NBA PLAYOFFS: (7-1)
DRUNK ON DERBY DAYS: (14-0)
I was going to focus only on this little horse race that I heard about happening somewhere in Kentucky, but with a friggin’ 7-1 NBA playoff record I see no reason not let the good times roll. I have convinced myself that sobriety is a thing of the past, Mint Julep anyone!!
Orlando @ Detroit -6.5
Many are going to look right away at the fact that the Pistons just played Thursday night while the Magic will have fresh legs since their last game was on Monday. I look at it through a different colored set of lenses….SuperHoward and the boyz have now officially had 4 days off, their longest since the off-season last year which is just long enough to have the body forget the quickness required in NBA tilts. On the Pistons side the fact they only get a days rest is exactly what they want, they are riding a wave of ‘can’t do anything wrong’, and you can bet that their team is finally acting like 1st graders in the locker room cause they are so giddy about their play. To top it off, the Magic watched them dismantle the Sixers, which can’t be good for the ego. I look for Chauncey to give a lesson to Jameer, Rip to shut down Turkoglu, and Sheed to keep Howard busy enough so that my boy Maxiel can go off!! Pistons by 13 as the starters get to rest another 4th quarter.
San Antonio +3 @ New Orleans
At this point in time, I don’t see how I can look at the Spurs and not throw some grocery money at them. Not only are they the champions of yesteryear, but they just walked right through Phoenix like they were an East Coast team. The matchup between Paul and Parker will be great all series long, but the Spurs simply have too much talent in Ginobli and Duncan, I just don’t think Mo Peterson and David West can hang. Why I also love the Spurs in the playoffs is cause they are extremely systematic in how they go about business by controlling the shot clock, keeping turnovers to a minimum, and dominating the defensive glass. This type of play can get very frustrating and make a young team like the Hornets turn into 5 individual players players with their own agenda. Bottom Line, someone has to knock the Spurs out of their throne, and until someone does I don’t believe they deserve the rights to be a damn favorite. Spurs outright by 7.
While everyone else is going with Big Brown today, I’m not gonna be that guy. I agree that the horse has all the qualities of an elite, but starting from the 20 post on a track that was an absolute mess yesterday doesn’t bode well, especially when you look at the fact that this horse has to wear glue on shoes cause of it’s foot problems. Have you ever stepped into mud and tried to pull your foot out? I’m thinkin’ Big Brown loses 2 shoes on his way to a 4th place finish. Below are my thoughts on how everything will shape up.
Win: Monba - This 3 year old is coming off a win at the Blue Grass Stakes and we all know that all Derby winners come off a strong race in their one prior to the big one. Todd Pletcher finally gets his victory in the Derby after an 0-19 start. Pletcher is too good to be denied much longer.
Place: Colonel John – A place ticket for John is about as close to a money lock as you will get from me. Many will have him on their win ticket, I just think the hype is a bit too much today. A good post position combined with a strong horse is a solid #2 to me. I am concerned about John starting next to Pyro, I see Pyro as a loose cannon that could easily mess up the pace and/or line that John needs to take to win.
Show: Adriano – Love the horse, I just think there are two better today.
I am also going with the following:
Exacta – Big Brown and Cowboy Cal. If Brown gets out and can make up the bad post start, Cal will follow. Cal needs to be out front and will stay out their if he is following Brown.
Trifecta Box – Colonel John/Eight Belles/Monba/Visionairre. I like to gamble.