May 3rd 2013 - Posted 5:40 PM Eastern Time


There are 3 suggestions (2 NBA and 1 MLB) risking 7% in total tonight. Listed in full detail below are the reasons why we feel these bets are likely to be good ones based on all the information available before the games.



#1: Take Boston Celtics at +2 spread against New York Knicks risking 3%

Who would have thought that with the Celtics going down 0-3 in the series that we would be looking at a Game 6 tonight? The issue with the Celtics has never been their lack of defense, in fact their defense has been stellar during this series, limiting the Knicks to under 90 points in all 5 games! The issue for the Celtics had been on the offensive side of the ball and over the last 2 games it has appeared that they have finally put it together with back-to-back solid performances both at home and on the road.

In Game 5, it was a combined team effort for the Celtics where they had 5 players score 15+ points in a 93-86 win in New York. In all games in this series thus far the Celtics have came out strong and led at halftime. Poor second half offensive efforts have been the downfall of the Celtics but since the foul on Jason Terry by JR Smith in Game 3, and the post Game 4 comments made by the suspended Smith himself, it appears that has lit a fire under the Celtics which has turned this series around and made it a whole lot more competitive and interesting.

The Celtics are a team that has been playing with a strong purpose since facing elimination while the Knicks look a little lost mentally and are much less battle-tested when it comes to 7-game Play-off series. It's easy to see how experienced and mentally tough this Celtics team is to have bounced back from being down 0-3 in a series and if they can put up another good offensive effort, it will be tough for the Knicks to stop them in Boston tonight. The Knicks have historically choked a bit in big games and that's especially true in the playoffs. Carmelo Anthony himself knows what it is like to fail to show up in the playoffs though he seems a more mature player now than before. The worst thing for the Knicks right now is to have a motivated, veteran team like the Celtics smell the proverbially "blood in the water" and take it to the Knicks. The Celtics are a storied franchise and have a ton of Big Game experience. They have proven that they can hang with just about any team in the league on their day and that's especially true at home. The fact that they are finally finding their groove in the playoffs makes them a very dangerous team.

Tonight's Game 6 is back in Boston with all of the momentum currently on Celtic's side. They were basically out of the playoffs and have since decided to just go out and play their game. They are not trying to do anything fancy, they are simply going out and playing solid basketball and have 2 recent wins against the Knicks to show for it now. Not only are the Celtics playing better, it appears that the Knicks are feeling the pressure of not being able to close out the series. The two biggest threats offensively for New York, JR Smith and Carmelo Anthony were held to just a combined 11 of 38 shooting on their home floor in the last game.

Now the series goes back to Boston with a chance for the Celtics to tie things up and force a Game 7. This is the perfect position for the Celtics and with the Knicks failing to close out Boston in their last 2 attempts, you have to wonder how much you can trust the Knicks laying any kind of points away from home tonight. The Knicks are overall the better team with Celtics missing Rondo but the value is on the Celtics tonight in this situation and for this particular game and I expect them to win this game and go to New York for Game 7. The Celtics are usually a much superior team at home and their regular season record shows that. The Celtics are 14-6 ATS in their last 20 home games and the underdog is 4-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings in Boston. Having beaten the Knicks in NY, the Celtics are back home more confident than they have been in a long time and that renewed confidence should be the difference maker tonight.



#2: Take Oakland Athletics / NY Yankees to go OVER the posted Total of 8 Runs risking 2%

There is a lot of value in this total tonight. Oakland has been the number 1 team in the league this season when it comes to games going Over the projected total. Of their 29 games this season, Oakland has played to the Over in 24 of them! Part of it has to due with the fact that Oakland has greatly improved behind the plate. They have hitters scattered all over the batting order that are capable of not only getting on base but who are a threat to hit it out of the park. As a team they have a batting average of .254 and on-base percentage of .343 Interestingly enough those numbers actually improve when Oakland is on the road! Oakland ranks near the top of the league in runs scored averaging 5.6 per game (6.6 on the road). The Yankees share similar statistics and their batting average and on base percentage is slightly better than Oakland's. The Yankees, even without power hitters Curtis Granderson and Mark Texeira in the lineup are still averaging 4.6 runs per game.

