Triple-doubles dominated the last week of NBA action while an injury to LeBron James has triggered a change in the championship market.
The general feeling around the Atlanta Hawks firing Lloyd Pierce was that the erstwhile coach was hard-done-by.
His side struggled to live up to heightened expectations to start the NBA season. Expectations many considered too high too early for a franchise that has the pieces to be patientt in rising up the standings. Nonetheless, at 14-20 and 11th in the East, Pierce was relieved of his duties.
Enter, Nate McMillan:
Nate McMillan moves to 8-0 as the Atlanta Hawks’ interim coach, tied for fourth in the East at 22-20. So far, McMillan’s making a strong case to keep this job beyond the season.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) March 20, 2021
There is more to it than simply changing the coach. Bogdan Bogdanovic has returned from injury while Danilo Gallinari has finally started to produce the goods. McMillan has also been presented with a favourable schedule to be 8-0 since taking over with the Hawks now 21-20 for 5th in the East.
On a roll and climbing the standings, the Hawks are at $3.40 to win the Southeast Division.
Houston, We Have A Problem
The Houston Rockets are baaaaad.
They’ve now lost 19 in a row with the last 12 coming by double-digits. Those big losses have hurt punters, too.
The Rockets have covered the spread only twice throughout the losing streak.
Avoid at all costs.
Giannis Tripling Up
- 24 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists
- 33 points, 11 rebounds, 11 assists
- 31 points, 15 rebounds, 10 assists
Giannis Antetokounmpo put together three consecutive triple-doubles during the week. He’s the first player in Milwaukee Bucks history to achieve the feat. The Greek Freak has led the Bucks to six wins on the bounce to be 27-14 and closing in on the Philadelphia 76ers (29-13) for the number one seed in the East.
Despite Milwaukee’s purple patch and Philadelphia’s #1 seed, the Brooklyn Nets are significant $1.75 favourites to advance through the East and into the NBA Finals.
Tripling Up Around The League
While Antetokounmpo set a new Bucks record, he wasn’t part of the NBA-record six triple-doubles in one day.
- James Harden: 40 points, 10 rebounds, 15 assists
- Domantas Sabonis: 18 points, 11 rebounds, 11 assists
- Russell Westbrook: 26 points, 14 rebounds 10 assists
- Draymond Green: 16 points, 12 rebounds, 10 assists
- Ben Simmons: 13 points, 10 rebounds, 12 assists
- Nikola Jokic: 12 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists
Remarkably, these six triple-doubles set a new record that had only just been set at five four days earlier.
Injury In La La Land
LeBron James went down with an injury confirmed to be a high-ankle sprain.
X-rays returned a negative result but the Los Angeles Lakers are still waiting for the MRI.
He’s out indefinitely. As a result, the Lakers have fallen to the second line of betting to win the championship at $4.
Nothing angers and saddens me more than not being available to and for my teammates! I’m hurt inside and out right now. 🤦🏾♂️. The road back from recovery begins now. Back soon like I never left. #ThekidfromAKRON🤴🏾
— LeBron James (@KingJames) March 21, 2021
Away Dogs Lose Their Bark
Remember when we highlighted the fast start by underdogs playing on the road throughout the first quarter of the NBA season?
Away Dogs covered at 55.5% up to Week 7. They consistently produced the good for punters, but as expected, the profitable trend didn’t last forever.
The once appealing cover rate for underdogs away from home has levelled out to now be 50.8% after Week 13.
NBA Against The Spread Standings
No changes at the bookends of the NBA ATS ladder. The Phoenix Suns are still the best option for punters while the Houston Rockets are unlikely to be shifted off the bottom at any point this season. Houston’s 3-16 record against the spread at home is diabolical.
After Week 13
|Top 10||Bottom 10|
|Suns (27-13)||Raptors (18-22)|
|Jazz (26-15)||Mavericks (18-22)|
|76ers (24-16-2)||Timberwolves (18-23-1)|
|Knicks (24-18)||Heat (18-23-1)|
|Spurs (23-16)||Pelicans (18-23)|
|Clippers (23-20)||Celtics (18-23)|
|Pistons (22-17-2)||Kings (18-24)|
|Bulls (22-17-1)||Pacers (16-24)|
|Hawks (22-19-1)||Cavaliers (16-25)|
|Nets (22-20)||Rockets (12-28)|