One of the best betting strategies in sports is fading the public. Find the team the casual gambler is backing and take the other side.

Here are the results of all regular season games since 2005 by betting percentage.

Spread %RecordUnitsROI %
>507414-7333-263.03-1.8
>555722-5712-254.12-2.2
>604132-4197-253.93-3
>652729-2845-240.08-4.3
>701600-1644-115.57-3.6

As you can see, being on the same side as the public has been a losing proposition. However, that changes in the last game of the season.

Game 82 results by betting percentage

Spread %RecordUnitsROI %
>5086-75+6.52+4
>5563-49+10.9+9.7
>6047-33+11.48+14.3
>6527-20+5.47+11.6
>7016-11+4.14+15.3

Why the sudden change? The casual bettor tends to bet on favorites. The team favored in the last game of the season has gone 84-76 (52.5%) ATS. Favorites in all regular season games have a win rate of 49.8% ATS.

Motivation helps explain the difference in success for favorites at the end of the year. The bookmakers know which teams have something to play for and which squads do not.

The Sweet Spot

Since 2005, public favorites, teams getting more than 60% of the spread bets, have gone 42-26 (61.8%) ATS, +13.59 units.

The Grizzlies, Thunder, Bulls and Jazz are all favorites getting more than 60% of the bets tonight. Typically these would be teams to fade but tonight you should bet with the public.