Monday, 1 January 2001

BLUnders System

BLUnders (Big Line Unders) is a neat little system that I came up with when I was asked my opinion on NBA Totals betting in games where one side was heavily favoured.

My gut response was that Unders was more likely to offer value, my thinking being that a team with a comfortable lead has a tendency to psychologically ease up, rest starters, and in addition the often crucial extra points from the fouling towards the end of a close contest are absent.

I looked at the data for the last twenty seasons to see if this idea had any merit, and found that while the older data from 1995-2004 showed more equity between Overs (474) and Unders (480), the numbers since 2005 showed more of a bias (54.8%) towards Unders (487 - 402) and since 2010, even more of a bias at 56.5% (247 - 190).

The number of qualifiers is a little under 100 per season, a very manageable number for a part-timer, although the 2015-16 season has seen an increase with the dominance of the Golden State Warriors and San Antonio Spurs having an effect.

One additional note here is that the system is even more profitable in the play-offs. In the 20 completed seasons since 1994, the Unders has a 15 - 10 advantage.

** Update after 2015-16 season. 

For the fifth consecutive season, the system returned a profit, albeit lower than the previous four seasons.
Most qualifying matches are, as might be expected, home games, but on the rare occasions (less rare over the past two seasons) when it is the Away team favoured, the results are:
The second system I play alongside the BLUnders mentioned previously meant that the combined totals for the season ended up as below:

Not the sexiest of profits perhaps, but as I have said before, their value lies in the churn volume and the ease with which selections are determined.

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