Ice's Burbs Gambling Guide: No Football :(



For the first time since September, there's no football to watch or gamble on. While it makes me want to cry, there's a ton of basketball on this weekend, so I'll keep it positive vibes. To make up for the lack of football, I'm gonna do you guys a service and point out a couple of MLB futures that peak my interest.


I had a solid over .500 percentage last weekend, including a nice 3-1 showing in college basketball. Hopefully, that success can continue as we head into another sports-filled weekend. LEGGOO!!


MLB Futures


Toronto Blue Jays +750 to win A.L. Pennant


When I do future bets, I look for value as opposed to going with the chalk play. The New York Yankees are the big favorite to win the A.L. right now, with odds at +135. The Toronto Blue Jays present a ton of value at +750. They've had a terrific offseason so far, and it's not done yet. The big move was to get former World Series MVP George Springer, arguably the best leadoff hitter in the game today. Toronto also added four quality pitchers with Ross Stripling, Tyler Chatwood, Steven Matz and closer Kirby Yates.


The Blue Jays are also reportedly looking to add even more and they're looking at potentially acquiring former N.L. MVP Kris Bryant and pitcher Kyle Hendricks from the Chicago Cubs. I would try and jump on +750 now, because there's a good chance they make another move that could lower their odds even more.


Washington Nationals +1500 to win N.L. Pennant


The Washington Nationals experienced the dreaded World Series hangover last year. In the COVID-shortened season, they started out slow and could never really get it going. Even with expanded playoffs, they still weren't able to make it. I see a different story this season.


Washington still has a strong rotation, led by Stephen Strausburg and Max Scherzer. That rotation got an even bigger boost with the signing of three-time World Series winner Jon Lester coming over from Chicago. The Nats plucked another Cub away from the Windy City, as they also agreed to terms with power-hitting outfielder Kyle Schwarber. Here's my logic in this situation: when you have three of the top 20 players in the MLB on your team, you always have a chance. Look at what happened in 2019. Nobody thought they were going to beat the mighty Los Angeles Dodgers, but guess what? They did. Throw a couple of bucks on it; who knows what could happen with the 2019 champs.


Corey Seager +3500 to win N.L. MVP


This is my favorite one. Corey Seager was outstanding last year. I watched pretty much every playoff game, and it felt like he had two or three hits in every game. He was on an absolute heater at the plate. Seager has been mostly forgotten since his rookie year in 2016, when he finished third in MVP voting. I expect Seager to continue his dominance at the plate in the 2021 season. The value here is too hard to ignore, so I will responsibly throw a few dollars on Corey Seager to win the N.L. MVP award.


College Basketball


Alabama +1.5 vs. Oklahoma


I absolutely LOVE Alabama here. Oklahoma's coming off of two massive wins against Kansas and Texas. This seems to be a massive let down spot for the Sooners. Plus, Alabama is one of the most talented teams in the country. The Crimson Tide have suddenly gone from middling SEC team to legitimate national title contender. It's hard to ignore Alabama here, especially as the underdog.


Furman-Western Carolina O153.5


This Southern conference match up pits two potent offenses against one another. Both teams are averaging over 78 points per game. Furman's defense is average, allowing a little over 68 per contest, while WCU struggles mightily on that end, allowing around 78 a game. I expect this to be a shootout where both teams could easily get into the 80s.


Florida-West Virginia O148.5


I'm heavy on overs this weekend for good reason. This isn't your typical Mountaineer team. When you think of Bob Huggins teams, defense comes to mind. Not this bunch. They're extremely explosive on offense, led by guard Miles McBride and forward Derek Culver. Florida isn't a pushover, either. Even without one of their best players, Keyontae Johnson, there still one of the top teams in the SEC. 148.5 is too low in this spot. Another easy over cash to start your Saturday.


VMI +9.5 vs. UNC Greensboro


VMI has been a cover machine lately. On Wednesday, they were 1.5 point dogs to Western Carolina and they ended up winning by 26. I don't think they'll beat UNC Greensboro, but I definitely think they can cover the 9.5.


Duquesne -10 vs. St. Joes


St. Joes is not a good basketball team. They had decently-high expectations in the A10 this year, but have struggled mightily. They've managed to only win one game on the season. Against superior opponents, the Hawks have been routinely dominated on both sides of the ball. Even though Duquesne isn't a world-beater, I expect them to blow out St. Joes and send them home with another loss.


NBA


Rockets -110 vs. Pelicans


The Pelicans will be playing the second game of a back to back against a Houston Rockets team that looks to have found their footing after the James Harden trade. The Rockets had a nice three point home win against the Portland Trail Blazers on Thursday, and I think they'll continue their momentum against a poor New Orleans Pelicans squad.


Bulls -1.5 vs. Trail Blazers


Portland continues to be without three key players, including C.J. McCollum and Jusuf Nurkic. Damian Lillard has been fantastic as usual, and I again expect to have a massive night against a bad defensive backcourt for Chicago. But ultimately, I think Zach Lavine and the Bulls will be too much for Lillard to handle on his own.


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