See spot, see spot bet: This week's best spot bet opportunities

Dec 11, 2012 |
Billy Donovan knowns the dangers of December's distractions too well.
Photo By - USA Today Sports
Billy Donovan knowns the dangers of December's distractions too well.
Photo By - USA Today Sports
Spot bets are a classic handicapping practice that has proven profitability no matter what sport you’re betting. Whether it’s a team looking past this week’s opponent, one coming off a hard-fought victory, or a rough patch of schedule, bettors can find value picking their spots.

Here’s a look at some possible spot bet opportunities this week:

Letdown spot

Teams don’t always have to win in order to set up a letdown spot. The Houston Rockets did everything but win versus the San Antonio Spurs Monday, losing 134-126 in overtime.

Houston was without star shooting guard James Harden (sprained ankle) and finally got its money’s worth out of free-agent acquisition Jeremy Lin, who tied a career high with 38 points in the loss.

While it’s still early in the NBA schedule, a win over the Spurs would have gone a long way for the Rockets in the Western Conference standings. Now Houston has to avoid a hangover with the lowly Washington Wizards coming to town Wednesday.

Look-ahead spot

The Seattle Seahawks will take the national stage for Sunday Night Football on Dec. 23 after the league shuffled its Week 16 slate to better accommodate NBC. Seattle hosts the San Francisco 49ers that night with the NFC West title possibly hanging in the balance.

But before that massive matchup with the Niners, the Seahawks get their passports stamped and travel to Toronto for a meeting with the Buffalo Bills. Oddsmakers opened Seattle as a 4-point favorite but that number has since been bet up to -5.5. The Seahawks set a franchise record for points in a single game and handed Arizona its worst loss ever in a 58-0 thumping this past week.

Schedule spot

The Florida Gators head west for one of their biggest non-conference games of the year this weekend. Florida faces the Arizona Wildcats in Tucson Saturday night, with a late start time of 10 p.m. ET.

Not only does the tipoff (8 p.m. in Tucson) work against the Gators but the long layoff during midterms halts any momentum UF has gained en route to a 7-0 SU (4-1 ATS) start to the season.

The Gators played those seven games – and half of one versus Georgetown on the deck of the USS Bataan – in a span of 24 days and never left the Sunshine State. Now, they head into Arizona having been off for 10 days.

Florida lost to Rutgers as an 8.5-point road favorite in overtime last December, was upset by Jacksonville (no odds) in December the year before that, and suffered a three-game skid – capped off by a shocker to South Alabama (+19) – in December 2009.
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