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Big Al's Daily Angle: NHL and MLB Previews and Odds - 06/20/2022

by Big Al Staff

Monday, Jun 20, 2022

The Monday sports card features NHL and MLB action.The National Hockey League playoffs continue with Game 3 of the Stanley Cup finals, with the Colorado Avalanche traveling to Tampa Bay to play the Lightning on ABC at 8:15 PM ET. The Avalanche are on a seven-game winning streak after beating the Lightning in Game 2, 7-0, on Saturday. Tampa Bay returns home for the next two games trailing 0-2 in this series. Both teams are priced as a -110 money line favorite with the total set at 6 (all odds from DraftKings).Major League Baseball has nine games on its schedule. The New York Mets host the Miami Marlins at 1:10 PM ET. The Mets’ record fell to 44-24 after a 6-2 loss to the Marlins on Sunday. Miami improved their record to 29-35. David Peterson takes the ball for New York against Trevor Rogers of the Marlins. New York is a -155 money line favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The Chicago Cubs visit Pittsburgh to play the Pirates at 7:05 PM ET. The Cubs lost to Atlanta yesterday, 6-0, which lowered their record to 25-41. The Pirates improved to 26-39 after their 4-3 victory against the Giants on Sunday. Both teams are priced as a -110 money line favorite with a total of 8.5. Two MLB games throw out the first pitch at 7:10 PM ET. Boston is at home against Detroit with Josh Winckowski pitching for the Red Sox against Alex Faedo of the Tigers. Boston beat St. Louis on Sunday, 6-4, to raise their record to 36-31. Detroit defeated Texas yesterday, 7-3, to improve to 26-40 this season. The Red Sox are a -170 money line favorite with an over/under of 9.5. New York plays at Tampa Bay with the Yankees pitching Gerrit Cole against the Rays’ Shane McClanahan. The Yankees dropped to 49-17 on the season with their 10-9 loss at Toronto yesterday. The Rays fell to 36-30 after a 2-1 loss at Baltimore on Sunday. New York is a -130 money line road favorite with a total of 6.5. The Atlanta Braves are at home against the San Francisco Giants at 7:20 PM ET. The Braves raised their record to 38-29 after their 6-0 victory on the road against the Cubs yesterday. The Giants dropped to 37-28 with their 4-3 loss to the Pirates. Max Fried pitches for Atlanta against Logan Webb of the Giants. The Braves are a -140 money line favorite with an over/under of 8. Two MLB games start at 8:10 PM ET. Toronto travels to Chicago with the Blue Jays pitching Jose Berrios against the White Sox’s Lance Lynn. The Blue Jays have a 38-28 record after their victory against the Yankees on Sunday. The White Sox fell to 31-32 after their 4-3 loss to the Astros last night. Toronto is a -135 money line road favorite with a total of 9.Milwaukee plays at home against St. Louis on FS1 with Corbin Burnes pitching for the Brewers against Miles Mikolas of the Cardinals. The Brewers  beat Cincinnati, 6-3, on Sunday to raise their record to 38-30. The Cardinals have a 38-30 record, too, after their loss to the Red Sox yesterday. Milwaukee is a -150 money line favorite with an over/under of 7.The Los Angeles Angels host the Kansas City Royals at 9:38 PM ET. The Angels have a 33-36 record after beating Seattle on the road yesterday, 4-0. The Royals lost on the road at Oakland on Sunday, 4-0, to drop their record to 23-42. Los Angeles pitches Noah Syndergaard against Kansas City starting pitcher Kris Bubic. The Angels are a -175 money line favorite with a total of 8.5. The San Diego Padres play at home against the Arizona Diamondbacks at 9:40 PM ET. The Padres fell to 41-27 this season with their 8-3 loss at Colorado yesterday. The Diamondbacks improved to 39-29 after their 7-1 victory against Minnesota on Sunday. Yu Darvish pitches for the Padres against Zach Davies. San Diego is a -195 money line favorite with an over/under of 7.5. 

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Big Al's Daily Angle: MLB Previews and Odds - 06/19/2022

