GREG GAMBLE’S 2008 PIGSKIN PICKS: 58-38 ATS...60%
NFL 22-17 - NCAA 17-11 - Teasers 19-10 - Lovely Ladies 96-0
GREG GAMBLE’S 2008 HARDWOOD PICKS: 12-8 ATS…60%
NBA 7-4 - NCAA 3-4 - Teasers 2-0 - Church League 69-0
GREEN BAY PACKERS @ CHICAGO BEARS (-4)
Do you know how frickin’ cold it is in Chicago…so cold my 24 oz Icehouse was frozen by the time a finished walking my white tiger around the block this morning! Call me crazy, but I honestly believe Green Bay has no desire to even suit-up for tonight’s festivities. While Chicago’s playing for a playoff spot and some redemption after getting blown-out in Lambeau, the Packers are playing for nothing except pride…and my guess is pride will be thinking about sitting next to a heater more than the pigskin. Throw-in the reports of infighting from Packerland as players and coaches are pointing fingers on who to blame for their demise, and as soon the Monday Night magic wears-off I expect the Packers to be looking for the bus.
As for the game-plan, expect a heavy dose of Matt Forte as the Pack ranks 24th in rushing D and have looked even worse since LB Nick Barnett was knocked-out for the season. On the offensive side of the ball for GB, while Rodgers has played well in first season under center, the cold & windy conditions, as well as, the added pressure from a season spinning out of control should make this a nightmare for the Cal Bear. I know the Bears secondary has been susceptible to the pass, but as the season has progressed many of their youngsters have developed into quality playmakers (D. Manning, K. Payne, & C. Graham). Especially with a riled-up fandom on their side, I expect the aggressive group to create a few turnovers & look more impressive as the night wears on. I could go on, but it’ really that MFin simple!
Final Score: BEARS 23 PACKERS 10
GREEN BAY PACKERS @ CHICAGO BEARS (UNDA 40)
Once the Bears get up tonight, look for Lovie to simply pound the ball ad nauseam to ensure his QB doesn’t make the same mistakes he made on his last nighttime stage (3 INTs in a loss to Minny). Especially after the criticism O-Coordinator Ron Turner & he received following the Saints game, don’t be surprised to see Orton with less than 20 pass attempts tonight. On the flipside, with a banged-up O-Line and a QB feeling plenty of pressure from the Cheeseheads the last few weeks, I don’t think Green Bay has the confidence to make things happen on a frozen Solider Field.
Final Score: BEARS 23 PACKERS 10
*Since this morning's write-up, Anthony has been ruled out for tonight
PORTLAND BLAZERS (+3) @ DENVER NUGGETS
Since the Iverson for Billups swap, it’s amazing how Carmelo (probable-elbow) has completely transformed his game. While always a dominate scorer, Anthony actually seemed to enjoy letting the world know he had no intention of putting effort into the defense end. Now, with Chauncey bringing in a professional swagger, all of a sudden he’s attacking the glass and actually putting-up a hand on D. That being said, all the luv the Nugs were getting while playing the bottom-feeders after the trade overshadowed their still short bench and inept frontcourt.
In the paint, George Karl has limited options as K-Mart (12 ppg, 7 rpg) is a shell of a player he once was, Nene is merely a big-body that cleans-up Melo’s misses, Linas Kleiza thinks he’s a small forward, and the Birdman is a one-trick pony (swatting shots into the third row instead of trying to block it to a teammate). While Carmelo has stepped-up his performance on the glass and Chauncey has pointed the bigs in the right direction, Denver just can’t compete against anybody with some size. Speaking of Melo, no matter what he says his ailing elbow is huge concern for Karl & Co. In his last two games, the All-Star is 8-27 from the field and starting to shy-away from contact (last two games: 4 free throw attempts & 3 rebounds).
As for the squad I’m playing tonight...TOUCH ME HERE
As for the squad I’m playing tonight, Portland has looked sharp since overcoming their first losing streak of the season hammering Sacramento and handling Phoenix in their last two. Brandon Roy (last 5 games: 36.4 ppg, 5.6 rpg, 5.0 apg) has been a beast of late while LaMarcus Aldridge (last 5 games: 20 ppg, 8.2 rpg) should have a filed day against Denver’s defenseless frontcourt. I know the naysayers will tell you the Blazers have struggled on the road, but this cat believes that’s a trend ready to change! PORTLAND WINS OUTRIGHT!