2012 NBA Finals Preview: Who do the Betting Trends Favor?

The 2012 NBA Finals is a dream match-up of young superstars, as the Miami Heat take on the Oklahoma City Thunder beginning on Tuesday, June 12 in Oklahoma City.

Could LeBron/Durant be the next Magic/Bird? With a three-time scoring champ in one corner, and a three-time MVP in the other, both players certainly have the necessary credentials. But who do the betting trends favor in this epic matchup?

The Public Has Bet the Over in 87% of NBA Playoff Games. Are They Right?

The Celtics’ shocking 94-90 victory over the Heat last night not only completely shifted momentum, but also marked the fourth consecutive time the over has hit this series. That has dropped Boston’s postseason record for unders to 45-43 (51.1%, -1.01 units) during the Big Three Era.

This recent scoring binge has also been detrimental to betting the Heat’s unders, which dropped into the red for the first time with a 37-36 record (-.99 units) since 2006 and 15-19 (-4.74 units) since LeBron took his talents to South Beach.

Are Home Teams Undervalued in the Playoffs?

With another thrilling victory for the Celtics last night, the series has been knotted at two games a piece as the action moves back to Miami. The win not only shifts the momentum of the series, but continues a prevalent playoff trend — and no, it’s not just unpredictable officiating.

Boston’s victory means that the home team has won every game of the series and the same thing can be said in the Western Conference showdown between the Thunder and Spurs. But does this apparent home team bias translate to sports bettors?

Who Will The Bobcats Take With the 2nd Pick in the Draft? Oddsmakers Have a Surprising Favorite

The NBA draft lottery took place on Wednesday night, prior to the Celtics/Heat game, and the draft order is now set. The formerly league-owned New Orleans Hornets won the top pick, spurring conspiracy theories to blow up the internet and dropping the historically woeful Bobcats down to the number two slot.

Although losing out on Anthony Davis (who many talent analysts view as the only sure thing in this year’s draft class) hurts, Charlotte will still land a potential franchise cornerstone with their pick. But who will that selection be?

Do NBA Teams Really Play Better Defense in the Playoffs?

Throughout the regular season, NBA highlights are dominated by dunks, buzzer-beaters and the obligatory JaVale McGee “Bonehead Play of the Day.”

Sometimes a ferocious rejection gets sprinkled in, but for the most part, highlights focus on offense. Do you remember the last time Sportscenter’s Top 10 included a fundamentally sound boxout or some solid help defense? I didn’t think so.

While offense rules the regular season, the perception among fans is that once the playoffs begin, teams turn up the defensive pressure. We’ve all heard it before, defense wins championships, right?

But is that perception a reality? We looked back in our archives to answer the question, Do NBA teams really clamp down defensively once the Larry O’Brien Trophy is within reach?