Duke vs UNC college basketball predictions and picks: Anthony not enough to even odds vs Blue Devils

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Two of the most most prestigious programs in college basketball face off against each other as the North Carolina Tar Heels host the Duke Blue Devils on Saturday. The Tar Heels have struggled this season but expect Roy Williams to have his squad well-prepared for a Duke team that is ranked No. 7 in the country.

We break down the odds with our best bets and predictions for this marquee NCAA matchup.  




Duke has plenty of firepower with Vernon Carey Jr, Tre Jones and Cassius Stanley all capable of filling up the hoop. And the Blue Devils don’t waste any time getting going, putting up 40.4 first half points per game (third-best in the country).

If you’re looking for an early wager to cash early, banking on the Blue Devils to get to 20 points first looks like the right call, even if it is juicy.

PICK: Race To 20 Points – Duke


This rivalry doesn’t have its usual luster this season with the Tar Heels currently sitting two games under .500. But there has been a glimmer of hope on the horizon when point guard Cole Anthony returned to the lineup last week after missing 11 games with a knee injury. With Anthony back in action, the Tar Heels have at least looked competent, losing by a single point to Boston College and hanging tight against Florida State.

Anthony gives UNC a shot creator and talented ball handler. Expect the Tar Heels to stay in this game early and back them on the first half spread.

PICK: First Half Spread North Carolina +4.5


Although Duke averages 82.5 ppg, there’s nothing like a big game in hostile territory to make the basket seem smaller.

One thing that North Carolina does very well, is clean the glass on the defensive end of the court where they rank 12th in the country in rebounding rate. Tar Heel forwards Armando Bacot and Garrison Brooks provide enough size and athleticism to stand up to Duke big man Vernon Carey Jr.

Expect UNC to contain Carey and limit Duke’s ability to get second chances on the offensive end of the floor. It’s also worth noting that UNC hasn’t allowed an opponent to put up more than 71 points in regulation since January 8. With Duke’s team total for this game set at 79, back the Under.

PICK: Team Total Duke Under 79


We think Duke will go Under their lofty team total but we don’t think UNC will have an easy time getting buckets either. The Tar Heels have been very inefficient on offense, ranking outside the Top-300 with a field goal percentage of 40.8. And before you assume that Anthony might improve that, consider that they have shot just 38.9 percent from the floor in the 11 games that he has played.

North Carolina has a bad habit of stopping all offensive movement and playing stagnant when Anthony has the ball. That’s bad news against a Duke team that is among the best squads in the country in blocks, steals and forcing turnovers. We’re banking on another frustrating offensive performance from UNC, and taking the game total Under.

PICK: Under 150


The Blue Devils have been a solid bet coming off a loss, owning a long-running 46-8 SU mark and a 30-23-1 ATS record (56 percent) when losing the previous game.

While we don’t think the Blue Devils will be able to run away with this game early, they should be able to seperate towards the end. As good as Anthony is, the Tar Heels had lost three of their last four games prior to his injury, and that included a 25-point home loss to Ohio State and a 7-point loss to Michigan.

There’s a reason that Duke ranks fifth in the country in offensive efficiency and eighth in defensive efficiency, while UNC ranks outside the Top-200 in OFF efficiency and outside the Top-100 in DEF efficiency. Duke simply has too many weapons and plays with more cohesiveness and better execution. Back the Blue Devils to win and cover the spread.

PICK: Duke -8

Canucks vs Golden Knights picks and predictions for Game 1


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.


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.


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)


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)


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

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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