With Kobe Bryant currently out for the Los Angeles Lakers it has me wondering how much does the future Hall of Famer affect the spread for the Lakers. How are the bookies reacting to his omission from the team and how do bettors now favor the LA team?
Any star player missing in action for a team does affect the line and it will certainly be adjusted by the bookmakers and sometimes very significantly. Serious analysis must be done when considering teams for or against the spread who boast major injuries to their lineup. For example, imagine the Oklahoma Thunders without Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook in their lineup, which is 75% of their offense out the game and it, will certainly affect the points spread and total given to the team.
How Injuries Affect The Bookmakers Odds
When key players get injured, initially is when you will see the most significant jump in the adjustment made by the bookies and it can be hard for you as the bettor to know how to react at times. If the injury persist for a period of time what will happen is that other players will attempt to fill the gap that was left and from how they have responded you can determine how to react to the odds being offered by the bookies who will tend to react later rather than sooner to players stepping up their game or lack thereof.
So many times I have seen a team have injury to their big name player and the team goes 5-1 or even 9-1 ATS and the team has remained undervalued by bookmakers all along their current streak because they were given too many points to overcompensate for the loss of the player.
This is not to say that if a major player is out for the remainder of the season that the bookies will take forever to react to how the team responds so your timing has to be perfect in taking advantage. Even though players will have a good run of form in the absence of big name players to injuries, this form will rarely ever last for the duration of the season.
More than likely the team won’t even make the playoffs and their play will be up and down all season making it hard for bookies to zero in on how best to adjust the lines to them. When players are out, they can win tonight and be a complete slump the other night and here in lies the risk that goes with teams who carry big name injuries to their squad.
Consider The Strength Of The Squad
It is important to understand that each team will react differently to injuries and there is no set rule as to how a bettor should go about betting with such teams.
When it comes to injuries in the NBA the key is to analyze the depth of the team, age of the squad and just as importantly the coaching staff. All three factors can help to indicate if a team will step up to a loss of a player or go into a losing slump.