Wednesday was a great night for NBA sharps, contrarians and sportsbooks as unpopular plays went 2-0 ATS. In the early game, the Raptors (+ 3) upset the Celtics 125-122 in double overtime to stay alive and force a decisive Game 7. Toronto only received one-third of spread bets but displayed line freeze value and late reverse line movement. Toronto opened + 3, rose to + 3.5 with the public hammering Boston, then fell back down to + 3 right before tipoff. The Raptors cashed + 131 on the moneyline. Under bettors suffered an awful bad beat in this one. The game was tied 98-98 at the end of regulation and the Celtics had a chance to win it, but instead it went to overtime, AKA the place where unders die. The total opened at 210, closed at 209.5 and landed on 247 thanks to a pair of overtimes.
In the late game, the Clippers (-7.5) game up huge for sharps, beating the Nuggets 96-85. Roughly two-thirds of bets grabbed the points with the trendy dog Nuggets, but liability was always on contrarian favorite Los Angeles, who opened -7.5, reached -8 and won by 11.
Today, we have a packed betting slate with NFL Opening Night, a college football game, 1 NBA game, 1 NHL game and 12 MLB games. Let's discuss a trio of matchups receiving notable sharp action from respected bettors.
For an updated breakdown of Thursday's betting action, be sure to tune in to the VSiN Market Insights Podcast with Josh Appelbaum. It will be posted at noon ET.
8 p.m. ET: UAB (1-0) at Miami Florida (0-0)
UAB already enters this game with a win under their belt having just defeated Central Arkansas 45-35 last week. Meanwhile, this is the season opener for the Hurricanes. This line opened with Miami listed as a 14-point home favorite. The public is all over the Hurricanes due to their name recognition, home favorite status and the buzz surrounding Houston transfer quarterback D'Eriq King making his Miami debut. With two-thirds of bets laying the points, Miami ticked up to -15. That's when you saw some sharp UAB buyback hit the market, dropping the line back down to 14.5. Some books are even at 14. Essentially, we are looking at a sharp line freeze on UAB plus the points. UAB also has notable contrarian value since they're only receiving a third of bets in what will be an incredibly heavily bet (and the only) college football game on Thursday night.
8 p.m. ET: Dallas Stars vs Vegas Golden Knights
This is Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals. After being blanked by the Stars 1-0 in the opener, the Knights rebounded with a 3-0 win in Game 3 to even the series at one game apiece. This Game 3 line opened with Vegas listed as a -165 favorite and the Stars a + 150 dog. We've seen some early money hit the Knights, pushing this line up to Vegas -170. Sharps really have their eyes on this under, though. It's listed at 5.5 with the under juiced to -130, signaling heavy under liability. Some books are juicing up the under closer to -140. If this continues, we may see it drop to 5, in which case getting the hook with the under 5.5 could be crucial. The under is 2-0 so far this series. With the series tied 1-1, the Knights are -239 favorites (71%) at BetMGM to win and advance to the Cup Final. The Stars are + 195.
8:20 p.m. ET: Houston Texans (0-0) at Kansas City Chiefs (0-0)
The Chiefs are coming off a 12-4 regular season, AFC West crown and Super Bowl championship. Houston finished 10-6 and won the AFC South. This NFL opening night showdown is a rematch of the AFC Divisional Round playoffs in which Houston raced out to a 24-0 lead only to lose 51-31 to Patrick Mahomes and Co. This line opened with Kansas City listed as a 10.5-point home favorite. The public is all over the defending champion Chiefs. However, despite two-thirds of bets laying the points, we've seen this line fall from Chiefs -10.5 to -9. This signals some sharp reverse line movement on Houston with pros grabbing the Texans. Historically, big dogs + 7 or more perform well against the spread in the early weeks of the season. We've also seen some smart money hit this under, dropping the total from 55.5 to 54. Some books are even down to 53.5.
Remember, the sports betting market is fluid and constantly changing due to action coming in. Stay up to date with the latest odds by visiting our free VSiN Live Odds Page for Vegas sportsbooks and for other legalized states.