by Big Al Staff

Sunday, Jun 19, 2022

The Sunday sports card features MLB action.Major League Baseball has 15 games on its schedule. The Philadelphia Phillies visit Washington to play the Nationals on Peacock at 12:05 PM ET. Zach Eflin takes the ball for the Phillies against Jackson Tetreault of the Nationals. Philadelphia is a -180 money line road favorite, with the total set at 9.5. Three MLB games throw out the first pitch at 1:35 PM ET. San Francisco plays at Pittsburgh with the Giants pitching Alex Cobb against the Pirates Mitch Keller. San Francisco is a -180 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8.5. Boston hosts St. Louis with Nick Pivetta pitching for the Red Sox against Andre Palate of the Cardinals. Boston is a -145 money line favorite with a total of 9. Tampa Bay travels to Baltimore with the Rays pitching Corey Kluber against the Orioles' Jordan Lyles. Tampa Bay is a -145 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The New York Yankees are at Toronto to play the Blue Jays at 1:37 PM ET. Luis Severino pitches for the Yankees against the Blue Jays Yusei Kikuchi. New York is a -165 money line road favorite with a total of 9.Three MLB games play at 1:40 PM ET. Milwaukee visits Cincinnati with the Brewers pitching Adrian Houser against the Reds Mike Minor. Milwaukee is a -140 money line road favorite with an over/under of 9.5. New York is at home against Miami with Chris Bassitt pitching for the Mets against Sandy Alcantara of the Marlins. New York is a -135 money line favorite with a total of 7. Texas plays at Detroit with Dane Dunning the starting pitcher for the Rangers against Drew Hutchison of the Tigers. Texas is a -150 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8.The Atlanta Braves travel to Chicago to play the Cubs at 2:20 PM ET. Ian Anderson pitches for the Braves against Kyle Hendricks of the Cubs. Atlanta is a -165 money line road favorite. The San Diego Padres play at Colorado against the Rockies at 3:10 PM ET. The Padres send out Blake Snell to pitch against the Rockies Antonio Senzatela. San Diego is a -135 money line road favorite with a total of 12.5. The Kansas City Royals are at Oakland to play the A’s at 4:07 PM ET. Brad Singer pitches for the Royals against Jared Koenig of the A’s. Kansas City is a -140 money line road favorite with an over/under of 7.5. Three MLB games begin at 4:10 PM ET. Seattle host Los Angeles with Logan Gilbert pitching for the Mariners against Kenny Rosenberg of the Angels. Seattle is a -165 money line favorite with a total of 7.5. Minnesota visits Arizona with the Twins pitching Chris Archer against the Diamondbacks Merrill Kelly. Minnesota is a -120 money line road favorite with an over/under of 9. Los Angeles plays at home against Cleveland, with Andrew Heaney pitching for the Dodgers against Shane Bieber of the Guardians. Los Angeles is a -155 money line favorite at PlayMGM with a total of 7.5. Sunday Night Baseball on ESPN at 7:08 PM ET has the Houston Astros hosting the Chicago White Sox. The Astros turn to Cristian Javier in their starting rotation against the White Sox starting pitcher Michael Kopech. Houston is a -175 money line favorite with an over/under of 7.5.

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Previewing the Tampa Bay Lightning/Colorado Avalanche Playoff Series

by Team Del Genio

Saturday, Jun 18, 2022

The Tampa Bay Lightning were expected to have an initial edge against an Avalanche team that had not played for nine days in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals. Yet it was Colorado who scored the first goal of the series when Gabriel Landeskog scored at the 7:47 minute mark of the first period before Valeri Nichushkin gave the Aves a 2-0 lead less than two minutes later. Nick Paul cut the lead in half for the Lightning just over three minutes later yet Colorado was able to take a 3-1 lead into the first break when Artturi Lehkonen scored a power-play goal at the 17:31 mark of the first period. It appeared that Tampa Bay initially struggled to adjust to the speed of the Avalanche. Playing in the high altitude in Denver likely played a role as well. Yet the two-time defending champions responded in the second period with Ondrej Palat and Mikhail Sergachev both scoring to tie the game at 3-3. The teams played a scoreless third period before Colorado won Game 1 with Andre Burakovsky scoring the game-winner just 83 seconds into overtime. Tampa Bay has struggled throughout the postseason in the opening games of a series. They only won once in their four Game 1s (against Florida) with goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy posting a .884 save percentage in those games.Tampa Bay completed their Eastern Conference finals series with the Rangers with a 2-1 victory at home on Saturday. The Lightning attempt to become the first NHL team to win three-straight Stanley Cup titles since the New York Islanders won four championships in a row from 1980 to 1983. It has been a difficult road getting back to the finals for the Lightning. They needed seven games to get by a talented Toronto team in the first round of the playoffs before dominating Florida in the second round. After beating New York and perhaps the best goaltender in the world right now in Igor Shesterkin in six games, the Lightning have a 12-5 record in these playoffs. Forward Brayden Point returned to action in Game 1 after being out since Game 7 of the first-round series against the Maple Leafs. He assisted on a goal and played just under 18 minutes on Wednesday. Point scored 28 goals and added 30 assists during the regular season, and the 14 goals he scored in each of the two previous postseasons is the league’s top mark. Perhaps the biggest edge the Lightning have in this series is with goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy. In winning the last four games against the Rangers, Vasilevksiy only gave up five goals and posted a .955 save percentage. He began this series with a 2.27 goals-against average in his seventeen starts in the playoffs this year with a .928 save percentage. In his career in the playoffs going into Game 1, Vasilevskiy had a 61-34 record with a 2.24 goals-against average and a .925 save percentage. He won last season’s Conn Smythe award for being the Most Valuable Player in the postseason. Led by Vasilevskiy, the Lightning will bring the most disciplined and effective style of play on defense that Colorado will have faced in their playoff run this year.The Colorado Avalanche reached the Stanley Cup finals by completing their second series sweep in the postseason with their 6-5 victory in overtime at Edmonton that eliminated the Oilers from the playoffs on June 6th. The Avalanche opened the postseason with a four-game sweep against Nashville. Colorado is 12-2 in the playoffs with their only two losses coming against St. Louis in the second round of the playoffs. Yet the Aves now face their biggest challenge in these playoffs in playing the Lightning. They take a step up in class which may present a jolt to the system for this Colorado team playing in their first Stanley Cup finals in the Nathan MacKinnon era. Beginning this series after nine days off between games may leave head coach Jerad Bednar’s team rusty, yet they scored three times in the first period. That time off may later help their speed and endurance as this series moves on. An area of concern for Bednar is the state of his goaltending. Darcy Kuemper had a 2.65 goals-against average and a .895 save percentage in ten playoff games before the beginning of this series. His backup, Pavel Francouz, had six victories in his six games (four starts) in the playoffs with a 2.86 goals-against average and .906 save percentage. Bednar did not announce who his starting goaltender would be to begin the finals before calling on Kuemper to be his starter. He stopped 20 of the 23 shots he saved in Game 1. Colorado is allowing 2.9 goals per game in their fourteen playoff games.The strength of the Avalanche is their balanced scoring attack. Nathan MacKinnon scored 11 goals and added seven assists in the first three rounds of the playoffs. Gabriel Landeskog added 17 points in those 14 games in the first three rounds. Mikko Rantanen scored four goals and had two assists last round against the Oilers. Defenseman Cale Makar had five goals and another 17 assists in the first three rounds of the playoffs. Tampa Bay has been the best team in the NHL over the last few seasons, yet it has been Colorado that has perhaps been the best team in the regular season over that span. This is the first Stanley Cup finals for the Avalanche corp group of young superstars. Their ambition to win their first Stanley Cup will depend on their ability to play good enough defense to beat elite opposition and how well their goaltending holds up.Good luck - TDG.

