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Line Movement, Sharp Action for All 3 Thursday NBA Games: Classic Pros vs. Joes Battle With Lakers vs. Nets


Photo credit: Zhizhao Wu/Getty Images. Pictured: LeBron James

You might be familiar with The Action Network through our content, but we also provide a host of tools for bettors, season-long fantasy players and DFS fanatics. One I want to highlight in this piece is Sports Insights’ live odds page, which allows you to see real-time odds movement and how lines are moving.

As a bettor, it’s not only interesting but important to note where sharp money is coming in on a game. Sometimes a team will get 70% of the spread bets, but the line will actually move drastically in the favor of the other team.

Aligning yourself on the side of smart bettors — or just making sure you’re not consistently on the square side — can be invaluable for those looking to step up their betting game.

In this piece, I’ll walk through both NBA games on the schedule tonight and show how to use the Sports Insights tools to analyze line movement and why the movement has occurred. For reference, here are a few phrases I’ll use, if you aren’t familiar with them:

  • Steam move: Sudden, drastic and uniform line movement across the entire sports betting marketplace. Steam is the result of a sudden overload of money placed at multiple sportsbooks and, in most cases, occurs due to betting groups, betting syndicates and a few key players with the resources to “get down heavily” at multiple locations, all at once.
  • Reverse line movement: Betting line movement that contradicts the public betting percentages

Odds as of Thursday morning and via FanDuel, where Action Network users get a risk-free bet up to $500.

Wizards at Cavaliers

  • Spread: Cavs -2.5
  • Over/Under: 230.5
  • Time: 7 p.m. ET
  • TV Channel: League Pass

This certainly is the least exciting NBA game of the night, featuring two of the worst teams in the league, but bettors are still getting down.

The action has been all over the place, interestingly enough. Very early this morning when the market opened we first tracked a steam move on the Cavs at -1, but since we’ve tracked two on the Wizards, both at +2.

The line now sits at a consensus number of Cavs -2.5, and they’re definitely getting the majority of the action despite the steam on the Wiz. The Cavs have received 63% of the spread bets and 73% of the total money wagered.

The over/under has dipped two points (230.5) from the opening number (232.5), as the under has gotten 56% of the bets and 67% of the money. We’ve tracked two steam moves on the total: Under 231 and then Over 229.5. It seems bettors thought that opening number was too high but then bought it back a bit when it dipped below 230.

Steam moves tracked: Cavs -1, Wizards +2, Wizards +2, Under 231, Over 229.5

[In New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Indiana or West Virginia? Bet now at FanDuel]

Lakers at Nets

  • Spread: Lakers -5
  • Over/Under: 229.5
  • Time: 8 p.m. ET
  • TV Channel: TNT

Kyrie vs. LeBron on national TV. Let’s do this.

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