Golden State Warriors
The Warriors enter this series off arguably the best win these playoffs, overcoming the Rockets in Houston without Kevin Durant. Stephen Curry absolutely lit things up in the second half, scoring all 33 points as he led his side to victory. The strong outside shooting of Klay Thompson and Andre Iguodala kept Golden State competitive throughout, the two combining for 44 points and 12 made 3 pointers. Draymond Green had another excellent all-round game, playing elite defence and falling just short of a triple-double. Kevon Looney also deserves credit for his consistent excellent production off the bench, adding 14 points and 5 boards of his own.
Portland Trail Blazers
While they were arguably outplayed during the series, Portland deserve credit for a tough game 7 road win in Denver. CJ McCollum was absolutely cooking, dropping 37 points and 9 boards on 17/29 shooting. Despite shooting a measly 3/17 from the field, Dame Lillard still led his side well and fell just 2 assists shy of a triple-double. Evan Turner also surprised everyone with his cameo off the bench, adding a valuable 14 points and 7 boards.
Prediction: Under 218.5
Backing the under in Warriors home games has been profitable this season and I can see that trend continuing here. Portland should be very fatigued after a draining game 7 and I can see them struggling from deep. Similarly, Golden State will need to readjust their offence without KD, which should make it more difficult to score. I also expect a slower pace throughout the start of this series, which should lend itself to the under here on a relatively high total.
While they definitely deserve credit for making it, Portland is probably the worst Western Conference Finals team over at least the past decade. They’ve got absolutely nothing on the wing and a very minimal interior presence. Especially without KD and DeMarcus for the start of the series, I think this is a much better matchup for Golden State than Denver. I expect them to win each of their home games this series, followed by a split at the Moda Center to claim the gentleman’s sweep in 5. $3.25 looks like very solid value for this, especially when you consider Golden State is just $1.20 to win the series outright.