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Big Al's Daily Angle: NHL, MLB and CFL Previews and Odds - 06/18/2022

by Big Al Staff

Saturday, Jun 18, 2022

The Saturday sports card features NHL, MLB, and CFL action.The National Hockey League playoffs continue with Game 2 of the Stanley Cup finals, with the Colorado Avalanche hosting the Tampa Bay Lightning on ABC at 8:10 PM ET. The Avalanche are on a six-game winning streak after beating the Lightning in the opening game of the Stanley Cup finals with their 4-3 victory in overtime on Wednesday. Colorado is a -150 money line favorite with the total set at 6 (all odds from DraftKings unless indicated otherwise).The Saturday card in Major League Baseball has 16 games on its schedule. The Atlanta Braves visit Chicago to play the Cubs at 2:20 PM ET. Kyle Wright pitches for the Braves against Justin Steele for the Cubs. Atlanta is a -165 money line road favorite. The Toronto Blue Jays host play at home against the New York Yankees at 3:07 PM ET. The Blue Jays turn to Alek Manoah in their starting rotation to face the Yankees Jameson Taillon. Toronto is a -120 money line favorite with an over/under of 8.5. Two MLB games throw out the first pitch at 4:05 PM ET. San Francisco travels to Pittsburgh with Alex Wood pitching for the Giants against Jose Quintana of the Pirates. San Francisco is a -182 money line road favorite at BetRivers with a total of 8.5. Tampa Bay plays at Baltimore with the Rays pitching Jeffrey Springs against the Orioles Kyle Bradish. Tampa Bay is a -165 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The Oakland A’s are at home against the Kansas City Royals at 4:07 PM ET. Cole Irvin pitches for the A’s against a starting pitcher yet to be named for the Royals. Five MLB games start at 4:10 PM ET. Texas visits Detroit on FS1 with the Rangers pitching Taylor Hearn against the Tigers' Rony Garcia. Texas is a -125 money line road favorite with a total of 8.5. Cincinnati hosts Milwaukee with Graham Ashcraft pitching for the Reds against Jason Alexander of the Brewers. Cincinnati is a -115 money line favorite with an over/under of 9.5. Los Angeles plays at Seattle in the first game of their doubleheader with the Angels pitching Patrick Sandoval against a Mariners starting pitcher yet to be named. Houston plays at home against Chicago with Justin Verlander pitching for the Astros against Johnny Cueto pitching for the White Sox. Houston is a -210 money line favorite with a total of 8. New York is at home against Miami with the Mets pitching Taiwan Walker against the Marlins Braxton Garrett. New York is a -190 money line favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The Philadelphia Phillies are at Washington to play the Nationals at 4:35 PM ET. Aaron Nola takes the ball for the Phillies against Josiah Gray of the Nationals. Philadelphia is a -215 money line road favorite with a total of 8.5. Two MLB games begin at 7:15 PM ET in regional coverage on Fox. Boston hosts St. Louis with the Red Sox pitching Kutter Crawford against the Cardinals Dakota Hudson. Boston is a -120 money line favorite with an over/under of 9.5. Los Angeles is at home against Cleveland, with Julio Urias pitching for the Dodgers against Cal Quantrill of the Guardians. Los Angeles is a -225 money line favorite with a total of 8.5. The San Diego Padres travel to Colorado to play the Rockies at 9:10 PM ET. San Diego turns to Nick Martinez to pitch against the Rockies' German Marquez. San Diego is a -135 money line road favorite with an over/under of 11.5. Two games conclude the MLB card at 10:10 PM ET. The Angels play the Mariners in the second game of their doubleheader in Seattle. Minnesota travels to Arizona with Dylan Bundy pitching for the Twins against Luke Weaver of the Diamondbacks. Both teams are priced at -110, with the total at 9.5. The second week of the Canadian Football League concludes with two games. The Hamilton Tiger-Cats host the Calgary Stampeders at 6:30 PM ET. The Tiger-Cats rebound off a 30-13 loss at Saskatchewan as a 2.5-point underdog last Saturday. The Stampeders won their opening game in a 30-27 victory at home against Montreal as a 3.5-point favorite on June 9th. Hamilton is a 1.5-point favorite with an over/under of 45. The Saskatchewan Roughriders play at Edmonton against the Elks on ESPN News at 9:30 PM ET. The Roughriders won their first game of the season with their victory against the Tiger-Cats. The Elks got blown out, 59-14, at British Columbia as a 4-point underdog last Saturday. Saskatchewan is an 8-point road favorite with a total of 50.5.

