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Sweet Sixteen predictions – These predictions come from The Power Rank’s best member numbers that combine a number of sharp predictors into an ensemble. These NCAA tournament games are considered neutral sites.
- Duke will beat Texas Tech by 0.6 points. Duke has the highest ceiling of any team in this tournament, as all five of their starters could get taken in the first round of the next NBA draft. Texas Tech has the nation’s best defense by The Power Rank’s adjusted points per possession.
- Purdue will beat St. Peter’s by 13.6 points. The cinderella story most likely ends here, as my numbers gives a 7% chance for St. Peter’s to win. The 3 seed Purdue is the highest remaining seed in East that formerly had Baylor and Kentucky.
- Gonzaga will beat Arkansas by 8.7 points. In the Round of 32, Gonzaga only beat Memphis by 4 points. However, at one point in the game, Gonzaga was 7-18 from the free throw line, including multiple misses on the front end of a one and one. The margin of victory could have been larger if they shot their usual percentage, and the Bulldogs did ice the game by finishing 6-6 on free throws.
The Power Rank founder Ed Feng also discussed Sweet Sixteen games on the Gambling with Gold podcast this week.
Scaling up a betting syndicate – Legendary NBA bettor Haralabos Voulgaris joined Spanky on the Be Bettor Bettors podcasts. At 24:08, Spanky says:
To be able to scale up in professional sports betting, you have to deal with the underworld.
His guest agreed, as this comment came after a story of how he bet on the Canadian Football League early in his career. In one of the best sports betting interviews ever, Voulgaris also discussed model vs subjective betting and dealing with variance when he worked for the Mavericks.
Tyreek Hill Leaves the Chiefs – In what might be the most shocking move of this NFL offseason, Kansas City traded its most productive wide receiver in Tyreek Hill to Miami for five draft picks over the course of the next two drafts.
Why would Kansas City give up its top receiver who, over the past six seasons, ranks third in Total EPA among pass catchers behind only Travis Kelce and Davante Adams? Two words: salary cap.
Kansas City already has a lot of expensive deals with quarterback Patrick Mahomes, defensive tackle Chris Jones, etc. With so few players under contract after 2022 and serious depth questions, there were few easy choices (Chiefs apologist Eric Eager goes over these details in the latest PFF Forecast episode).
Kansas City still has the third-lowest odds to win the Super Bowl (+950 per FanDuel Sportsbook). Miami is 15th at 36/1 and tied for second to win the AFC East at 4/1.
Quarterback Carousel – For a fifth-straight season, a different quarterback will be leading the Indianapolis Colts. This week, the team traded for Atlanta’s Matt Ryan, and then the Falcons signed Marcus Mariota to take over.
Indianapolis can move on from Carson Wentz with an otherwise impressive roster, while Atlanta saves money in rebuilding mode (despite the move creating a lot of dead money). The move makes Indianapolis a co-favorite to win the AFC South with Tennessee (+120 per FanDuel Sportsbook).
One of the more stable metrics for quarterbacks from one season to the next is passer rating when not pressured. Per Next Gen Stats, here are the 2021 numbers for starting quarterbacks in the AFC South:
- Ryan Tannehill, 98.4
- Davis Mills, 97.2
- Matt Ryan, 95.2
- Trevor Lawrence, 79.4
Baseball’s Biggest Moves – The Minnesota Twins have longed been considered a small market ball club because they almost never spend money. Per Spotrac.com, Minnesota’s total payroll ranked 17th out of 30 teams in 2021 and has hovered around that ranking in recent history.
But on Tuesday, shortstop Carlos Correa agreed to a three-year, $105.3 million deal with Minnesota, with opt-outs after each season. This season’s ZiPS projections has Correa finishing with the 11th highest fWAR among all hitters at 5.3, and the Twins have the second-shortest odds to win the American League Central at 5/1.
A Boost for the Nets – As vaccine mandates are lifted across the country, one of the bigger beneficiaries may be point guard Kyrie Irving. Shams Charania is reporting New York City plans to allow unvaccinated athletes to be able to play home games, which would include the Brooklyn Nets standout.
Irving has only been able to play in certain road games, and he has averaged nearly 28 points and more than five assists in these games. Brooklyn has been hovering around the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference, but has consistently been one of the favorites to win the NBA Finals.
Literally Taking a Trophy Away – It’s dangerous enough for officials to overturn a game-winning anything once players and teams are either celebrating or leaving for the locker room. It’s another when it involves a championship and is done after the trophy presentation!
Minnesota State and Bemidji State were locked in an overtime battle with the winner earning both the Mason Cup and a spot in the NCAA Men’s Ice Hockey Tournament. Originally, the Mavericks scored, officials declared it a good goal and gave the prize to Minnesota State.
Minutes after awarding the trophy, the Central Collegiate Hockey Association obtained new television footage that showed the net leaving its moorings and the puck sliding underneath the frame. Officials then changed the call and resumed the game. Perhaps fortunately for the league, Minnesota State wound up winning anyway, ultimately celebrating twice.
Data driven betting information
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