Saturday, March 24, 2007

March Madness Elite 8 Day 1 Picks

By Pauly

Sometimes there are moments in life when suicide is a viable option. The world makes no sense whatsoever. You feel embarrassed, humiliated, dejected, and sitting in a cold puddle of utter depression which may or may not include your own urine. When Wall Street traders and gamblers lose big, they are bombarded with waves of those demure feelings.

I don't know how I got into that position, but someone... anyone... shoot me now before the pain sinks in deeper.

I didn't sleep much last night and it wasn't the insomnia keeping me up. It was a big loss that went down after a day that started out perfect. Within a matter of a few minutes, I experienced a 6K swing. If North Carolina and Oregon don't cover, I win big as my March Madness roll increases to the size of a small poodle. There's a fine line between going 4-0 and 2-2 and I got my ass ripped apart last night.

I went with all of the underdogs and by mid-afternoon, I was walking on air. I nailed an easy NBA bet with the Mavs -8.5 against the Celtics along with Butler and Vandy getting points. I knew that Georgetown and Florida would win but by a small margin. I felt the same way about USC and like Vandy and Butler, they jumped out to a comfortable first half lead. Only with the Trojans, the shit hit the fan in the second half. The Heels outscored them by 19 (including an 18-0 run) with Tyler Hansborough scoring a paltry 5 points for the entire game. That's what happened when you commit 10 more turnovers and get outrebounded. Not to mention shooting 5-18 from downtown. In the last two minutes, they took four shots... all treys... and missed each one. USC didn't score a single point in the last three minutes and scored just two points in the last 4:25. Talk about a bad beat.

The UNLV game was pure torture. The sportsbook at Red Rock was filled with UNLV fans and alumni wearing red to support their team. They looked good early but then out of nowhere Tajuan Porter had the game of his life and every three pointer that he hit was a tiny little dagger that pierced my heart. When the dust cleared, Porter dropped 33 points on UNLV including 8 treys. He went 8-12 from downtown. UNLV shot 9-33 from three point range and scored just one more than Porter's 8 treys. They also shot crappy from the floor and FT line.

UNLV looked like they were dead until an amazing 17-4 run late in the second half to pull within 4. They would get as close as 2 with a few seconds left. The money line bet was toast, but I was ahead with the points. I was getting 2.5 and 3 on two different slips. Of course, Oregon nailed the free throws to put the game out of reach. Another wild beat.

I can't recall ever losing so many games by 1 and 2 points in a single year during March Madness. I'm 26-16-4 overall. I'm up for the entire March Madness even though all my Las Vegas gains were wiped out thanks to North Carolina and Oregon.

I was wicked pissed after the last two loses and stewing in a pot of gambler's anger. Since I was in the middle of the sportsbook, I had to contain myself and walk away silently. If I was alone at home and suffered those loses, I would have punched a hole in the wall the size of Webster. I would have kicked my dog if I had one. If I had a litter of kittens, I would have tossed them in the microwave. Consumed with ire, I wanted to head butt the lone Oregon Ducks fan in the casino. I wanted to find an LA douchebag with a Mercedes and key his fucking car. I wanted to piss and shit on Tim Floyd's mother. In essence, I just wanted to die.

The hardest part to being stuck in Las Vegas was to ignore the temptation to get it back at the tables. Luckily, I just headed to the cafe and ate a late dinner with JW, Friedman, Derek, Senor, and Change100. I brooded my loses and couldn't wait until Saturday morning to come around so I could bet on the Elite 8 games.

Senor got super drunk and couldn't stomach the last five minutes of the games. He headed to the pits and tried to recoup his sports book loses.

"I walked by the craps tables and put $100 on the field. Then... fuck!!!!"

He headed over to the $25 blackjack tables and bet big. When he stumbled into the cafe, he admitted that he won back 25% of his sportsbook loses playing blackjack. He was bummed because I promised him a trip to the Rhino had I won big.

"Tomorrow's another day!" he screamed at the top of his lungs.

He's right. We have two games on Saturday and after we win both, we're going to eat high off the hog then head to a stripclub. Or two.

Here's Saturday's lines according to BoDog:
4:40p Memphis +2.5 Ohio State
7:05p UCLA +2.5 Kansas
And I'll be betting on:
UCLA +2.5
Memphis +2.5
After almost losing the last two games, Ohio State is lucky to be still alive. They have an awful record against the spread while Memphis has great numbers as an underdog. I'm also going with UCLA and an upset of Kansas. The Bruins have been shooting better from the FT line. I want to write more about both teams, but I'm out of time. Bottom line, I'm betting the dogs. In the last two days, dogs are 5-3.

* * * * * Random Live Updates * * * * *

1:30pm... Will be able to do a little live blogging today watching the games from my room. We might also have a few special guests providing you updates. Stay tuned.

1:40pm... Change100 says: "Ohio State won the tip. Of course they did. They are wearing white uniforms, and teams wearing white uniforms were 8-0 during Sweet 16 play."

2:06pm... Derek says: "I won a 3 team parlay yesterday. Fuck all you crackers!"

2:20pm... Miami Don says about Antonio Anderson who's bleeding: "A couple of stiches and he's ready go!"

2:30pm... JW says: "Memphis better pick up the pace or Anderson won't be the only one bleeding today. Anyone need a drink ticket?"

2:45pm... OSU up by 3 at the half. I got Memphis with the moneyline too. Looking for a big second half from Calipari's crew.

3:00pm... Miami Don says about one of the refs: "Ted Hillary is crooked. Always look for the crooked refs."

3:26pm... Derek says: "Crooked Ted . . . the fix is in for the Ohio State Luckeyes. Never trust a drunk Irishmen referee."

3:53pm... Looks like the Memphis pick was a dud. A big fuckin' dud. 0-1 for the day. If I had a kitten, I'd drown it right now. (Disclaimer: No actual animals were harmed in the writing of this blog)

4:30pm... Derek says: "Daddy likes em stout!"

4:35pm... Derek says: "The gang is wondering how much dope Bill Walton and Robert "the Chief" Parish smoked together. Over/under 2.5 pounds?"

5:00pm... UCLA up by 4 at the half. We're looking good for now.

5:15pm... Miami Don says: "There's a lot of talent on that UCLA cheerleading squad."

6:15pm... With 45 seconds left and UCLA up 8, I'm close to winning my big bet of the day (and biggest bet of the tournament).

6:20pm.... Ship it! UCLA gets me unstuck for today and the last two days.

Original content written and provided by Pauly from Tao of Poker. All rights reserved. RSS feeds are for non-commercial use only.

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