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2022 Arkansas Razorbacks Preview

by Matt Fargo

Friday, Jun 17, 2022

Arkansas Razorbacks2021-22 Season Record 9-4 (4-4 SEC West) - 8-4-1 ATS - 7-6-0 O/UReturning StartersOffense - 8Defense - 6OverviewIt was a very successful season for Arkansas and second year head coach Sam Pittman as it won nine games, the most victories since 2011, and it was two more wins than the last three seasons combined. The Razorbacks went to their first bowl game since 2016 and defeated Wisconsin in the Outback Bowl and they can build on that heading into this season. Arkansas has had only one winning season in the SEC since Bobby Petrino left in 2011 and while the conference as a whole is a beast, the SEC West is brutal with every team capable of producing a winning record. The Razorbacks have plenty of experience all around and the building block from last season attracted some highly touted transfers. Another winning season is likely but the schedule will dictate how many wins are attainable as it is a tough one and it will be important to get off to a fast start. OffenseKJ Jefferson is duel-threat quarterback that led the team in rushing and was excellent in the passing game as he tossed 21 touchdowns and just four interceptions. He did lose his best receiver to graduation but there is good depth here with three key pass catchers back along with transfer Jadon Haselwood coming in from Oklahoma. Second leading rusher Trelon Smith surprisingly left the team and transferred to UTSA but his 592 yards will be made up by Raheim Sanders and Dominique Johnson who combined for 997 yards on the ground so the No. 1 ranked rushing offense in the SEC could be even better. It will come down to the offensive line that is big and will open holes but needs to improve in pass protection as it allowed 2.31 sacks per game, No. 70 in the nation. This is the second year under offensive coordinator Kendal Briles, yes that pedigree, so they could be better in 2022. DefenseThe defense was a huge improvement in 2021 as the Razorbacks finished No. 50 in the country with 367.7 ypg and while that is just above average, they gave up 400 yards only four times after doing so 17 times in the previous two seasons. While pass protection needs to improve on offense, the pass rush needs to improve on defense as they averaged only 1.85 sacks per game which was tied for No. 89 in the country and their top sack leader that is back had just 3.5 sacks. Drew Sanders transferred in from Alabama to go alongside Bumper Pool to form a solid linebacking core to help get into the backfield. The secondary has to replace a safety and a corner and the likely guys to take over are two transfers from SEC schools so the athleticism will be there. While the principal defense is a 4-2-5, Arkansas implements a 3-2-6 at times and it has the players in place to succeed. 2022 Season OutlookArkansas opened the season 4-0 last year and while it does not have a true road game until its sixth game, a fast start will be difficult. The Razorbacks open with Cincinnati, which will be good but not like 2021, and then four of the next five games are all SEC contests against South Carolina, Texas A&M (neutral), Alabama and at Mississippi St. After Alabama, Arkansas does not play another home game for five weeks so that is a tough stretch but the back end offers an opportunity to close strong. It misses Georgia, Florida and Tennessee and its two games against the SEC East are against two of the bottom teams. The Razorbacks are pegged to finish fourth in the SEC West so it will take some overachieving to surpass its 4-4 conference record from last season. The win total is at 7.5 and they will be favored in seven games so a couple upsets might have to occur for the over to hit. 

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2022 Arizona St. Sun Devils Preview

by Matt Fargo

Friday, Jun 17, 2022

Arizona St. Sun Devils2021-22 Season Record 8-5 (6-3 Pac 12 South) - 6-7-0 ATS - 4-8-1 O/UReturning StartersOffense - 5Defense - 7OverviewExpectations were huge last season for Arizona St. and it did finish tied for second in the Pac 12 South but it was a minimal consolation. The Sun Devils started 5-1 including a perfect 3-0 conference record but a pair of losses against Utah and Washington St. deflated that great start. Not counting the 2-2 COVID-shortened season, head coach Herm Edwards has three winning seasons and three bowl games in his four years but has been unable to take the Sun Devils to the next level with their best finish being 8-5 twice. There are no high expectations this season and that might be a good thing with no pressure on the players but a stronger division puts them in a tough spot. Arizona St. lost a ton to graduation and transfers and while it is not a rebuild, the pressure is still on Edwards in what could be his final season if the Sun Devils cannot make a push at the Pac 12 South Division title. OffensePlaymakers were in place last season to form an explosive offense but it could never get off the ground and now all of those playmakers are gone. Quarterback Jayden Daniels, who had three solid seasons, transferred in February and will likely be replaced by either Emory Jones or Paul Tyson, a pair of transfers from the SEC. Running back Rachaad White, who rushed for over 1.000 yards, has graduated while leading receiver Ricky Pearsall is also gone so the offense could be challenged early on. The offensive line lost its best player in Kellen Diesch but there is enough experience and talent for this group to succeed and they will have to be the backbone of this offense. The Sun Devils finished No. 75 in total offense last season with a stacked group and with so many defections, it is a guess as to how this unit will perform especially early in the season before they can come together.DefenseThe defense carried Arizona St. last season as it finished No. 13 in total defense and No. 22 in scoring defense, both of which led the conference, and it will need another repeat. Defensive coordinator Antonio Pierce is gone to the NFL after one season and will be replaced by Donnie Henderson who has never been a coordinator at the college level. The defense lost some key players to graduation and the Sun Devils will have to rely on some significant transfers on this side of the ball as well. Defensive lineman Nesta Jade Silvera from Miami, linebacker Rodney Groce from Mississippi St. and safety Khoury Bethley from Hawaii will plug in the three big holes across the three levels. The Arizona St. defense on paper should not miss a beat as there is plenty of experience and depth across the board and a lot of the success will depend on DC Henderson and how he transitions into the system. 2022 Season OutlookThere were offseason issues with talk about recruiting violations which led to a lot of the player transfers and coaching changers and it will be up to Edwards and his veteran leadership to carry this team. The Sun Devils have two easy non-conference home games against Northern Arizona and Eastern Michigan sandwiched around a game at Oklahoma St. before opening conference action at home against Utah and at USC and those two games could make or break their season early. Arizona St. misses Oregon from the North Division and its home and road slates are relatively equal. Three of the four favorites in the conference are from the South Division and Arizona St. is not one of those so it will be a challenge. The O/U win total is set at 6.5 and this is a tough one to call as it could go either way and it will come down to upsets, good or bad, to predict the final outcome. 

