What’s Driving Raptors vs. 76ers Game 4 Line Movement?
Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Joel Embiid and Kawhi Leonhard
- After opening at +1, the Sixers are now 2.5-point favorites in Game 4 against the Raptors.
- Betting market percentages and Sports Insights' Bet Signals explain the drastic line change.
If you happened to catch a glimpse of the Raptors-76ers Game 4 point spread prior to this morning, there’s a good chance it looked quite a bit different than it does right now.
Despite its convincing 21-point victory in Game 3, Philly opened as a 1-point underdog for Game 4. Initial bettors — and even perhaps some sharp ones, according to the tools at Sports Insights — drove that line up further to Toronto -1.5.
But now the line favors the Sixers by 2.5 points with about four hours left until tipoff. So what’s happened in between to cause such a drastic shift?
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For starters, Philly won the respect of the betting public with its Game 3 performance. For the first time this series, the Sixers are comfortably the more popular bet, attracting 65% of spread tickets (they got 51% in Game 1). But for a line to move four points, a team needs more than just popularity among the average Joes.
What does help is money, and the Sixers have generated plenty of that. Their 65% backing has accounted for 82% of actual dollars wagered on the spread, suggesting that the bigger bettors are backing Philly. And bigger bettors, in general, tend to be sharper.
Sports Insights Bet Signals have confirmed that the wiseguys have, indeed, taken Philly’s side. Following the small initial wave of professional activity on Toronto, three Bet Signals — indications of market-wide line movement caused by sharp action — have been triggered on the Sixers, coming at +1, -1.5 and -2.
It should also be noted that the Raptors will be without Pascal Siakam, although the announcement of his absence resulted in just a half-point reaction in the betting market.