Heading into Tuesday night's battle between Duke and Pittsburgh, the Blue Zone has you covered with some can't-lose bets:
Duke (-2.5) vs. Pittsburgh
This spread is one that will leave bettors restless after they make their last call to the bookmaker. Duke being favored by 2.5 points against a historically bottom-of-the-ACC program in Pittsburgh seems like a no-brainer, but this year’s Blue Devil team has struggled mightily in covering the spread.
Most recently, Duke went into its matchup with Virginia Tech favored by one point, and they fell to the Hokies. Just a couple weeks ago, betting on the Blue Devils to cover an 11.5-point spread against Boston College seemed like free money, but the Eagles kept it close and Duke only edged them out by one.
The Blue Devils have not done anything as of late to give bettors any confidence in their ability to cover, so at the end of the day, Pittsburgh is the better pick in this one.
Pick: Pittsburgh +2.5
Here’s what we’re looking at. Duke averages 74.8 points per game and Pittsburgh is not far behind with 73.7. While the closeness of this game made the spread so difficult to pick, that is going to play into the favor of all the bettors who go with the over.
Both of these teams have something to prove, especially the Panthers—who are a young ACC program looking to claw their way up the pecking order of the conference. The Blue Devils are obviously an established powerhouse, but there is a fair amount of people doubting the abilities of this year’s team.
All that is going to make for an exciting and, more importantly for those who picked the over, a high-scoring finish.
Pick: Over 142.5
DJ Steward over/under 2.5 three-pointers
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Steward has emerged as an offensive threat, fully capable of scoring from all three levels whenever he so chooses. Arguably the most important part of his game that makes him so effective is his smooth stroke from downtown, and he has made opponents’ feel the pain of it multiple times.
Steward hasn’t made over two three-pointers since the Notre Dame game, but the Panthers' ability to score on second-chance opportunities is going to force Duke to lean on some big three-point shots. More often than not, Steward and fellow sharpshooter Matthew Hurt are the ones to answer the call and with how high-scoring I expect this game to be, Steward is going to eclipse 2.5 three-pointers.
Pick: Over 2.5 three-pointers