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Big Al's Daily Angle: MLB and CFL Previews and Odds - 06/17/2022

by Big Al Staff

Friday, Jun 17, 2022

The Friday sports card features MLB and CFL action.The Friday card in Major League Baseball has 16 games on its schedule. The Philadelphia Phillies travel to Washington to play the Nationals in the opening game of their doubleheader at 1:05 PM ET. Ranger Suarez takes the mound for the Phillies against Joan Adon of the Nationals. The Atlanta Braves play at Chicago against the Cubs at 2:20 PM ET. The Braves turn to Charlie Morton in their starting rotation against the Cubs Keegan Thompson. Atlanta is a -170 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8. The Tampa Bay Rays visit Baltimore to play the Orioles at 6:05 PM ET. Shane Baz takes the ball for the Rays against Dean Kremer of the Orioles. Tampa Bay is a -140 money line road favorite with a total of 8.5. The Milwaukee Brewers are at Cincinnati to play the Reds at 6:40 PM ET. The Brewers pitch Eric Lauer against the Reds’ Hunter Greene. Milwaukee is a -115 money line road favorite with an over/under of 9.Two MLB games throw out the first pitch at 7:05 PM ET. The Philadelphia Phillies send Bailey Falter to the hill against the Nationals Paolo Espino. Philadelphia is a -225 money line road favorite with a total of 10.5. San Francisco travels to Pittsburgh with Carlos Rodon pitching for the Giants against Zack Thompson of the Pirates. San Francisco is a -115 money line road favorite with a total of 10. The New York Yankees play at Toronto against the Blue Jays at 7:07 PM ET with the Yankees pitching Jordan Montgomery against the Blue Jays Ross Stripling. Both teams are priced at -110 with an over/under of 9.5. Three MLB games start at 7:10 PM ET. Texas visits Detroit with Sonny Gray pitching for the Rangers against Tarik Skubal of the Tigers. Both teams are priced at -110 with a total of 7.5. St. Louis plays at Boston with the Cardinals pitching Adam Wainwright against the Red Sox’s Michael Wacha. St. Louis is a -115 money line road favorite with an over/under of 10. The New York Mets host Miami with Carlos Carrasco pitching for the Mets against a starting pitcher yet to be determined for the Marlins. The Houston Astros play at home against the Chicago White Sox at 8:10 PM ET. The Astros pitch Framber Valdez against the White Sox’s Lucas Giolito. Houston is a -170 money line favorite with a total of 7.5. The San Diego Padres are on the road against the Colorado Rockies with Mackenzie Gore pitching for the Padres against the Rockies Kyle Freeland. San Diego is a -145 money line road favorite with an over/under of 11.5. The Minnesota Twins play at Arizona against the Diamondbacks at 9:40 PM ET. Delvin Smeltzer pitches for the Twins against Madison Bumgarner of the Diamondbacks. Minnesota is a -130 money line road favorite with a total of 9.Two MLB games begin at 10:10 PM ET. The Los Angeles Dodgers are at home against Cleveland with the Dodgers pitching Clayton Kershaw against the Guardians Zach Please. Los Angeles is a -250 money line favorite with an over/under of 8. The Seattle Mariners host the Los Angeles Angels with Robbie Ray pitching for the Mariners against Michael Lorenzen of the Angels. Seattle is a -130 money line favorite with a total of 7.5. The second week of the Canadian Football League continues with one game. The Winnipeg Blue Bombers visit the Ottawa Redblacks at 7:30 PM ET. The Blue Bombers beat the Redblacks at home last week, 19-17, as a 6.5-point favorite. Winnipeg is a 2.5-point road favorite with the total set at 46 for this rematch this week.

