Previewing Game of Thrones Season 6

I haven’t watched any of the leaked episodes from this series, nor have I read any books😉 so there’s no spoilers for GoT here, just speculation.

As I’m a degenerate who can’t function in any capacity without a bet on, yesterday me and Mrs Flash sorted out our annual Game of Thrones Death Pool.

You what? I think you have a problem

Gambling is fun, so is Game of Thrones, so combining the 2 is a winning combination! Prior to each season, me and the missus select a number of main/reoccurring characters who we think will die during the coming season. To any snowflakes reading who think this is in poor taste: I don’t care. We’re talking about fictional characters in a TV show notorious for killing them off.

What does the winner get?

Whoever predicts the most deaths wins a pat on the back and a well-done…oh, and gets taken out for a slap-up meal. She fluked a victory last season, and as I had to pay for dinner, she even turned down my offer to order for her too! She was the only one of us to get one right: Mance Rayder… so we sucked at predicting this last year, this year we’re increasing the selection to 4 names from 3.

As she’s the reigning champion she got first pick…and with the 1st pick in the Game of Thrones Season 6 Flash household Death Pool™ Mrs F selects Ser Jorah Mormont.

Bugger, good pick that. Jorah’s got greyscale, is well old and he’s likely to encounter a Dothraki horde. Talk about a tough road trip in the Essos Conference. Oh and he’s set off with a bloke that may try to kill him in Daario. Daario looks like a vegan, or the sort of beardy weirdy that reads the Guardian, but underneath that he’s what Danny Dyer would call a “propa nawty boy”.

Danny Dyer: professional idiot

With my 1st pick I went with the High Sparrow: he’s old, recently aggrieved Cersei (people who do that don’t tend to live very long), and he doesn’t look like he’ll be handy in a ruck.

2nd pick for the missus and she went for Ellaria Sand. She’s done her homework here. Ellaria Sand killed Mercella Lannister and defied the Prince of Dorne in doing so. So there’s plenty of people who want her dead… Fast forward to my 4th pick I went with the Prince of Dorne; Doran Martell. I’m hoping that Ellaria has some semblance of foresight and will try to kill Doran, before he has the chance to have her head chopped off.

With my 2nd pick I’ve gone for Ramsay Bolton. I don’t think there’s anything left for this character. There’s nothing he can do to make the audience think he’s even more evil, his ‘evilness’ is maxed out. And the Boltons will be defeated to further the story line as regards to Little Finger controlling the North and accruing more power.

3rd pick for the missus and she’s gone with Missandei… I don’t know what she was thinking here.

With my 3rd pick I’ve gone for Roose Bolton. I’m putting all my chips on the Boltons getting wacked within the next 10 episodes.

4th pick for the missus and she’s gone with Robin Arryn. Long term Little Finger will want to have him killed so he can control the Vale.

One other name strongly considered was Reek, he may have more story than Ramsay left to tell with being reunited with his family and becoming ‘Theon’ again, but he may just end up sacrificing himself this season for Sansa.

In summary:


  1. High Sparrow
  2. Ramsay Bolton
  3. Roose Bolton
  4. Doran Martell

Mrs Flash:

  1. Ser Jorah Mormont
  2. Ellaria Sand
  3. Missandei
  4. Robin Arryn

I’ve got a good squad on paper, but it could go either way. I’m just going to take it one episode at a time. I’ll be seething if she wins again though!

Update: 4-0 to the Flash! I absolutely destroyed her. 

NBA 2015/16 Playoffs – First Round

The NBA playoffs start tonight at 5:30pm BST. Which means I have to either have dinner early, or get the missus to have it ready for half time…er anyway here’s my thoughts:

The East

Cleveland Cavaliers v Detroit Pistons

The Cavs are the clear favourites to win the East. Quite rightly so, but their sum is not the equal of their parts. While I think they’ll have problems in later series, they shouldn’t here against Detroit.

Cavs in 5

Toronto Raptors v Indiana Pacers

Many reckon this is going to be a straight forward Toronto series win, I’m not so sure. Toronto have gone out in the first round the last 2 years. If they’re ever going to have a good run in the playoffs, it’s this year. Lowry has had a great season, but has dropped off since the ASB mostly due a prolonged elbow injury, and is the wrong side of 30. DeRozan has also had a career year and may be playing elsewhere next season. I think whoever ends up paying him a max contract will regret it.

Dwayne Casey is a pretty average coach, with Vogel the Pacers have the advantage there. I’m expecting games with a slow pace, a half court game will suit the Pacers with their tough defence. But on the other side of the court the Pacers have struggled at time in the 4th Q offensively.

The most likely result is the Raptors going through in 5. But I think Indiana are underrated in this matchup and are available at 4.10 to progress, I’ve had some of that.

Miami Heat v Charlotte Hornets

I was going to write about how Charlotte are underrated here and are a good bet to win…I think I’ve talked myself out of it though. I was tempted to back Charlotte to win the series but I think Miami have a lot more experience and are going to get the calls in their favour. There’s been some chat recently, backed up by a convincing YouTube video on how J. Lin gets no calls ever:

Also the older guys in Miami may suddenly have an extra spring in their step…I do think this is going 6 games or 7 though.

