NFL Week 9 opening odds and early action: Patriots-Ravens quickly draws two-way play

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NFL Week 9 is on deck, and the Sunday night game is already on the move. Covers checks in on the opening odds and early action for that matchup and three others, with insights from John Murray, director of The SuperBook at Westgate in Las Vegas.

New England Patriots at Baltimore Ravens (+5)

Defending Super Bowl champion New England hasn’t lost since the middle of last December, going 13-0 SU and 10-3 ATS. In Week 8, the Patriots (8-0 SU, 6-2 ATS) topped Cleveland 27-13 as 9.5-point favorites.

Baltimore leads the AFC North at 5-2 SU after winning its last three before a Week 8 bye. In Week 7, the Ravens (2-5 ATS) snapped a five-game spread-covering slide, knocking off Seattle 30-16 as 3-point road underdogs.

“We opened Patriots -5 and saw money come in on Baltimore at +5 and +4.5,” Murray told Covers on Sunday night. “Then we took a bet for $31,045 on the Patriots -4. The Ravens will be a huge-need game for the books everywhere next Sunday night, especially if the afternoon games are chalky.”

Minnesota Vikings at Kansas City Chiefs (no line)

Kansas City was without Patrick Mahomes in the Week 8 Sunday nighter, but Matt Moore and Co. gave Green Bay all it could handle. The Chiefs (5-2 SU, 4-3 ATS) scored 17 straight second-quarter points to erase a 14-0 first-quarter deficit and were in it the rest of the way, losing 31-24 as 5-point home ‘dogs.

Minnesota returns from its bye week looking to build on a four-game win streak. The Vikings (6-2 SU, 5-3 ATS) went off as hefty 16.5-point Week 7 home faves against Washington and managed a 19-9 victory, halting a three-game spread-covering streak.

With Mahomes’ Week 9 status unclear, The SuperBook held off on posting the opening number for this game. But Murray offered a little insight into where the line might land if Moore is still under center.

“It would depend a lot on the result of (the Sunday night) game and how K.C. and Moore look without Mahomes,” Murray said during the Packers-Chiefs tilt, in which Green Bay was a 5-point road chalk. “But Minnesota is considered slightly better than Green Bay, so it would be something close to what Packers-Chiefs was. Maybe a touch higher, unless K.C. wins, then a touch lower.”

That being the case, Murray said if Mahomes returns, the Chiefs will be short home favorites.

San Francisco 49ers at Arizona Cardinals (+7.5)

San Francisco remained in elite company through eight weeks, sticking with New England as the only unbeaten outfits. The 49ers (7-0 SU, 5-2 ATS) steamrolled Carolina 51-13 as 4.5-point favorites Sunday.

Arizona is better than expected this year, with a rookie coach and quarterback, but its three-game SU and ATS win streak ended in Week 8. The Cardinals went to New Orleans as 12.5-point pups and were dealt a 31-9 setback.

“We opened 49ers -7.5 and are still there,” Murray said. “Arizona will be one of the biggest needs of the week for us in the NFL. A ton of moneyline parlay and teaser wagers will start with the 49ers.”

Chicago Bears at Philadelphia Eagles (-4.5)

Philadelphia got a much-needed Week 8 win, snapping a two-game skid to get back to .500. The Eagles (4-4 SU, 3-5 ATS) shuffled over Buffalo 31-13 laying 1 point on the road Sunday.

Chicago looks little like the squad that last season went 12-4 SU and ATS, leading the league in spread-covers. The Bears (3-4 SU, 2-5 ATS) held a 16-7 third-quarter advantage against the Los Angeles Chargers, but didn’t score again in a 17-16 loss laying 3.5 points at home Sunday.

“We opened Eagles -4.5 and have been bet up to -5,” Murray said. “It’s hard to imagine people wanting to bet on Chicago right now.”

Patrick Everson is a Las Vegas-based senior writer for Covers.com. Follow him on Twitter: @Covers_Vegas.

Canucks vs Golden Knights picks and predictions for Game 1

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Perhaps no team has been more fun to follow during the NHL playoffs than the Vancouver Canucks, and hockey bettors can still get the Canucks at +1,300 to hoist Lord Stanley’s cup. Vancouver is coming off a thrilling series win against the defending champion St. Louis Blues, but now a much more difficult challenge awaits. The Vegas Golden Knights are +350 favorites to win it all, and they’ve certainly looked the part while dropping only one playoff contest.

Game 1 of this series gets underway Sunday, so we’re here to bring you our NHL picks and predictions in this Western Conference semifinal showdown.

Vancouver Canucks vs Vegas Golden Knights betting preview

Starting Goalies

Canucks: Jacob Markstrom – playoffs – 7-3, 2.44 GAA, .929 SV% (season – 23-16, 2.75 GAA, .918 SV%)

Golden Knights: Robin Lehner – playoffs – 5-1, 2.44 GAA, .904 SV% (season – 19-10, 2.89, .920 SV%)

If this game was actually played in Las Vegas, then Markstrom could easily spend a few hours performing with Cirque du Soleil. The 30-year-old dazzled against Blues with an eye-opening array of acrobatic saves and an impressive 7-3 record. He’ll need to provide more of the same against a dangerous Vegas squad.

