Posts Tagged ‘Chris Bosh’

Okay, so now that I’ve given all grace and glory to LeBron James and the Miami Heat, enough is enough.

I’ve never been a fan of the self-proclaimed King, and the only thing I’ve ever liked about the Heat, realistically is Dwyane Wade and Shaquille O’Neal raising the roof in 2006. Watching Wade do so with James after winning this year’s title didn’t bother me much, but what I can’t stand seeing now is all the articles about a rematch and how this is the next big rivalry of the NBA.

Uhm, excuse me. Did anyone forget about Derrick Rose and the Chicago Bulls?

Anyone else forget if his season painfully ended in the first round of the NBA Playoffs, and it was a torn ACL-injury in Game 1 that ultimately played a significantly played a role in the Bulls losing in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs to the Philadelphia 76ers?

Just as Michael Jordan, albeit never forgotten, was seemingly becoming a distant memory, April 28 became a day Bulls fans had nothing about His Airness to ponder until next year.

Well, as I saw the 2013 NBA Championship Future Odds come out not too long after James proclaimed “It’s about damn time” on national television, and I saw the Thunder and Heat were both +250 to win next year’s championship, I see agrees with me that Chicago is going to be right back in the hunt.

The Bulls are next in line at +500, followed by: the Spurs (+700), Lakers (+1200), the Mavericks (+1500) and at +2000, the Celtics and Pacers.

So I’m not sure why there are so many columnists out there talking about the Thunder and Heat returning for another trip to the NBA Finals next June.

The Thunder? I can see it.

The Heat? I’m not so sure they have an easy path.

First order of business is to get Wade healthy, even if that means shipping him off to Germany to see the Kobe Bryant’s doctor to get that knee back in shape. I’m telling you now, if he doesn’t get that knee fixed NOW, the Heat won’t be around later. Next order of business, find a legitimate big man who can defend guys like Roy Hibbert, Joakim Noah, Brook Lopez and Dwight Howard. Also, there has to be some sort of stipulation that Wade does not play in London, while James and Bosh get enough rest before and after the 2012 Olympics, cause it can be a tiring experience that cuts into needed rest. The Olympics begin in a month, with a full warm-up schedule preceding the games. Remember, Bosh was injured earlier in the playoffs, and we don’t know how he’s feeling now.

Now, as for the Bulls, this is what I read on their website:

“Derrick Rose is doing terrific. He’s been diligent in his rehab. He’s made tremendous progress to this point,” Bulls general manager Gar Forman said. “The surgery obviously was a huge success. The biggest thing that has been encouraging about Derrick has been his mentality towards the rehab. He’s working each and every day, putting a lot of effort into it. We’re optimistic that if he continues to make the kind of progress that he has that we will see Derrick back on the floor at some point next season.”

That’s encouraging news for the Bulls, and the city of Chicago.

Again, I can see the Thunder returning, cause of the Western Conference contenders in line to make a run, I don’t trust the Spurs, Lakers or Mavericks. After the Thunder, the next viable number I see that might be worth an investment at its price: the Los Angeles Clippers at +3000. I mean, why not?

That organization has already started building for the future, while the Spurs, Lakers and Mavs have yet to clean house and start over. It wouldn’t surprise me one bit to see the Clippers continue their ascension in the Western Conference to challenge for the title and move into the NBA Finals.

HOTTIE – If you read my Blog before Game 5 of the NBA Finals, you read about my note regarding Miami-based model/professional sports dancer Alexis Augusto. Well get used to reading about her here, cause I’m going to remind all my players, readers and followers to vote for her every chance I get. I promised her I’d do so, as she is in the running for Maxim Magazine’s Hometown Hotties. And the first step is to get her into the Finals, that way we can get a bit more intimate with her, as I told her Thursday we’d conduct a one-on-one interview so her fans could get to her know her better.

She’s all in! Now it’s up to you to go to her PAGE and vote for this sports fanatic hottie. And trust me, she knows her game.

She’s been on the Miami Dolphins cheerleading roster, she’s been on the Florida Panthers Ice Dancer roster. She was a cheerleader for Florida Atlantic University. She’s a fitness model for VPX Redline and loves her some Yankee pinstripes. The list goes on, but believe me, this lady is all about competition.

As a betting man, my money in the Maxim Magazine Hometown Hottie competition is on Italian-American bombshell from Brooklyn, New York.

Goto her PAGE and vote for her now.


Prior to this series, I told you the Miami Heat were the value play, at anywhere from +150 to +170.

