Saturday's Picks, Odds Movement & Top Betting Trends

Doug Upstone

Saturday, March 28, 2015 5:32 PM UTC

Saturday, Mar. 28, 2015 5:32 PM UTC

Today we focus our sports picks on the NBA, NHL and, of course, NCAA Tournament Elite 8 selections with this special Saturday edition of betting line moves analysis.

Like we say every day, understanding line moves can build your bankroll. (457-405 L162D)


NCAA Basketball – Arizona vs.  Wisconsin  6:05 ET  TBS
Since this Elite 8 confrontation was set on Thursday, there has been a great deal of discussion about the tempo, would it be fast or slow and who would have the edge in either case. Bettors looking at this match may not know at what the pace this game will be played at, but with both Arizona and Wisconsin permitting fewer than 60 points per contest, the total has sunk from 133.5 to 131. While this makes a sense to many, I see two offenses connecting on over 48 percent of shot attempts and having the ability to be very efficient making two point shots, which opens up the area behind the arc. I’ll make the call this total ends up at around 140.

NCAA Tournament Pick – Play Over

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NBA – Hawks vs. Hornets  7:05 ET  SPSO
Since losing three in a row and giving up 117 points per game to Golden State, Oklahoma City and San Antonio, Atlanta has returned to their winning ways against inferior competition and its defense has also improved. The Hawks have held Orlando and Miami to 83 and 86 points respectively in winning and covering twice and faces a Charlotte squad that is 26th in scoring in the league at 94.7 points a game. Those placing NBA picks versus the betting odds prefer the Hawks defense to limit the Hornets offense and moved them from -1 to -2.5 road favorites. Atlanta is 8-2 and 7-3 in recent matchups with Charlotte including 4-1 SU and ATS in North Carolina.

NBA Pick – Atlanta covers


NBA – Nuggets vs. Trail Blazers 10:05 ET  NBA-TV
Take away Portland’s recent contest with Golden State in which they lost 122-108, in their three other games they have averaged allowing just 89 PPG. Denver’s offense has been wildly inconsistent in their past six contests, three times scoring 107 or more points or failing to reach 92 points in the trio of other tilts. Sportsbooks like sent the total out on this Western Conference clash at 210, but those working the NBA odds prefer the Trail Blazers defense to cause another less than stellar shooting night from the Nuggets and slid the total to 207.5. As an NBA basketball handicapper I’m going to support this line move recognizing the Blazers are  15-4 UNDER in home games when the total is 200 or higher this season. 

NBA Pick – Play Under


NHL – Devils vs. Hurricanes  7:05 ET  MSG+, SPSO
After putting together a nice run to get back into playoff contention, New Jersey has lost three in a row. Though Carolina has only won three times in the past 12 tries, the money line trail is following them, up from -120 to -145. I’m thinking the value is with the Devils here who are 4-0 recently at PNC Arena, outscoring the Hurricanes 14-5. Toss in Carolina’s 5-2 victory over Pittsburgh, they are 6-20 after one or more consecutive Over’s this season, making them play against material for NHL picks

NHL Pick – New Jersey wins


Sportsbook Review Tasty Trends

NBA ATS Trend: New York is 0-9 ATS playing their fifth game in week this season. 

CBB ATS Trend: Canisius is 15-3 ATS after scoring 80 points or more the last two seasons. 

NHL Money Line Trend: Toronto is 0-15 playing against a team with a winning record in the second half of the season.

ARENA ATS Trend: Arizona is 17-4 ATS when playing at home the last couple seasons.

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