Tuley: Friday NHL Best Bet, plus updated ‘takes’ on Sunday’s NFL Championship Games


Friday NHL Best Bet, Thursday Recaps

Thursday was spent catching up with some errands and chores in and out of the Tuley’s Takes home office as well as monitoring the NFL Championship Game line moves plus some horse racing.
I also helped post the horse racing picks of my friend, Ed Sehon (aka Mr. Ed), on Saturday’s big Pegasus card at Gulfstream Park. It’s the biggest card since the Breeders’ Cup and has become one of the biggest annual winter racing events on the calendar. My picks will be in my regular “Team Tuley’s Thoroughbred Takes” column at VSiN.com/horse-racing/ on Saturday morning.
As for my sports picks, we returned to the winner’s circle with Blackhawks-Flames 1P Over 1.5 -135/Ducks-Avalanche 1P Over 1.5 -145 for a parlay payoff of +194. The Ducks and Avalanche both scored in the first 10 minutes to easily cash that leg as both games were played at the same time, but we had to sweat out the other as Blackhawks-Ducks was scoreless for nearly 18 minutes before both teams scored to get us the cash!
We’re just 5-6 with these NHL 1P Overs, but because they’re at plus-money, we’re not back up 2.88 units.



Top NFL Resources:


Let’s recap the rest of Thursday’s betting action and then look for a Best Bet on Friday as we’ll stick to the ice. And then, as has become our custom around here, we’ll rerun our NFL column from Wednesday and update our “takes” on the NFL Championship Games based on the current lines.

Thursday Recaps

NBA: Underdogs went 4-2 SU and ATS on Thursday with the upsets by the Knicks (+8.5 in 120-117 OT win at Celtics), Pistons (+7.5 in 130-122 win at Nets), Hornets (+3 in 111-96 win vs. Bulls) and Mavericks (+1.5 in 99-95 win at Suns). Road teams also went 4-2 SU and ATS. Over/Unders split 3-3.

More NBA: On the season, faves still lead 464-261 SU with 10 games closing pick-’em, but dogs improved to 368-338-19 ATS (52.1%). Home teams lead 440-295 SU and 379-339-18 ATS (52.8%). In totals wagering, Overs still lead 375-348-12 (51.9%).

CBB: USC upset No. 8 UCLA 77-64 as a 4.5-point home underdog. No. 1 Purdue held off Michigan 75-70 and pushed vs. the consensus closing line as a 5-point road fave. No. 6 Arizona beat Washington State 63-58 and also pushed as 5-point road chalk.

NHL: Dogs went 6-3 Thursday with the biggest upsets by the Blackhawks (+320 in 5-1 win at Flames), Ducks (+320 in 5-3 win at Avalanche) and Sabres (+155 in 3-2 win at Jets). Home teams went 5-4. Unders led 5-3-1 with push in CHI-CGY (6). On the season, faves lead 447-288 with 20 games closing pick-’em. Home teams lead 389-353 with 4 neutral-site games. Overs’ lead was cut to 356-355-31.

Friday NHL Best Bet

Senators-Maple Leafs 1P Over -150/Flames-Kraken 1P Over -140 (parlay payoff of +186): The Senators are on a 8-1 1P Over run and are a combined 57-39 (59.4%) with the Maple Leafs while the Flames are 32-15 as the No. 3 1P Over team after helping us cash last night while the Kraken are No. 6 at 28-19 for a combined 60-34 (63.8%). Another potential play is Blue Jackets-Canucks 1P Over 1.5 at -160 as Vancouver is tied with Anaheim for the league’s top 1P Over record at 35-13 (72.9%). All NHL 1P betting stats from @PSUOtto on Twitter.

Here’s the rerun of our weekly breakdown of the NFL schedule, with updates in italics:
Welcome to our regular Wednesday “Tuley’s Takes Today” column where we give our breakdown of all the games on the NFL schedule, which this week is the two Conference Championship Games, and give our Best Bets and “pool play” strategy.
This week has a different feel to it as we’ve had a change of favorite in the AFC title game. Regular readers and those who caught my weekly Sunday night appearance on “The Greg Peterson Experience” – where my NFL early Best Bets have gone 22-12 ATS (64.7%) since the start of November – know that I gave out a 2-team, 6-point teaser on 49ers +8.5/Bengals +7.5 and advised listeners/readers to bet it ASAP due to the uncertainty of Patricks Mahomes’ high ankle sprain and the early action coming in on the Bengals.
Sure enough, the money continued to come in on Monday and the spread flipped from Chiefs -1 to Bengals -1 and then -1.5, which is where it still sat as I’m writing this early Wednesday morning. I loved that play and those who hesitated missed it; however, as I’ll discuss further below, the value has probably flipped to the Chiefs +7.5 (and those who did jump in with us on the Bengals +7.5 now have a shot at a 14-point middle). Friday update: the line has flipped back to the Chiefs being favored, offering the chance for those that missed Bengals +7 or +7.5 to get our original wager.
But let’s start with the NFC Championship Game at 3 p.m. ET/noon PT on Sunday. Posted lines are as of early Wednesday morning unless otherwise noted. For current lines, check out the VSiN NFL odds page.

