Can the Golden State Warriors win back-to-back and put the Toronto Raptors down 2-1 with another game left in Oakland before heading back to Canada?
The best online sportsbooks have the Golden State Warriors as favorites at 5.5 points. Are the sportsbooks correct? Can the Dubs win by six points or more at Oracle in Game 3 of the NBA Finals?
It’s all about who needs this game more. And in my opinion, that team is the Golden State Warriors. They absolutely have to keep their winning momentum going, or they risk dropping back-to-back games at home and forfeiting their newly acquired homecourt advantage.
If they can keep it rolling, with a win on Wednesday night, suddenly the Kawhi Leonard and the Toronto Raptors backs are against the wall. They’ll be down 2 to 1 and rolling into another road game against the most prolific team in the last 5 years of basketball with a definite possibility of going down 3-1.
But as Isaiah Thomas said, the Dubs have played so well in the playoffs that they are statistically due a ‘home stinker,’ which makes sense. A team like Toronto with such incredible defense could provide the perfect storm to help the Dubs stink it up. And if we are looking at both Game’s 3 and 4, Game 3 is the one where this seems the most possible.
Klay Thompson, if he plays, will still be stiff and sore. Kevin Durant most likely won’t play –each extra day increases the chance that he’ll be healthy and back on the court. Steph Curry might still be a little weak from the cold or flu he seems to have. So, if the Raps are going to steal a road game, it is most likely going to happen on Wednesday night.
GSW Vulnerable at Home?
This is a fascinating meditation. As far as winning straight up, not really, but against the spread, definitely.
The Warriors have smashed opponents in their last 5 consecutive home games. And against the Raptors the history is bleak –for the Raps. The Warriors have a won an astounding 15 of 20 against the Raptors over the last few years… that is some serious series domination. To make matters worse, in 14 games in Oakland, the Raps have only beaten the Dubs once. That said, that one road victory came this season, so they have proven that they can beat the Warriors in
Oracle. That was a game where Durant, Draymond Green, and Steph Curry all played but Kawhi didn’t, and the Raps still won.
The Warriors do not excel at covering the point spread. In fact, one of the only times that they cover more than 50 percent of the time is when they have two to three days of rest (53.8%). As home favorites, the Dubs are just 40.4% or 19-28-1. After a win, they are 43.3% or 43-55-2. And in playoff games, they are just 47.1% at 8-9-1.
The Raps are 12-8 or 60% as dogs, and 11-8 or 57.9% as away dogs. However, they tend to flop with some time off. The Raptors are a horrendous 37.5% 9-15-0 with 2 to 3 days of rest and just 46.7% or 14-16 after a loss. In playoff games, they are a bit better than the Warriors at 11-9 for 55%.
So where does this leave us?
This is a tough game, but all in all, I think the Raptors cover the number. I am going to wait to see if the public pushes the line to 6 or 6.5 and then take the Raptors last minute to get the backdoor cover. Don’t get me wrong; I think the Warriors still win this game … just not by 6.