Miami in 7

Atlanta Hawks v Boston Celtics

For most of the season the Celtics looked like they were going to get the 3rd seed. They missed Crowder when he was out after the ASB and dropped down to the 5th seed where they face Atlanta.

I think this is a bad matchup for Boston, they’re going to have trouble with Horford & Millsap. Boston don’t have great bigs defensively. And they’re not going to have the success they usually have going small when Millsap can defend multiple positions.

Having said that, Boston are still a good team, with some very good players and obviously have an excellent coach. So it’s very likely that this series goes to 6 or 7 games.

Atlanta in 7

The West

Golden State Warriors v Houston Rockets

I mentioned last time that I’ve already bet on GSW to win the championship at 1.943. Pinnacle currently have them at 1.675. As I’ve said before only an injury to Curry or Draymond stops them.

In the first round the Warriors start off against Houston, the biggest disappointment of the regular season. GSW have a 3-0 record over them so far this season, and will have no problems in this series.

Houston have plenty of problems. Some of which are easy to fix, such as just giving more effort on D. They get beat back on D a lot, and if certain players actually communicate more, or gave more concentration they would at least give up less back door cuts.

One problem that isn’t easy to solve is that without Harden, they won’t be able to score. Bigger problem is that GSW have multiple players able to guard him. Dwight Howard is past it. Here’s another player that is going to get a max contract, and whoever gives him it will regret it.

The only question here is if Houston wins a game. Forget about the series, Houston should be happy to win one game. They’ll need Harden to play 40+ minutes, hope that they shoot great from 3 and crash the O boards.

GSW in 4

San Antonio Spurs v Memphis Grizzlies

When Gasol went down for the season, I thought the Grizzlies would suck. Even more players went down and they’ve done incredibly well considering. Joerger has done a hell of a job. Still there’s only so much you can do with the players available against a great team like the Spurs.

Spurs in 4 and is available at 2.10

Oklahoma City Thunder v Dallas Mavericks

Just look at the team Dallas has got into the playoffs with, it’s pretty incredible. It just shows what a great coach Carlisle is. They’ve been playing JJ Barea and Felton at PG. They’re a team with hardly any athletism. Wes Matthew is probably the most athletic player to get plenty of mintues, that’s a guy who came back from an ACL tear. While Dirk can sink an open shot, he’s so immobile, and a complete liability on D. (check out those lineup that have Dirk and David Lee as the bigs!).

So athleticism is a problem and they line up against a team with Westbrook and Durant. Good luck with that! If the coaches swopped, this would finish 4-0 to OKC easy. But this way round the Mavs can win a game at home.

OKC in 5 is most likely, but OKC 4-0 is available at a crazy 3.60.

Los Angeles Clippers v Portland Trail Blazers

The series is the best chance of an upset in the West…and I don’t think it will happen. Portland have had a great season, they were expected to win 26.5 games, but have ended up with the 5th seed. But the Clippers have a lot more talent. Lillard is excellent offensively, but faces up against one of the best guard defenders in CP3. Lillard is a terrible defender, on D he’ll either have to deal with the CP3-Jordan PNR basketball cheat code, or he’ll have to chase JJ Redick around screens.

Portland can win a game (or two), I like how Stotts always has either Lillard or McCollum on the floor at all times, while Rivers infamously throws out all bench dumpster fire lineups Still, Clippers to go through and I’ve backed Clippers -1.5 games on the series handicap at 2.10.

Clippers is 5 most likely result

Quick Update

It’s been about 4 weeks since my last post. I haven’t really had much to say, but as the NBA playoffs start on Saturday I’ll be posting more regularly. So here’s a quick catch up:

So far it’ been a really good season betting on the NBA, my bank’s grown massively after making around 45 points this regular season. The winning bets posted pre-season haven’t cashed yet. I’ve gone 5-1 on over/unders:

  • Boston Celtics Over 42.5 games – Won
  • Minnesota Timberwolves Over 25.5 games – Won
  • LA Lakers Under 29.5 games – Won
  • Portland Trailblazers Over 26.5 games – Won
  • Miami Heat Under 46.5 games – Lost (Bastards)
  • Oklahoma City Thunder Under 57.5 games – Won

Karl Anthony Towns is a dead cert for ROY also. But I think I’m gonna to be left disappointed with my Coach of the year bets. I’ve got Stevens at 10/1 and Stotts at 100/1, but Kerr is probably going to win with the black swan event of winning a record 73 games (despite not coaching for more than half the season!). Even more annoying is that I backed Kerr last year at 20/1 and he finished 2nd.

So Golden State Warriors will win a record 73 wins tonight, Curry will be MVP, Draymond will be at least be 2nd for Defensive player of the year and Kerr will win COY. I actually think the playoffs will be a little bit boring from the point of view that it’s GSW’s to lose. I would consider it a shock if they didn’t win it. The best odds available currently have them at 1.73 to win it. On the exchanges the best is Matchbook who have them at 1.943, which I’ve backed.

You could back that, or look to back them each series, but I definitely think 1.943 is value. The only thing I’m worried about is a Curry or DGreen injury.

First round preview up shortly.