On the mound tonight we also have 2 pitchers who have struggled against the opposing batters in the past. AJ Griffin has only seen the Yankees twice in his career and while he did get the win in one of those games, he does own a lifetime ERA of 5.23 and WHIP of 1.646. The veteran Sabathia has also struggled against Oakland in his career going just 8-8 lifetime with a 4.56 ERA and WHIP of 1.356.

The series between these two teams have seen their share of high scoring games as well since 11 of the last 19 meetings have gone Over the listed Total. AJ Griffin has given up 13 earned runs over his last 3 starts while CC has given up 11! Neither team's bullpen has been stellar this season and both of these teams appear to be seeing the ball relatively well and should have no problem scoring runs off of the opposing pitcher. Oakland games have gone over the posted total in 10 of the last 11 games while the Yankees have gone over in 5 of their last 6! I feel this total is probably 1 or 2 runs too low and the bats should come alive tonight and send this total Over the top.

For Oakland Athletics, The OVER is:

  • 24-5 in all games
  • 10-2 after a loss
  • 8-2 against a team with a winning record
  • 17-1 when the total is set between 8-8.5
  • 11-1 on the road
  • 22-4 in games played on grass
  • 14-5 in night games
  • 7-1 against left handed starters


#3: Take Houston Rockets at -1 spread against Oklahoma City Thunder risking 2%

For those who had thought that the injury to PG Russell Westbrook wasn't going to effect the Thunder's performance, Game 5 of this series should have been a telling sign. Westbrook is the "quarterback" of this team. Even though Kevin Durant is the Thunder's best player, it is Westbrook who is the driving force behind this team. He is the one man on the Thunder team who commands the floor the most and runs the offense to perfection. Without him in the lineup, the Thunder seem almost lost.

Kevin Durant has no doubt stepped up his game and is averaging more points now than when Westbrook was on the floor but that is only because no other Thunder player has been able to step up. Without Westbrook in the lineup, even the production from the Thunder bench has been lacking due to a number of players now having to play out of position. Westbrook was the type of player who would draw the attention of often 2 guys leaving another member of his team open but unfortunately for OKC, that is no longer the case. Houston has figured out that by double-teaming Kevin Durant, they can beat the Thunder since his team-mates haven't stepped up to help with scoring.

The regular season greatly demonstrated just how good the Rockets are at home in Houston. To go into Oklahoma City (an extremely tough place to play) and still put up over 100 points and beat a very tough team says something about this team and their character. Houston at this point holds a number of advantages over OKC. Kevin Durant's teammates will need to step up if they want to close out this series but with this game being played in Houston, I don't think that will happen tonight.

Houston has progressively gotten more efficient on offense the deeper this series has gone. They shot a collective 47% in the last game which is impressive given how stout Oklahoma City can be on defense. Without Westbrook to disrupt drives to the basket, James Harden and the rest of the Houston players are able to get a lot more easy baskets now and that along with 3-point shooting is what Houston thrives on. If this game turns into a shootout which it almost always does in home games for Houston, the Thunder won't be able to keep up with only KD doing his part. In Game 3 Oklahoma City came out firing after Westbrook went down which is not uncommon. But they still allowed Houston to come back from 30 points down and take the lead inside the final minute and had it not been for a miracle 3 by Kevin Durant, we would have seen one of the greatest comebacks of all time! That shows me that no matter what Oklahoma City does, Houston has the offensive firepower to get back into a game and that is worrying for Scott Brooks and co especially when playing the Rockets in Houston.

Houston has all of the momentum coming into this game and the Thunder are reeling. The first game after Westbrook went down everyone stepped up and they had a good showing in the first half but now they are 3 games in it and they still have not found a consistent way to adjust. Kevin Durant can only have so many 40 point games in a row before the weight of his team wears him down. Houston needs to stave off elimination tonight so you can expect them to come out motivated and avenge the game 3 loss at home and I believe they get their revenge. It's also worth noting that OKC opened up as 1 point favorites in most places and yet despite the vast majority of public backing last year's finalists, the big money has come in on the Rockets and the line has shifted to -1 with Houston being favorites now. OKC are still a very good team but not be able to keep up for the full 48 and Houston gets the cover that sends this game back to Oklahoma for Game 7. Take the home team.



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