Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors may be the prohibitive favorites to win both, the Western Conference and NBA Finals, but if the San Antonio Spurs’ annihilation of James Harden and the Houston Rockets is any indication, then the Dubs had better be prepared for a knock-down, drag-out fight.
With the top-seeded Warriors set to host the second-seeded Spurs in Game 1 of their Western Conference Final matchup on Sunday, May 14, the expert analysis and preview that you’re about to get is just what the doctor ordered. If you’re looking to maximize your chance of cashing in on the outcome of the Western Conference Final and maximize your chances of striking pay dirt on each game in this series, then let’s get started.
Spurs-Warriors Series NBA Betting Odds And Preview
Western Conference Finals Series Odds
Golden State Warriors -1100
San Antonio Spurs +700
San Antonio Spurs (69-25 SU, 48-44-2 ATS)
San Antonio ranked 14th in scoring (105.3 ppg) during the regular season, seventh in field goal shooting (46.9%), a surprising first in three-point shooting (39.1%) and seventh in free throw shooting (79.7%). Defensively, the our ranked a stupendous second in points allowed (98.1 ppg), fourth in defensive field goal shooting percentage (44.3%) and fifth in defending the three-pointer (34.4%).
San Antonio is led by MVP-caliber small forward Kawhi Leonard (25.5 ppg, 5.8 rpg, 1.8 pg) while three other players average double figures in the regular season in LaMarcus Aldridge (17.3 ppg), Pau Gasol (12.4 ppg) and Tony Parker (10.1 ppg). The Spurs also have a handful of very good role players in veteran Patty Mills, Manu Ginobili and Danny Green and a pair of young blossoming performers in Jonathan Simmons (6.2 ppg) and to a lesser degree, Dwayne Dedmon (5.1 ppg, 6.5 rpg).
Golden State Warriors (75-15 SU, 45-42-3 ATS)
High-scoring Golden State led the league in points per game (115.9 ppg) while also ranking first in field goal shooting percentage (49.5 %), third in three-point shooting percentage (38.3%) and 11th in free throw shooting (78.8%). You may not know it, but the Warriors also closed out the regular season ranked a surprising first in field goal defense (43.5%) and first in three-point defense (32.4%) though they did finish 11th in points allowed (104.3 ppg). By now, NBA fan everywhere know that Golden State has four all-stars in Steph Curry (25.3 ppg), Kevin Durant (25.1 ppg), Klay Thompson (22.3 ppg) and Draymond Green (10.2 ppg, 7.9 rpg, 7.0 apg).
Just as important however is the fact that the Dubs also have a fantastic bench with key contributors like Andre Iguodala (7.6 ppg), Ian Clark (6.8 ppg), JaVale McGee (6.1 ppg), Zaza Pachulia (6.1 ppg), Matt Barnes (5.7 ppg), Shaun Livingston (5.1 ppg) and David West (4.6 ppg).
This Season’s Meetings
San Antonio took two of three regular season meetings against Golden State by winning 129-100 on October 25 as an 8.5-point road dog and 107-85 as a 10.5-point home favorite on March 11. Golden State took the final regular season meeting 110-98 to cash in as a 4.5-point road dog on March 29.
While I can’t say it enough how impressed I was with San Antonio’s dismantling of James Harden and the Houston Rockets, particularly in Game 6 on Thursday night, I just don’t see Kawhi Leonard and company getting past a Golden State squad that looks quite determined to get back to the NBA Finals in the hopes of extracting some serious revenge against LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers.
The Warriors are well-rested after sweeping their first two playoff series and will be able to use their youth and speed advantage to wear out the older, veteran-laden Spurs while challenging San Antonio at the defensive end of the floor far more than Harden and the defenseless Houston Rockets ever did in the last round. The Warriors and Spurs are both outstanding defensive ballclubs, but it is Golden State that is the far more efficient, balanced – and explosive – offensive team
The bottom line is that Golden State hasn’t been beaten by anyone out west with three all-stars and now they’re virtually impossible to beat after adding Kevin Durant. I like the Golden State Warriors to win the Western Conference Finals in six games and you should too.