Monday’s betting tips: Mavs still cashing as playoff underdogs

Apr 29, 2012 |
Who’s hot

NBA: Dallas is 9-1-1 against the spread in its last 11 playoff games as an underdog dating back to last season's title run.

NBA: The under is 22-5 in Miami’s last 27 home games.

NHL: The New York Rangers are 21-10 in their last 31 games as a home favorite.

NHL: Los Angeles has won four straight road games.

MLB: The over is 22-8-2 in the last 32 meetings between Minnesota and the L.A. Angels.

Who’s not

NBA: Oklahoma City is 0-4 against the number in its last four.

NBA: Indiana has dropped four straight against the spread.

NHL: Washington is 0-6 in its last six Conference Semifinal games.

NHL: St. Louis is 1-4 in its last five meetings with Los Angeles.

MLB: Texas is 6-13 in its last 19 meetings with the Toronto Blue Jays.

Key stat

22 – Los Angeles Angels slugger Albert Pujols went hitless in four trips to the plate Sunday and has yet to hit a home run through the first 22 games of the season. He snapped an 0-for-21 skid on Thursday, but is 2-for-12 with a couple of singles since then. The Angels have watched the under go 15-7 to begin the season.

Injury that shouldn’t be overlooked

Brandon Dubinsky, New York Rangers – Dubinsky sat out Game 1’s win over Washington with a knee or ankle injury and isn’t expected to play in the second game of the series. The hard-nosed center was seen on crutches Sunday, so while the team is staying tight-lipped about the injury, it could be more serious than originally thought.

Game of the day

Dallas Mavericks at Oklahoma City Thunder (-6.5, 194.5)

Notable quotable

“We’ve been careless in recent games and only have ourselves to blame for being in this position. We should have been going to City with an unassailable lead. But, instead, we are facing a very difficult game with everything at stake. Shame on us. There is no excuse. A year without a title for a club like Manchester United would be a very bad year for everyone at the club. It would be a disaster.” – Manchester United winger Nani on his team giving up its lead atop the Premier League table. If United loses to City in Monday’s Manchester derby, City will move into first place due to goal differential. United is set at +235, City is at +105, with the draw at +225.

Notes and tips

Boston Celtics guard Rajon Rondo was hit with two technical fouls and bumped an official in the closing seconds of the Celtics' loss to the Atlanta Hawks on Sunday, causing him to be ejected from the game and leaving open the possibility that he will be suspended for Game 2 of the series. Rondo was upset when teammate Brandon Bass was called for a loose-ball foul with 41 seconds left in the Hawks' 83-74 victory in Atlanta. Rondo disputed the call and was called for a technical. He then bumped official Marc Davis, earning a second technical and automatic ejection.

The New York Yankees announced Sunday that struggling starting pitcher Freddy Garcia has been sent to the bullpen. Yankees manager Joe Girardi said it was possible right-hander David Phelps would move into the rotation. "He's pitched well enough to say that if there is a guy you want to move up that you could do that," Girardi told the New York Times on Sunday. Garcia has struggled this season as a starter. The right-hander is 0-2 with a 12.51 ERA. On Saturday, Garcia allowed six earned runs in 1 2/3 innings. It was the second game in a row he had failed to make it through two innings. Girardi said Garcia has not had the velocity or the crispness in his pitches that was expected.

New York Knicks point guard Jeremy Lin went through some light drills on Sunday and said he hopes to return to action before the end of New York's first-round series against the Miami Heat. Lin, who had surgery on April 2 to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee, had a bit of a setback Sunday when he experienced soreness in his knee, but he still would like to participate in contact drills by Tuesday or Wednesday. Lin told the New York Post that he could not return earlier than next Sunday's Game 4. "I don't really want to make a promise because I just don't know," Lin told the Post on Sunday. "If I felt good today, then that would be more of a possibility. But I don't feel that great today."

Vladimir Guerrero, who is now a free agent, will work out for Arizona Diamondbacks general manager Kevin Towers in the Dominican Republic some time this week, reported Sunday. Guerrero, 37, hit .290 with 13 home runs for the Baltimore Orioles in 2011, but became a free agent after the season. He wants to continue to play and had said he would consider playing in Japan. He also drew some interest from the Cleveland Indians last month.

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