San Francisco 49ers at Philadelphia Eagles (-2.5)

We have two great matchups on Sunday. I knew immediately when the lines came out that the proper play was to tease both underdogs through the key numbers of 3 and 7, so that’s why we went with 49ers +8.5/Bengals +7.5 as we expect both games to be one-score games.
As for this individual game, I also like the 49ers plus the points, though I’ve been waiting for it to get to 49ers +3 just in case they lose by a field goal. The line opened Eagles -1 and -1.5 at some books and was bet steadily higher to -2.5 with BetMGM going to -2.5 -120 before settling at -2.5 -115 as well as several other books, so we’re hoping the money keeps coming in on the favorites as 76% of the bets and 77% of the money at DraftKings was on the Eagles -2.5 as of early Wednesday on the VSiN Betting Splits Page (check back for current figures).
Even though the Eagles have been the best team in the NFC all season – and impressively returned to form in their 38-7 rout of the Giants in the divisional round – I still trust the 49ers more on their 12-game winning streak (8-4 ATS) as their No. 5 offense should have more success against the Eagles’ No. 2 defense and their No. 1 defense has a better chance of getting stops against the Eagles’ No. 3 offense.
I usually lock in my Best Bets for the week in these Wednesday columns (which used to appear in our “Point Spread Weekly” digital magazine), but it’s my column and just like how we’re able to wait for the best number in the real world, I’m reserving the right to make 49ers +3 a conditional pick.

Best Bet: 49ers +8.5 in teasers, plus 49ers +3 if we can get it (pool play: 49ers 55/45 in ATS contests – higher at +3 – but Eagles still 55/45 in SU pools).
Thursday update: more books have gone to Eagles -2.5 -115, but still waiting to get 49ers +3.
Friday update: the South Point was the first book to move to Eagles -3/49ers +3 (and they stick to -110 each way) at 11:43 p.m. PT late Thursday, so hopefully more books follow suit. 

Cincinnati Bengals (-1.5) at Kansas City Chiefs

I really see this game as a toss-up, with the Chiefs playing in their fifth straight AFC Championship Game against the defending AFC champion Bengals, who have overcome the “Super Bowl loser hangover” to go 14-2 SU (13-3 ATS) since an 0-2 start.
The big news has been Mahomes’ high ankle sprain, though he’s expected to play. But the fact is that his counterpart Joe Burrow is 3-0 against the Chiefs, all as underdogs, in the past 13 months, so the Bengals really have their number. It was an easy call to jump on the 49ers +8.5/Bengals +7.5 teaser on Sunday night.
Now that the line has flipped to the Bengals -1.5 as of Wednesday morning, the value has also flipped to the Chiefs +7.5 in teasers for those who missed the early bet (and too juicy to pass up the 14-point middle for those who did join us on Bengals +7.5). Even though we still believe the Bengals are the right side and the more likely winner, we also think that Mahomes will keep the Chiefs in the game – and even if Chad Henne is pressed into service, he again looked capable when he led a 98-yard TD drive against the Jaguars before Mahomes returned to the lineup. Regardless, we’re counting on a one-score game either way.

Best Bet: Bengals +7.5 in teasers for those who got it; now, Chiefs +7.5 in teasers (pool play: Chiefs 55/45 in ATS contests assuming they’re listed at +1.5, though Bengals 55/45 in SU pools).
Thursday update: the line moved to pick-’em at most books on Wednesday with reports of Patrick Mahomes making progress with his injured ankle, taking it out of the "teaser zone," while South Point moved to Chiefs -1 as of early Thursday.
Friday update: more books moved to Chiefs -1 on Thursday, with Circa the first to go back to Chiefs -1.5 as of early Friday, so that’s giving more people the chance to have both sides of the teaser on this game.