NBA All Star Weekend Bets

 Gambling Winter is upon us.

Gambling Winter – The period lasting from the end of the Super Bowl up until the beginning of March Madness.

Winter Gambling Disorder (WGD) – An inability to cope with the loss of football leading to an insatiable urge to gamble on what’s available. Possible symptoms of WGD may include: Blowing all football winnings on regular season college basketball; creating a sportsbook for your local church’s Upward league; taking an impromptu trip to Mexico City to get some action on cock fighting; wandering back alleys with a wad of cash in hopes of stumbling across a high stakes dice game.

If you are suffering from WGD, I sympathize with you. I’m here to assure you that you’re not alone. Times feel dark right now. But we’ll get through this. Together. I’m already doing my do diligence to prepare for the conference and NCAA tourney but we all know we need action along the way to get us there. So before you bet that stack of cash on St. Peter’s vs Monmouth tonight, consider putting that money on these NBA All Star Weekend plays:

3-Point Contest

  • Klay Thompson 7/3
  • Eric Gordon 4/1
  • Devin Booker 6/1
  • Bradley Beal 7/1
  • Paul George 10/1
  • Kyle Lowry 14/1
  • Wayne Ellington 15/1
  • Tobias Harris 50/1

My Pick: Eric Gordy Bags

The 3 point competition is a tough one to gauge considering its not about who the best shooter is as much as its about who gets hot. The only past winners on the list are Klay Thompson (2016) and Gordy Bags (2017). I’m going with Gordon at the longer 4 to 1 odds to repeat. The last repeat champ in the event was Jason Kapono in 07′-08′ so I say we’re due for a back to back winner.

Dunk Contest

  • Larry Nance 3/2
  • Victor Oladipo 7/3
  • Dennis Smith Jr. 17/3
  • Donovan Mitchell 17/3

My Pick: Donovan Mitchell 

This year’s dunk contest is full of new comers aside from Oladipo who’s making his 2nd appearance (2015). This leaves him as the only semi-known and based on Oladipo’s previous performance, he certainly has what it takes to win the event. His downside is I don’t think he quite blows people away, leaving the door open if someone else can really shine. He seems to specialize in 360 dunks, which are underrated in difficulty. However, to me, his biggest setback is he’s not a violent finisher. Which is what brings me to Donovan Mitchell.

Mitchell is the shortest of the group at 6’3 which can be an advantage because dunks are more impressive when they’re pulled off by shorter people. He has good hands, I’ve seen him snag numerous one-handed alley-oops. I like him mostly cause he throws down dunks with authority. Now Nance is understandably the favorite. His father is a previous dunk contest winner so perhaps he was born for this. Nance is the best in-game dunker of the group. He’ll put defenders on posters if they aren’t careful. But best in-game dunker doesn’t always translate to the dunk contest so I’m rolling the dice with the longer odds.

All Star Game MVP

  • Russell Westbrook 4/1
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo 6/1
  • LeBron James 8/1
  • Anthony Davis 9/1
  • James Harden 11/1
  • Kevin Durant 12/1
  • Steph Curry 15/1
  • Kyrie Irving 20/1
  • Paul George 25/1
  • Damian Lillard 40/1
  • Field 8/1

My Pick: Giannis and the Field

The Greek Freak is having his best year to date. The crazy thing is he’s only going to keep getting better from here. Last year he had some nasty dunks and I expect more of the same Sunday. In a game where little defense is attempted, a guy that will rack up points with sick nasty dunks is a pretty strong play. As far as the field is concerned, the most legitimate shot is probably Demar DeRozan. But others such as: Klay Thompson, Bradley Beal, Jimmy Butler, and Embiid could make a run at it as well.

Team LeBron vs Team Steph

  • Team LeBron (-3.5, -160 ML)

Starters: LBJ, Uncle Drew, KD, AD, (Westbrook?)

Bench: Aldridge, Beal, Dragic, Drummond, PG, Oladipo, Kemba Walker

  • Team Steph (+3.5, +130 ML)

Starters: Steph, The Beard, Giannis, DeRozen, Embiid

Bench: Jimmy Buckets, Draymond, Horford, The Lizard Man, Lowry, Klay, Towns

My Pick: Team Steph +130 ML

The first question on everyone’s mind: ‘Are they hooping???’. The answer is probably not really. No one wants to get hurt and guys are so rich now that there’s not much financial incentive to win. But perhaps the picking teams format will give a slight competitive boost.

At first glance, LBJ’s starting five jumps off the page. Literally all 5 starters (I’m assuming Westbrook fills in for Cousins?) are previous All Star game MVPs. Plus you get an interesting edge of LBJ-Kyrie and Westbrook-KD playing together. LBJ possibly drafted with the mindset of getting guys that have played together. But if you take a look at Steph’s starting 5, they aren’t too far behind. The Greek Freak, DeRozen, Harden, and Steph himself are all having great seasons. Steph I’m sure has heard people say LBJ and KD are 1,2 in terms of best players in the world. Does this motivate him to get this W over them? Maybe. Maybe nobody really cares.

Ultimately I’m going with team Steph because I like the +130. Plus I’ve talked myself into thinking Steph’s team has a superior bench. LBJ’s team got hit hard with the injuries (Cousins, Love, Porzingis, Wall).

 

 

 

 

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