0||?||0.0||0|
|CHI||26 - 26 (.500)||41 - 41||OVER 40.5||$200||5.0%||-110||$382.0||?||0.0||0|
|MIN||5th (14.0 GB)||32 - 50||DIV||$200||5.0%||+500||$1200.0||?||0.0||0|
|MIN||19 - 33 (.365)||32 - 50||OVER 42.5||$200||5.0%||-110||$382.0||?||0.0||0|
|IND||29 - 22 (.569)||44 - 38||UNDER 45.5||$200||5.0%||-110||$382.0||?||0.0||0|
|LAL||18 - 36 (.333)||26 - 56||OVER 26.0||$200||5.0%||-110||$382.0||?||0.0||0|
|Field vs. GSW||68 - 14||CHAMP||$100||2.5%||+130||$230.0||?||0.0||0|
The blue rows are those where the bet is marginally on track (or better). And some of them are a bit too optimistic given the trendlines (e.g. Chicago and LA's Pythagorean expectation is probably optimistic given their fast starts vs. their current play level). And as you can see, even in the extremely optimistic scenario where all of those bets cash, we gross only a little over $3900, which means the portfolio needs a couple of huge swings (dare I say miracles?) to make any money. Let's talk about why.
Public Enemies #1 and #2: Memphis and Charlotte
All I can say to Charlotte is... what the fuck, dudes? This team started out 8-3. Even after 40 games, the bet looked to be in pretty good shape, but now they've lost 12 of their last 15, and I have *serious* doubts that they can beat Brooklyn tonight (editor's note from the future: they did win ... barely). What a turnaround for one of the two biggest bets in the portfolio. Ouch.
Memphis is another "what the fuck.....are you guys putting in your Wheaties and can I have some too?" Conley, Allen, Gasol, and Carter have a combined age of 136 years and are all in the team's top 5. Oh, yeah, and Conley tore his ACL not long ago and broke his freaking back just a few months ago. The Grizzlies give no fucks and are on the way to 47 wins. I'll probably take the under again next year because right now you know Father Time is in a trailer somewhere watching NBA League Pass and screaming "Oh, come on!"
Public Enemy #3: Minnesota
Oh, Minny. You'll always be the Lucy to my Charlie. Ever since the 2003 Western Conference finals, when Sam Cassell's injury allowed a Lakers team that had no business getting that far to advance to the finals, where Detroit rightfully thrashed them.
I'll admit, I fell for all the hype. At first, I thought 35 or so was a good over bet and didn't want to touch 42 because seriously, teams full of 20-year-olds do not win 45 games. But then I saw KAT putting up David Robinson numbers and doing this kind of nonsense in the preseason, and I threw all logic out the window.
They've let me down big time, but even worse is that they've done a remarkable job of winning when they are playing another team with an OVER on this portfolio, with wins against Charlotte, Chicago, Houston, and Brooklyn. Between that and gifting the Grizzlies 3 wins, I'm not a big fan of this franchise right now.
Public Enemy #4: Washington
This one is another big head-scratcher. They started 3-9, and we looked like geniuses, and then...well, who the hell knows what happened. It's like after November; they did a body switch with Charlotte. In fact, the Pythagorean 47 win projection is probably too low, again because it's weighted down a bit by their very slow start, which probably doesn't reflect the team's current level of play.
The miracles that this portfolio needs are for one or more of the above trends to dramatically reverse and for a long shot (such as Houston winning the division) to come in. Unfortunately, it looks like the one trend that is reversing is precisely the one I don't need -- Minnesota is 8-7 in their last 15.