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Big Al's NBA, MLB and CFL Previews and Odds - 06/16/2022

by Big Al Staff

Thursday, Jun 16, 2022

The Thursday sports card features NBA, MLB, and CFL action.The finals in the National Basketball Association continue with the sixth game in the series between the Golden State Warriors and the Boston Celtics on ABC at 9:10 PM ET. The Warriors took a 3-2 lead in the NBA finals with their 104-94 victory on Monday as a 4-point favorite. The series moves back to Boston, where the Celtics are a 4-point favorite with the total set at 210 (all odds from DraftKings unless indicated otherwise).The Thursday card in Major League Baseball has nine games on its schedule. The Boston Red Sox host the Oakland A’s at 1:35 PM ET. Rich Hill is the starting pitcher for the Red Sox against Paul Blackburn of the A’s. Boston is a -155 money line favorite with an over/under of 9. The San Diego Padres visit Chicago to play the Cubs at 2:20 PM ET. The Padres pitch Joe Musgrove against the Cubs Matt Swarmer. San Diego is a -155 money line road favorite with a total of 10.The Toronto Blue Jays play at home against the Baltimore Orioles at 3:07 PM ET. Kevin Gausman takes the ball for the Blue Jays against Tyler Wells of the Orioles. Toronto is a -260 money line favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The Cleveland Guardians travel to Colorado to play the Rockies at 3:10 PM ET. The Guardians pitch Triston McKenzie against the Rockies Chad Kuhl. Cleveland is a -130 money line road favorite with a total of 11.5. Two MLB games throw out the first pitch at 7:05 PM ET. New York hosts Tampa Bay with Luis Severino the Yankees starting pitcher against the Rays Jalen Beeks. New York is a -160 money line favorite with an over/under of 8. Philadelphia is at Washington with the Phillies turning to Zack Wheeler in their starting rotation against the Nationals Patrick Corbin. Philadelphia is a -160 money line road favorite with a total of 9.5. Two MLB games start at 7:10 PM ET. Texas visits Detroit with Martin Perez pitching for the Rangers against Beau Brieske of the Tigers. Texas is a -132 money line road favorite at Bet Rivers with an over/under of 9. New York plays at home against Milwaukee with the Mets going with Tylor Megill as their starting pitcher against the Brewers Aaron Ashby. New York is a -140 money line favorite with a total of 8.The Los Angeles Angels travel to Seattle to play the Mariners at 10:10 PM ET. Shohei Ohtani pitches for the Angels against George Kirby of the Mariners. Los Angeles is a -118 money line road favorite at Bet Rivers with an over/under of 7.The second week of the Canadian Football League kicks off with one game. The Toronto Argonauts make their season debut after getting the bye last week against the Montreal Alouettes at 7:30 PM ET. The Alouettes come off a 30-27 loss at Calgary as a 3.5-point underdog last Thursday. Toronto is a 3.5-point favorite with a total of 49.5. 

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2022 Arizona Wildcats Preview

by Matt Fargo

Wednesday, Jun 15, 2022

Arizona Wildcats2021-22 Season Record 1-11 (1-8 Pac 12 South) - 6-6-0 ATS - 5-6-1 O/UReturning StartersOffense - 6Defense - 8OverviewIt has been an ugly stretch for Arizona football as it has had four straight losing seasons with former head coach Kevin Sumlin running this program into the ground with a 9-20 record. He left nothing for Jedd Fisch who finished 1-11 in his inaugural season with the lone win coming against a COVID depleted California team in a 10-3 victory. While there were some ugly losses, five of the 11 defeats were by one possession so the Wildcats had the possibility of a below average season as opposed to the worst non-COVID season in program history. Arizona will surpass that win total this season but by how much is the question and the Wildcats brought in a very solid recruiting class and some transfers that will play right away but how the chemistry comes together will be the difference. Arizona is the biggest longshot to win the Pac 12 so making a bowl game is unlikely but there will be improvement. OffenseArizona was putrid on offense last season as it was ranked No. 101 in total offense and No. 124 in scoring offense as it scored more than 20 points only two times. The biggest issue was the offensive line as the Wildcats could not establish a running game and were not able to protect the quarterback. There are new bodies that should improve this unit and one factor contributing to this could be the style of play. Quarterback Jayden de Laura transferred over from Washington St. and has the ability to sling it downfield and getting the ball out quick which will decrease the sacks. He has a transfer weapon with wide receiver Jacob Cowing who shined at UTEP with 1,330 yards last season and 2,571 in three years with the Miners. Michael Wiley takes over at running back after a meager 302 yards on 3.3 ypc so maybe an improved line can get him going at a higher level. DefenseThe defense was a lot better than the offense and it was a vast improvement from the previous season, albeit a small sample size of a COVID shortened season, and from 2019 as well. The unit gave up 400 yards or more in only five of 12 games after allowing that many yards in 16 of 17 games in the two prior years. Eight starters are back to build upon the improved success from last season and it starts with the secondary that brings back both corners, possesses one of the better safeties in the conference in Christian Young along with a key transfer to play the nickel. The pass rush was the big issue as Arizona was ranked No. 92 with only 1.8 sacks per game so stepping up there will only help the secondary more. Nose tackle Kyon Barrs is legit and can stop the run but he needs that push up front in pass situations with the linebackers helping out. Expect improvement again.  2022 Season OutlookDespite one victory, the Wildcats covered half of their games which shows they were competitive to an extent against the public perception. This season, the personnel needs to take another step forward but intangibles are just as key as the Wildcats need to do better than allowing 37 scores in 38 redzone opportunities and they need to have more than one takeaway in a seven-game stretch like it did in the final seven games last season. The schedule is doable as anything can happen in the Pac 12 and Utah, USC and Oregon are the only big threats and they get the latter two at home. The non-conference schedule is tough but they open conference play against two other bottom feeders in Colorado and California. The O/U win total is set at 2.5 -125 and this could be a great over spot as the betting public will likely not be backing a one-win team from a season ago. 

