Vegas veteran Benjamin Eckstein, author of America’s Line, brings three decades of experience to make weekly picks in his “Ecks & Bacon” column.
LAS VEGAS — If you’re interested in the odds for tomorrow’s WBA/WBO lightweight title fight at Madison Square Garden in New York City, here ya go. Vitaly (The Matrix) Lomachenko is -4000 at most sportsbooks, and I AIN’T laying $4,000 to win back a stinkin’ $100. Also not interested in Sportsbook my wallet for the underdog, Jose “Sniper” Pedraza. Yeah, not even Pedraza’s WBO crown and 25-1 record is gonna get me to buck maybe the GREATEST fighter on the planet at the moment. The one we like to call, “NO MAS-CHENKO!”
First up, a quick skate tonight, and we’ll grab the Oilers over the Wild. Edmonton has been on a sweet run, winning four of the last five, while Minny is heading in the opposite direction, and has dropped four of the last five. Buying OIL!
Now, if you’re standing at attention, let’s get all military and take a look at the Army-Navy Game. Every stat and every metric points toward the Long Gray Line. The Army has a stellar 9-2 overall record, 6-4-1 against the spread. The Cadets are going bowling in a few weeks, hooking Houston at the Armed Forces Bowl in Fort Worth. On the other side of the field, can’t say anything good about the water boys. The Midshipmen stumble in at 3-9 straight up, with a 5-7 mark against the spread. However, and isn’t there always a however, this IS Navy’s bowl game. And they’ll be ready. Just take a look at the last four games and you see scores like Army 14-13, Army 21-17, Navy 21-17 and Navy 17-10. No final margin is more than a TD in this historic rivalry, and we expect another tight fit.
On to Sunday, and we rolling with the Rams -3 points over the Bears. You would think that Los Angeles might take a deep breath after clinching the NFC West last week. Nah. That’s not Sean McVay’s style. His team came off the bye week, looked kinda out of sorts, and still beat the Lions by 14 points, 30-16. Speaking of 30, the Rams are averaging 35 points per game, and not even this talented Chicago defense will be able to derail Jared Goff and company. Goff has been amazing the last six games, with 15 TDs and only 2 INTs. And let’s not forget that they have the NFL’s LEADING rusher, Todd Gurley, who has gobbled up 1,175 yards. And while everyone talks about what a force Chicago LB Khalil Mack is, let’s not forget that L.A. has the NFL’s LEADING sack artist, Aaron Donald, with 16.5. Finally, we gotta point you to the Rams’ RIDONKULOUS record on the road the last two years with McVay in charge of X’s and O’s. How about 13-2, and how about, yeah, this is my BEST BET BABY!
And plz, PLZ hit me on Twitter over the weekend, @vegasvigorish, just in case anything pops on the college hoop board.
Benjamin Eckstein is a nationally syndicated sportswriter/oddsmaker. His column, America’s Line, with the Ecks & Bacon appetizer, has run in the New York Daily News and over 100 other papers since 1988. You can follow him online at www.americasline.com. He is beloved by most, when he picks Sportsbooks, and detested by others, when he picks the occasional loser. If you wanna piece of Eck, hit his email...email@example.com.