With one week until the Super Bowl, the dreaded dull period in football is set to hit Louisiana sports betting.
Even after the New Orleans Saints’ season ended early, gridiron action captivated audiences everywhere. Sean Payton’s unexpected retirement has been the biggest story since the conclusion of the regular season, and the complexion of next year’s team is still largely unknown.
The weeklong halt in football action will prepare audiences for post-Super Bowl life, a dark time for sports fans. Until then, the Cincinnati Bengals’ and Los Angeles Rams’ battle for the Lombardi trophy cannot come quickly enough.
Weekend Prospects in Louisiana
While the NFL is off of televisions, the New Orleans Pelicans will be in action Friday and Sunday night. The Pels are 19-32 this season and 25-26 against the spread, fresh off a healthy cover against the Detroit Pistons.
This has been a disappointing season for a team that many thought would be a play-in tournament contender. Zion Williamson’s injury-induced absences and Brandon Ingram underperforming have instead reduced them to the 11th-seed in the Western Conference. DraftKings Louisiana has them at +1600 to make the playoffs.
With just a couple of weeks until the All-Star break, the Pelicans will welcome the opportunity to pause and heal up. Even if Williamson does not return, players like Josh Hart and Ingram will welcome the break after playing heavy minutes.
The LSU Tigers will also be in action, taking on the Vanderbilt Commodores at dinnertime Saturday. The Tigers are ranked 25th in the nation after dropping five of their last six contests.
LSU is 14-8 ATS this year, providing a favorable return to most of their investors. They are also stuck in the middle of a loaded Southeastern Conference, led by the #1 Auburn Tigers. Their chance of a conference championship is not great, but they are on track to make the NCAA Tournament.
The Future of Louisiana Sports Gambling
The United States Gambling Association estimated that $4.3 billion in bets would be wagered on the last Super Bowl. With the increased availability of online gambling, this number should only be on the rise.
Once the NFL plays its final game of the postseason, the biggest draw in sports, eyes will turn to the college level. LSU has an exciting basketball team and a new leader in Brian Kelly leading their football team.
The Pelicans also provide a consistent and enticing option in Louisiana sports betting, with games coming around once every other day. Without placing too much burden at his feet, a healthy Zion Williamson would also greatly increase their draw. The worst-case scenario is that NO tanks the back-half of the season and ends up with a high draft pick.
As far as immediate action, most Louisiana sports betting apps have the Pelicans as a six-point underdog Friday at the Denver Nuggets. Denver is the sixth seed in the West and has reigning MVP Nikola Jokic as its centerpiece.
The Nuggets beat and covered against the Pelicans in both of their previous matchups this year.