The Knights will likely roll with Robin Lehner, who has taken over the spot as Vegas’s starter in the crease—and rightfully so. Still, the Knights have the luxury of having Marc-Andre Fleury as their “backup.” The five-time All-Star matched an NHL record this season with his 14th consecutive playoff appearance.

Injuries

Vancouver: Tyler Myers D (out), Tyler Toffoli RW (out), Micheal Ferland LW (out), Josh Leivo LW (out)

Vegas: Tomas Nosek LW (out)

Betting Trend to Know

Canucks are 0-6 in their last six Sunday games. Find the latest NHL betting trends for Canucks vs. Golden Knights.

MONEYLINE PICK

The Canucks have been a force with the extra man during the postseason, converting 26.2% of their power plays. While the Knights are known for their offensive firepower, it’s their stingy defense that allows them to suffocate opponents—as evidenced by an 86.4% penalty kill during their playoff run. Vancouver is the only team in the league to never beat Vegas in regulation, going 0-11 all time. That’s something I just can’t ignore.

PREDICTION: Vegas ML (-175)

OVER/UNDER PICK

Each team is filled with loads of offensive talent. Vancouver’s Bo Horvat and J.T. Miller have combined for 11 goals thus far. Elias Pettersson has racked up 13 points, tied with Colorado’s Nathan MacKinnon for the playoff lead.

The Knights can match Vancouver’s scorers, but they’re more balanced—Shea Theodore, Alex Tuch and Mark Stone have each lit the lamp four times during the postseason. The difference is on defense, where Vancouver has allowed the most high-danger chances of all remaining playoff teams.

PREDICTION: Over 5.5 (-110)

PROP PICK

Though I like Vegas to win, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Canucks kept it close and continued their offensive success. I’ll take a flyer on Vancouver scoring at least three goals.

PREDICTION: Canucks total goals Over 2.5 (-100)

Canucks vs Golden Knights Betting Card

  • Vegas ML (-175)
  • Over 5.5 (-110)
  • Canucks total goals Over 2.5 (-100)
NHL Parlays

Did you know that if you parlayed today’s NHL Canucks vs Golden Knights picks, you could win $104.93 on a $10 bet?

Use our NHL parlay calculator to create your own parlays and see their potential payouts.

Verlander injury shuffles Astros’ MLB futures odds

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MLB betting got a shake-up Sunday afternoon, specifically on World Series odds and AL pennant odds, with news that Astros star pitcher Justin Verlander could miss the rest of the season – or at least a significant chunk of it – with an arm injury.

Initial reports suggested Verlander had an elbow ailment, but both he and manager Dusty Baker quickly denied that. Baker called it a forearm strain and said that Verlander would be re-evaluated in “a couple of weeks.” The reigning AL Cy Young winner pitched a solid six innings in an 8-2 Opening Day rout of the Seattle Mariners on Friday.

Verlander’s injury led oddsmakers to shuffle futures book odds on the defending AL champions. Covers checked in on the MLB odds moves with a couple of Las Vegas sportsbooks.

How does Verlander’s injury affect Astros’ World Series odds?

At CG Technology books, risk analyst Rich Zanco said the Astros quickly moved from +1,200 to +1,800 in World Series futures. The SuperBook at Westgate also had Houston pegged +1,200 prior to Sunday’s news and initially went to +1,600, then dialed it a little further to +1,800.

However, there were apparently buyers on the Astros at that point, prompting the SuperBook to reel the price in to +1,400.

How does Verlander’s injury affect Astros’ American League odds?

In AL pennant futures, the Astros initially moved from +600 to +800 at The SuperBook, then ticked back to +700.

World Series odds

Team Odds to win
Los Angeles Dodgers +350
New York Yankees +350
Houston Astros +600
Atlanta Braves +1,600
Minnesota Twins +1,600
Tampa Bay Rays +1,800
Washington Nationals +2,000
Cleveland Indians +2,000
New York Mets +2,000
Chicago Cubs +2,000
Oakland Athletics +2,000
St. Louis Cardinals +2,500
Cincinnati Reds +2,500
San Diego Padres +2,500
Philadelphia Phillies +3,000
Chicago White Sox +3,000
Los Angeles Angels +3,000
Milwaukee Brewers +4,000
Boston Red Sox +5,000
Arizona Diamondbacks +6,000
Colorado Rockies +8,000
Toronto Blue Jays +10,000
Texas Rangers +10,000
Pittsburgh Pirates +20,000
Detroit Tigers +20,000
San Francisco Giants +30,000
Seattle Mariners +30,000
Miami Marlins +30,000
Baltimore Orioles +30,000
Kansas City Royals +30,000

Odds courtesy The SuperBook