Anyone out there questioning me now about my NBA Finals series pick on the Heat – which again, you got at no charge just before the series started? I tried to tell you the value was with the Heat, and that we’d see experience take over, and a bit frustration take hold of the young and inexperienced Oklahoma City Thunder.

And no, I’m not counting my chickens before they’ve hatched, but now that I’m up 3 games to 1 in this series, I can tell you I’m in position to get back my initial investment by betting Oklahoma City on the moneyline in Game 5. The Thunder are +135 pretty much across the board. So if you bet the Heat to win this series on my recommendation, here’s how you need to figure on getting your initial investment back IF you want to hedge.

For every $100 you wagered on the Heat to win the series, you can wager $74 on the Thunder tomorrow night. So let’s say you $500 invested on Miami to win it all, a $370 wager on the Thunder at +135 tomorrow would get back $499.50 provided the Thunder win.

If the Heat wrap it up tomorrow night, you’d lose the $370, but you’d also win about $800 for your series bet. Subtract your hedge, and you’re still up a little more than $400. The hedge is entirely up to you though.

Personally speaking, I would probably be out to recover anywhere from 30 to 50 percent of the initial investment if I were you. And then progressively grab some of your investment as the series moves forward.

KING – As one of his biggest critics, I have to admit, LeBron James is playing his ass off this postseason. If the self-proclaimed “King” James scores 29 more points in this series, he will join Allen Iverson, Shaquille O’Neal, Hakeem Olajuwon and Michael Jordan as the only players to have scored 700 points in one postseason.

Notably, only two players – but three times – in postseason history has a player averaged 30 points per game, 9 rebounds per game and 5 assists per game: Oscar Robertson in 1963 and James in 2009 and this postseason.

It’ll be long overdue if he can finally place a ring on his finger. I’m just wondering if I will finally be able to call him “King” after doing so.

TIGER – Haven’t had a chance to comment on last week’s collapse in San Francisco yet, but let it be known I am a big Tiger Woods fan. I will root for him until he retires, and already am watching the odds on next month’s British Open. According to, he is a 10/1 favorite to win the Major, which will be held at the Royal Lytham & St. Annes course in Lancashire, England, from July 19-22.

Strange enough fact I came across from last week, and prior to Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s win, the last time Junior won a race had been coincidentally the exact same weekend Tiger Woods captured his last major victory (U.S. Open at Torrey Pines, in San Diego, CA.) on June 15th, 2008. Since that day, Junior had been mired in an unlucky 114 race skid. And though Tiger had won eight tournament victories in 2009, none of them were majors.

HOTTIE – Last, but certainly not least, I have to mention Miami-based model/professional sports dancer Alexis Augusto. Caught up with her recently and promised I’d mention to all my readers/followers/players she is in the running for Maxim Magazine’s Hometown Hotties.

This girl is a sports fanatic, and trust me, she knows her game.

She’s been on the Miami Dolphins cheerleading roster, she’s been on the Florida Panthers Ice Dancer roster. She was a cheerleader for Florida Atlantic University. She’s a fitness model for VPX Redline and loves her some Yankee pinstripes. The list goes on, but believe me, this lady is all about competition.

As a betting man, my money in the Maxim Magazine Hometown Hottie competition is on Italian-American bombshell from Brooklyn, New York.

Goto her PAGE and vote for her now.

While the Oklahoma City Thunder have opened up as series favorites over the two-time Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat, I implore all of you Kevin Durant lovers/LeBron James haters to remember my Top 5 points before making your future bets on the NBA Finals.

1. The Miami Heat, under the guidance of Pat Riley and Dwyane Wade, albeit with Shaquille O’Neal in the middle, have already won an NBA title once, and know what it takes at this point.

2. These particular Miami Heat were already undone once, last season, by another team out to win their first NBA title, like the Oklahoma City Thunder, that being the Dallas Mavericks, who won in six games, 4 games to 2.

3. Those Dallas Mavericks knew what it was like to lose in the NBA Finals, as they fell in the 2006 Finals to the Miami Heat, the ones led by Riley, Wade and O’Neal. The Mavs were spearheaded by veterans like Dirk Nowitzki, Jason Kidd and Tyson Chandler – not a group of youngsters like the Thunder.

