Finland – Montenegro
Line had opened with (-4.5) points handicap on away side but than quickly moved to -9.5. Because of this movement we have an opportunity to get a typical value bet on Finland. It does not mean that I am confident that Finland has to win this game but simple the odds are not fair. I suppose if these teams would play in Montenegro on Day 1 we would have the same 8.5-9 points handicap on Montenegro and I really would not play them to cover it. Now we have home handicap in away match and that is wrong line.
Finland are missing their leader Kopponen but at home they can compensate his absence with solid team performance. Another problem which is more important – how Finland is going to stop Pekovic oriented offense? They don’t have answer for him. But on other side Finland at home can bring a tremendous percentage of 3 pointers, they can offer offensive minded basketball and be successful with it. Montenegro does not have a long bench and they can struggle if game would be offensive minded.
I would not be surprised if Finland will fight for a victory here but I also understand that they can lose it by double digits in case they don’t find their offense. But 9.5 handicap is not a correct line here. According to my estimations Montenegro should be 4.5-6 points favorite. Also I think that this game should go over the total line because Finland would not be able to defend well against Pekovic but usually they are hot at home in 3-point shooting.
Prediction: Finland 76 – 82 Montenegro
Poland – Portugal
Easy win for Poland team but handicap is too high to jump on.
Belgium – Georgia
I expect Belgium to win at home and I would consider to bet on them if the would be 2.5-3 points dogs in the line. Unfortunately they are not and I don’t want to bet on them as favorites.
Latvia – Italy
As I wrote earlier Latvia is completely different team. Most of players don’t have experience on this level, also they don’t have answer for Bargnani on defense and their coach is much weaker than his opponent. All is pointing to a clear Italy victory here. But after watching Italy game versus Israel I have to say that Italy is also very far from being a real power.
Italy must have ideal game to avoid problems in Latvia and I doubt that it is possible. So Latvia must show character in first half but than experience of Italy players will prevail and they will get an important victory. My advice to wait for better odds in Italy at in-play in first half.
Bosnia and Herzegovina – Ukraine
Bosnia without Teletovic but this should not a big problem against Ukraine. At home Bosnia is clear favorite for me here but 9 points handicap looks high. I think that fair line should be around 7.5-8 points but anyway I am not ready to bet on Ukraine.
FYR of Macedonia – Hungary
No chance here for Hungarian young team but 14.5 handicap is too solid to jump on it.