After an incredible weekend of hoops, The Basketball Tournament (TBT) is setting up for a great finish in Dayton. Let’s look at the TBT picks for Monday, July 26, and some teams to watch. Heavyweights like Boeheim’s Army, House of ‘Paign, and Always a Brave are in action too.
(5) Autism Army vs (4) Always Us -3.5 2 pm EST
Both of these upstart TBT teams managed to survive the first round of the tournament. Always Us held on for a 79-73 win vs Peoria All-Stars after a “too close for comfort” Elam Ending. The Oregon alumni team had seven players with seven or more points. Mike Moser provided some serious juice coming off the bench with 13 points and seven rebounds.
Autism Army blew SCD Hoops out the water by the tune of 76-48. And they did it on the back of D’Angelo Harrison, who had 29 points in the affair and was 4-6 from three. My concern for Autism Army is if Harrison is not on then who is going to be that guy for them in the game from their bench. Even in a blowout win they still had multiple guys that had 30+ minutes.
Always Us has proven in their first game that they had a number of different guys they trust with the ball in their hands to make plays. Always Us has a deeper bench of guys that have the caliber to be the starter. Lay the points with Always Us.
The Pick: Always Us -3.5
D’Angelo Harrison has been ON FIRE all game for @Autism_Army_TBT‼️🔥
He has 25 points on 8-10 FG right now pic.twitter.com/2lKWL7xIvB
— TBT (@thetournament) July 25, 2021
(1) Golden Eagles -8.5 vs (9) Playing for Jimmy V 4 pm EST
Both the Golden Eagles and Playing for Jimmy V demolished their opponents in their first-round games by 28 and 32 points, respectively.
The Golden Eagles had five players in double figures led by Elgin Cook with 15. Playing for Jimmy V had three members in double figures, however, it feels like they could have run the score up even more.
The question is—can Playing for Jimmy V get the offense to keep up with the Golden Eagles? They have just as many scorers with the Golden Eagles to compete. Although I think the defending champions are ultimately too much for Playing for Jimmy V, I expect former Mississippi State Dee Bost to have a more productive day and keep them in it.
The Pick: Playing for Jimmy V +8.5
(3) Boeheim’s Army -6.5 vs (11) Team Heartfire 7 pm EST
Boeheim’s Army got the win and cover vs Forces of Seoul, but it was anything but pretty. The team did not seem to be able to score in the first half if Malachi Richardson was not on the floor. But then Tyrese Rice erupted to finish the game with 20 points and four threes.
Team Heartfire felt like they were launching a barrage of threes the entire game. Jared Wilson-Frame hit five as the team shot 40% from three for the game. Team Heartfire comfortably cruised to a strong first TBT win in their second year. But now they get a veteran Boeheim’s Army.
Team Heartfire was very impressive in their first game, but I think that Boeheim’s Army is going to right the ship here. They did not have the best game from Overseas Elite stars D.J. Kennedy and DeAndre Kane who are still trying to find their new roles on this team.
This Boeheim’s Army team is still stacked and if they clean up some of the sloppy first-half play they should easily cover the number.
The Pick: Boeheim’s Army -6.5
HOW IN THE WORLD DID TYRESE RICE MAKE THIS SHOT⁉️⁉️⁉️⁉️⁉️ pic.twitter.com/PE8avoK3nO
— TBT (@thetournament) July 24, 2021
(15) Jackson, TN Underdawgs vs (7) Always a Brave -4.5 9 pm EST
The Underdawgs by far had the upset of the tournament thus far by sending Mike Daum and House of ‘Paign packing. 13 players saw the floor for the Underdawgs and almost all of them had some type of significant impact. They moved the ball around and got individual players to their spots. And they had a pesky defense that held House of ‘Paign to four points in the Elam Ending.
Technically, Always a Brave did not have the upset of the tournament but they definitely shocked many. After being down 15 points in the Elam Ending, the Bradley alumni came roaring back to somehow win the game. Marcellus Sommerville came up big late as he finished with 17 points and 13 rebounds. However, they will need a better shooting performance as they were only 34% from the field.
Ultimately, this game could be a letdown spot for both teams. I believe Always a Brave is a more talented team, but the Underdawgs are feisty and have a defensive edge to them. They have so many players that can come up big for them at any time. I like the Underdawgs catching points here in what is sure to be a great game in the nightcap. Take the Underdawgs to upset to round out the July 26 TBT picks.
The Pick: Jackson, TN Underdawgs +4.5