NBA Odds: Golden State Warriors at Boston Celtics
Betting odds courtesy of Bovada
The Golden State Warriors are 37-24 and situated 6th in the Western Conference, trailing Portland by 4.5 games for the fifth spot. The Warriors are an exciting team that has improved immensely defensively, but even having a blue chip point guard like Stephen Curry and a talented cast hasn’t rendered the Warriors among the true contenders in the West. The Warriors are 19-14 on the road and will travel to face the Boston Celtics in a game NBA oddsmakers at Bovada are favoring the Warriors by 5.5 points.
Boston is in the first year of a complete roster overhaul following the departure of Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett. The Celtics weren’t expected to compete for much this year, and first-year coach Brad Stevens has done a good job of trying to get blood from a rock. He’s nurtured the group into a strong defensive squad, ranking 10th in the NBA in points allowed.
Generating offense of course has been a problem, as the C’s rank 26th in points per game, accounting for a -3.6 point differential. Jeff Green has had a strong season as the No. 1 option in the offense, but his efficiency has plummeted with the increase in usage. Still, Green’s 17 points per game lead the team. Avery Bradley has expanded his offensive game in addition to being a lockdown defender, but the team traded a valuable guard in Jordan Crawford and weakened the bench by one. Bradley is also questionable for this contest as he sprained his ankle in the Pacers game.
Rajon Rondo is still working his way back into shape and has averaged under 30 minutes per game in his 15 starts thus far. The Celtics are hoping for continued growth from Kelly Olynyk, who has even drawn Kevin Love comparisons for his rebounding and shooting ability. Olynyk is averaging just 18.9 points per game but has a PER of 13.2. He’s battling a toe injury but is expected to play.
The Warriors scored a big win in Indiana on Tuesday night (Mar 4), winning by two points over the best team in the East. Klay Thompson scored 25 points to lead all Warriors, and he’s averaging 18 points per game this season.
Curry has been the talk of the league, and is averaging 24 points per game and 8.8 assists per game. Perplexingly, Curry lost a three-point competition to Warriors’ coach Mark Jackson, who was always more known for his passing abilities. That notwithstanding, Curry and Thompson are one of the league’s best backcourts, and Thompson has shown better defensive skills than he had been given credit for this season.
Harrison Barnes hasn’t really grown much a player, but he adequately fills his role within the Warriors offense and doesn’t force much. In time, Barnes may be more featured, but he doesn’t detract from the main focuses of Curry, David Lee and Thompson.
Andre Iguodala was a very underrated signing and his defensive ability has been instrumental in Golden State’s much improved defense. He is questionable with a sprained finger. This season, Iguodala is averaging 1.59 steals per game, but is only second on the team as Curry is averaging 1.62 per game. The gambles have paid off for the Warriors thus far, and with a better defense an upset over a top West team is conceivable in the first round.
GSW Trends: 4-0 ATS in last 4 games vs teams with losing SU records; UNDER 5-0 in last 5 following ATS win; UNDER 4-0 in last 4 vs teams with losing SU records.
BOS Trends: OVER 4-0 in last 4 overall; OVER 4-0 in last 4 after allowing 100 points in previous game; 1-4 ATS in last 5 games vs teams with a winning SU record.
Head-to-head: Warriors 3-9 ATS in last 12 meetings in Boston; Warriors 8-3 ATS in last 11 meetings.