The biggest bankroll builders and busters of the decade

Dec 29, 2009 |

Global recession, my ass.
 
Not everyone lost money the first 10 years of the century, especially wise guys who consistently bet the farm on the decade’s most generous cash cows.

But those cash cows were far out-numbered by teams that excelled in sending bettors toward bankroll-ruptcy.

Here’s a look at the best and worst bets of the decade.

MLB

Best: Los Angeles Angels

Only seven baseball teams produced a profit this decade. The Angels were by far the best bet.

A $100 player who bet on the Angels every game the past 10 seasons made $10,888.

Their most profitable season was this year, when they finished at +$3,734.

The only other teams to report a profit this decade were: Florida (+$3,411), Minnesota (+$4,550) Oakland (+6,635), San Francisco (+2,466), St. Louis (+$7,423) and Texas (+$447).

The Mariners produced the most profitable single season of the decade. Their 120 wins in 2001 resulted in a profit of $4,693.

Worst: Chicago Cubs

Baseball fans’ affection for the Loveable Losers cost them dearly. The Cubs lost a $100 player $16,276 this decade. The Cubs had profitable seasons only twice and they were puny. In 2008, they made $969 and in 2001, they finished up $318.

Other high-profile losers include: the Yankees -$5,233, Red Sox -$1,170, Dodgers -$2,294 and Mets -$6,151.

The Diamondbacks produced the worst single season this decade, losing $6,125 in 2004.

NBA

Best: San Antonio Spurs

Small-market franchises with mundane stars are gold for gamblers. They’ll never receive the media hype or public love that inflates point spreads.

Tim Duncan and the Spurs were just that team.

The Spurs, who won titles in 2003, 2005 and 2007, went 510-450-19 against the spread this decade, covering the number 52 percent of the time.

Now, compare that to the glitzy Lakers, who won four titles this decade, but went only 485-487-20 ATS.

The mighty Sacramento Kings were the second most successful team in the Association, covering 51.1 percent of the time.

The fledgling Charlotte Bobcats, who popped into the NBA in 2004, covered 51.8 percent of their first 436 games.

Worst: Washington Wizards

Congrats to the Clippers for finally not being the worst at something. That title went to the Wizards, who went 393-461-16 ATS this decade and covered the number a pathetic 45.1 percent.

The Clippers will have to settle for second to last. They covered a whole 45.6 percent (391-449-16) of the time.

NFL

Best: Baltimore Ravens

Defense wins championships. It also makes gamblers money.

The Ravens opened the decade by winning the Super Bowl and covered 54.8 percent of their games the past 10 seasons.

Baltimore edged the Eagles (54.5 percent) and Patriots (53.8 percent) to become the decade’s most profitable NFL squad, despite posting the worst single-season ATS mark with 2007-08’s 3-13 campaign.

The Chargers finished with the best single-season ATS mark, with 2004-05’s 13-1-2 mark.

Worst: St. Louis Rams

The Rams entered the decade as the best team in footb

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