Tuley's Takes Today: Sunday recaps, NBA zigzag discussion, Monday best bets 4/18

By Dave Tuley  (VSiN senior reporter) 

April 18, 2022 05:16 AM

Easter Sunday was a great day in the Tuley’s Takes home office – and the rest of the house – as we had my brother, sister-in-law and nephew over for lunch/dinner after the kids had their annual Easter egg hunt in the morning and mostly filled up on chocolate and jelly beans.

I shared with you readers that I took my son, Maddux, to Knott’s Berry Farm on Wednesday, but since returning I still feel like I’m riding a roller coaster as we had a Great – not just a Good – Friday and then a Sad Saturday, but then had a Super Sunday.

We won with our Best Bet on the Nets + 4 at the Celtics as they covered in a 115-114 loss, nearly pulling the outright upset. That improved our record to 41-22-1 (65.1 percent) with our top play of the day the past 64 days (that’s 9-plus weeks). We also hit our second NBA play of the day with the Bulls + 10 covering in their loss at Bucks and also went 2-0 with Unders in the two USFL games played on Sunday. It wasn’t a perfect day as we lost with our top MLB play on the Cardinals and our lone NHL First-Period Over play on the Panthers-Red Wings, but at least we had our plays listed in order of preference and only lost our lowest plays. Note: I received what I considered to be constructive criticism from a Twitter follower who said to stop post NHL 1P Over plays. My reply was: “Points well taken...but I feel I've been open with my readers that these NHL 1P plays have cooled off, which is why I've been listing them last (I still have people asking for my daily preferences so they can make their own decisions, so that's what I do.” And that’s what we’ll continue to do. If you feel they’ve run their course, then by all means go ahead and pass, but they’re there for those who want them.

Let’s recap the rest of Sunday’s betting action and try to keep the good times rolling with our plays on Monday.

Sunday’s recaps

NBA: Faves went 4-0 SU on Sunday but 2-2 ATS with the Nets (+ 4 at Celtics) and Bulls (+ 10.5 at Bucks) covering as dogs in SU losses. The Heat (-6.5 vs. Hawks) and Suns (-9.5 vs. Pelicans) covered as chalk. Home teams (same as faves) also went 4-0 SU and 2-2 ATS. Unders went 3-1.

More NBA: Favorites went 7-1 SU in Game 1s on Saturday and Sunday, but just 5-3 ATS. Home teams 6-2 SU (Mavs lost as home underdog, accounting for the difference), but just 4-4 ATS. Over/Unders tied 4-4 after Unders went 6-0 in the play-in tournament.

USFL: Gamblers (+ 3.5) upset Panthers 17-12 Sunday and Breakers (-5.5) covered in 23-17 win over Stars. Both games stayed Under their betting totals. Bandits-Maulers postponed until Monday. Including Saturday's opener, faves are 2-1 SU and ATS so far in Week 1 while Unders lead 2-1.

MLB: Faves went 9-5 with upsets by the Orioles (+ 175 vs. Yankees), Marlins (+ 130 vs. Phillies), Cubs (+ 110 at Rockies), Pirates (+ 110 vs. Nationals) and Rays (-103 at White Sox). Home teams went 10-4. Overs 8-5-1 with push in the Pirates' 5-3 win vs. the Nationals with an Over/Under of 8.

More MLB: Faves (9-5 on Sunday) lead 83-57 SU (59.3 percent, right around historical averages) so far on the season with 2 games closing pick-'em Home teams (10-4 Sunday) reclaimed lead at 73-69. Unders (5-8-1 Sunday) still lead 76-56-10 (57.6 percent) overall.

NHL: Faves went 4-0 SU on Sunday (after going an impressive 14-0 on Saturday) with Sabres-Flyers and Blues-Predators closing consensus pick-'em. note: Sabres were + 1.5 on puck line, so won as dogs if using that to determine fave/dog). Overs went 4-1-1 with the push in Panthers-Red Wings (7) games.

More NHL: Many people/websites are Tweeting that NHL faves are 20-0 the last 3 days, but I have Sabres-Flyers and Blues-Predators closing PK on Sunday. To me, that’s misleading. Yes, the Sabres (who beat the Flyers 5-3) were favored at some books, but just as many books closed them as dogs. PLUS, anyone claiming they were favored are ignoring the majority of books that had the Sabres + 1.5 dogs on the puck line, too. I’m just sayin’ that I haven’t seen any tickets where someone parlayed all 6 favorites (it seems like there should be some), and I suspect that's because anyone doing that probably used the Flyers instead of the Sabres, so again it’s why I say that “20-0” claim is misleading (in addition, the Blues opened as faves at the Predators).

Monday’s Takes

Mavericks + 5.5 vs. Jazz: As I discussed with my VSiN colleague Scott Seidenberg on “The Lookahead” on Sunday night, with Game 1s of the NBA playoffs behind us, the obligatory topic is to discuss the “zigzag theory” (aka “loser of the last theory) in which we bet the SU loser in the next game against the spread (and preferring when we’re getting points as in this case). We also made sure to mention that the Gold Sheet is given credit for first writing about this, but it’s not as strong as it was 15-20 years ago. However, I believe it’s still important to at least be aware of it and incorporate it into your own handicapping, even though it’s nowhere near the automatic play it once was. We know Luka Doncic is again expected to be out for the Mavericks, but they had their chances in the Game 1 loss to the Jazz before failing to cover. With the added motivation of not wanting to go to Utah down 0-2, we’re hoping Doncic’s teammates pick him up. Besides, the Jazz should be content with just getting a split in Dallas. (Note: I’m not as interested in the Raptors or Nuggets plus the points in their zigzag roles, so we hope this shows how we’re not just betting the zigzag blindly but being selective). More of this on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Maulers + 6/Under 41.5: Hey, we have bonus Monday night football as the Tampa Bay Bandits-Pittsburgh Maulers game was postponed on Sunday. I was previously passing on this game, but with the line inflated to 6 (and me believing there’s not much difference in these teams’ overall rosters), I’m taking the points. In addition, I already said I was taking the Under in all Week 1 games and we’re 2-1 heading into this matchup.

Angels + 140 at Astros: I didn’t get to mention this play on “The Lookahead” as we didn’t get around to talking about baseball, but this is my favorite MLB underdog play on Monday. Both pitchers (Lorenzen and Garcia) pitched well in their season debuts and we’re getting a fair price on the Angels in what should be closer to pick-’em in my opinion. Note: Yes, we know Mike Trout is out, but I’m not one to overreact to one player being in or out of a lineup (and the Angels have played many times without him).

Parlay Capitals-Avalanche 1P Over 1.5 -165/Devils-Golden Knights 1P Over 1.5 -155: See our note above about these NHL 1P Over plays, but I’m combining these two in a parlay.

Good luck today (and every day!).



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