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2022 Appalachian St. Mountaineers Preview

by Matt Fargo

Wednesday, Jun 15, 2022

Appalachian St. Mountaineers2021-22 Season Record 10-4 (7-1 SBC East) - 8-5-0 ATS - 5-8-0 O/UReturning StartersOffense - 7Defense - 6OverviewIt was another successful season for the Mountaineers which have made it to seven straight bowl games although they did have their six-game bowl winning streak snapped with a 59-38 loss to Western Kentucky. Appalachian St. won the SBC East again but has not won the conference championship since 2019 and that is the goal this season. Head coach Shawn Clark is in his third season after posting a 20-7 record in his first two years but that overall conference championship has eluded him after losing to Louisiana in the SBC Championship last year. The offense has some holes to fill at the wide receiver position and defensively, the Mountaineers lost five of their top seven tacklers but there is still plenty in the cupboard to make another run. The conference is better and the schedule is tougher and notching double-digit wins for the fourth time in five years will be difficult. OffenseAppalachian St. finished No. 30 in total offense last season, exceptional for a team from a non-Power Five conference, and it was No. 2 in the Sun Belt with its 441.3 ypg average. Quarterback Chase Brice returns following a very successful campaign where threw for 3,020 yards, 23 touchdowns and 10 interceptions while completing 61.9 percent of his passes but there will be work to do. His top three receivers, who combined for 2,463 yards, are gone and of the returning wideouts, none caught more than 12 passes or gained more than 112 yards last season. He has the best offensive line in the conference in front of him with four starters back and because of the pro style offense, the running game is a vital part and both Nate Noel and Camerun Peoples return along with their 2,463 rushing yards but the duo combined for just 10 receptions last year. DefenseThe defense was right up there as well, finishing No. 33 in the country overall while finishing No. 22 in third down percentage defense. The rushing defense, which led the Sun Belt last season, is the key to success on this side of the ball as Appalachian St. is undersized and inexperienced along the defensive line so the linebacking strength will have to keep this unit stout. They are facing some strong rushing offenses so this is imperative and linebackers Trey Cobb and Nick Hampton provide proven ability on the second level to stop the run while also helping out in the passing game. The Mountaineers were No. 58 in passing yards allowed but were a much better No. 27 in passing efficiency defense. Three of four starters in the secondary return although they do have to replace their best corner in Shaun Jolly. Bend but do not break could be the mantra of the defense in 2022. 2022 Season OutlookBoth offense and defense have the ability to be at the top of the conference once again but the competition takes a step up. The Mountaineers open with games against North Carolina and Texas A&M and then head to Troy for their conference opener but then it gets pretty easy after that with four of their next five games at home with the lone road game over that stretch at Texas St. The final quarter of the slate could decide where they finish with three challenging road games, one at Marshall and a home game against Old Dominion, two winning teams from last year coming over from C-USA. They are again among the top teams in the Sun Belt Conference and not playing Louisiana is a big edge. Their 8.5 win total O/U is intriguing as five of six road games will be difficult so they will likely have to win four of those along side an estimated 5-1 home record to cash the over. 

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2022 Alabama Crimson Tide Preview

by Matt Fargo

Wednesday, Jun 15, 2022

Alabama Crimson Tide2021-22 Season Record 13-2 (7-1 SEC West) - 7-6-0 ATS - 7-6-0 O/UReturning StartersOffense - 5Defense - 8OverviewThe rich continue to get richer. Alabama lost to Georgia in the CFP Championship and like most every year, it will retool and is currently the favorite to win the championship this year at +200. The Crimson Tide not only have one of the most talented and deep rosters in the country, but they also have the best player in the nation on each side of the ball coming back. Quarterback Bryce Young won the Heisman Trophy last season and linebacker Will Anderson, Jr.  took home a lot of big defensive hardware and finished No. 5 in the Heisman voting. Alabama lost seven players to the NFL draft, tied for fifth most overall, but this has been commonplace so there will be little, if any, drop off from its 13-2 season, only its second two-loss season since 2015. The Crimson Tide went 7-6 in 2007, the first year under Nick Saban, and since then it has been an historical run of 14 consecutive double-digit win seasons. OffenseLast season, the offense had to replace eight offensive starters and did not miss a beat and this season, Alabama brings back five starters. It all starts with Young after setting school records for passing yards and passing touchdowns but he loses his top three wide receivers and top running back. The Crimson Tide will rely on transfers to lead at these positions as wide receiver Jermaine Burton comes over from Georgia and has a great skill set while running back Jahmyr Gibbs left Georgia Tech where he led the Yellow Jackets with 746 yards rushing on 5.2 ypc. The offensive line returns three starters but has to replace left tackle Evan Neal who was the No. 7 overall draft pick. Alabama finished No. 7 in the country in total offense and No. 6 in scoring offense last season and despite the lack of proven playmakers around Young, the offense will again put up huge numbers. DefenseAlabama also finished No. 7 in total defense and it might have to rely on this unit early on if the offense does take some time to come together. Anderson simply cannot be left one-on-one as he finished with 17.5 sacks and 34.5 tackles for loss and on the other side, Dallas Turner is also back after recording 8.5 sacks and both will again cause havoc. The Crimson Tide lost defensive end Phidarian Mathis who anchored the front line the last two seasons but fellow end Byron Young, who has not missed a game in three years, returns along with three-year starting nose guard DJ Dale. The secondary was the weakest unit last season as it finished No. 50 in passing defense but it is not all on them as teams were down and forced to pass. Starting safeties Jordan Battle and Demarco Hellams both return but both corners need to be replaced with three strong candidates. 2022 Season OutlookThe schedule is in the favor of Alabama but it is still never a cakewalk in the SEC. The Crimson Tide miss Florida and Georgia from the SEC East and they get Texas A&M, Mississippi St. and Auburn at home. The challenges will come at Texas and Tennessee with Mississippi being potentially dangerous, but all said and done, Alabama could not have gotten a better slate. A ton of key players have to be replaced but this is not like many other programs as the additions are not raw and come in with plenty of experience. The Crimson Tide are expected to make their seventh CFP Championship in eight years and it is hard to go against that with plenty of five-star players and one of the best coaching staffs in the nation. Alabama has a 10.5 regular season win total O/U so it can afford only one loss to surpass the over and we can see this one cashing but it is at a -230 price. 

