Well, the 2017 NBA Finals are finally here and basketball fans across the globe have the matchup we’ve all been expecting as the Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors meet in the Finals for an unprecedented third straight season.
Better yet, thanks to the expert insight that I’m about to drop, roundball betting enthusiasts everywhere that are gearing up to wager on the finals are going to have a great idea of just who’s going to win the finals and in how many games in what looks like another epic edition in their NBA Finals trilogy.
NBA Finals 2017 Updated Odds, Game Times, TV Schedule & Series Pick (May 29th)
2017 NBA Finals Series Odds
Warriors -250 vs Cavs +210
Head-to-Head Finals History
In their two NBA Finals meetings, Golden State has the slight edge over Cleveland in wins (7-6), but as we all know, the Cavs have won the last three finals matchups. Andre Iguodala (2015) and LeBron James (2016) have claimed MVP honors.
NBA Finals Schedule
|Game 1||Thu., 6/1||CLE @ GS (9 p.m., ABC)|
|Game 2||Sun., 6/4||CLE @ GS (8 p.m., ABC)|
|Game 3||Wed., 6/7||GS @ CLE (9 p.m., ABC)|
|Game 4||Fri., 6/9||GS @ CLE (9 p.m., ABC)|
|Game 5||Mon., 6/12||CLE @ GS (9 p.m., ABC)*|
|Game 6||Thu., 6/15||GS @ CLE (9 p.m., ABC)*|
|Game 7||Sun., 6/18||CLE @ GS (8 p.m.,ABC)*|
Why Bet the Cleveland Cavaliers To Win the Finals
There are a handful of great reasons to back the Cavs (63-32 SU, 44-47-4 ATS) in the finals despite them being underdogs.
First and foremost, Cleveland, possibly more than any other team in the league, has resiliency and I mean boatloads of it. Not only did LeBron James and company pull off a historic comeback in beating the Warriors in last season’s finals despite trailing 3-1, but they’ve also gotten their act together this postseason after hitting the playoffs in a pretty nasty funk.
“This team is a crazy team,” Cavs coach Ty Lue said. “They just stayed resilient all year, got to the playoffs, and we really stepped our game up.”
The defending champions dispatched the feisty Boston Celtics 4-1 in the Eastern Conference Finals and only lost one game en route to the finals (12-1 SU). Another great reason to back Cleveland is the fact that, since the postseason started, the Cavs are scoring the ball like crazy, having scored at least 106 points in every game while topping 115 points nine times, 120 points three times and reaching the 130-point plateau twice.
Last but not least, Cleveland has arguably the best player in the league in LeBron James (26.4 ppg, 8.7 apg, 8.6 rpg) and another flat-out superstar in Kyrie Irving (25.2 ppg) not to mention another all-star in forward Kevin Love (19.0 ppg). The Cavs also have some impressive scoring balance with seven more players all averaging between 7.5 and 10.7 points per game.
Cleveland ranked fourth in the league in scoring (110.3 ppg) and second in three-point shooting percentage (38.4%) but uncharacteristically struggled at the other end of the floor by giving up a generous 107.2 points per game to rank 20th in points allowed.
“It feels good to, as a team, collectively play some really inspired and really good basketball,” Love said. “I know toward the end of the season there were some rough patches. There were times where collectively we could have been better, but I think that we showed that if we have a great game plan and we play inspired basketball, we’re a tough team to beat.”
Why Bet the Golden State Warriors to win the Finals
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that there are a bunch of great reasons to back the Golden State Warriors (79-15 SU, 48-43-3 ATS) to win the 2016-17 NBA Finals.
First and foremost, I simply believe that Steph Curry and company are going to come out more focused and prepared than they have been all season and that’s a bit scary seeing as how they haven’t lost a single game while becoming the first team in league history to complete three sweeps in a best-of-seven series
“12-0 is great, but it doesn’t mean anything going into the next series. It’s a great run, and we had an opportunity to get it done tonight,” Curry said after the Warriors’ Game 4 win over San Antonio.
The best reason to back the Dubs however is that they have a more balanced roster than Cleveland and more viable scoring threats, particularly off the bench. Golden State has a pair of former MVP winners in Steph Curry (25.3 ppg) and Kevin Durant (25.1 ppg) and two more perennial all-stars in shooting guard Klay Thompson (22.3 ppg) and do-it-all power forward Draymond Green (10.2 ppg, 7.9 rpg, 7.0 apg). The Warriors have a whopping seven other players outside their quartet of all-stars that all average between 4.6 and 7.6 points per game.
The Dubs have the game’s most potent offense (115.9 ppg) and have been much better than Cleveland in ranking 11th in points allowed (104.3 ppg), first in field goal defense (43.55) and first in three-point shooting defense (32.4%). The Warriors are 8-4 ATS in their 12 wins and nine of their 12 games have played Over the closing total.
Expert Analysis and Prediction
Game 1 Spread: Warriors -7
Game 2 Spread: Warriors -7
Game 3 Spread: Cavs -7
Analysis: As you can see, the opening odds for each of the Finals’ first three games are identical with the home team being favored by seven points. However, for the entirety of 2017 NBA Finals, I’m going to advise you to back the loaded Golden State Warriors to dispatch LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in five games after watching both teams this postseason and looking back over their pair of regular season meetings.
While Golden State lost to Cleveland 109-108 on Christmas Day while failing to cover the spread as a 3.5-point road favorite, the Warriors let a seven-point lead starting the final quarter slip away in a contest that had the look of a definitive win for the Dubs before bouncing back to completely annihilate the Cavs in their 126-91 home win on Jan. 16 to easily cover the spread as a 9-point home favorite.
The bottom line for this year’s NBA Finals matchup is that, while Cleveland has looked good in routing their clearly inferior competition in the mediocre Eastern Conference, Golden State has looked absolutely phenomenal in dispatching three very good teams in Portland, Utah and the incomparable San Antonio Spurs.
The Cavaliers are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games against teams from the Pacific division and a winless 0-4-1 ATS in their last five games against teams from the Western Conference while the Golden State Warriors have gone 20-6-1 ATS in their last 27 games overall.
For me, the warriors have had the look of a team with a date with destiny all season long and I have seen nothing this postseason to make me think otherwise. Golden State wins in five to give Kevin Durant his first NBA Championship.