January 23, 2018
There is one pick today.
Take St. John's +2 spread against Creighton for 3% of the bankroll.
The Creighton Blue Jays find themselves in an all too familiar spot after hearing that star sophomore Martin Kramelj will be lost for the season after tearing his ACL. If you recall, a season ago Creighton was 18-1 when their start player, Maurice Watson Jr tore his ACL and was lost for the season and for the rest of the year they struggled to maintain a .500 record. Nearly a year to the day, Creighton is seemingly reliving the past and it will be interesting to see how they bounce back from this; if they do at all.
In their first game without Kramelj, the Blue Jays offense looked lost. For a team that ranked 7th in the nation is scoring and 11th in field-goal percentage, they shot just 39.4% from the field, ultimately losing 85-71 at Providence. Greg McDermott was the first to admit that he is currently experimenting with lineups to fill the hole that Kramelij has left. He is putting guys onto the court that have not been used to being on the floor at the same time, so the chemistry of the team and the flow of both the offense and defense is off and will take some time to adjust. We don't believe this is the matchup where they are going to get any type of mercy from their opponents.
The St John's Red Storm coming into this matchup struggling. They have lost 8 straight and are the only team from the Big East that is currently winless in conference play. While they haven't necessarily been able to close out games, the Red Storm players have been competitive in each of their losses, with 6 of their 8 losses coming by 7 points or fewer. You can believe that this team is anxious to snap their losing streak and hungry to get the proverbially monkey off their backs by gaining their first conference victory. A win over an injured and vulnerable Creighton team, may be just what this team has needed to provide that spark.
The Red Storm gave the Blue Jays all they could handle in the first meeting, where St. John's even held a double-digit lead in the second half in Omaha, before ultimately allowing Creighton to rally back for the 78-71 victory. There is no question this team remembers that contest and would like nothing more than to gain a manner of revenge in this matchup. This could likely be the teams' best chance at doing so. Kramelj was instrumental in the Blue Jays earlier victory over St. John's, recording a double-double in that game and yet Creighton still narrowly won at home. We believe it is going to be extremely tough to replace Kramelj's production and the Blue Jays won't have enough offense to stage another dramatic comeback. Until Creighton can figure out how to win without Kramelj, we believe the advantage in this contest has to go with the home team.
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