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Big Al's Daily Angle: NHL and MLB Previews and Odds - 06/15/2022

by Big Al Staff

Wednesday, Jun 15, 2022

The Wednesday sports card features NHL and MLB action.The National Hockey League playoffs continue with Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals with the Colorado Avalanche hosting the Tampa Bay Lightning on ABC at 8 PM ET. The Avalanche are on a five-game winning streak after completing their four-game sweep of the Oilers with their 6-5 victory at Edmonton on June 6th. The Lightning are on a four-game winning streak after rallying from losing the first two games against the Rangers to beat New York in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals by  a 2-1 score on Saturday. Colorado is a -155 money line favorite, with the total set at 6 (all odds from DraftKings).The Wednesday card in Major League Baseball has 15 games on its schedule. The Philadelphia Phillies are at home against the Miami Marlins at 1:05 PM ET. Kyle Gibson pitches for the Phillies against a starting pitcher yet to be named for the Marlins. Philadelphia is a -135 money line favorite with an over/under of 8.5. The Chicago White Sox visit Detroit to play the Tigers at 1:10 PM ET. The White Sox pitch Vincent Velasquez against the Tigers Alex Faedo. The Houston Astros play at Texas against the Rangers at 2:05 PM ET. The Astros send out Luis Garcia against a starting pitcher yet to be determined for the Rangers. The Arizona Diamondbacks are at home against the Cincinnati Reds at 3:40 PM ET. Zac Gallen takes the ball for the Diamondbacks against Luis Castillo of the Reds. Arizona is a -125 money line favorite with a total of 7.5. The Kansas City Royals travel to San Francisco to play the Giants at 3:45 PM ET. The Royals turn to Jonathan Heasley in their starting rotation against a starting pitcher yet to be named for the Giants. The Minnesota Twins play at Seattle against the Mariners at 4:10 PM ET. Sonny Gray pitches for the Twins against Marco Gonzales of the Mariners. Minnesota is a -145 money line road favorite with an over/under of 8.Two MLB games throw out the first pitch at 7:05 PM ET. The New York Yankees host Tampa Bay, with the Yankees pitching Nelson Cortes against the Rays Shane McClanahan. New York is a -130 money line favorite with a total of 7. Atlanta visits Washington with Spencer Strider pitching for the Braves against Erick Fedde of the Nationals. The Braves are a -180 money line road favorite with an over/under of 9.5. The Toronto Blue Jays play at home against the Baltimore Orioles at 7:07 PM ET. The Blue Jays turn to Jose Berrios in their starting rotation against the Orioles Bruce Zimmermann. Toronto is a -305 money line favorite with a total of 9.5. Two MLB games start at 7:10 PM ET. Oakland plays at Boston with James Kaprielian pitching for the A’s against Josh Winckowski of the Red Sox. Milwaukee travels to New York on FS1 with the Brewers pitching Corbin Burnes against David Peterson of the Mets. The Brewers are a -125 money line road favorite with an over/under of 7.5. The St. Louis Cardinals play at home against the Pittsburgh Pirates at 7:45 PM ET. Jack Flaherty pitches for the Cardinals against Roansy Contreras of the Pirates. St. Louis is a -165 money line favorite with a total of 8.5. The San Diego Padres travel to Chicago to play the Cubs at 8:05 PM ET. The Padres pitch Ryan Weathers against the Cubs Caleb Kilian. The Cleveland Guardians visit Colorado to play the Rockies at 8:40 PM ET. Konnor Pilkington pitches for the Guardians against Austin Gomber of the Rockies. Cleveland is a -115 money line road favorite with an over/under of 11.5. The Los Angeles Dodgers host the Los Angeles Angels at 10:10 PM ET. The Dodgers turn to Tyler Anderson as their starting pitcher against the Angels Reid Detmers. The Dodgers are a -195 money line favorite with a total of 8.5. 

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