Spurs vs Warriors – NBA Pick for April 16th
Heading into Game 2 of this exciting Western Conference Playoffs series, the San Antonio Spurs look to bounce back after an embarrassing Game 1 loss to the Golden State Warriors 113-92. The Warriors, who are without the two-time MVP Stephon Curry, jumped all over the Spurs in the 1st quarter of the opening game (28-17) and never looked back. Golden State showed their championship poise despite not being at full strength.
The Warriors are a 9.5 point favorite for Game 2 and there’s plenty of reason to believe they can win by double digits again. For starters, Golden State beat San Antonio via defense as they held the Spurs to 40% shooting from the field. Additionally, they held San Antonio’s best player LaMarcus Aldrige to just 14 points on 5-of-12 shooting. That’s 9 points less than his season average of 23 points per game.
The Spurs are greatly missing Kawhi Leonard who is expected to be out for the Playoffs. Without him, San Antonio doesn’t have the firepower to compete with Golden State. Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson combined for 51 points, while Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala chipped in 15 points. The surprise of the game had to be Javale McGee’s performance as he outplayed Aldridge by scoring 15 points with 4 total rebounds. Aldridge finished with just 2 rebounds. For the game, Golden State outrebounded the Spurs 57-40.
As much as some bettors want to believe that the Spurs will bounce back, history isn’t in their favor. Golden State swept San Antonio last year in the Western Conference Finals and they have the talent to do it again this year.
The Spurs are 0-8 ATS in their last 8 games on the road. Additionally, the favorite in this series has gone 7-1 ATS in the last 8 games. Furthermore, San Antonio is 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games when an underdog of 9.5 points or more.
Over the last 3 years, Golden State is 5-3 ATS versus the Spurs at home and 7-1 SU during the same span. Additionally, over the last 3 years, the Warriors are 8-2 ATS in the first round of the playoffs and 25-8 ATS since 1996. When leading a playoff series, they’re 17-9 ATS over the last 3 years. It just so happens that Golden State has won 2 championships during the last 3 years.
I expect the Spurs to come out and play better against the Warriors for the first half, but look for Golden State to pull away late. They have too much firepower and too many mismatches for the Spurs to handle on the road.
The Warriors came into the playoffs injured and not playing good basketball. They wanted to make a statement in Game 1 of this series and they certainly did. The Warriors know what it takes to win in the playoffs, especially at home. Look for the Dubs to get strong performances by Thompson and Durant, while Green does the dirty work.
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