To play, or not to play, against teams headed into Salt Lake’s rarified air

Posted: March 25, 2013 in NBA
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

So much for the old theory of going against NBA teams that play in Salt Lake City, Utah, with the conception they can’t handle the altitude. This used to be a major basketball betting system, going against teams that play the second of back-to-back nights in Salt Lake, or Denver.

And while those numbers are forthcoming, I wanted to take a look at how teams fared when they ended a road trip of three games or more in Salt Lake City, which eight squads have done.

Boston, New York, Chicago, Cleveland, Washington, Sacramento, Houston and Memphis have all had elongated road trips finish up against the Jazz at EnergySolutions Arena in Salt Lake. And five of those teams ended their road trips by playing their road game in Utah, on the second of back-to-back nights.

Let’s start there, since the Philadelphia 76ers are doing just that tonight.

Boston, New York, Chicago, Houston and Memphis have all done it, with the Rockets being the only team to lose both straight-up (SU) and against the spread (ATS).

The other four all won both on the hardwood and against the spread.

The other three teams that ended their road trips in Salt Lake City, but did not play the final game on the second of back-to-back nights, were Cleveland, Washington and Sacramento.

The overall tally for those teams concluding their junkets with the Jazz at EnergySolutions is 4-4 SU and 6-2 ATS.

Again those playing that final game on the second of back-to-back nights is 4-1 SU and ATS.

Tonight the Sixers are catching +7-1/2 points from Utah, after winning last night in Sacramento, 117-103.

Philadelphia is in on ATS win streaks of 4-1 versus the Western Conference, 4-0 after an ATS cover and 6-1 overall. Conversely, the Sixers are mired in ATS slides of 8-20 when playing with no rest and 1-6 against the Northwest division.

The Jazz, meanwhile, are in on ATS win streaks of 5-0 after a straight-up loss, 5-1 against losing teams and 4-1 overall.

In this series, the home team has covered six straight, while the Jazz are on a 16-7 ATS roll – including 4-0 in Utah.

With the Jazz looking to stay alive in the Western Conference race, and the Sixers in after an offensively explosive game last night in Sactown, I’ll lay the points as your free winner. Take the Utah Jazz tonight in the NBA!!!

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