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Biggest NBA Betting Money Makers at Mid Season

Written by:
C Costigan
Published on:
Jan/16/2020

We’re right at the midway point of the NBA season and there’s no better time to look at the performance of the individual teams.  Obviously, you can just look at the standings at get a feel for each team’s performance from a W/L perspective but we’re talking about what really matters—a team’s performance against the NBA pointspread!

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The rest of the NBA season should be really exciting and the playoffs will be completely wide open.  The Milwaukee Bucks have the best record in the league and are expected to win not only the Central Division, but also the Eastern Conference.  The West is a bit more competitive but the Los Angeles Lakers are right at the top of the table.  The odds at BetOnline.ag suggest that the Memphis Grizzlies’ Ja Morant should bring home the ‘Rookie of the Year’ award while the Milwaukee Bucks’ star forward Giannis Antetokounmpo is the top choice for the ‘Most Valuable Player’ award.

The most important thing from a betting perspective, however, is how teams perform against the spread on a nightly basis.  We’ve monitored their performance against the lines at BetOnline.ag all season long and here are the most profitable teams in the league for NBA bettors.  All records are complete through games of 1/15/20:

OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER +10.6 UNITS:  One thing that successful NBA bettors know is that there is little correlation between a team’s place in the standings and their performance against the spread.  Case in point—the Oklahoma City Thunder who are ranked #7 in the Western Conference with a 23-18 record.  From a pointspread perspective, they’re running away with the league.  The Thunder have banked +10.6 units this season from a 26-14-1 ATS record making them twice as profitable as the #2 ATS team in the NBA.  Even more interesting—the Thunder have done it all by being especially competitive as an underdog.  As a favorite, OKC is 14-4 SU but a pedestrian 9-8-1 ATS.  As a underdog, they’re just 9-14 SU but 17-6 ATS.  Given the dynamics of their pointspread performance this year their success ATS could continue for awhile.  They’re not doing well enough to draw the attention of the mainstream sports media and ‘the public’.  Instead, they’re just being more competitive than the marketplace has expected.  In a Western Conference full of big stars and successful teams they could cash even more tickets with that formula.

DALLAS MAVERICKS +5.3 UNITS:  There’s a big gap between the OKC Thunder and the second most profitable team for NBA bettors, the Dallas Mavericks.  There’s not much of a gap in the standings, however, as Dallas is just ahead of the Thunder on the Western Conference table in 6th place.  The Mavs have gone 26-15 SU this year but are 24-17 ATS.  They’ve made money both as an underdog (7-4 ATS) and as a chalk (17-13 ATS) but they’ve not shown the same balance with their home/away performance.  At home, they’ve actually lost money going 12-10 SU/9-13 ATS.  On the road, they’ve gone 14-5 SU/15-4 ATS covering at a clip of 78.9%.  These divergent trends could continue, at least in the short term.  Dallas is a decent team and can be competitive as an underdog in opposing venues.  At the same time, they’re not really at the point where they can be counted on to cover numbers as a home favorite.  Pay close attention to them as these tendencies could change quickly should oddsmakers get a more accurate valuation of the Mavs.

MIAMI HEAT +4.4 UNITS
BOSTON CELTICS +4.4 UNITS

The Miami Heat and Boston Celtics are tied for third on the NBA ATS hit parade and they’re separated by ½ game in the Eastern Conference standings.  The Heat are 28-12 SU and in second place while the Celtics are 27-12 SU and in third place ½ game back.  Miami is 22-16-2 ATS while Boston is 22-16-1 ATS.  Boston is right around the ‘Mendoza Line’ both at home and on the road going 11-9 ATS at the TD Garden though a slightly better 11-7-1 ATS on the road.  They’ve had their most success as an underdog where the Celtics are 5-5 SU but 7-3 against the spread.  Miami has a losing record on the road at 10-11 and are just 9-11-1 ATS on their travels.  They’ve been dominant on their home court at the AmericanAirlines Arena going 18-1 SU/13-5-1 ATS.

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