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Pittsburgh St. John’s Betting – Red Storm Claim Another Scalp At The Garden

Posted by Washington Tucker on 2/6/2014 1:51:52 AM

Online betting players are watching a renaissance in New York basketball, with the Knicks entertaining crowds at Madison Square Garden once again, and that energy has carried over to St. John’s, who have taken down some big names at the Garden this season. Next on the list is Pitt, a team that has dominated them over the last couple of seasons, and it’s time for the Red Storm to get their revenge.

  • What: NCAA Basketball Betting
  • When: Saturday, February 19th, 12:00 PM ET
  • Where: Madison Square Garden, New York City, NY
  • Pick: St. John’s Red StormM

Why Bet On Pitt (24-2, 12-1 Big East)

The No.4 Panthers sit atop the brutal Big East with a two-game lead over Notre Dame, and they’ve won five in a row after a 12-point win over South Florida. They have even continued to roll without leading scorer, junior guard Ashton Gibbs, who has missed the last three games with a knee injury. They’ve really gotten some good production from junior forward Nasir Robinson, while senior guard Brad Wanamaker and senior forward Gilbert Brown have steadied the team as well. Sophomore guard Travon Woodall has done a good job in Gibbs’ spot as well. The Panthers are known as one of the most hard-nosed teams in the country, coming in first in rebound margin, 30th in points allowed and field-goal percentage defense, as well as 29th in three-point defense. They share the ball (fifth in assists) and take care of it as well (fourth in assist-to-turnover ratio). The Panthers also don’t shoot many three-pointers, but they shoot a good percentage, making 38.6% of their attempts from beyond the arc.

There isn’t much to say that you can say negatively against the Panthers, other than their foul shooting, which is pretty bad (233rd in the nation). You have to think that this could come back to bite them at some point, but the Panthers just keep grinding teams down.

Why Bet On St. John’s (16-9, 8-5 Big East)

The Red Storm are surging after five wins in their last six games, and senior guard Dwight Hardy has been leading the charge. Hardy was named the Big East Player of the Week after averaging 25.5 points in wins at Cincinnati and Marquette, and he’s been aided by two more seniors, guard Justin Brownlee and swingman D.J. Kennedy. The Red Storm are a team loaded with seniors who have played inspired basketball against the nation’s best teams, just look at their resume: wins over Georgetown, Notre Dame, then-No.1 Duke, and UConn, and the wins over Duke and UConn were beatdowns. The Red Storm shoot 45.5% from the field, they take care of the ball (59th in turnovers) and they’re 13th in turnover margin. The Red Storm also shoot well from the free-throw line (108th at the line), and they force a lot of turnovers (62nd in steals).

A major problem with the Red Storm is inconsistency because remember, they have lost to St. Bonaventure and Fordham. They don’t defend the three-point shot very well (278th in three-point defense), or rebound very well (232nd in the country), and they don’t block many shots (223rd). Coach Steve Lavin has done an unbelievable job with this team to get them to this point, and it’s likely the program will make its first trip to the Dance since 2002 because on paper, they’re not really that good. The Red Storm work hard, and they raise their game when they need to.

How The Game Will Play Out

NCAA basketball betting players will likely favor the Red Storm at the Garden, given their track record against good teams this year. The Panthers are 2-3 SU and ATS in their last five on the road at the Garden against the Red Storm, but they’ve won the last two. The Red Storm are 7-2 SU and 5-4 ATS at the Garden this year, and you have to wonder how long the Panthers can manage to succeed with Gibbs. They’ll have to contain Hardy, while using their advantage in the post with Robinson and senior center McGahee because that is where Pitt’s big edge really lies. There won’t be many surprises in this game; a lot of these players have seen each other a lot over the last three or four years, so it’s just a matter of execution, and we think it’s time for St. John’s to pull one out, which will essentially stamp their ticket to the NCAA Tournament. Take St. John’s in your sports betting book.

Pitt St. John’s Betting Pick: St. John’s Red Storm

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