Awakened Warriors Huge Favorites Hosting Heat

Jay Pryce

Monday, November 6, 2017 1:49 PM UTC

Monday, Nov. 6, 2017 1:49 PM UTC

The Warriors return to Oracle Arena to host the Miami Heat on Monday (10:30 p.m. ET) after a 3-0 road trip appeared to awaken the reigning NBA champions from their Finals hangover. Golden State is a 16-point favorite. 

Free NBA Pick: Over 226.5Best Line Offered: BetOnline

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Miami Heat at Golden State Warriors (-16, 226.5)

Golden State appears to have scraped off the rust following a slow start to the 2017-18 season. The reigning NBA champions tipped off the year with a lackluster 4-3 SU and 1-6 ATS record, the bottom dropping out in a 115-107 defeat to the Pistons as 13-point chalk on Oct. 29 at Oracle Arena. Following the loss, head coach Steve Kerr publicly criticized his players for their lack of conditioning, focus and fundamentals. Golden State committed a season-high 25 turnovers in defeat. Since, the Warriors have won three straight, outscoring opponents 126.7-104.3 in this span. They covered the spread by 22, 12, and 10 points, respectively. Wake up call received.

Steph Curry looks specifically motivated by Kerr’s admonishment. The two-time MVP registered a career-high 44 plus-minus rating last time out in a 127-107 win at Denver on Saturday night. Curry scored 22 points and doled out 11 assists in the performance. He’s recorded a plus-minus of +35 or more seven times as a professional. The Warriors are 1-6 ATS in the follow-up effort.

The Heat, meanwhile, are in the thick of a season-long 6-game road trip. They pulled off a 104-101 upset win at the Clippers Sunday as 5-point underdogs. Stingy defense led the way, holding L.A. to 39.1 percent shooting from the floor.

Can Miami match similar heroics against the league’s most dangerous offensive team? Tired legs make the task even more daunting. Tonight is Miami’s fourth game in five days. Head coach Eric Spoelestra will have to get creative to keep fresh personnel on the court, especially since guard Dion Waiters is questionable while awaiting the birth of a child. Twice last season Miami played on zero days rest as a road dog on a West Coast swing. Spoelestra proved a magician, winning each outright despite catching 7.5 points at both the Kings and Jazz.

Miami is 3-7 SU and 6-4 ATS all-time at the Warriors as the underdog. All three outright victories occurred in four contests when spotted 5 points or less on the NBA oddsboard. Three times the visitors have caught double digits, covering two and narrowly missing the third by 1 point. For what it’s worth, the Heat have covered every game (five) in this situation when the game total is 207 or higher.

The Heat are built a lot like the Pistons and could present similar problems for Golden State. They are both below-average shooting teams with a strong inside presence. Miami, however, does not generate as many turnovers. Nor does it crash the boards as well, giving up more than its fair share of second-chance opportunities (24.2 percent opponent offensive rebounding rate). They may be able to slow the game in transition, but not prevent Curry and Co. from extra opportunities. Look for Golden State to pop 120-plus points. The Heat stay within range, however. Pick ‘over’ 226.5 for your best bet. Also, check out the SBR Picks Live YouTube page throughout the day to gather more valuable handicapping perspective on this contest.

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