Serbia – Croatia
Public heavily favors Serbia here and line moved from -6.5 to -9.5 quite quickly. I don’t think that now it is possible to find value in handicap because Serbia looks like much more stronger team. They are playing collective basketball with 10 man rotation and they have so many tactical solution that croats would not be able to stay in the game for long. But for some time Croatia should be in the game and I plan to use this period of time to get handicap less than 5.5 points or 1.60+ for Serbia to win. You know this is a type of derby and everything might happen. But the winner for sure is Serbia.
Croatia has D.Kus questionable, Zoric in but he missed last 2 games, Planinic out of form, K.Loncar still looking for his place on the court.
Another public bet is over 156.5 here and now line moved to 157.5-158 where I see some value in under. This is a new hall and new rims for both teams and finally this a knockout stage where defense matter. Serbian team has excellent defensive skills and if they are motivated they can defend under 72-73 points. Croatia has too predictable offense and I expect them to struggle in offense for long time. Croatian defense so far was awful (90+ points from Slovenia, Brazil and USA) but I don’t expect this game to be run and gun type so Croatia should find a way to stop Serbia under 85 points.
I expect to see Serbia scoring 78-86 points and Croatia 66-73 so for me there is a value now on under side.
Pick: Under 158 @ 1.93 3/10 Pinnacle
Greece – Spain
I am quite suprised to see Spain such strong favorite on neutral value. I expected to see them with handicap around 4.5-5.5 points before lines were set but unfortunately I can’t bet on Greece after they fixed match with Russia to avoid Spain. Now it is hard to count on any support from referees and public which hates greeks. Public in the gym will support Spain and referees probably too. This small details are important and I prefer to stay away from side betting here.
But for the total I think that it worth trying to bet on over with average-medium stakes. Line is affected by h-2-h history which is showing that this total was beaten only in 2 of 6 games. But now Greece is playing much faster than in previous years and I expect to see here 168-174 possession game which directs to 155.5-161.5 total if both teams will shoot with 0.925 per possesion rate what is a statistical norm for men’s basketball. So far on this tournament Spain showed 0.98 pts/possesion offensively and 0.845 defensively while Greece had 0.95 (offense) and 0.96 (defense).
On Eurobasket-2009 they had 173 possesions game and 148 points total but greeks did 20 turnovers and only 40% shooting what lead anomal 0.76 pts/possesion rate. Now they looks much better offensively and Spain so far allowed more than 67 points in ALL their matches. Greeks should have some advantage under the boards because without Pau Gasol spaniards are not so strong there.
Pick: Over 151.5 @ 1.91 4/10 Pinnacle