4. This will be LeBron James’ third trip to the NBA Finals, and though I hate to use cliches, “the third time is a charm” might be in order at this point in his career. The three-time league MVP averaged 22.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 6.8 assists for the Cleveland Cavaliers, in the 2007 NBA Finals, won by the San Antonio Spurs. Last year he averaged 17.8 points, 7.1 rebounds and 6.8 assists in the Finals, but the Mavs took home the trophy. This year, so far in the postseason, he is averaging 30.8 points, 9.6 rebounds and  5.1 assists. He could very well be on a mission boys.

5. And again, there’s the youth factor. As much as I admire the Thunder, and how they did knock off the last three NBA champions – the Mavericks (2011), Lakers (2009-10) and Spurs (2007) – make note of the personnel on those teams. The Mavericks were a shell of last year’s surprising championship team, especially without Chandler. The Lakers were a mess all season, even the oft-injured and aging Kobe Bryant. And the Spurs, well, they were the No. 1 seed over teams like the Mavs, Lakers and even the Thunder. But in the end, they just couldn’t hang with OKC. Now the Thunder gets a team with plenty of talent, and one that will have been rested by the time Game 1 comes around.

As of 10 a.m. (pst) Sunday, had the Thunder as -160 favorites. Ask me, and the value right now could very well be on the underdog Heat, at +140.

Only one person in the sports-betting world has enough power to cause a domino effect with a betting line, and unless he’s the one who’s initiated a line move on Thursday night’s Game 3 between the Miami Heat and the Indiana Pacers, then the public sure hasn’t been keeping an eye on the Pacers the past couple months.

I can’t personally confirm what sports-betting behemoth Billy Walters is doing in the NBA Playoffs – if he’s even still playing, for that matter – but since the public isn’t exactly the type to worry about an NBA Playoff game the night before, there has to be a reason the point spread has moved from the Pacers laying -1 point – or -1-1/2 at some places, to the Heat now laying the single digit.

It really doesn’t make sense, when you look at it, to move the line on a team traveling off a loss and without a key component (Chris Bosh) to your scoring. Especially against a very dangerous basketball team that brings a 25-11 record back home with it.

My opinion, the Pacers seized the opportunity to take control of this series with an outright win in Game 2, in Miami, the overwhelming favorite to win the Eastern Conference now that the Chicago Bulls are out-of-the-way.

The Heat were a decisive favorite over the Pacers, but I’m telling you right now, if you look a little bit deeper into these lineups, you’re going to find this series is a little more even than most would think.

The Pacers may not have the likes of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade or Chris Bosh – who the Heat no longer have either – but they do have a balanced roster that has turned up their noses at everyone who has ignored them as legitimate threats in the  Eastern Conference.

The aforementioned Big Three for the Heat were the only players on that team to average double figures in points during the regular season. But the Pacers had five players averaging double figures, while George Hill and Tyler Hansbrough were close behind at 9.6 and 9.3 points, respectively. And now that Bosh is unavailable to bang for boards and produce paint points – he was averaging 18 points and 7.9 rebounds per game – I think it poses more of a problem than most South Beach residents would like to believe.

Sure, the underdog in each game of this series might look like a value play, but catching a point or two, after losing the way they did and without a member of the vaunted Big Three… who would want to play the Heat?

Which brings me back to my original statement: Only one person is the sports-betting world has enough power to cause a domino effect with a betting line – and it would be because he’s on a mission and is doing so with a purpose. Walters has been known to trigger those betting dominos, by initiating a little bit of sharp money on the side he’ll eventually play against, as other groups and then the public will follow suit with hopes of catching an assumed-value before it disappears.

I see throughout Vegas, that line moved from Indiana -1, to a pick at some places throughout the morning, anywhere from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. pacific. But shortly before 11 a.m. Vegas time, someone shot out an order on the Heat, moving the line simultaneously to Miami -1. Offshores pretty much followed suit, for instance, went to Pick around 9 a.m. pacific, then Miami -1, about 11 a.m.

Now, with a sophisticated guy like Walters, once he’s seen the money trickling in, and pushing the line where he wants – in this case, possibly, Indiana +1-1/2 or +2 – BAM! He brings in enough to cover his decoy money, and then some, on his actual play right before tip-off of the game.

It’s what makes Walters the best there is.

That all being said, I’m still hopping on one leg back in square one trying to figure out who it was in the first place, because there are some years the sports-betting King has turned off his computers and given his troops the summer off by now.

So what do I know? *Shoulder-shrug*

Guess I’ll be tuned in to my odds page right up to the 4 p.m., pacific tip-off, to see where the line closes. If it comes back down with an instant, I’m going to smile with a pretty good idea the King hasn’t necessarily left the building – ahem, the books – just yet, for the summer.